the writer is a lonely hunter

writing by Gail Aldwin and other authors

Back from Greece

on November 2, 2021

As we let our house as a holiday home whenever we’re away, it takes a little while to feel at ease in our surroundings again. Everything about our return went very smoothly and the only stress was mastering the QR reader to submit our Covid tests. Fortunately, we were both negative. We found the Greeks were much more observant of Covid precautions. We wore masks and were required to provide evidence of double vaccinations in Athens (but not elsewhere) on entering restaurants, during journeys by bus and at all museums (even some outdoor ones).

After we left the gorgeous Gerolimenas, we caught the bus to Gythio which is a lovely port town with a delightful harbour front. The tiny island nearby is called Kranae and is mentioned by Homer as the site of Paris and Helen’s first night together after fleeing Sparta.

View of Gythio from Kranae

We stayed in a fabulous hotel in Gythio with a roof top bar where we were served cocktails. At breakfast, I was introduced to Loukoumades, delicious doughnut balls soaked in honey and sprinkled with nuts. As it was the end of the holiday season, the harbour side restaurants boasted loads of tables yet only a handful were taken. I enjoyed the sense of visiting Gythio when it was not too busy.

We travelled on to Nafplio by bus.

Bus station in Sparta

The journey over the mountains to Nafplio involved many hairpin bends and although the driver was clearly experienced, I was slightly alarmed by his propensity to answer his mobile and drive with only one hand on the wheel. We arrived safely and found Nafplio to be equally quiet. It’s usually a popular weekend destination for Athenians but as the weather had turned cooler by this point, there was hardly anyone on the beach.

The town is also lovely with its placid harbour and a dramatic fortress called Palamidi Castle. We climbed the 999 steps to the top and were stunned by the beautiful colours of water and sky.

Palamidi Castle

Next stop was Athens. We spent two days visiting the archaeological sites included in our budget 30 euro ticket and on our last day went to the Archaeological and Acropolis Museums.

A wonderful trip from start to finish.

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