Tiday we had a lazy day at George’s house to celebrate our first week of travelling. We were woken by the sound of a megaphone which turned out to be a truck selling watermelons passing through the village! Then we had a huge breakfast, apparently they have a big breakfast every Sunday because it
s the only day they don’t have to go to work early. In Greece some days of the week they work early morning, break for a few hours in the middle and work into the evening and others they just work in the morning.
After breakfast we went to George’s local beach for a couple of hours and played volleyball in the sea with him and a friend and went swimming. The water was so warm it was like swimming in a bath!
We then went back to George’s house and had another big meal, this time cooked by his mother which again was brilliant!
We caught the train our of town and made our way to the ferry.
Happy Birthday Asher!
The ferry was crowded and dirty and it was impossible to sleep because every hour or so there was a deafening announcement, preceeded by the most irritating music ever over megaphones. The ferry stopped at several islands and by the time it got to Santorini we’d probably had about 3 hours sleep!
Santorini (Thira is it’s official name) was very very beautiful. When we first arrived we got a coach to the city (Fira) and found somewhere to leave our luggage. The coach zi-xagged up the cliff face which was a bit unnerving as there were hardly and barrieres between the coach and the edge of the cliff – it took some skill to take those corners and I was amazed at the wase with which the coach got up very steep hills whilst full of people. When I say full of people I think I should explain that they packed as many people in as possible, sitting and standing. When they couldn’t get any more into the front door, they decided that they could pack a few more in through the side! It was even more crowded than the bus boats in Venice.
We walked around the city, climbed lots of steep steps until we got to a very high point with a great view.
We then got another coach (they were very cheap) to Perrisa beach which is next to huge cliffs and has black, volcanic sand and smooth volcanic rock. The beach really was beautiful and we swam in the sea for a couple of hours before having a great value Greek meal in a nearby restaurant (about £4). We didn’t want to leave but we had to catch the ferry home.
The ferry was even worse than on the way there but we eventually found a good place to sleep on the deck which was sheltered from an incredible wind over the sea. It was very dirty and there were 6 of us squashed into a small space.
We both started to notice that we’d got sunburn (Wez worse than me) and used aftersun. The waitress had told us that you burn very easily on Santorini because of the lethal comination of sun and constant wind. We’d put suncream on but it had washed off in the sea and we got burnt whilst drying off in the sun. You can’t drink the water in Santorini but it’s cheap bottled. I miss the water fountains in Venice.
Woke up this morning already at the port in Pireas. We’d not heard that many announcements where we were because someone in the past had got frustrated with the megaphone above their head and had ripped the wires out of it!
We got off the ferry at around 6:30am and found that the gates for the Metro were locked. We waited for them to open but they didn’t!
I invesigated and from about three different equally unhelpful travel agents/ticket offices and a shopkeeper I found out that there was a strike on public transport in Greece for 24 hours and the buses too so the only way to travel is by taxi.
We had intended on going to Olympia for the day and catch a ferry from Patras to Bari in Italy (included in interrail pass). We were stranded.
I investigated further, got very mixed information, visited a closed train station, got in a taxi to go to another train station and then the taxi driver was very helpful and on the way told us there were no trains from that station today and took us to the bus station instead. Eventually we got to Patras (where I’m sitting now waiting for the Ferry) but it cost us E23!
Missing you all, will post again soon x