Greek Islands

Trip Start Sep 11, 2005
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35
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Trip End Dec 13, 2005


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Monday, November 7, 2005

Chania, Crete

After much deliberation we decided we didn't have time to see as many of the Greek islands as we had hoped. We decided to head to the farthest one south, Crete. We were dreaming of something like Hawaii or maybe Croatia. Ten hours on a ferry was our means of transport. We went with the cheapest tickets which didn't have sleeping quarters. We didn't realize this meant we were to sleep on the floor. We found a corner to nestle in and had a long night ahead of us. We arrived at five thirty in the morning hoping to find palm trees, sunshine, and glorious beaches.

Instead we were greeted with a dirty port town, graffiti, and no clue of how to get where we wanted to go. We had hoped to head to the U.S. Navy base and restock on some much needed supplies. Of course we couldn't figure out where that was. We were told to head down this road and it would be right there. We found a military base, but it didn't fly an American flag and lots of Greek trucks were coming in and out. We decided that couldn't be it and headed back to the bus stop. A stray dog decided we were his friends and followed us until we found our bus. He was pretty annoying, but in a cute kind of way. Charlie named him Kujo.

We found our way to the Old Harbor at Chania. It was the cutest part of the town. The hotel we had hoped to find no longer existed so we wandered into an old building that looked pretty quaint and asked if we could see a room. They were adorable and at the right price since we were in the off season. I sat up on the roof top terrace and enjoyed the blue sky, sunshine, and views of the harbor. It was not the beauty I had pictured in my mind, but it did have a nice feeling to it. My favorite part was the cozy room. The hotel took an old Greek mansion and turned it into various rooms. We couldn't afford the ones with the view, but they said we could hang out on the roof whenever we wanted. I found a lounge chair and made it home for a few hours. We would highly recommend Hotel Amphora.

Our first evening we were seeking out a nice beach to sit and relax on. Instead we found a lot of rocky areas, which would have been lovely if the area around them would have been much cleaner. Charlie said it reminded him of parts of Mexico, it just made me very sad. It seems that it was probably once a pretty place, but it has now been replaced with people not taking care of that which surrounds them. I am sure tourism has much to do with it, but in the winter season it is pretty dead. I like not having to battle the crowds.

We were able to find some nice shops which we enjoyed browsing through. We had some nice walks in the evening and a great hotel room. We did find our way to the base, which was not the greatest place we had ever been. Charlie did get some Dr. Pepper and we had our little taste of America for a few hours. We then decided to head on to other parts of Crete. We were wishing we had more time to island hop and see the beauty of Greece. For now we are going to head east and see what we get.

Our bus ride takes us to the big city of Iraklio which we will just touch base in as we visit the Minoan site in Knossos. From there we are head straight to the beach, we read a ton of travel information at the hotel and we are going to one that is supposed to be great. We will let you know. The temperatures aren't as warm as we wish, but it's got to be warmer than home. We hope we enjoy it.
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