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The Ionian Islands are an archipelago, which are a part of Greece. The islands are located in the west of Greece, right before its coast. The sea on the east of the islands, the Ionian Sea, is named after the islands. Traditionally, the islands are called the Heptanese (Seven islands). The capital of the islands is the city of Corfu.
Since 1864, the Ionian Islands are a part of the modern state of Greece. The islands are influenced by Italy, for the islands have ruled by Venetia for centuries. After the Venetians, the islands were ruled by the French and the British. In contrast to the rest of Greece, the islands are never been ruled by the Ottoman Empire.
As the tradition name says, there are seven main islands. These are from north to south, Corfu, Paxi, Lefkada, Ithaki, Kefalonia, Zakynthos and Kythira. Kythira is located south of the Peloponnese, between this peninsula and the island of Crete. Although, there is quite a distance between Kythira and the other six islands, the island is still a part of the Ionian Islands and has cultural and historical ties with the islands.