Only 11,5 km from the southern part of the town, on a small hill, is the most outstanding and the most famous jewel of the island: the Achilleion, a fine and elegant building, associated with important people and romantic stories.
A strange sense of awe overwhelms anyone that gazes over the imposing form of the Palace which dominates the area with its presence, residing between the cypress trees and other exotic plants and flowers which surround it.
Going back to history Achilleion palace was built by the Empress of Austria Elisabeth of Bavaria, also known as Sisi. The palace is designed with the mythical hero Achilles as its central theme. The palace, with the classic Greek statues that surround it, is a monument to platonic romanticism as well as escapism and was, naturally, named after Achilles: Achilleion. There are astonishing gardens surrounding the palace providing a majestic view of the surrounding green hill crests and valleys and the Ionian sea.
After Queen’s Elisabeth death the German Kaiser Wilhelm II purchased Achilleion in 1907. Wilhelm, expanding on the main theme of the grounds, commissioned his own Achilles statue an imposing bronze sculpture that stands tall as a guardian of the Gardens facing north toward the city.
Kaiser’s statue represents Achilles in full hoplite uniform. This tall statue is surrounded by palm trees that complement its graceful outline.
During the First and Second World War the palace was abandoned and inevitably pillaged by the enemy. After years of rebuilding and restoration, the palace was finally restored to its former beauty and is now available to every visitor on Corfu Island and one of the most famous destinations for Transfers Corfu.