I honestly believe that the absolute Best Way to get from Athens to Corfu is by taking the 1-hour direct flight.
To be fair, if you are flying from anywhere within Europe to Greece chances are there might be a direct flight from a major European city to Corfu as there are hundreds of direct flights to Corfu from all over Europe every year. This applies basically to every Ionian island.
This could be a much better option than flying to Athens first and then looking to get the bus/ferry, so I highly recommend you check that first!
But if you have to go through Athens then here are the 2 options you have:
|How Long It Takes||Cost*|
|Bus to Igoumenitsa & Ferry|
(bus/drive to Igoumenitsa port and then ferry)
|6 hours |
(it’s 4.5 hours drive & the ferry from Igoumenitsa is 1.5 hours)
|44 euros bus to Igoumenitsa and 6 euros for the ferry|
(from Athens Intl. Airport)
|1 hour||100 to 200 euros|
There are no direct ferries from Athens to Corfu so you have to reach the town of Igoumenitsa and then take the 1.5-hour ferry to get to Corfu. I honestly think that this is too much hassle if you only have a few days on the beautiful island of Corfu so I highly recommend you take the direct flight from Athens International Airport. However, if you do decide to get the bus to Igoumenitsa and then the quick ferry you would see 1/3 of Greece along the way.
- Ferryhopper is the largest and most safe website in Greece to book your ferry tickets from Athens to Corfu, but you can also use it just for checking timetables and prices between Athens and all greek islands.
- Expedia has all the available options for flights from Athens to Corfu (CFU is Corfu airport code) with all possible airlines (Aegean, Olympic, Sky Express, Ryanair)
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It’s obvious that whatever I explain in this post also applies to the return trip from Corfu to Athens.
ATHENS TO CORFU TIPS:
- Best way To get From Athens to Corfu: by direct flight (1 hour) because it’s simply a lot faster; the ferry might be worth checking though if money is an issue or if you cannot find a flight ticket
- Best Website for Ferry Prices & Timetables: Ferryhopper
- There is no direct ferry from Athens to Corfu
- Bus from Athens to Igoumenitsa: you have to take it from the Central KTEL Bus Station (on Google Maps) which is unfortunately one of the worst in the country and really old-fashioned and chaotic (see below how to get there)
- Igoumenitsa town on Google Maps
- Between April-October there is usually a ferry from Igoumenitsa to Corfu every hour, pretty much.
- How long is the ferry ride from Athens to Corfu: there is no direct ferry, but you have to drive to Igoumenitsa first (4 hours) and then take the 1.5 hours ferry
- How much does it cost to take a ferry from Athens to Corfu: there is no direct ferry from Athens but the ferry from Igoumenitsa costs around 6 euros but then you also have to pay the bus to get from Athens to Igoumenitsa which is usually around 45 to 50 euros
- Where to Get the bus from Athens to Igoumenitsa: from Kifissos KTEL Bus Station
- Best Way to Get From Athens Airport to KTEL Kifissou Bus Station is by taking the Express Bus X93 (see its route here)
- Where to Book the Bus from Athens to Igoumenitsa: you have 2 options: from KTEL Kerkyras (select Kerkyra as your destination) or KTEL Thesprotias (select Igoumenitsa as your destination)
- You must book your ferry online and you can then enter the ferry with the barcode that will be on the email that will be sent to you. This will be clearly written on the email you will receive from Ferryhopper and it is now the system that most ferry companies use BUT some smaller companies may ask you to get a printout from a kiosk that is outside of the ferry and it is this print out that will allow you to enter the ferry. As a rule of thumb, if your ticket you got through email from Ferryhopper has a barcode then you can enter the ferry directly.
- How long is the flight from Athens to Corfu: the flight is 1 hour long, and checking in is usually quick but you have to be 2 hours in advance at the airport, as with any flight in the world.
- Direct International Flights to Corfu: there are many international flights to Corfu from all over Europe and if you have no interest on visiting Athens, I highly recommend you fly directly to Corfu from a European city. in fact, if you are flying from the US or Canada, I recommend you fly to a European city first and then take a direct flight to Corfu. Going through Athens might be too much of a hassle.
- The Best Airline to fly from Athens to Corfu is Aegean Airlines (Check flights on Expedia)
- Strikes in Greece: strikes can happen anytime in Greece and for any means of public transportation within short notice; usually, they may happen on Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays; yes, they may mess up your trip but they are necessary for the hard-working people of Greece so that they can have decent salaries and benefits for their lives. So, get over it and try to find some alternatives for your trip (a taxi is usually the best option).
- Strong Winds – Ferries Cancellations: in case there are strong winds (which can be pretty common in August in Greece), then the Greek Port Authorities may stop all ferries from departing, so bear in mind this is also a possibility that can mess up your trip; as an average there might be 4-5 days during the summer months that this can happen so get prepared
- Punctuality of ferries in Greece: in general, all ferries in Greece depart on time with no delays, and they won’t wait for you if you are late; however, they don’t always arrive on time as there are weather or other conditions that may affect their route to the islands along the way
- Business Seats on Ferries in Greece: in my opinion, they are not worth the extra money as you only get a bit more space and a slightly quiet area to sit but even the standard seats are very spacious
- The Ferry Schedule for all greek islands is announced only 2-3 months before the actual trips, so if you cannot find any scheduled ferries for your trip 3 years from now, please check again 2 months before your actual trip.
