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Europe » Greece » Crete » Heraklion » Arkadi January 4th 2024

From Vanessa at MarketWatch: Research supports the idea that exposure to diverse cultures and people promotes personal growth and learning, which in turn, contributes to keeping your mind sharp and young. The possibility of stagnation and immobility (both mind and body) motivates me to embark on group trips, despite my introvert-influenced reluctance of meeting new people. An 80-year-old url=https://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2017/04/over-nearly-80-years-harvard-study-has-been-showing-how-to-live-a-healthy-and-happy-life/Harvard study confirmed that community, relationships and how happy we are in them influences our health as we grow older. As we age, many of us lose people (through death or otherwise) when, arguably, url=https://karger.com/ger/article-abstract/66/3/286/148324/The-Increasing-Importance-of-Fri... read more
Katy's final tally
My Bucharest adventure

Europe » Greece » Crete December 23rd 2023

Wherever you are in Crete – in the region of Chania, Heraklion or over on the eastern shores in Lassithi -you’ll find an irresistible story of beaches, culture, mountains, valleys, villages, wine routes and people. And somehow, once you’ve sampled it all, it becomes part of your story. With incredible countryside and rich history, there are so many things to do here. The island of Crete is the largest and most populous of the Greek Islands, with approximately 700,000 inhabitants - the capital and largest city is Heraklion. Crete, a tapestry of splendid beaches, ancient treasures, and landscapes, weaving in vibrant cities and dreamy villages, where locals share their traditions, wonderful cuisine, and generous spirit. Here is where you will discover centuries-old ways of life, magnificent Ottoman, Byzantine, and Minoan ruins, with an Old Town (in ... read more
Palace at Knossos (3)
Palace at Knossos (4)
Palace at Knossos (5)

Europe » Greece » Crete » Heraklion » Arkadi October 12th 2023

As a solo traveler, you might ask what I do to fill the "down" time during my trips. Other than the occasional nap, my down time is quite limited. My television viewing is certainly curtailed, since I can only handle so much of BBC and CNN. "Kelly's Thoughts on Things" has some suggestions. While many individuals view traveling as an opportunity to enjoy quality time with loved ones, it can also serve as a personal odyssey for self-reflection and rejuvenation, offering respite from the frenetic pace of life. Traveling alone can be a liberating experience, but it can also be challenging at times. If you have upcoming travel plans and find yourself concerned about how to keep yourself entertained while traveling alone, fret not! Here are her ideas: Read a boo ... read more
Party time in Plaka
New rules of travel

Europe » Greece » Crete » Sfakiá September 13th 2023

That’s all folks, the fat lady has sung, there are no more, mind your p’s and q’s, call it stumps, pack up your marbles and it’s time to go home. And that’s what we are doing tomorrow except home for a while will be Singapore. Last night was souvlaki time. Can you have too many souvlaki? We don’t think so. Here they are different to the wrap we get at home, here are souvlaki are gyros and souvlaki is skewered meat on a stick (our kebabs). It whatever the answer is probably no. They always represent good value, although not as good as gyros that we have paid as little as €3.20 for good ones. The souvlaki is usually about €8 which when compared to my shrimp dish the other evening at €18 works out pretty ... read more
OK Greek salad.
Souvlaki.
Loutro at night.

Europe » Greece » Crete » Sfakiá September 12th 2023

Same as lots of times before, we are not where Travelblog says we are but it’s close. We are about 5 hours walk away or just 20 minutes on the ferry at a little town called Loutro. It’s car free which gives it a certain charm straight away, and it means you either walk in (some) or you ferry in (many). Walkers or ferryers probably means you’re a tourist and the town certainly is geared up for tourists. The waterfront is sun lounges, restaurants, bars and kiosks that seem to specialise is cocktails, long drinks and good wine (their descriptions not mine!). The grills and rotisseries were going as we arrived and that was mid afternoon although it’s like that many tourists will head back to other accommodation venues in the evening. Chickens, lamb and beef ... read more
Up and out of Skafia.
What to buy some prime property?
But the coast in good. The rocks there are underwater. Well the wet rocks are underwater.

