This amphitheatrically built 16th century settlement with its rich history, is characterized by its picturesque alleys, old stone mansions, newer colourful houses, beautiful churches and pretty squares set in the lush, green landscape that surrounds it
It is located 25 km from Corfu Town. Built on the mountain of the same name, it allegedly was the venue for King Alcinous’ wedding, so many of the residents call it “Wedding Mountain”.
Agios Mattheos is a settlement with about 1500 inhabitants, with their main occupation being agriculture. However, the Philharmonic Society of Agios Mattheos, “Lorentzos Mavilis”, founded in 1965, which is located on the main street of the settlement, is also of great importance.
Back in time, in the area where the current village of Agios Mattheos is located, Barbarossa and his pirates looted and destroyed the original village called Zygonos. The remaining residents sought security by building the new village amphitheatrically, in the mountainous part of the area.
The16th Century Monastery of the Pantocrator Christ has pride of place at the apex of the mount. It is no longer operational and is closed to the public. It does however have an absolutely fabulous view of the Adriatic Sea and surrounding verdant area. According to tradition, on August 6, Agios Mattheos gathers a large crowd for the festival held in commemoration of the Transfiguration of the Savior, Jesus Christ.
A steep road leads from the village to the Monastery of Pantokrator and the Grava Cave. At the top of the mountain the Grava Cave, also known as the “Cave of the Sea”, which according to the inhabitants of the island communicates with the sea, is situated.
Situated close to the Gardiki Fortress, about 400 meters from the main road, Grava Gardiki cave has two entrances. Positioned on the south side of the hill with views across the valley below, it is also referred to as the “Glow Worm Cave”. Research revealed evidence of habitation in the area around 20.000 BC, (Paleolithic era). It is considered to be the oldest settlement on Corfu. Goat and deer bones, flints and other artifacts were discovered during excavation.
Visit the Byzantine Gardiki Castle which dates back to the thirteenth century, and is located on a low hill in close proximity to the village. Its location at the narrow southwest flank of Corfu provided protection to the southern lowlands and in combination with Kassiopi Castle on the northeastern coast and Angelokastro on the northwestern shore, formed a triangular line of defense which protected Corfu during the pre-Venetian era (1401–1797).The walls of Gardiki Castle form an octagon and the structure features eight towers decorated by rows of tiles.
Around the Village Agios Mathheos
Video: Agios Mathaios Corfu Greece by drone 4K Christos Servos