Ok, so let’s see all the available options from Athens to Corfu (that also apply to the return trip from Corfu to Athens):
Athens to Corfu Ferry Schedule
Let me be clear first: there is no direct ferry from Athens to Corfu nor from Corfu to Athens.
These ferries only connect Corfu to Igoumenitsa, so you have to go to Igoumenitsa first!
There are many ferries per day, though, from Igoumenitsa port.
Here is an example of a Ferry Schedule from Igoumenitsa to Corfu in September from Ferryhopper:
This is just an example of a ferry schedule, though!
For the latest Ferry schedule, always check on Ferryhopper.
The winter ferry schedule is less frequent, with probably fewer ferries a day.
BUS FROM ATHENS TO CORFU
The Corfu Local Bus company (called Green Buses) operates a route from Athens to Corfu, which is basically a bus that will take you from Athens Central Bus station in Kifissos and then to Igoumenitsa to take the ferry.
The bus ride takes about 4.5 hours and then 1.5 hours on the ferry to Corfu. Once you reach the ferry port of Corfu there is a small ride to the central bus station of Corfu, so basically it will drop you to the center of Corfu town.
The ticket for this bus DOES NOT include the ferry ticket, which you must pay once you arrive in Igoumenitsa.
Alternatively, you can take a KTEL Bus that will take you to Igoumenitsa port only and then you have to take the ferry by yourself (it’s literally the same thing…).
BUS FROM ATHENS TO IGOUMENITSA
The other thing you can actually do to reach Corfu (“Kerkyra” in greek) is just to take a direct KTEL Bus from Athens to Igoumenitsa.
These buses are operated by “KTEL Thesprotias” (different bus company than the Corfu bus) but they also depart from the Central Bus Station in Athens (Kifissos).
Obviously, when you arrive at Igoumenitsa you then have to hop on to the ferry (there is one ferry every hour) and they never sell out but it’s a good idea to book it in advance online through Ferryhopper.
ATHENS BUS STATION (KIFISSOS)
Athens Bus Station is located in Kifissos area and it’s probably the worst in the country with very old facilities and amenities, that is also pretty difficult to reach as it’s not close to anything.
Here is Kifissos Bus Station on Google Maps.
HOW TO GET TO KIFISSOS BUS STATION
There are only Athens buses that serve Kifissos Bus Terminal in Athens and there is no metro connection.
So here are the possible ways you can reach the station:
- From Athens International Airport: you have to take the X93 Express Bus
You can also see the details of X93 Route and timetables on the official website of Athens Buses.
- From Piraeus Port to Kifissos Bus Station: you have to take the 420 Bus
FLIGHTS TO CORFU
The best and cheapest website to book or search for flights to Corfu is Expedia, as it has all the available options (including any available low-cost airlines like Ryanair).
A few useful info to have in mind when booking your flight to Corfu:
- Corfu Airport on Google Maps
- Athens Airport Code is : ATH (Athens)
- Corfu Airport Code is: CFU (Corfu)
- Every plane that lands on Corfu, takes off after 1 hour to fly back to Athens.
- The exact times of the flights change and they are not the same throughout the year, so make sure you get the right times from Expedia as it will give you all the available flights immediately.
- There are more flights from Athens to Corfu between April – October (high season)
- If you book your tickets well in advance (6 months) you could probably find some very good deals with return tickets.
- The cost of the flight from Athens to Corfu may come up to 250 euros during the high season (April-October)
The airlines that fly from Athens to Corfu (April-October) are:
I highly recommend you fly to Corfu instead of taking the bus and ferry from Athens.
There are flights to and from to Corfu from pretty much anywhere in Europe and this is actually very convenient as it’s much better to fly directly to the island from anywhere in Europe instead of messing around with the buses and ferries that will also take ages.
In my honest opinion, it’s definitely worth flying to Corfu and you should do it instead of taking the bus and the ferry from Igoumenitsa. You will be on the island within 2.5 hours in total (1 hour flight and 1.5 hours for the check-in process at the airport).
Corfu Airport is International, which means there are direct flights from: London, Milan, Rome, Amsterdam, Paris, Munich, Brussels, Tel Aviv, Berlin, Warsaw, Glasgow, Birmingham, Newcastle, Manchester and many more European destinations.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How long is the ferry ride from Athens to Corfu?
There is no direct ferry to Corfu from Athens, so you have to take a bus that will take you to Igoumenitsa port first, that takes 4.5 hours and then the ferry takes 1.5 hours to get to Corfu. The journey might take more than 6 hours overall and is not worth it. A direct flight to Corfu is always more convenient and faster (but more expensive).
What is the best way to travel from Athens to Corfu?
The best way to travel from Athens to Corfu is by a direct flight because it is relatively quick and easier than going through the hassle of getting the bus to Igoumenitsa and then the ferry. The flight is only 1 hour on the air and Corfu Airport is one of the most modern in Greece.
Is it better to fly or ferry to Corfu?
It is better to fly to Corfu because in order take the ferry you need to get to Igoumenitsa port first which is 4.5 hours drive or bus ride from Athens. The bus and the ferry to Corfu might be a better option if money is an issue and you are looking for the absolute cheapest way to get to the island.
You basically have 2 options to get from Athens to Corfu: by plane or by a bus and ferry. I recommend to take the flight instead of the bus and ferry because the bus and the ferry combination takes too long and it’s not that straight forward. This is valid if you are also a family with young kids.
However, if you do take the bus to Igoumenitsa and then the ferry, you will see almost 1/3 of Greece along the way with some very impressive landscapes of western Greece, which can be a nice experience too.