Spianada Square in Corfu

Spianada Square is the largest in Corfu and in the entire Balkans, as impressive as it is historic.

Spianada Square and the Old Fortress of Corfu
Spianada Square and the Old Fortress of Corfu

In 1576, the inhabitants began to demolish the buildings around the fortress in order to increase its visibility and defensive capacity. It is estimated that about 2,500 houses were demolished within 2.5 years.

The area was later planted with trees by the French, creating the now historic Spianada Square in the centre of Corfu town. A walk in Spianada is pleasant and a must, as the view of the sea is magnificent.

Walking around the square, you can also see the Maitland Rotunda, built in honour of Sir Thomas Maitland, the English Commissioner, and buy prickly pears from the various market traders in the square. In the square you will usually listen to a small band or the city’s philharmonic orchestra playing classical music or jazz.

maitland rotunda in spianada square in corfu
The Maitland Rotunda in Spianada Square is a rotunda with 20 Ionic columns, constructed in 1821

Spianada is also the place where the Resurrection service is held on Holy Saturday. On Holy Saturday, the custom of the “botides” is revived in Corfu Town.

The best place to watch the custom of the jugs is the pentofanaro in Spianada, which offers a panoramic view of the balconies of the square decorated with burgundy cloths, from where Corfiots at 11 in the morning throw the jugs while biting an old key to exorcise the evil spirits.