Neighbourly neighbours in Corfu 

The bay of Kalami Corfu made for a nice lunch stop on our drive day

190919 1 Our neighbour Lady Vienna Hans and Gabi190916 2 Sorting out the dinghy with help from Hans Lady Vienna


With a broken windlass and no water making facilities we were marina bound in Corfu. The intention was originally to have the water maker parts awaiting our arrival in Gouvia Marina on Monday 9th of September and for Andrew to make a rapid replacement enabling us to depart by Thursday. Now with the need of a new windlass we were definitely in for a longer stay.

Having spent very little time in marinas this season we were instantly reminded of how social staying in a marina can be. In our unexpected ten day sojourn we met more Aussies then we have in our entire time cruising onboard Katherine. We also found ourselves tucked up in the best neighbourhood with two completely different styles of boats but people with the best attitude. 

Hans and Gabi from Holland were onboard their Ferretti 68  Power Boat and Stefan from Germany on his 56 Foot Lagoon sailing cat. There was a definite banter between the boats with Hans winning on the the most engine power and the biggest crane, Stefan winning on real estate and Katherine for her clean lines and sailing ability. 

On the main road heading North on Corfu - narrow was one word that came to mind.

The Palace of Achilleion

190915 3 Driving the south side stop 1 Achillion Palace


While waiting for parts we hired a car to drive around the island of Corfu. Well after having driven North on our first day then South on our second day we came to the conclusion that there isn't really that much to see on the island of Corfu outside of the beautiful Old Town and that the island is far better viewed from the water. 

190915 7 Driving the south side stop 1 Achillion Palace

We chose to first visit one of the "must see places" on the tourist list, The Palace of Achilleion built in 1890 by Empress Elizabeth of Austria as a place to visit for her well being. After her assassination in Geneva at the age of 60 the estate was purchased by a German Kaiser and during the first World War was used as a military hospital. In the 70’s and 80’s it ran as the Corfu Casino before being turned into its current role as a museum. Throughout the palace building and grounds there were elements of impressive artwork and many statues but the gardens which were noted as being part of the beauty of a visit were sadly in neglect. 

Next we attempted to find the Korision Lagoon listed as a haven for wildlife and with a stretch of “most beautiful dunes”. The attempt was terminated when the road turned to a shaley dirt track that threatened a tyre puncture. A careful retreat was the only option. 

190918 2 The Ipapanti Church 1713

The Ipapanti Church originally built in 1713

190918 4 The Ipapanti Church 1713

Back in the marina with the car returned undamaged from the Corfu experience we headed out in the dinghy to check out the small church that was prominent across the bay. 

Unexpectantly the  church was open and attended by a friendly and helpful volunteer who provided an information brochure on the history of the church and was not letting Lee out without a photo. 

190918 5 The Ipapanti Church 1713 Lee

Built originally in 1713 during Venetian rule the church passed through the hands of several families until it was left abandoned. In 1996 a local committee was formed from members of the Christian Community and with the assistance of engineers and the archaeological authorities the church was restored using everything that could be returned to its original form. The three alter doors are over 280 years old and were stored during the restoration period in the Byzantine Museum for safe keeping and restoration. It was special to have have had the opportunity to appreciate not only the building as a place of worship but as a community achievement to preserve a piece of history. 

190919 4 Andrew Lee Hans Gabi and Stefan Corfu Marina (1)

Our wonderful neighbours 

190918 7 All hands on deck Stefan Hans and Andrew installing Dave


So as for those jobs keeping us in the marina. 

1: Fix the water maker. Well after having pulled it apart, installed the new part which Andrew had doubts about its authenticity as a “new part” due to rust stains throughout, it was determined that it definitely wasn’t a new part and we were still without a working water maker. Frustrated at such an error it was agreed to have the “new, new” part sent to Ragusa Marina where Katherine will winter. 

190919 2 Hangover Stefans Lagoon

2: Replace the windlass. Sounds easy except the space in which the windlass was fitted definitely defied understanding as to how it was installed in the first place. A combination of sheer strength, body gymnastics and patience was required to just remove the old one. To install the new was a completely different challenge particularly as the motor that needed to be lifted and squeezed into place weighed around 45kgs. Without the help of our neighbours Hans and Stefan, the ingenuity of inflating fenders to hold the motor in place, we would have struggled to achieve the installation of our new windlass. 

With jobs done, including Han's grey water tank sensor issue sorted and Stefan's jet ski safely secured back onboard it was time to farewell new friends with the hope that our boats will cross paths again.

With just a few weeks left in our sailing season we needed to get sailing and to check out a few of the Ionian Islands. 

(For more photos) 

© SV Katherine 2018      Cover Photo: Katherine on Anchor Isle Tabarca Spain