If we had the opportunity to have a look at the old town of Corfu in the past and specifically during the Venetian occupation, we would have a very different picture that does not look at all like the one we have today. The strategically way that the buildings of the time were built and structured had to be in line with the main plan of protecting the areas from impending attacks. According to the specifications at the time and within the walls that defined the city of Corfu, impressively tall buildings were built on three hills, the hills of Kampielo, Agion Pateron and Porta Remounta.
Porta Remounta area has many important historical elements and features of the conquerors of the island over the years. With four-storey buildings built during the Venetian occupation (1386-1797) and even seven-storey apartment buildings, built during the British occupation (1814-1864). The whole area is built on a hill that ends at the well-known beautiful “Plateia Dimarxeiou” or Duomo as it is called and then at the famous and biggest square Spianada .
During the Venetian occupation, the most important event of the year for Corfu, were the equestrian competitions of the nobles that took place on this street.
Porta Remounta is also known for the impressive and recently remodeled “Plati Kantouni” or Moustoxydi Street, named after the Corfiot philologist and historian, Andreas Moustoxydis. The wide canton was also called Strada Larga, ie wide street and stood out for its width, compared to all the cantons of the city that usually range in 2-3 m ..
During the Venetian occupation, the most important event of the year for Corfu, the equestrian competitions of the nobles, that used to take place on this street, on the last Thursday of the Carnival. These equestrian competitions were also called Giostre and were held in memory of the bloody, equestrian competitions of the Middle Ages. During this race, two cavalrymen with non-sharp spears galloped to the point where they had to pull out a small iron ring and reach to the point where they had to pierce a manikin.
Walking, today in this area you will admire many old Venetian mansions built in the 19th century, with unique details, highlighting The Riki Mansion at number 17, with the decorative head sculptures (or mourionia ), located at the top of the building arch.and the balcony which was an ideal place for the nobles to watch the equestrian competitions that used to take place there in the Venetian years.
Moustoxidi or Plati Kantouni Street was the inspiration for the creation of two more streets on the island, Homer Street, in the Garitsa bay, and Spyrou Doui Street in the Mandouki area, which, as the inhabitants used to say, were made as an imitation of it.
While strolling around the old town, do not forget to admire the beauty of two more typical buildings, the Ionian Parliament, and the Ionian Academy. It is also worth visiting the picturesque neighborhoods of Tenedos that descends the Scholenburg Street.
Sourtzinos, C. George (2008) “Toponyms linguistic testimonies in the historical route of Corfu”