The Archaeological Museum of Corfu is housed since 1967 in a two-storey modern building in the area of Garitsa. It houses antiquities from the ancient city of Corfu and the rest of the island.
From 2012 until 2016 an extensive project for the restoration of the building complex and the re-exhibition of its collections based on a modern museological approach was launched.
The new exhibition offers to visitors the chance to familiarize themselves with the cultural heritage of the island from Prehistoric to Roman times through a rich collection of exhibits that includes important works of art as well as objects of everyday use.
The exhibition unfolds on two levels.
On the ground floor, the prehistoric finds, many of which are displayed for the first time, travel visitors to the distant past of the island, from the Paleolithic to the Bronze Age. In the next gallery the exhibition narrates the history of the foundation of the ancient city in the late 8th century BC during the period of colonization and makes reference to its contacts with the other powerful Greek cities of the period.
On the floor, visitors have the opportunity to explore the historical course of Corfu from the 7th century BC until the 4th century AD. Key events in this timeline are the city's peak in Archaic and Classical times due to commerce, the turning point in the late 5th century BC as a consequence of the Peloponnesian war and the civil conflict, the uncertainty of the Hellenistic period with the successive claims of the island by various rulers, which gradually led to its decline and surrender to the Romans in 229 BC, and, finally, the island's short recovery under the Roman protection in the early post-Christian centuries.
In the four galleries of the floor there are exhibits from the agora (market), the harbors, the sanctuaries, the private houses, the workshops and the cemetery of ancient Corfu, as well as finds from other places of the island, such as Kassiopi, Acharavi, Almyros, Afionas and Roda. Here, visitors are invited through six thematic units to discover aspects of the daily life of the inhabitants of the ancient city, their relationship with death, their cults, their craft and economic activities and, above all, the importance of the insitution of city - state in the shaping of the individual and collective identity.
Of special importance among the exhibits of the Museum are the pediment of the temple of Artemis, where the goddess is portrayed as Gorgon, various funeral monuments of the same period, such as the 'Lion of Menecrates', and the important epigraphic monuments, such as the grave stele of Arniadas and the capital of Xemvares.