Ionian ferriesIonian ferriesFerries in the Ionian
Greek Islands Travel

New ferry links for the Ionian islands

Azimut ferry Joy
Ferry timetable Ionian islands

The Ionian islands look set to get a new ferry to link some of the biggest holiday hotspots in Greece.

The Ionian chain includes the very popular holiday islands of Corfu, Kefalonia, Lefkas and Zante.

Although they attract thousands of UK visitors each year, ferry links between the islands have always been notoriously poor.

Now a ferry route to link all the Ionian islands for the first time looks ready to set sail on May 1 and run right through the summer season until the end of October.

Shipping Minister Panagiotis Kouroumblis announced the new ferry service at the Regional Development Conference of the Ionian islands.

The new sea ferry services will be run by Azimut Joy Cruises with a 30-metre ship that will carry up to 260 passengers.

The Minister said: "The linking of the Ionian islands will be a new reality that will put an end to the isolation between islands belonging to the same region".

The new ferry will link Corfu with Paxi, Lefkada, Ithaca, Kefalonia and Zakynthos with sailings every day except Sunday.

Each week the ferry with travel from Corfu, in the north, to Zante (Zakynthos), in the south, every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and back again (Zante to Corfu) on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

The full journey will take about eight hours, leaving Corfu at 8 am and arriving in Zakynthos about 4 pm. Details of sailing time can be found on the right.

It's only in Greek at the moment but those with a basic knowledge of the Greek alphabet will be able to decipher the islands of ΚΕΡΚ"Ρ' ΚΕΡΚΥΡA (CORFU), ΠAΞΟΙ (PAXOS), ΛΕΥΚADA (LEFKADA), ΙΘAΚH (ITHAKA), ΚΕΦAΛΟΝΙA (KEFALONIA) and ZAΚΥΝΘΟS (ZAKYNTHOS) or something similar.

Although plenty of ferries call at these islands they are usually heading east-west on routes between the mainlands of Italy and Greece.

There are a few local inter-island ferries but these usually just day cruises, have poor connections and irregular sailing times. This is the first ferry to run the whole length of the Ionian islands. 

With three passenger and car ferries plus two flying dolphins, Joy Lines, a subsidiary of Joy Cruises, has been operating since 2005 running day cruises and tours from Corfu to Albania.

The launch of this new Ionian ferry service could trigger a wave of island hopping tourists who can now sail from island to island. 

As the closest Greek islands to the UK, the Ionian islands can be reached in flight times of three hours or so. The Ionian group lies off the west coast of mainland Greece and the are notably greener than other islands thanks to heavy winter rains.

Good sandy beaches and shallow seas help to make most islands in the Ionian chain very popular with families. Corfu, Kefalonia, Lefkas and Zante are the best known but the smaller islands of Paxos and Ithaka are also well worth a visit.

Add a comment...
Name
Email
 
Message
Enter security letters
Ionian ferries
  • Stephen

    This service is a fantastic idea, but as a tourist, I need to book in English and know which ports that the ferry serves. All tourists staying say in Zakynthos for two weeks would Love to ring a hotel, say in Ithaki, and book a room, then book the ferry. This service is missing, the company should look into overnight, two or three night stay overs. This would generate great business.

Greek Islands Travel Leisure Guides and Advice

© 2012 - 2018 Aldelyme Ltd UK