We left the Turkish port of Fethiye and caught a ferry over to Rhodes . I opted for the large ferry so we would have a smoother ride. As we sat on the dock ready to board we were looking at this small oddly shaped rusting hydrofoil called the Flying Poseidon , H remarking that it looked like a death trap , boarding was called and as we head to the large ferry we were diverted .. I looked at the ticket and in the bottom right had corner it said POSEIDON. Luckily this didn’t turn out anything like the 1970’s disaster movie with the doomed ship .. our Poseidon adventure went without a hitch. We arrived in Rhodes and expected to be caught in the middle of thousands of refugees , but we didn’t see any. In fact none in the whole month we travelled the islands. We headed straight for our favourite little gem Lindos , the medieval village with narrow winding streets bars and restaurants leading to the acropolis over looking the sea. We spent our days at St Pauls bay in the protected calm waters , and the nights eating on roof top terraces…. Lindos it was good to be back ,like visiting an old friend 🙂
St Pauls bay Lindos … most people miss this idyllic gorgeous bay .
We decided to take a plane to our next destination Crete as the ferry ride was over 8 hours long . The 40 minute flight was a bargain at 30 quid and we based ourselves in the concrete jungle of Heraklion . Our 3 day stay here was to visit Knossos , the mythological home of the Minotaur. The truth behind the story was that a huge 5 story palace was built over an existing town so there were maze like streets under the lower levels. There was a practice of people running towards bulls and doing a hand vault over their backs ,showing bravery. So we have a maze and a half bull half man legend, that would devour anyone that went in. The site was exceptional and luckily we arrived before the hoards of tourists arrived in their air conditioned buses following their umbrella clasping guides. We visited the Archaeological Museum and saw the very best discoveries from around the island. We left the concrete jungle and took the bus to Rethymnon and stayed the night. we were there 20 years ago and went to find a little bar called ” The Lemon Tree” situated in a hidden court yard with a huge lemon tree over head. We also wanted to try and find a bar tender we met , which should be easy as everyone knows everyone in these Greek towns. We look for an old random guy and pick the owner of a jewellery shop . He tells us someone cut down the tree and now its a t-shirt shop. He also knows the bartender .. but he died 4 years ago .. so our trip had a sombre moment … everything is constantly moving forward …. and so did we as we left for the island of Ios.
A wall relief from the Palace of Knossos depicting bull leaping
We arrived in Ios on a huge high speed catamaran car ferry, as the ferry stops off at different islands the process is very hurried people barking at you quickly quickly ..move along quickly. We have small backs weighing less than 7 kilos for our entire trip, I see an old lady who must be 130 years old dragging a case , people barking at her quickly quickly .. trust me she ain’t going know where fast … We get off the ferry with no plans and no accommodation , H is a little anxious , but as in life I assure her , there will always be someone who wants your pocket full of money. A smartly dressed woman approaches us and offers us accommodation flashing a glossy brochure.. 30 euro’s a night for luxury accommodation is enough to tempt us in to her car. What a place it was , fantastic pool , views overlooking the sea and 3 mins walking distance to the lively village of Chora. Luckily it was the end of the season and it was DEAD just how we had planned . No puke in the street , no shouting voices at 4am when the clubs turn out , just an old quaint hillside village. If you are a party animal this is surely the jewel in the crown June , July ,Aug. We catch the the local bus to Mylopotas beach which is stunning , easily making my top 3 beaches on our world travels. The rocks in the hill side have silver like flecks which erode and are washed into the sea , when you walk through the crystal clear water flecks of silver shine back at you truly amazing.
Mylopotas beach probably the best in the whole of Greece.
The island of Paros was next , just a short 50 minute hydrofoil ride away .. the ferry is packed with Chinese tourists and as we come to dock they all jump up and rush to one side to take pictures it is pure bedlam as people struggle pass the mele of clicking cameras luckily our sleek back packs cut effortless through then , if not with the odd push and jab of the elbow from H 🙂 …. we walk of the ferry no one there to part us from our money , but I spy a guy with a brochure at the gate and he drives us 7 miles to the other side of the island to a lovely fishing village called Naoussa . Pedestrianized winding streets lovely eateries and boutique shops a chilled laid back place OUT of SEASON. We decide to move the next day to another place and find a studio apartment with sea view lovely pool and snack bar including huge breakfast for 2o euro’s , I’m sure there has been some mistake in the price so I check again. They are about to close for the season but keep open for another week , as there are another two couples there. We are waited on hand and foot and even get to pump out some MARLEY MUSIC around the pool on their sound system. We hired a beach buggy ,which is totally f*cked and barely manage it around the island , the worst vehicle hire in my life EVER ..but we survived 🙂
We then hopped over to Mykonos for 3 days and again bagged a great funky hotel over looking the old town 30 euros a night , they had a bug problem in one of the wodden beams in our room and I asked to be moved .. they moved us into a room that I can only describe as the star wars room. Futuristic white smooth clean lines with neon lights amazing. The old town was lovely by day and night and we took a boat ride to the adjacent island of Delos . It is the most significant archaeological site in the whole of Greece and is where modern society grew from. Today it is a ruin but we hired a guide who gave us the low down.
The windmills in Mykonos with knobhead tourist who insisted in getting in my photo
Leaving Mykonos behind we headed to our last stop of Santorini from where we would catch the last charter flight out of the season. We did 4 days in Fira and partied a little 🙂 , then head back to Parissa where we lounged on the black sand beach necking beers. The place we were stopping in was having a wedding … a wedding in Greek islands always means gun fire , well lots of guns fire and the obligatory Kalashnikov assault rifle and you have one hell off a party .. 5 thousand rounds later .. not a policeman in sight …well I suppose they are all at the wedding anyway 🙂 … I have my first foot massage on the beach , she nearly destroys my foot and leaves me with a bleeding cut in my toe H is laughing hysterically ..NEVER again … we finished our last night with a meal in Mataxi mas a little hidden gem place where they do slow cooked lamb …. to die for .
The breath taking Fira perched on the volcanoe caldera of santorini
To sum up the month island hopping trip … it’s business as usual in the greek islands no refugees , no money shortages or problems at ATM’s , exactly as it has always been … DON’T BELIEVE THE HYPE IN THE NEWS