Swimming in Canal d’ Amour is one of the top things to do in Sidari, Corfu

Things To Do In Sidari: Must-See Canal d’ Amour & More

Sidari, a small village on Corfu’s northwestern coast, is a popular stop for tourists when visiting the island. The coast here has a fascinating natural landscape feature called the Canal d’ Amour and several sandy beaches along its coast, all surrounded by the crystal-clear turquoise water of the Ionian Sea.

It’s also lined with many restaurants and bars to enjoy dinner or drinks overlooking the sea and offers other day trip options, like the dramatic rock formations at Cape Drastis farther west, a popular sunset bar over Loggas Beach on the west coast, and more.

This post covers the top things to do in Sidari, how to get there, and the best places to stay.

Canal d’ Amour

The highlight of the area and one of the top things to do in Sidari is to visit Canal d’ Amour, which translates to the Tunnel of Love.

The Canal d’ Amour is a beautiful geological feature consisting of sandstone etched by centuries of wind and water. The formations create a long channel of water surrounded by cliffs that are fun for swimming, climbing, exploring, and cliff jumping.

Swimming in Canal d’ Amour is one of the top things to do in Sidari
Canal d’ Amour

There are several legends around this canal. The first is that couples who swim through the canal will be blessed with eternal love. This is how Canal d’ Amour got its name and makes it a popular destination for couples and honeymooners that want to strengthen their bonds.

There are other legends along the same theme, like those who swim through the tunnel at Dionysus Cave will meet their true love on the other side or that the area has mystical powers to help attract and bond soulmates. It’s all about attracting love whether you’re solo or a couple.

In additional to its romantic allure, the Canal d’ Amour is really pretty, and makes a stunning backdrop for swimming, snorkeling, climbing, cliff jumping, selfie-taking, and sunbathing.

Cliff jumping at Canal d’ Amour is one of the top things to do in Sidari
Cliffs For Jumping Near Canal d’ Amour

There are several trails around the formation to explore to see the various beach and cliff areas. They follow the coast to both the east and the west. I first arrived near sunset and spent and hour or so following the trails, exploring the area, and watching people jump off the cliff above. I returned the next day to explore the beach areas.

The area nearby has been built up with cafes and hotels overlooking the waters, so it honestly is a bit touristic, but also convenient.

It is beautiful, but with its popularity it does get busy. Because of this, it’s best to visit early in the morning or late afternoon. I was here in early September, which is slightly off season, but it was still really busy.

Dionysus Cave

Dionysus Cave is the cave you see on the left side of the right formation in Canal d’ Amour below. You can swim into the cave, which is actually a tunnel that goes all the way through the formation. There is also a small area to climb around inside the cave.

Swimming in Dionysus Cave at Canal d’ Amour is one of the top things to do in Sidari
Dionysus Cave

The sandstone ledge above the cave is a popular place for people to climb up and jump into the water.

Of course, be careful swimming in or near the cave, especially if the waves high…and be careful jumping. There is no life guard so swimming here is at your own risk.

Beach D’ Amour

There are several beach areas near the Canal d’ Amour formation, all loosely called Beach d’ Amour. Although these beaches do have golden sand, or tawny brown sand, it’s not plush, thick sand like a typical beach. The attraction is more about the location, the turquoise waters, and the rock formations.

The main beach known as Beach d’ Amour is the small sandy area between the two main rock formations (shown in the first photo with the people on it). This beach area is the most popular as it’s the most visually interesting, so it attracts the most people.

There’s a larger beach area located between the Canal d’ Amour and the D’ Amour Beach Bar Restaurant. It’s on the right side of the photo below. It’s a fairly wide stretch of beach with gentle waves to enjoy the sun.

You can rent pedaloes, canoes, and stand up paddle boards here to explore the Canal d’ Amour formations. There are also two small rock formations in the water here that are popular to swim to and climb around on.

And, as you can see below, you can rent sunbeds and umbrellas on the cliffs by the D’ Amour Beach Bar.


There’s another small, intimate beach area to the east of this (below), on the other side of the D’ Amour Beach Bar. The cliffs here make this tiny beach feel really private. As it’s protected by the cliffs, the waters here are shallow and calm.

Tiny Beach Near Canal d’ Amour

D’ Amore Beach Bar Restaurant

There are several restaurants/bars on the coast near the Canal d’ Amour, but the most iconic is the D’ Amour Beach Bar. It’s the perfect place for your instagram shots with its bold letter spelling out D’ Amour Beach Bar, a large deck overlooking the sea, swing seats, and loungers set up with gauze panels that blow in the breeze.

The food and service here is really good and it’s the perfect place for a cocktail at night.

