Published: November 16th 2011June 15th 2007
Yikes! We woke up at 9:50am and the hotel reception desk had told us to call before 10am to check on availability and make reservations for the volcano tour. Called reception to see if we were too late, they checked and found out we could get on the tour. We would be picked up from the hotel at 10:45am and returned around 5:30pm. We raced through getting ready and went up and ate another fabulous breakfast with eggs over easy today. The bus came around 11am and took us to Athinos port, but the boat wasn’t there. The tour director came over and told us that the boat we were supposed to be on had a problem and that we would be taking another boat which wasn’t there yet. We were told to go wait in the shade outside the covered area where people were waiting for the ferries. Then the port police yelled at us to go inside the area and wait. When we tried to go inside the covered area, we were told we couldn’t enter without a ferry ticket! Arghhhh!
Finally the boat showed up about a half hour later and everyone raced over to get on it nearly shoving the tour guide into the harbor. The boat ties up at a small dock area on the volcano, Nea Kameni (which translates to ‘new burnt island’, which started to form about 425 years ago). We got to the volcano at about 12:30pm, so it was blisteringly hot! The tour guide told us it was a 1.4 kilometer walk to get to the top of the volcano, just picture black volcanic rock everywhere and steep, steep trails with loose gravelly sand! We took lots of pictures on the way up and at the top. It definitely smelled like sulfur around the vents of the volcano. The rock was discolored a whitish green around them too. Our tour guides name was Lena and she was really knowledgeable about the volcano, she also spoke fluent English and Spanish as well as Greek.
We headed back down to the boat, which although it was much easier it was still scorching hot. Our boat (the one we were supposed to be on) was there waiting for us at the port. It was a dark green sailboat with green masts, very cool! Finally we all boarded and headed off to the hot springs at Paleo Kameni. The hot springs are more warm than hot and the water is kind of brown and yucky. So Steve and I jumped into the water off the boat, but we didn’t swim over to the hot springs which were about 100 meters from the boat. The water was cold, but not too bad compared to New England ocean water. We only spent about a half hour at the hot springs .
We then sailed over to Thirassia to have lunch and relax. We decided to eat at the taverna with the windmill all the way at the end of the harbor. While we were walking there, I was looking up at the village on the cliff above us and managed to smash my toes on a rock and tear off a chunk of skin, ouch! The food was good and it was cafeteria style service. We sat on the corner by the harbor and had an awesome view. Steve and I fed one of the kitties, a scruffy tiger. There was another one-eyed black cat when we first got there, but it must have gone off to beg at another table.
After we ate, we walked the length of the port area, through all the little tavernas to a deserted taverna of which the only thing left was a cement pad. We lay in the sun for a little while and then walked back to our boat. At 4:30 we left Thirassia for a tour of the caldera on the way back to Athinas port. We stopped to let some people off in Oia for the sunset excursion and then stopped at the old port in Fira to let some other people off to do the donkey ride or take the cable car to Fira.
Once again we watched the sunset from the deck outside our hotel room. I was really colorful and much better than the ‘nonset’ we saw in Oia and best of all we didn’t have to drive there to see it! Steve and I finally figured out what settings to use on the camera, so I think we got some good shots.
We rested up for a while and drove into Fira around midnight. We started out at the Box Club because the drinks were cheap. We paid 13 Euro for two sex on the beaches and a Red Bull vodka, but it was really boring there and kind of empty. So we decided to go check out Murphy’s and paid 30 Euros for the same drinks there and the sex on the beach drinks were super sugary and tasted terrible. We stayed for a couple of drinks, but it was really slow there too.
Next we went to the Koo Club, which was kind of busy. We ran into a guy from Mikrokastro and he gave us some tips on things to do. We only stayed for one drink as they were 10 Euros each. Alice wanted to go to Enigma Club because she heard them playing Reggae. Of course as soon as we got there they switched to Greek music! We ran into one of the servers from our hotel on the way in to Enigma. This place was packed; apparently this is where all of the Greeks go to party. We stayed there until about 4am and then went back to the hotel stopping for gyros at Mythos on the way to the car.