Europe » Greece » Crete » Sfakiá September 11th 2023

Yesterday was sort of cancelled because I’d had too many ‘metaxas’. With 17 km already walked we thought with only 3 km to go we deserved a quick lemonade and maybe an expresso (read Lipton’s tea for Julie). We got the lemonade, we missed the expresso and we had 6 shots of this metaxa. Fortunately the flavour is pretty good, it’s quite sweet but still scary to be having mid afternoon. The taverna was packed, it was Sunday afternoon, rowdy with banter and people just having a good time but as soon as we were identified as Australian it was on. To compound the situation I drunk one before the compulsory ‘salute/cheers/here’s lookin up your old address’ so I had to pour the next round for everyone. Very convivial and very friendly and absolutely refused to ... read more
And the obligatory raki, or two.
My new besties.
Everything looks good here!

Europe » Greece » Crete » Adelianos Kampos September 9th 2023

Don’t bet we are at the location mentioned above. The internet is slow and intermittent here so I dare not check. We are close to Askifou and obviously still on Crete which is all you probably need to know. Found gyros last night. Still surprised we don’t see it more frequently and still surprised how relatively cheap it is. We pay about half the price of any other ‘main course’, still get chips with it (everywhere we have had gyros with chips in it!) and we always enjoy them. Again made the trek to breakfast and yes I still think it’s a bit weird. It’s not like it’s an impressive breakfast either. There are some hard boiled eggs but nothing else is cooked, there’s no cereal of any description, no pastries and only a couple of ... read more
Ready despite the weather.
Little church among the gum trees.
At least it’s easy to follow!

Europe » Greece » Crete » Vamos September 8th 2023

We’re walking again. That’s good because less can go wrong when really your well being and comfort are in your own hands. The official start of the trail, and a use that term loosely, is a the village information center. The centre appears to be a front for a couple of hotels and enterprises in the village but that is sort of irrelevant to us. We went there then immediately started to follow the exhaustive set of directions I received from the walking company. There are turn by turn directions meaning in the villages there may be instructions each 10m or so! Over the 13 km today the directions proved very good. Bit frustrating continuously checking the iPad but still effective. The trail is not a circular track, like the Juliana Trail or even a continuous ... read more
Google to check path, terrain, features and touristy stuff.
One of several pages of directions for today.
In Vamos. I’m hoping it’s a kids cubby, it’s even got a bell tower.

Europe » Greece » Crete » Vamos September 7th 2023

So close to DISASTER. Mr Silly left his iPad at the restaurant of our hotel and was happily on the way to the airport when the driver received a call. Well we turned back, the hotel host drove towards us, we met in the middle and everything was fine (apart from losing 5 minutes). But the scary thought of how close this was to a disaster will haunt me for a while. As it was we were told the drive would be 2 hours to 2 hours 15 minutes but it took 3 hours and the only hold up was with iPad and really that was less than 10 tops. We stopped for photos at the Corinth Canal and for driver coffee and pastries so I don’t know if he was unaware of the time schedule ... read more
Us.
Corinth Canal.
Corinth Canal. (Opposite direction)

Europe » Greece » Crete » Heraklion » Anissaras August 16th 2023

You may or may not follow the Frugal Expat. Neither do I, but once in a while, something strikes me. Here are some of her controversial opinions about solo travel. See if you agree or not. Make a big deal about every activity This applies to any kind of travel. Some activities and historic sites will underwhelm or feel like a waste of money. It is nevertheless part of the history and culture of the place you are visiting. I cannot imagine choosing root canal or cleaning the toilet as a better alternative. Some places surprise, and some disappoint. It applies to the new restaurant you tried last night, or that highly touted bottle of wine. No need for a budget When I travel solo, or the fabulous Mr. Mike, I (we) never have a budget. ... read more
Trans Siberian Railway, Vladivostok
Bangkok Chinatown




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