D’ Amour Beach Bar Restaurant in one of the top things to do in Sidari

If D’ Amour Beach Bar is too fancy, or “instagramy”, for your taste, there are several other more traditional seafood and Greek restaurants nearby, both to the east and to the west. There are also several hotels tucked in the area that have restaurants and bars too.

Sidari Beach

Sidari Beach is a larger beach, located east of the Canal d’ Amour formation. The water here is shallow, so it’s perfect for families. It also offers sun beds and umbrellas for rent and has a variety of water sport opportunities.

There are also many restaurants/cafes along this beach. Some offer free sun beds if you eat at their establishment.

Aprotipiti Beach

Another beach area to explore in Sidari is Aprotipiti Beach. Actually, I think this is in Peroulades, the town west of Sidari, but it’s only an 8-minute walk west of Canal d’ Amour.

This beach area has some rocks you can swim to and climb, like Mermaid’s Rock, and the Kapeses Islet behind it.

To get to this beach from land you need to walk down some rickety steps, so it’s best only for those with good mobility, but it’s a little less crowded than the beaches at Canal d’ Amour. Of course, you can also use a pedalo, kayak, or SUP to get here from Canal d’ Amour via the sea.

This is not an organized beach as there are no sun beds or umbrellas, so you need to bring everything you want.

Megali Beach

On the east side of Sidari, just past the busiest strip of town is another beach called Megali Beach. This is a long, but narrow strip of beach sitting just beside the road making it convenient to access if you’re staying on this side of town. The sand is a little plusher here. I even saw someone grooming it in the morning by the chairs in the photo below. There are sunbeds and umbrellas for rent and a water-sport rental shop.

The mountains in the distance, which I think are in Albania, make it picturesque, even though it’s right on the side of the road.

Megali Beach

Being on the side of the road, it does feel a little unnatural, but for now this is a fairly quiet area of town, so there’s not much traffic. This beach is also somewhat friendly to wheelchairs, as there are no steps to it (just a little curb).

The opposite side of the street (just behind the photo) is lined with restaurants and hotels, also with no or minimal steps, making this beach area wheelchair friendly.

Day Trip To Cape Drastis

Cape Drastis is an even more beautiful dramatic cliff formation than Canal d’ Amour. It’s located closer to the northwestern tip of Corfu, in the village of Peroulades. As it’s a little more remote and more difficult to access, it does not get as many tourists. And because of this, it’s not as built up and retains most of its raw, natural beauty.

Most people view the formation from the clifftop, but you can walk down the steep hill to the sea and take a boat ride from there to see the formations up close. If you arrive on your own boat, you will be free to climb and explore the formations on your own.

Cape Drastis Viewpoint
Cape Drastis

The drive here from Canal d’ Amour is a little over 2.5 miles (4 km) and takes about 20-minutes. You can also take the bus from Sidari to Agios Stefanos, but exit in Peroulades and walk to the clifftop.

I will be creating a post soon with full details on how to get to Cape Drastis and what to do to experience this incredible natural wonder.

Watch the Sunset At 7th Heaven over Loggas Beach

7th Heaven is a well-known restaurant/bar on the west coast of Corfu, about 2.5 miles (4 km) from Sidari, that is perfect to watch the sun set over Loggas Beach. They even have a glass skywalk for a more unobstructed view.

It’s best to visit this restaurant/bar via car or taxi. You can walk from the bus stop in Peroulades during the day (in about 20 minutes), but if you want to be here to see the sunset, you will need a car as the buses do not run late enough.

Day Trip To Agios Stefanos

If you want a relaxing day on a larger, sandier, beach, in a quieter village, take a day trip to Agios Stefanos on the west coast of Corfu.

This was once a small fishing village for the nearby town of Avliotes. The beach, nestled between two hills, offers sunbeds and umbrellas set up in soft, thick, golden sand. It’s hard to see them as the view of the beach is so large…but if you zoom in, there are many.

Agios Stefanos

There’s not much to the village other than the beach, the cute Chapel of Saint Stefanos (which is worth a visit), and a few restaurants for tourists. Agios Stefanos is all about quiet and the beach.

You can also walk down to the port, which is simply stunning as this area is not built up.

Agios Stefanos Port

The main restaurant on Agios Stefanos Beach (Waves) was offering free sunbeds if you ordered a meal with them. There are also unorganized beach areas closer to the cliffs, where people can bring their own chairs and umbrellas. Naturalists also use this beach area.

Agios Stefanos is about 6 miles (10 km) southwest of Sidari. If you have a car, the drive will take about 20-minutes and there is parking by the beach. There is also a green line bus from Sadari to Agios Stephanos. It picks up at the stop near Medditeranno Restaurant in Sidari.

Day Trip To Kassiopi

I did not visit Kassiopi, but it’s another popular day trip from Sidari. Kassiopi is an old fishing village dating back to Byzantine times that is now one of the more affluent parts of Corfu with luxury villas near the port.

