Greek Journal Part VI
Greek Journal: 5/13/2005-6/8/2005
(Meteora)àIguominitsaàCorfu TownàIguominitsaàZorganian Villages, Vikos Gorge and
Old Fort standing
guard over the port entry to
The Old Fort at
We had no lodging
arranged so we pulled out our Corfu Guide book.
A short taxi ride later we were at the Couvilleire Hotel on the Esplande
The central square
and the surrounding building reflect the various occupation of the island
dating back to the 1500’s. The park
itself is rectangular with shaded walk ways and the only cricket field in all
On the north side of
the park is the area they call the
Looking back toward
Had a long leisurely lunch at Rex’s Esiatoria located on a pedestrian walk way just off the Spianadha. We had Greek salad, bread, olives, apps, main course and wine for two people for 36 Euro.
Open air café and town square in the
Tomorrow we find our
way to the beginning of the Corfu Trail.
Spent part of the day trying to locate the guide book and maps. Before leaving for
5/24/2005: Had breakfast at the Couvilliere and stashed as much bread, eggs and fruit in our pockets as we could hold. Since we have no idea what is available where we are going, or for that matter where we are going, that we thought it would be good to bring some provisions with us.
To get to our destination we had to take another Greek test. First we had to figure out what bus to take to the south end of the island. Logically, I thought, I would talk to information at the KTEL (island bus line) office at the bus station. I asked for the bus to Lefkimi (second most southerly town on the bus line) and was told to look for the 10 am bus. Since buses seemed to come and go every few minutes and none of them said where they were going I thought I needed more specific information. Noticing that each bus had a number I patiently waited in line again and asked “what number is the bus to Lefkimi?”, to which the information man said, it is #12, why didn’t you just ask for the bus number the first time.
We boarded #12 and headed for Lefkimi with our back packs in our laps and adventure on our mind. First things first, we had to get dropped off at the right town. As we passed through each small town and got closer to our destination, Mo asked repeatedly if the conductor would let us know when we got to Lefkimi. No problem, no problem. He would let us know.
At some point it
occurred to us that there was no Lefkimi ahead.
We asked the steward where Lefkimi was and we were informed we had
missed the town. The steward shrugged his
shoulders and walked off. Oh well, we
could get off at Kavos. Kavos is the end
Didn’t know much about Kavos when we landed there, but with just a walk through town we got quite an education. Everything in town was in English, because the English had basically built the town. A nice Greek fellow we met gave us the run down. Kavos was considered the Gamora of Greece. That explained the abundance of sex shops and advertisements for sex resorts. In season the bars ran 24 hrs a day and at any time of day you would see passed out drunken Englishman on the sidewalks. Even now in the off season people zoomed around on motor bikes, go-carts and ATVS. Since our real goal was a town off the bus line called Sparteva we decided to get out of Dodge as fast as our legs and my sore foot could carry us.
I used my meger
Greek to ask where Sparteva was and of course got a variety of answers. The one consistency was it was south on the
only road out of town in that direction.
After a very nice 5 km walk along a quiet road line with fruit trees,
flowers and olive trees we did in deed come to the tiny town of
We walked to the
high point in town, sat at the one cross road we had come to and ate a little
of our pilfered fruit and considered our options: (1) Return to
We happily descended the track in the direction indicated by the sign and entered new Greek world. The olive trees must have been hundreds of year old. Some of the old gnarled trees had trunks 6 ft in diameter. There were forests of ferns 5-6 ft high, streams, flowers and bamboo. Every once in a while we would come across a small grove of oranges and loquats with ripe fruit.
The start of the Corfu Trail. Ancient olive trees, large ferns, fruit trees and a few snakes. This is not your desert Greek Isle.
The one thing we found very little of was trail marking. After following what appeared to be a main trail for several hours we came to a more established dirt road. The next thing we know we were on the main island road just at the north edge of Kavos. The Devil must have led us back here. We crossed the road to a small quiet beach and had a snack and a swim before continuing on.
We walked about 4k north until we came to the town of
After we left Lefkimi signs of humans diminished, in fact we saw no humans for the next five hours. We followed the canal for a while and then as the trail split and split again we made our best guess.
We knew there supposed to be a bird sanctuary on the “Great Salt Flats” but we were a little startled when we ran in to this critter
No humans, just a lone ostritch hanging out in a sycamore grove in the middle of no where.
We walked across the salt flats for a couple of hours and by
some miracle, one of many, we came out right at the restored Venetian Salt
Works and its 800 year old church. We
found a couple of people at an empty cafe along the shore line who we could
converse with. When we asked where Parovoli
The sun was setting, we had been on the trail for about 8 hours already and it was 7 pm. What lay ahead down the beach was an endless strip of empty sand with no sign of a trail. After weighing the option we threw on the pack and headed north along the shore line. This effort was short live because with in a km the tide came up and the beach was no more.
A miracle, a miracle!
Looking immediately left at the point where the beach disappeared
The chef did more than put a TV dinner in the microwave. We had salad, home made bread, calamari, lamb chops, double ouzo and a little local Lefkimi wine. The meal and lodging was 47 Euro. We were taken to our room and told to show up for breakfast around 7:30 or 8 am. I don’t know what the place was called or where exactly it was since it wasn’t on the map.
The view from our dinner table at the unknown hotel out to the beach and the Ionian Sea