From east to west coast Greece
Igoumenitsa Travel Blog› entry 19 of 31 › view all entries
One more day and night in Greece. Andrew has found what we hope will be a great car ferry trip from Igoumenitsa (love saying that name) to Venice, Italy. It is a fairly new route but it will save us quite a bit of driving and put us in a part of Europe that we intended to see anyway. We cross the Olympus mountain ranges and there are many snow capped mountains in this range. Temperature is 26oC and there are mountains 2,204 metres high. More lovely name places we pass through like Trikala and Larisa. Roads snake through the range and one hairpin bend is so sharp that there is a roundabout on the outside edge that one has to do a 360 o turn around so that you can continue on down without falling off the edge! Speed limits drop to 10 kms per hour.
Make it into Igoumenitsa before 5 pm and book a passage with Aneke Lines for the next day departing at 8.30am. I have to help out to clarify Andrew's accent as when he asks for a passage for 2 people and a car, one of the clerical staff has silent hysterics. Think she thought he wanted to take a cow with us! Wiser after the last trip about booking deck passage or Pullman we find there is only deck or cabins for the 24 hour journey so we opt for deck class. Top up with diesel at a garage and get advice for a nearby campsite we know exists.
Find that my burgundy Thai fishermen's pants went into the wash by mistake and everything is pink! Andrew looks great in pink socks.
Breakfast on those honeyed apples and greek yoghurt, pack up and are out of the park by 7 am having paid the night before. Down at the new port the military police check our passports, ask us where we have been in Greece and ask if we are a married couple. Phew! I didn't mention Volos as there seemed to be a Military base there and some spots on the coast road had signs saying "Photographs forbidden".
Explore a little, watch Corfu as we steam past. Have a light 2nd breakfast at 9.30am then watch as we pass countries such as Serbia, Montenegro, Croatia, Albania & Bosnia Hersegovia. Andrew explores. Get a phone call from Australia from a bank asking if Andrew is in Greece as they have activity from there on his account. I confirm that we were but are now headed to Italy again. That makes them happy. We meet a lovely young couple and baby daughter from Prague. Martin gives us lots of good advice.
This time there aren't Pullman seats to bed down in. There is a large, comfortable lounge bar with 4 TV sets going on two Greek stations. It appears they are televising the rehersal for the Eurovision Song Contest and there appears to be a drama with one of the Nordic countries contestant. She has been bawling her eyes out and her thick eye make-up and some fancy face paint is smeared all over her face and her false eyelashes are peeling off as she lashes out at a TV crew. I wish I understood Greek.!!
The young couple have been told that they cannot sleep in the lounge bar area so they have picked out a corridor where they plan to bed down. There are very few passengers on board and most head off to their cabins while we lie on the comfy couches in the lounge bar. No one moves us but in peak season I would imagine it would be strictly forbidden. Wake early and go out on deck were some people have obviously slept on slatted benches and take in the most incredible view. We are about 7 storeys up in height and we are sailing up a huge canal with Venice on our starboard. Courier boats are chugging along laden with parcels for delivery. Early morning joggers are running on canalside paths and school children on the port side are waiting for their school bus. What an inexpensive cruise!