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Pelekas: This hilltop village in Corfu has evolved
into an inland tourist resort because of its proximity to popular beaches.


Nearby Glyfada on the coast and small beaches, such as Kontogialos and Gialiskari, can be reached down steep lanes and tracks. Above Pelakas village, a famous viewpoint, known variously as the Kaiser's Lookout, Tower or Throne, has added to the busy trail of summer visitors. It was to this hilltop that Kaiser Wilhelm II motored frequently from the Achilleion Palace to admire the spectacular sunsets off the west coast.

The viewpoint is reached by following a steep road signposted from the centre of Pelekas. Just before the summit, the road passes between the tiny whitewashed Church of the Virgin of the Annunciation and its bell-tower. There is parking at the road end, from where a paved path leads under a little archway and on through trees to the circular viewpoint with its railing and seats.

The views are spectacular; east to Corfu Town and Vidos Island, northwest along the green trough of the Ropa Valley, south to Mount Agios Mattheos, and west across a green wooded landscape to the western sea. Bring your own binoculars; the mounted pair at the lookout may not work. Pelekas itself retains the charm of a typical Corfiot hill village, although development has begun to erode its traditional character. There are several tavernas and cafés, plus numerous shops and tourist agencies. In the central square, with its war memorial and well-kept church, an old sea mine, now painted blue and white, serves as an eccentric plant pot.

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