Trip Start Oct 02, 2010
20Trip End Oct 26, 2010
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Where I stayed
If I took the 9 am bus to the top, I could see 3 or more in the day, buy an onward train ticket to Thessaloniki, grab dinner and be off. I had a nice breakfast in the common room Breakfasts are almost always included with rooms for tourists for about 5 Euro. Since coffee alone here costs 2-3, it's a bargain.
The owner Nick runs the place with his wife and they appear to homeschool their 2 kids. The new WiFi didn't have the signal strength to reach my room just above the computer, which pissed Nick off
Greece is a lot more expensive than it used to be, that's for sure. When I was here 9 years ago, things were getting more expensive, but I'd say it's about 60% more expensive than before. And in 2001, people were telling me how dirt cheap it was before they started using the Euro. Ah well, you can't blame them for getting a piece of the pie.
Kalambaka is a nice little modern town and I wish I had more time. Trikala looked nice too. I went through there on my last bus change last night. There are lots of nice shops along a river and everyone really dresses up here. It's different than in the islands.
After blogging at breakfast, I managed to pack up, store the bag with Nick, and catch the bus to the top. (I've been somewhat of a slave to the blog, but I sure appreciate it years later when I can't for the life of me remember that one place I was at that one time).
I had to first break the news that the ceiling in my room was leaking For Your Eyes Only???).
On the bus, I met a Chinese American couple that stayed at Hotel Meteora (may TAY or ah) also. And there were 2 women from Pennsylvania on a round the world trip. It was strange that the only tourists on this bus were American, since most tourists are from Northern Europe. However, a lot of them are on package tours with their own buses.
And I must say, I've been on some really nice buses here. They're not just for poor folk!
So, at the top, we get off at a monastery that's supposed to be one of the better one's, only to find it's closed on Tuesdays. And a light rain is starting. Drag. But it does look pretty cool and I've got some photos below to prove it.
I walked downhill and went to 3 different one, including Agias Triadas, the one featured in the Bond film
I swapped travel stories with the American women on their round the world trip and found myself saying things like "Back in the day, we couldn't book rooms via a Blackberry on a bus driving through a remote village like you're doing." I did have some advice for them on future travels over a quick lunch. They were off in one direction and I was off to buy a train ticket that would take me to Thessaloniki that night. The timing was perfect. 5:30 bus would get me to town by 9:30 and I could grab a midnight train to Sofia.
Back at the hotel, I negotiated a shower for free, blogged, charged batteries (literally and figuratively), helped him with a PC problem, and wrote the Lonely Planet to update some info for him. He gave me free coffee and snacks while his kids studied with mom. What a great place. I hope they can afford the new roof!