In the heart of Corfu Town, you will find the Spianada, the largest square in Greece.
In the heart of Corfu Town, you will find the Spianada, the largest square in Greece. At 42,000 square metres, it is ranked 27th largest in the world. First created in 1516 by the Venetians and later expanded in 1537. Its configuration altered in 1628, with the extension of the boundaries and the demolition of buildings. During the 19th century, using the legacy of Napoleon Zampelis, it took its final form. The name Spianada comes from the Italian Spianare, which means level.
It has always played a vital role in Corfu’s history. Its creation was not due to aesthetic or urban development reasons but rather with defence in mind. Its vast area and visibility gave the defenders of the old fortress plenty of space to protect the town. The area in between the square and the fortress remains clear of buildings. The narrow streets leading away from it run perpendicular to it. These follow the rules of Venetian fortification.
The Spianada has two areas; the northern part known as Kato Spianada and the southern, the largest of the two, Ano Spianada. Throughout the Spianada, you will find statues and monuments. In the southern part an ornate fountain. In the northern part a cricket field, a remnant of the British occupation.
Today, the Spianada is not used with defence in mind but for recreation. A popular meeting place for residents and visitors, it’s a great place to sit and enjoy your surroundings whilst the swallows fly overhead.