Wth its sun-drenched shots of Corfu’s idyllic villages, its beautiful countryside and its glittering sea washing over golden beaches, The Durrells has spent four years making us all yearn for a Greek holiday.
As the ITV drama returns for its fourth and final series, here’s what you need to know about all the key locations we see on screen…
Where is The Durrells set?
The Durrells is set in Corfu, where the family lived between 1935 and 1939. Nature lover Gerry Durrell later wrote about his unusual childhood in My Family and Other Animals, the first book of the beloved Corfu trilogy.
Also known as Kerkyra, Corfu is the seventh-largest Greek island and sits in the Ionian Sea off the north west coast of Greece. Today, around 109,000 people live on the island, which is a popular holiday spot – especially since the ITV series arrived on our screens.
Where is The Durrells filmed?
The production team has been all over the island during the last four series, making use of Corfu’s many beautiful beaches and pretty houses and traditional streets. Hawes tells us: “By the fourth series we got recognised on the island a lot, which was very different from the first!”
One key location is Corfu Town, the capital city which is home to almost a third of Corfu’s inhabitants. The town boasts Corfu’s principal port, and has a huge variety of architecture, with Sicilian, Venetian, French and English styles all jumbled together. The Old Town on the northern side is particularly picturesque.
Also seen on screen is Dassia, a village on the northeast coast with beautiful beaches and gardens.
Series five takes us to Agios Stefanos on the northwest coast, a former fishing village with a beautiful beach, as well as the Sidari area – a seaside resort to the north which also has plenty of secluded coves and inlets.
Milo Parker, who plays Gerry Durrell, said: “We actually filmed a lot more towards the north of the island this year in a place called Agios Stefanos where you can virtually touch Albania from the coastline. It was absolutely stunning. We were filming one day on a beach that was only accessible by boat so we had the whole crew on speed boats in convoy going around the island.”
Spiro actor Alexis Georgoulis said: “The villa is my favourite location but I also love the Sidari area. The sunset in unbelievably nice and there are some beautiful beaches which are not so well-known. There are dirt-roads and the beaches are secret. We would go there and spend our free time having fun and swimming.”
In terms of more specific filming locations, the house where Leslie Caron’s character Countess Mavrodaki lives is filmed at a villa called Mon Repos in the forest of Palaeopolis, now used as an archeological museum.
And the production team has made use of Danilia on the east coast, otherwise known as Bouas Village. Based near Kontokali, this is a replica of a 1930s Corfiot village; also used in the James Bond movie For Your Eyes Only back in 1981, it was built by a Mr I Bouas from the ground up as a way of capturing and preserving the island’s traditional atmosphere.
Where is The Durrells’ house filmed?
The family actually lived in three houses during their time on the island: Gerry refers to the Strawberry Pink Villa, the Daffodil Yellow Villa, and the Snow White Villa.
In the TV series, the Durrells’ weatherbeaten Venetian villa with its green shutters and beautiful view of the sea has been a core part of every episode. This is the Villa Annemoyani near Gouvia, which may (or may not) be the original “Daffodil Yellow Villa” that Gerry referred to in his books.
The Villa Annemoyani is only used for exteriors, with interior scenes shot at Ealing Studios in London.
Filming wrapped on location in Corfu before the cast headed back to Ealing to film in the studio, but Hawes revealed that The Durrells stars received a special goodbye message from the Greek crew at the villa: “They sent us a video of the house, a drone shot, and all the shutters are shut and then each one opens and a member of the crew drops something out, and then they all come running out and there’s a message saying: thank you for an amazing time!”
In reality, Larry Durrell and his wife Nancy did not live with the rest of the family; for some of their time in Corfu, they lived in a former fisherman’s cottage in Kalami called the White House, which has actually been used as a filming location for other purposes.
The Durrells airs on Sundays at 8pm on ITV