The magic of Gerald Durrell’s childhood can still be experienced and savoured. It is a privilege for me to be with people when they visit Corfu, to watch their sense of enchantment unfold as the sun, sea and flower-filled olive groves that so beguiled the young Gerry once again weave their spell.Lee Durrell
Discover the real Corfu of the Durrells
With its sparkling cobalt sea and beautiful mountainous landscape, it's easy to see why naturalist Gerald Durrell fell in love with Corfu when his family moved there in 1935. His autobiography, My Family And Other Animals, has been brought to our TV screens with The Durrells, and you can follow in the footsteps of the drama's fabulous cast with this trip, where you'll experience the island in the company of Lee Durrell, the wife of the late Gerald.
Meet Lee Durrell
Naturalist Lee Durrell has dedicated her life to wildlife conservation. Lee will give two exclusive talks and share family stories with you, accompanying you as you visit the favourite spots of the Durrells.
Mouse Island, the White House, the Lake of Lilies… you'll see all the places that you've read about in Gerald's book and seen on the TV show. You'll also enjoy a private guided tour of the UNESCO World Heritage site of Butrint in Albania.
You'll receive a complimentary copy of My Family And Other Animals, which Lee will be happy to sign at one of her talks.
Reasons to book
Meet Lee Durrell
Your special guest
- Visit the old haunts of Gerald Durrell with his widow, Lee.
- Stay for five nights in Mayor Mon Repos Palace on a B&B basis.
- Take a private guided tour of Butrint in Albania, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- Be shown the highlights of Corfu's Old Town.
Day1Arrival and talk with Lee DurrellCorfu Town, Greece
On arrival, you will be met and transferred to your hotel for the next five nights - the Mayor Mon Repos Palace. Enjoy some free time before a welcome cocktail reception with Lee Durrell, followed by a talk by Lee reflecting on the legacy of her late husband Gerald and his lifelong love of this magical island. After the talk, we will head to a local restaurant for dinner.
Day2Walking tour of Corfu Old Town and Mouse IslandCorfu Town, Greece
Enjoy a coffee on Corfu Town's renowned arcaded avenue, The Liston, where you will be joined by special guest David Ashcroft, the director of the annual Gerald Durrell Week. Join David for a walking tour of Corfu Old Town, including sites of historical interest and relevance to the Durrell family.
This afternoon you'll visit Mouse Island, a tiny isle in the bay south of Corfu Town that featured prominently in Gerald's most notable book, My Family and other Animals. From here, you can see his Chessboard Fields - marshland rich in wildlife - and the location of the original Strawberry Pink Villa.
Day3Kalami's White House and the Lake of LilliesKalami, Greece
After a leisurely breakfast, we'll drive along the beautiful east coast of the island to Kalami and the White House, the former home of Lawrence and Nancy Durrell. You will have time to explore the area where Larry and Nancy swam and had picnics, and Lee will give a short talk about the history and links to the Durrell family.
Our next stop is the "Lake of Lillies" (locally known as Lake Antiniotissa), which featured in My Family and Other Animals, for a short reading by Lee Durrell and photo opportunities.
From there, it's a short drive to the Villa Alexina Study Centre, the location for the annual Gerald Durrell Week. Lee will give her second talk, which will focus on filming and writing with Gerald Durrell in the 1980s. There'll also be a presentation by a local expert on the medicinal herbs of Corfu.
Day4Old PerithiaOld Perithia, Greece
After breakfast and a relaxed start, enjoy a visit to Old Perithia, an ancient deserted village in the north of the island. You'll have the opportunity to explore the haunting streets and purchase local mountain honey.
Afterwards, we'll return to Corfu Town for a chance to explore, relax or shop - a good opportunity to sample one of the excellent restaurants in Corfu's Old Town.
Today you'll get a taste of another country: enticing Albania. We'll take the short transfer to Corfu Port for a crossing to Saranda on the Albanian coast. From there, we'll head to the Unesco-listed Butrint for a guided tour of this impressive archaeological site.
Day6Final morningCorfu Town, Greece
Enjoy breakfast and free time to make use of the hotel's facilities before your return flight.
Mayor Mon Repos Palace Hotel
Located on the edge of Garitsas bay, with views of the Ionian Sea and the old Venetian Fort in Corfu town, authentic and premium hospitality awaits in the historic Mayor Mon Repos Palace “Art Hotel”, where elegance meets luxury and classic meets contemporary.
Fantastically located just moments from the city, Mayor Mon Repos Art Hotel, with its 18th-century antiques from the Achillion Palace, is a great base from which to explore Corfu. Many stylish rooms offer panoramic view of the Ionian Sea and Corfu's Fort and the closest beach lies only 20 metres away. In the Passaggio Bistrot restaurant, rich flavors are accompanied by regular music events, popular among the locals and visitors alike.
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