From the few areas of Corfu, where the Venetians did not intervene at all to replace the natural vegetation with olive groves, Erimitis is preserved as a sample of the authentic Corfiot nature. Its cultural value is directly related to the preservation of the natural landscape and the ecosystem.
By land or by sea, the visitor can get exactly the same sensations as the heroes of the Homeric era, when present on the eastern coast of the island. Or the impressions of those who, by the 20th century, sailed with wooden ships along the coast and gazed out at the wild vegetation of the hills and the coastline.
Elements of the human presence of past times have been harmonized with the landscape and are a unique experience.
This little rock islet has its own story. The following excerpt from Eleni Sarakinou’s book “Kassiopi: A Small Place, A Great Story …” takes us to its very old pages and to the myth.
“… It is connected to the ship of Ulysses, as it is regarded by some as the rocky ship that Ulysses returned with to Ithaca. But it is also said that the storm around Caparelli inspired William Shakespeare in his short story “The Tempest”. On his journey out of the Kassiopi Strait he saw the waves breaking on the rocky island when the wind faded. Then ‘The Island of the Tempest’ that starred in his work (p. 73). was born in the imagination of the English writer”.
In the Odyssey, according to E. Sarakinou (p. 57): “The wandering king of Ithaca sailed from the Island of Calypso with his raft and after days was washed away on the island of Phaeakes, where the mythical Alkinoos ruled. According to Homer, the prosperous city of Pheakes was built on a peninsula. The city was walled and had two ports … “
“… It is known that the peninsula where the castle stands today has been surrounded for centuries by water and a small isthmus united it with the land. Local tradition says that ships could enter this passage. Could this be the port of Alcinoos?
Apart from the topographical similarity, Kassiopi’s candidacy as the ancient capital of the island is supported by another element. According to the story, Ulysses’s ship, which took him from Ithaca, was punished by Poseidon shortly before landing in the city of Alkinoos. To the south of Kassiopi lies the Caparelli rock island that looks so much like a marble boat that many have suggested that it may be the Ulysses boat…»1
1. See note 45 on page 77 (Ernest Riess – Cicero’s Letters, The Maximillian company, 1910 (e-book).