Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Back on the road....Gialova, Katakolo and Aginara Beach

82 Camping Erodios, Gialova
Well , it eventually came...the time to move. It would have been easy to stay put and make a run for the boat but there are places we want to see before leaving Greece for the drive home back to grim weather. We packed up in the cool morning and it didn't seem too much of a chore.We were sorry to leave Marje and Mike who have made the time at Thines even more pleasant. We took the Pylos 'ring road', a cut along the back of the town and no sooner were the words ' I wouldn't like to meet anything big coming along here...' out of Pete's mouth when an  mega artic driven by Dimitri ( his name was in huge letters on the front) hove into view...oh 'eck. However, a bit of reversing and Pete being cool meant the huge beastie got past. I love the view from Pylos over Navarino Bay and soon we were settled in Camping Erodios in a nice spot with a sea view. We had a lie on the free sunbeds  on the adjacent beach and a swim before lunch then we had an adventure. Okay it's was not a big adventure in terms of a mountain climb, a deep sea dive or even in Marje's case, Moray eel scaring, but for me cycling with no power ( can't charge the battery cos I stuck the key in the charger hole when I wasn't looking carefully) is akin to scaling a mountain. I didn't realise how much the power has come to be an absolute necessary not a  helpful extra.

Navarino bay
Navarino Castle
Anyway...we were going to cycle to Gialova...a mile away but Pete decided to turn left and go along to the lagoon. He said 'we'll just have a look along the road a bit'.....huh! So with no water, no hat and no anti insect spray we cycled along the 2.5 mile stretch of lagoon, went in a bird hide and got bitten to bits by lurking insects.
We did see a couple of white egrets and grey herons. We cycled along to the end of the road and started the walk up to Navarino Castle which is closed but we thought we would have having amazing views there. We were stunned by the scenery and the fabulous blues of the water but even we weren't daft enough to carry on when we realised it was quite a climb in the heat.

So we thought we would just 'have a look along' the south side of the lagoon. We looked in a well and Pete saw a huge snake skin at the side of it. It was nearly five foot long! Me, I was looking round for the snake! Of course we had to take it with us......

We walked in the shadow of the cliff along the lagoon to Voidikalia, a beautiful bay with white sand ( one of the ten best beaches in the world according to the New York Times) Pete had a swim ( I hadn't got my bikini and there were people about who might be offended by the sight of my bra and Asda pants) then we went back and sat on the campsite beach with a glass of rose wine watching the sun go down. It had been a five mile cycle and a three mile walk.

this dress gets worn a lot!

We had a meal in the camp restaurant- self service- my food was good but Pete’s wasn’t. They gave us waffles when we finished and they were huge.

83   Camping Erodios Gialova

that dress again
 I had aching knees after yesterday. We cycled into  Gialova ( 1 mile) It's a sleepy place at this time of year.We had coffee in Ionnis then another drink as we found it very comfortable to sit and watch the world ..( and a bus full of elderly people, mostly women, ) come out for Sunday lunch. I'd hate to have been the waiter at the  table of 15 Greek women who barely put their mobiles down for a minute to  shout orders across the table, resume their phone conversation and squabble at the same time...merely an observation, not a racist or sexist remark!

We went to the beach then walked into Gialova again in the evening just as the sun was going down. There's a place where a stream comes into the sea where you have to paddle across but it was quicker than going by road and quite romantic. We sat under the trees at a bar near the quay and had ouzos while getting attacked from not so romantic mosquitos. We had a lovely meal at O Spitikos and my prawn spaghetti was delicious though there was more than enough to share.  We walked back along the beach with torches and I got very anxious when I saw the beach gates were closed! I could see myself climbing over the gate when we notices that one was still open- thank goodness!

84 Katakolo and Aginara Beach, Glyfa

Kalo Nero

After I'd been bitten several times while I was eating my toast outside, we left the site. ( damp grass= mosquitos) We drove to Kyparissia stopping to shop at Carrefour and Lidl before having lunch on the beach at Kalo Nero.

 We then drove through Pyrgos to the port of Katakolo. The tiny port was dwarfed by two huge cruise ships docked there. We parked up with the intention of staying a couple of nights and visiting Olympia by train but we'd seen the train go past us and we couldn't find any information about train times. We wandered around the shops to the little beach but it was hot  and I'm not good with people who want to sell me things.......if I want something, I'll go and get it. We went back to the car park on the harbour and changed our minds about staying as there was no shade and no breeze. We might go another time.


 We headed back to Pyrgos, went to the A and B store which is the only place I've ever seen XUXU strawberry vodka which is amazing. It's crushed strawberries in vodka and is just fantastic!  We got  a smiling welcome from the Aginara 'family' and we got a nice pitch so we  soon settled in. We went for a swim and looking across the beach we saw Sue and boxer dog Duchess who we'd met in Githio so I went over for a chat.. We went up to the restaurant and had a lovely meal and a laugh with the waiters. We went to the beach and watched the stars and the lights on Zakynthos.
85 Aginara beach
I skyped Katie and had a lovely chat.I had an email back from e-bikes direct telling me how to change the fuse in my bike battery- what helpful people they are. Pete helped a French couple in an enormous brand new Carthago motorhome get into the space next to us and get his 200cc scooter out of it's garage......fabulous van, costing far too much money and far too heavy a scooter for an old guy to try and get out of the van. Pete did a wonderful meal of grilled chicken , courgettes and potatoes on the  Cadac. We went in the van for the evening as it was quite cool and tried ( almost in vain) to watch Man Utd v Basle (3-3).
86 Aginara beach

This is a good pitch we are on- 
we can see the sea, have plenty of space and it's quite private with lovely trees around. I took the bike battery to bits and Pete changed fuses - it looks like it's charging up. I washed the breakfast dishes and normally I'm lazy and don't dry things but for some reason today I decided to dry the coffee pot which has a chip in the glass rim and really should have been thrown out.........I cut myself from inside my thumb round to the outside! It's a  huge gash and while Pete was taping it up, I felt a bit faint.........So the moral of the story is, let dishes dry themselves!!! I couldn't go swimming but had a lovely day on the beach. Pete even went back to the van and brought ouzos and ice so we could have a drink and watch the sun go down. ....perfect! It gave me a chance to try 'arty' shots with the camera.

He was a super star and cooked pork chops to dinner too.

87  We had an early morning call by yet another mosquito....don't know how or where they are getting in but that one didn't get out again... we went to the beach, went to the restaurant, talked to  German Greek and his wife for a while.
88. The morning mozzie got earlier- 5am. I tightened the fly screens on the windows and sprayed some anti mosquito  stuff about....maybe there's a mosquito plan to escape Greece by hiding in our van? Another lazy day and goodbyes at the restaurant. We are always sad to leave here.

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