There are a variety of beaches to visit, like Avlaki, Kanoni, and Mpataria. There’s also an old castle that you can hike to and explore for free, Kassiopi Castle. This was one of three castles that defended Corfu before the Venetian era. It now lays in ruins (destroyed by the Venetians). Those who have visited say that the walk up its steep path is worth the view of the harbor.

Kassiopi is about a 30-minute drive east of Sidari, about 15 miles (25 km). During the summer months there is a bus from Sidari to Kassiopi.

Where To Eat In Sidari

There are many, many restaurants and cafes along the main strip in Sidari to choose from. My favorites are the following.

Seaside dining is one of the top things to do in Sidari
Greek Village Beachside Restaurant

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Where To Stay In Sidari (or Nearby)

Budget

  • I stayed at Sidari Vibes On The Beach, which is a 25-minute walk to Canal d’ Amour. It has a patio and a kitchenette just across the street from the beach. It’s very quiet in this part of town, and with no steps, it’s wheelchair friendly. The owner is easy to communicate with and everything was clean and comfy. Honestly, I would have preferred to stay closer to Canal d’ Amour, but I booked at the last minute, so the closer options below were not available.

Affordable To Moderate

  • Socrates Apartments are just a few steps away from Canal d’ Amour. This 3-star hotel has an outdoor pool, a garden, a shared lounge, and rooms with ocean and pool views.
  • Located just a few minutes walk to Canal d’ Amour, Akron Seascape Resort offers all-inclusive accommodations with an outdoor pool, a fitness center, and a garden. Each room at this 4-star hotel has pool views.
  • Del Mare Beach Hotel is just a 5-minute walk to Canal d’ Amour. It offers studio apartments with furnished balconies that have views of the sea or the pool. There is also kitchenware and electric kettles. 

If you have a car, these two properties are a little further away and look great. I almost stayed at each, but in the end decided they would be too challenging without a car.

  • Featuring garden views, My Corfu Luxury Villa offers self-catered 2 bedroom, 2 bath apartments with a private pool, a garden, a fully equipped kitchen, and barbecue facilities. Bicycle and car rentals are available. It is located farther away from Canal d’ Amour, about an 8-minute drive, although it looks luxurious and quiet and gets exceptional reviews. This one is a bit more expensive, in the moderate range, but worth it if you want to avoid the touristy areas closer to Canal d’ Amour.
  • Villa Ocean Breeze is on the west coast of Corfu in Avliótai (south of Peroulades). It features stunning sea views, balconies, and a kitchen, 1.2 miles south of Loggas Beach. Because of its remote location, you get an amazing view at an amazing price here!

Best Time To Visit Sidari

The best time to visit Sidari is May through September when days are sunny and warm. Deep summer, however, can be a little on the hot side, and quite humid. Winter will have fewer tourists, but brings frequent rain.

How To Get to Sidari

Sidari is located about 22 miles (37 km) northwest of Old Town Corfu. If traveling by car, the drive will take about an hour.

There is also a bus from the Green Bus Terminal in Corfu Town to Sidari. The journey is about an hour and a quarter. The cost is €3.40. You can buy tickets in the Green Bus Terminal or on the bus with cash only. The bus is air conditioned and there is space to store you luggage under the bus. As an added bonus, the bus drivers are very helpful and kind here.

The final bus stop is on the west side of Sidari, about a 10-minute walk south of the Canal d’ Amour. It’s near Mediterraneo Restaurant.

Want More Of Greece?

Greece is amazing and with over 200 inhabited islands on top of the incredible sites on the mainland, there’s so much to see and do. Here is a list of my favorites.

Mainland Greece

Corfu Island

Crete Island

Ios Island

Kefalonia

Milos Island

Naxos Island

Paros Island

Santorini Island

Zakynthos

Other

For an overview of all the best places in Greece, as well as how to get around, safety, tips, and more, see my Greece Travel Guide.

Safe Travels!

Julie

Hello! I resigned from a corporate career in product development to explore the world. Although my goal was to travel for a year, 8 years later, I’ve been honored to have explored more than 60 gorgeous countries and met some unbelievably amazing people. Our world truly is a beautiful place! Follow me into the gorgeous unknown by subscribing below. You’ll receive details on fabulous destinations, comprehensive travel guides, travel tips and tidbits, and information on travel trends, like experiential, sustainable, and transformational travel. Where is your next gorgeous unknown? Julie

2 Comments

  • Paula Cullison

    Great article on Corfu. So many tourists miss those ‘gorgeous unknowns’. You do a great job of highlighting them. Thanks for the memories.

    • Julie

      Paula, you are so sweet…thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts.
      Julie

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