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Esplanade (Spianada) description and photos - Greece: Corfu (Kerkyra). Detailed information about the attraction. Description, photographs and a map showing the nearest significant objects. The name in English is Spianada.
Photo & Description
The Esplanade, also known as Spianada, is the largest and most popular square in Corfu (Kerkyra) and the second largest square in Europe. It is located between the Old Fortress and the city. Until the 19th century, this territory was a huge wasteland and was used by the townspeople for defense purposes.
The Esplanade, as we see it today, became a public square and park area of the city during the French rule on the island. It was the French who laid out here a cozy city park with an abundance of greenery and cozy alleys. The square is surrounded by buildings from different historical eras, which played an important role in the development of the city and the island. On the sea side is the Old Fortress of Paleo Frurio. On the north side of the square rises the imposing British neoclassical building, the Palace of St Michael and St George (Royal Palace). The building was constructed from Maltese limestone in 1819-1824 according to the project of the English engineer, Colonel, Sir George Whitmore. On the west side, the square is bordered by a street overlooked by a massive arched complex known as Liston. It was built in 1807 by the French architect Mathieu de Lessep in the image of the Rue de Rivoli in Paris. Today it houses cozy and sophisticated restaurants and cafes.
On the square there is a monument to Ioannis Kapodistrias, who was a native of Corfu and the first president of Greece. There is also a monument to Thomas Maitland (the first British High Commissioner on the island). There is a marble monument by the fountain, dedicated to the unification of the island of Corfu and Greece, on which the symbols of all the Ionian Islands are carved.
Today, the Esplanade is the busiest part of modern Corfu and a favorite meeting place for citizens and visitors to the city. It is a kind of center for trade, recreation, social activities and the most important city events. Every year during the summer, the square hosts a cricket tournament, which became popular during the British rule.
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Topic: Esplanade (Spianada) description and photos - Greece: Corfu (Kerkyra).