Published: July 16th 2011July 13th 2011
We thoroughly enjoyed our 3 days on the island of Naxos. It was our first island stop in Greece and it was just what we were looking for.
Our ferry left the port at 7:15 am and thankful it was pretty large so I didn't get seasick and was actually able to sleep for the first 3 hours or so. Then we made a stop to let people off in Paros and I woke up and we went upstairs and outside to be able to watch until we arrived in Naxos. There were some pretty great views and some that were very typically Greek with the white building and blue roofs, just what we were hoping for.
We had forgotten to notify the hotel of our arrival time, but when we called from the port the guy said that he was there waiting. We hopped in and he took us to the pension. We had asked for two beds and somehow we ended up with five! He gave us, for them same low price, a little apartment thing with two rooms, 4 regular beds (one was a double), a bed folded in the corner, and a
little stove and kitchen sink. Arantxa tried to offer up our extra space to her friends on facebook, but sadly no one showed up.
We basically dropped off our bags and headed to the beach that is close to town. We went down and laid in the sun and went swimming for pretty much the whole afternoon. The water was significantly chillier than I expected it to be and it was a bit tough to get myself in, but it was refreshing after time in the sun.
On the way home we got spectacularly lost! We tried to take the same route home, but it just didn't work out and to make matters worse the guidebook I was carrying around had very few streets labeled. I can not use a map that does not have street names! How could we possible figure out what little street we were on? We found signs to the pension Irene 2 and since we were at Irene 1 that seemed like a good place to ask for help. When we got there I tried to go into what I thought was the office, but the door was locked. Then, after a minute
out the side door came a nice old lady. She had me come in and the door I'd been trying to get into was the side of her little apartment space. I think I interrupted her nap. She tried to tell us how to get to the other place, but with we really couldn't understand what she was saying. Eventually, after walking in circles and checking every single alley way that could have possibly fit her directions, we did find a hospital (which was labeled on the map) and we managed to find it from there.
After cleaning up we went down to the main part of Hora, Naxos and walked out to check out the portara which is an unfinished temple to Apollo, but is basically a door frame--at least that's how Rita's mom explained it to me. She was right on. It was beautiful just before sunset and also being out there provided a fantastic view of the town. We came back in before the sun actually set and had a drink to watch it at the aptly named "Relax Cafe".
The next day we decided to just take it easy. We slept in late, ate
breakfast under pink canopies and wandered around the Kastro which is a neighborhood of the town. The guidebook had said it was nice at siesta time and it was correct. It was beautiful to see all the white houses and churches and it was so quiet and nice at this time of day. In the afternoon we hit the beach again and had a drink there to watch the sunset. It the restaurant we got to watch the cutest little beetle trek across the sand and leave the coolest tracks. Then he got caught in a little dip and after a valiant effort to get out he just gave up and stuck his head in the sand. It was pretty adorable!
On Sunday we caught a bus into the town of Halki. When we got there it was nothing like what we'd expected and there was nothing going on, but that was okay because we had really planned on hiking outside of the town anyway. We asked directions and headed out of town towards a church that we wanted to see. We made one wrong turn and ended up finding a giant internet cafe. After all those hour so
searching in Athens I stumbled across this one in the middle of nowhere! It was super cool scenery and a great hike. I don't think that we ever found the church that we were looking for, but we happened across several others. I've never seen so many churches as they have here. Little tiny ones everywhere. After a nice refreshing orange juice in town we caught the bus back to Hora and headed, once again to the beach.
Monday we had our hotel guy take our bags down to Relax Cafe (which is right by the port) and we went jewelry shopping...finally! We each got something (we're aiming for one thing from each island). Then we retrieved our bags from Relax and hopped a ferry to Santorini.
There are more photos below