A Travellerspoint blog

Island Hopping in the Cyclades

Greece just keeps getting better and better. We've explored more islands, and they've all been great. It started with an overnight ferry from Athens, heading to the island of Amorgos, in the Cyclades (pronounced Ki-Klah-Dez). The water was a bit rough, and Jocelyn was not too happy with it, and after a decent nights sleep with our sleeping bags rolled out on the floor, we were happy to be on solid land once again.

Amorgos was amazing. It's a really long and narrow island, with mountains running all the way down. This makes for some spectacular scenery, and an excellent location for the Hora (capital of the island), on the top of the ridge. Not only that, but the landscape is full of old stone fences and terraces for crops which were really cool. The next day, which happened to be Jocelyn's birthday, we rented a scooter for the unbelievably low price of 5 Euros. This allowed us to go see a cool monastery on the side of a cliff, where the keeper gave us some Greek delight (same as the Turkish kind) and a bit of a sweet liquor, which tasted like cinammon. Miam miam. It was then off to explore a few beaches, and then a nice dinner by the port.

The next day we were off at 6 in the morning for our next island hop. The sea was angry that day, and the tiny ferry we were on was not very happy with it. Jocelyn was even less happy. But we did survive, and were rewarded with the beatiful, but tiny island of Donousa (population 110, and only about 5 other tourists). We spent time at the beaches, including a completely secluded one that was ours alone for the entire day. Clothing was optional and we took up that offer. There's just something about swimming naked in the sun.

Our next stop was another small island, Koufonisia. This one had a bit more tourist infrastructure, but not much. Unfortunately, the weather was not the greatest, in fact, a huge storm came through. We spent the whole day in our room, and the next day, when we were supposed to leave, the ferry had been cancelled. However, there are worse things than being stranded on a Greek island.

We are now on a much bigger island, Naxos. It's been a nice change, having a big town where things are still open (on all the other islands, most things have closed for the off season). We also rented a scooter yesterday to explore the beautiful interior of this island. Good times.

Posted by moutallica 01:00 Archived in Greece Comments (0)

Photos #2

Continuation of pictures from Greece. Enjoy!

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Posted by moutallica 06:10 Tagged photography Comments (0)

Photos #1

Pictures from Bulgaria to Greece. Enjoy!

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Posted by moutallica 06:07 Tagged photography Comments (1)

It's all Greek to me

Well.... I'm in love with Greece. Maybe not all of it (or as much as Jocelyn is), but one island in particular. Alonnisos it is called, and it's in the Sporades, sort of in the North West of the Aegean Sea. We stayed there for 4 days, relaxing on beaches. One day we even rented a scooter, and went around all the island. It was really great, although there isn't really anything to say in particular. It's a very green island, with what is considered the cleanest water in the Aegean (it's in a marine park). Other than that, I guess it's just a place you have to go to to appreciate.

After that, we headed to the island next to it, Skopelos. Although a bit more touristy and commercialised, it was still quite nice. Unfortunately, the weather was not the greatest, and therefore we did not end up going to any beaches.

We are now in Athens, and I can't say It's as great as the islands. Don't get me wrong, it was still really cool to go see the Acropolis, the Temple of Olympian Zeus, the Olympic Stadium from the first modern Olympic games, and other historical sites, but cities simply don't appeal to me the way small towns (or islands) do.

Anyways, while this might not be the most exciting post, my next post (probably in a few minutes) will contain pictures, which I'm sure you'll all enjoy.

Posted by moutallica 10:31 Archived in Greece Comments (1)

Mingling with the Gods

It's a tough hike to the top of the famed Mount Olympus, home of the Greek Gods, but worth the effort. The hike started on a grey and rainy day (Zeus must have been angry) from the town of Litohoro. We had decided to hike up the Epineas Gorge, partly because of the glorious views it offered, and partly because we were too cheap to pay the 20 Euro taxi fare to the settlement of Prionia, where the actual hike up the mountain begins. Although it took about 5 hours, it was worth it. Amazing views (but a lot was covered by cloud), a chapel in a cave type thing and a cool monastery made the hike more bearable.

After finally arriving in Prionia, we had a quick lunch (mmmmmm.... canned fish) and we were on our way. It was all uphill from this point, and the sky had gotten much worse. All the way up it was either raining, or just misting. Needless to say, after over two and a half hours, we were super excited to finally see the refuge where we would spend the night. Walking in drenched, it was nice to finally be inside. A nice hot meal added to this, even though the food itself was nothing special.

The next day we awoke bright and early (or were woken up bright and early by our roommates). Someone must have made a sacrifice to the Gods, because they were rewarding us with clear skies. A quick breakfast and we were on our way to the peak. This was much easier than the day before; no heavy packs to take with us and a nice day can make all the difference. All the way up we were blown away (not literally), by the magnificent views before our eyes. What an impressive mountain (I took over 150 pictures). We eventually got to a point where we could see across a ridge to Mytikas, the highest peak of the mountain. However, we decided not to go for the peak, partly because it looked really tough and scary, and partly because we were told the views were a lot better from the second highest peak. So we settled for Skolio, which at 2911m is only 7m less than Mytikas.

At this point some clouds were moving in, so, after saying farewell to Zeus and friends, we decided to head down. The way down was a lot easier, only hard on the knees (and toes). We decided to skip the walk across the gorge this time, and instead hitched a ride back with some friendly Russian-Americans.

Posted by moutallica 08:27 Archived in Greece Comments (0)

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