View as I was walking to the port.
Today was a wonderful day. I started off with a huge breakfast because I needed something to warm me up. It was so cold in the shade (my side of the island is in the shade until about 9 am) so I had a big enough breakfast to warm me up. Good excuse and I am sticking to it. Actually I was so chilled before my coffee; I had goose bumps and was shivering. I didn’t bring clothes for cold wind. The winds here have been really strong the last two days. I guess that is normal for Greece in July. It is wonderful when you are out walking about because the breeze is a welcomed relief from the 40 degree temperatures.
I had booked my volcano tour for this afternoon at 5 and decided I want to switch it to 11 am as the breeze would keep things relatively bearable on the hike.
So walked to Fira, through the back way, over cobbled stones and through hotels. It takes you much longer to walk but you are walking on the cliff side so the scenery is spectacular. I take way too many pictures but each view is so wonderful I always want to remember them. Made it to Fira and most people take the tram or gondola down the cliff side to the port. I decided I REALLY needed the exercise so I walked down the donkey trails. You see, you can choose to take donkeys as a mode of transportation. Since I hate horses (they scare me) then I also hate donkeys. So I am going to walk. The only problem with donkey trails is donkeys poop a lot. I think that’s all they do. They walk 50m and poop. Walk another 50m and poop. And there are 100’s of donkeys. So there is a lot of poop. I was slip sliding down the hill on donkey poop. It was like skiing in Jasper but instead of skis I had flip flops. Made it without landing on my (still sore) butt. Just mind you as I came pretty close a couple of times.
Looking back to my hotel while on my trek.
Got my ticket changed to the 11 o’clock tour and headed off across the caldera to the volcano.
Our guide was wonderful and explained that there really are three volcanoes. Two are dormant and one is active. We hiked up to the craters and saw all of three. It is just like walking on barbeque bricks. It even feels the same. Come to think of it, that is what they are. So no wonder.
The first three (of hundreds) of donkeys I saw.
After touring the volcano we went to the volcanic hot springs aboard a traditional Greek sailing boat. We had to jump off the boat and swim 50m to the hot springs. They told only strong swimmer to go. I was a tad nervous but felt what the heck, I didn’t die in the earthquake, and I won’t die in the strong waves. (It has all to do with my St. Christopher metal) The swim there was fine as the waves were taking you to shore. The hot springs was not nearly as hot as I thought they would be.
In fact they are more like a tepid bath. There is special mud that you are supposed to smear yourself with and it is suppose to be therapeutic. Tried some, but it just made my skin orange. Also my skin tends to be a little delicate right now (as the top layer has burned off) so I thought I better quit while I was ahead. No sooner was I relaxing that the horn sounded to summon us back to the boat. So off I swam back. Now that was more challenging than coming but made it with a few minutes to spare. They didn’t have to throw the life preserver out for me so that is okay.
View from the port.
Had such a great time, I decided to try hiking up the donkey poop path on the way home. Now it was 2 o’clock and the sun was in full force. I just wanted to make it up before the rest of my tour came up on donkeys. So I hoofed it (literally) up. I huffed and puffed but made it. Now I had to hike all the way back to my hotel. That was the hard part, as the sun was beating down pretty good.
Look at the neat rock formations.
Made it back safely and had to eat again. Come on, I earned it. I may not have earned the entire basket of bread (so what) I enjoyed it.
I am off to Ios tomorrow. Party island of Greece! I am such a party girl! Go Girl! Try and stay up past 11. I doubt it.