Our family have decided after much research etc to relocate to Greece. We are now being sensible and researching various areas so that we can make a long term and successful move to somewhere that suits us and somewhere we suit :-)
We don't want to live amongst other ex-pats, but try and integrate into the Greek community. We have started learning Greek and our main leisure interests are sailing/boating. We have our own internet business which we intend to run from Greece and we are keen on living in a fairly eco-friendly way.
We will need somewhere with plenty of land around it as we have a musician in the family and we don't want to disturb neighbours with what they may find noise.
We really love Ithaca, but it looks like that may not be the best long term solution as far as value for money property is concerned.
Sorry this is such a long post - we realise we will have to visit Corfu to get a good 'feel' of the isalnd - but we are trying to narrow down the areas to explore first by asking people on the net.
We don't need to be near schools, but we would want to rent somewhere first before deciding where to buy eventually. We think it would probably make sense for sailing etc to look at the Ionian side of the island.
Can anyone reccommend which areas we would be most likely to make friends with Greek families and people? We are entrepreneurial types who seem to get on best with other business/shop/taverna type people - we are very traditional family orientated people to whom 'things' and money are just a means to an end - and we have been amazed at how well we got on with Greek people - much more so than we have done in the past with UK people.
We also have two pet rabbits - so any advice on how best to bring them over would be appreciated - again we've researched it - but personal advice from folk who've done similar themselves would be welcome.
I've loads more to ask but I will leave that for another time,
thanks in advance,
Message posted by micheleb on 19 October 2005 at 12:52pm - IP Logged
just in case my previous post sounds a bit sniffy re ex-pats - I just read it and it might come across that way. We have no problems with making friends with ex-pats, every new friend is great - but we would like to move and be part of the community not in a seperate 'group' - I hope that makes sense.
Message posted by Sailor on 19 October 2005 at 1:01pm - IP Logged
Firstly, let me welcome you to the Corfu Travel Guide. You will find much information on all aspects of Corfu, and moreso in what you have asked in your post. Scroll down through the pages of the Greek Life Forum for lots of information on purchasing property, land, or renting.
Being from the sailing fraternity, I would say Gouvia on the east coast would be the perfect place for you, as it has a very large marina. However, Gouvia being a holiday resort also, means that this would probably not meet your criteria.
To reep the benefits of the Greek Life as you prefer, would probably mean locating somewhere in the North West and North East areas, or more in land. As I said the Greek Life Forum will give you lots of information on localities, properties etc.
As I am only in the thought process of moving out to Corfu, I feel I am not in a position to give you the precise information you need. However, there are many who will read your post with interest and offer their own thoughts, recommendations etc to you.
In the meantime, please enjoy the site. If we can be of assistance in all matters please do not hesitate to ask.
Message posted by psimms on 19 October 2005 at 8:10pm - IP Logged
You don't mention if you want to be right on the coast. We have a place in the centre of the island (between Afra and Agios Ioannis). Both of which are very nice Greek villages. We find the area great (especially as my wife's family are from Afra) because of the locality to the city (and the local buses). When we were searching we limited our search to the villages served by the local buses as we were very keen on having easy access to the city. Beaches are easy from this area, either Glyfada to the west or Gouvia/Dassia to the east. Another similar village is Pelekas.
Wherever you decide, one thing is for sure that on Corfu it will be a beautiful location.
Message posted by micheleb on 19 October 2005 at 8:27pm - IP Logged
thanks for replying. We don't mind being inland, we will be either bringing our car with us, or buying one - once we've decided which makes most economic sense. Does it cost a lot to moor a boat on Corfu?
We did see a fantastic house boat on one of the satellite channels which made us think about how nice it would be to have a house boat in Greece. Does anyone know whether or not that is feasible regarding Greek regulations or other limiting factors?
Apparantly for around £150,000 - £200,000 we could get a navigable house boat of fairly substantial size - but would we then have to pay import tax on it if we lived on it in Greece?
As you can probably tell we are exploring all possibilities at the moment no matter how off the wall LOL
But living inland and having a boat moored somewhere would be a perfectly nice compromise - compromise? who am I kidding it would be great :-)
We don't want to be somewhere touristy - you were right there Sailor.
What is the internet infrastructure like on Corfu - is there broadband? My husband has been looking into satellite broadband as a back-up plan if needs be.
Speak 2 u all again - banana
Message posted by micheleb on 19 October 2005 at 8:39pm - IP Logged
With regard to your boating queries, I guess the answer is "it depends"!
I'm not sure what you mean by a "substantial houseboat" but in general terms, provided that you have evidence of VAT payment within the EU, no VAT is payable. No customs duties are payable on yachts and I think that the same applies to power boats, but I will have to check. If the baot is imported into the EU, you will certainly have to pay VAT at the rate applicable in the country of importation. If the first port of entry is Greece the rate will be 19%.
In general, there are no mooring charges in Greece, unless you go into one of the marinas, such as Gouvia or Lefkas. You will pay for your time in the marina, even if you have a permenant berth and I think the average cost would be about 1500 pounds, but as I'm sure you are aware, much depends on length.
Gouvia marina, like many marinas around the world, has its "resident community". From my experience, they are a fairly laid back group and well worth getting to know. It's a fairly busy place, not especially "Greek" and has a fair throughput of charter yachts. That said, the vast majority of charter mooring are in a seperate area from the more permenant ones. You will also have to come to terms with the seaplane operation from the marina - it doesn't really affect the peace of the place
If your boat is registered ouside Greece, I believe you may have to pay a "cruising tax". This is a controversial issue and the best source of information is the RYA website.
Despite what the sailing mags say, the winds in the northern Ionian can be anything but benign. We have experienced F8 on a number of occasions in the last few years. The climate is changing and the winds are becoming less predictable and more ferocious. Having said that, the sailing is great fun, there are an infinite variety of bays, harbours,and tavernas, both on the islands and the adjacent mainland, to explore. With the changing winds, we often have trouble keeping the batteries charged as we sail whenever possible. I firmly recommend the purchase and study of Rod Heikell's "Ionian Pilot" which provides a huge amount of information on the area.
If I can be of any further help, please let me know.
Message posted by micheleb on 19 October 2005 at 10:09pm - IP Logged
Yes, if you buy the boat in the EU, then there will be no "import tax" but the boat will still be subject to VAT.
It is important to have evidence that the boat is "VAT paid" in the form of a purchase invoice or other certification. If you don't have this, your boat is liable to seizure by the authorities. France and Spain (and, increasingly, Italy) are very hot on this. It can take a great deal of time - not to mention considerable expense, to get the boat released.
Please note that you will not be eligible for the "Sailaway Boat Scheme" which relieves vessels from VAT as your destination is within the EU.
You may have difficulty finding a long term mooring for a boat of that size, although there are always several "Superyachts" in Gouvia. Have a look at www.gouviamarina.gr
All Rights Reserved. No part of the Corfu Travel Guide web site may be reproduced without permission.
Infringement will be pursued.
The Corfu Travel
Guide and Lefkada Travel Guides are brought to you by Agni Travel.
Agni Travel is the sister company of Taverna Agni and also the sponsor of the Agni Animal Welfare Fund