There may be something about this place you haven’t heard of…

Arillas long time ago

Arillas is well-known for its beautiful beach, the natural beauty of its landscape and its sustainable tourist development.
in the recent years, as a result of the particular love and care of the local people and associations, this place has become popular not only for its natural appearance but also as a decent destination.
Many visitors enjoy the hospitality of the local family businesses, the local cuisine, the friendly environment, the quality service and they keep arriving in Arillas every year. The Corfu Beer Festival is the top event among the ones organized in the area. But, apart from all these, there may be something about Arillas you haven’t heard of…

Since the beginning of tourism history in Arillas and the broader area, people from all over the world have moved in wishing to escape from the cities’ monotony and live in a quiet place of the world where modern civilization does not predominate over nature.
It all began by the end of the ‘60s when a small group of youngsters set off from Geneva, Switzerland. At first, they rented a little farm-house with no electricity or other amenities. At that time, there was only one direct flight per week from Geneva to Corfu and then to Athens all year round. This flight served the Corfiot high society of the time as well as the few visitors who grabbed the opportunity to explore such a beautiful island which, then, was still intact.

Old clayhouse where the first Sanyassi lived it on the late 70s
Old clayhouse where the first Sanyassi lived it on the late 70s
The first Sannyas Family In Kavadades together with local family
The first Sannyas Family In Kavadades together with local family

The few “hippies”, as our grandfathers called them at that time, used to go to India during winter from where they brought a great legacy.

Most of them followed Bhagwan Rajneesh, also known as Osho, an Indian guru who created one of the most controversial spiritual movements of the 20th century in Pune, in north-west India, who is very well known nowadays for his work. In his teaching, he urged his followers to expand around the world and spread the philosophy and the way of thinking he so boldly and successfully managed to imfuse in the hearts of those who were close to him at his ashram.
Before his death in Pune he established the Rajneesh’s ashram, now known as “The Osho International Meditation Resort”.
The Osho International Meditation Resort

The great Master’s followers later brought their friends along, started their own families, bought or rented properties and were professionally involved in the OSHO’s way of living and teaching, by establishing small meditation centres in Arillas which have been operating for 35 years as small hotel and accommodation units. In the course of time, the reputation and the success of alternative tourism, the nostalgic and sustainably developed landscape of Arillas, began spreading in the nearby villages. During the last decade, Arillas has burst with all sorts of festivals, both alternative and holistic, attracting hundreds of visitors willing to pay large amounts of money when compared to the usual tourist packages. These events are organized through social networks and news media abroad by groups of people managing such events worldwide. During these festivals and events, several dozens of instructors and healers are professionally involved in the area, directly offering their services to the guests and in the last years they were given the nickname “the Gurus”. Their official denomination coming from India is “Sannyasi”.

The “Sannyas” movement simply means a movement of seekers of truth, of the great importance of meditation, of love and of human sensitiveness. It promotes the courage, the creativity, the joy and the laugh, and believes that these are repressed when clung to static belief systems of the religious traditions.

The people who usually settle in the area for a few weeks to some months per year are professional psychologists, massage therapists, yoga teachers, alternative healers and chiropractors for a large number of diseases and conditions, as well as painters, goldsmiths, photographers, singers, DJs and musicians and chefs recommending traditional vegetarian Asian cuisine.
All the events combine the natural Greek landscape with an Asian culture, music, songs and association with famous meditation teachers and an alternative way of life and of thinking.
More and more such centres have been opening recently with Saskrit names such as Gayatri mandir, Darma, Buddha hall, Matangi, etc.
In the area, there have been about 4 foodservice businesses only for vegetarians for several years now while, in 2020, two new vegan restaurants will open in Arillas which will be unique in all Corfu.
During summer, anyone can participate in the events under the condition they have pre-booked and can speak the language, usually English or German.
Matra singing at Corfu Budahall
Meditation at Gayatri Mandir

Why make the journey to the far and less accessible India and Asia? In Arillas, the visitor may enjoy various massage types, many yoga techniques, meditation retreats, tantra, tai chi on the beach or in specially arranged areas, as well as free nudism on our nudist dedicated beach. Moreover, visitors can meet famous Masters and illuminated contemporary gurus who will initiate and spread a way of life that all Europeans seek to the ends of the earth…. the Wellbeing which the ancient Greeks used to describe as "EY ZHN"!

Arillas, focusing on the natural health, holistic medicine, healthy eating, beauty and exercise and a more holistic way of living and wellbeing for all the above reasons, constitutes an ideal destination for alternative holidays in Corfu.


Edited by Dimitris Kourkoulos

Arillas in the 80s