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Ferries to Ionian Islands

The Ionian archipelago sprawls down the west and south coast of Greece, comprising Kerkyra, Paxi, Lefkada, Ithaki, Kefalonia, Zakynthos and Kythira.

As soon as you step off the ferry, you’ll be immersed in their rich history, which is evident in the numerous landmarks and architecture.

Kerkyra, commonly known as ‘Corfu’, is the most visited and popular of the islands. One of the highlights is the Palace of St Michael and St George. Previously the residence of British High Commissioners, it’s now home to the world-renowned Museum of Asian Art. A tour around this gallery will show you over 10,000 priceless Asian artefacts.

Also on Corfu is the impressive Palaoi Frourio fortress, built in the 15th Century. It was used to successfully repelled all three major Ottoman Empire sieges in 1537, 1571 and 1716 and makes for a fascinating day out.

On Zakynthos, be sure to visit the Roma Family mansion in Zante Town. It was built in 1660 and was one of the few buildings to be left standing after the 1953 earthquake. It hosts stylish period furnishings and large, beautifully decorated rooms, giving you a real insight into its history.

Delve further into the islands’ past with a visit to the Venetian style castle, Kastro, on Kythira. It sits in front of an enormous cliff, offering breath taking coastal views.

There are many Ionian sites and landmarks referenced in Homer’s Iliad. One of the most popular is the Fountain of Arethousa on Ithaki, which is where Odysseus’ swineherd brought his pigs to drink. It’s well hidden amongst untouched landscape and the round trip takes around three hours, so bring plenty of water and something to eat.

The Ionian Islands are well connected by ferry, with crossings from mainland Greece and the Italian east coast as well.

The Greek departure points are in Kyllini, Ithaka and Kefalonia, with services running almost every day.

If travelling from Italy, you can depart from Ancona. This route is operated by Anek Lines Superfast Ferries, who offers a leisurely half day journey to Corfu.

You can also sail from Bari and Brindisi once and twice a week respectively. These journeys last about a day on high-speed, comfortable ferries.

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Popular Ferry Operators

  • Ventouris Ferries
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  • Anek Superfast
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  • Minoan Lines
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Ionian Islands reviews

  • "Great service, included accommodating our change of date request"

    Thank you Minoan Lines, we really appreciated you accommodating our change of date request after we made a mistake. The ferry was clean and well run with really efficient staff, the only issue was that some of the seating allocations meant that couples weren't sat together but the staff on the ship were great and managed it so people weren't separated. Thank you

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  • "Enjoyable"

    I was pretty apprehensive doing this ferry crossing as I get motion sickness & I know the Cyclades are known for the Meltemi winds in August. I must say though that I didn’t feel at all sick, the boarding was easy & the seats were big leather chairs. Totally enjoyed the 45 min trip from Mykonos to Paros.

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  • "Really nice trip! "

    The trip was grear, it was my first travel by ferry and I really enjoy it, very nice and comfortable. Only thing I would change would be an issue with departure time. We took the ferry from Heraklion terminal to Thira. Ship departure was scheduled at 9.40, but when we bought our tickets it was adviced to be 2 hours earlier from departure time. When we arrive, we couldn't board until 1 hour before departure, so we had to wait in the port terminal.

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  • "Aircon"

    One of the worst experiences I've ever had in my entire life. The air-condition in the closed areas was unbelievably on low temperature. My sensor on my I phone gave me 13 Celsius drafting on the floor from the roof and the static temperature of the area was 17 Celsius. This make me feel that the cold was drilling my flesh and my bones all the night. The service of course of the crew was unbelievable on good quality.

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Onboard the ferries

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Ship guides, videos & reviews

Routes and Ports in Ionian Islands