It is here that the Ottoman Turks stopped advancing westwards .
The fortresses and fortifications surrounding the town are a living monument where visitors can go when they come to Corfu town. If you wander around the small cobbled streets, on the fortifications, between the different buildings, if you have coffee or dinner at the various cafes and restaurants, you will experience pictures and feelings.
You will find your soul relaxing on the green scenery and the beautiful old town.
The mind travels to the open sea, searching for old traces. It is looking for the places where took place the battles of the Ancient Greeks, as described by Thucydides , it is searching for Antony and Cleopatra , for the places where the crusaders would stop for a short rest. You can "see" galleys and ship coming back in triumph after the naval battle of Nafpaktos . You can see the Turkish fleet on their last unsuccessful attempt to advance westwards. You can feel the agony of the united Christian fleet, the agony of the defenders . You can hear, in the empty rooms, the orders, the shouting and the celebrations. You can feel through the cobbled streets the prayers of the besieged, the gratitude processions to Saint Spyridon, the " Protector" .
A walk on the fortresses of Corfu town os not to be missed. It is the only place of the world where you can see the history of 2500 years in its most dramatic moments, with just one look .
The two fortresses are situated at the eastern and western parts of the old Town. In the past, fortifications led from one fortress to the other. Today, we only have few parts of the fortifications left, as well as two of the gates to the town. The first is the " Spilia Gate " (Porta Spilea), also called "Bonati Arch " (see photo) and it is in front of the old port, while the other one is the " Gate of Saint Nicolas " (San Nicolo) and it is on the sea front, at the far end of the Spianada Square, at a region called Faliraki .
Created by top architects and engineers, the fortresses of Corfu are two of the most important defensive complexes constructed all around the Mediterranean . Their effectiveness was proved by the repeated repulsions of the Turks. They themselves constitute important specimens of the military defense technique and engineering of their time (15th to 18th centuries)
The entire Old Fortress , the way that it is preserved today, is a special walking place, unique in its kind.
The New Fortress constructed in the 16th century is particularly interesting for its defense technique and architecture . Both fortresses offer a panoramic view over the countryside, the Town, the suburbs and the sea.