Day 97 - Elounda

Trip Start Apr 10, 2011
Trip End Jul 25, 2011

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Flag of Greece  , Crete,
Friday, July 15, 2011

I have always looked forward to this stretch of our trip as taking a holiday from our holiday and that is exactly what it feels like. The pace is totally different, the weather is fantastic, we are surrounded by the beautiful Mediterranean and even Mikayla said yesterday that it is hard to imagine that there is anything bad in the world when you are in a place like this. So obviously our usual morning rush to get out of the hotel to explore has been totally forgotten and this morning we slept in till about 9am and didn't venture out of our room till gone 11am.

However, despite being in chill mode, unlike yesterday, we didn’t just laze around doing nothing because the one place we wanted to explore is Spinalonga island. Originally a Venetian fortress, the island used to be part of Crete, but the Venetians carved out the peninsula to turn it into an island. It was later under Ottoman rule, and then in more recent times used as a leper colony from 1903 – 1957 – one of the last active leper colonies in Europe. The last inhabitant, a priest, left the island in 1962.

We caught the 12.30pm (ish – we are in Greece after all) boat and the trip across to the island took about 20 minutes. There is very little shade on the island and it was baking hot as we scrambled our way through the ruins. It was well worth the visit, but we were only given one hour to explore - our boat was to return an hour later at 2pm. It proved to be long enough in the heat and by the end we were all hanging out for something to eat and the girls for a swim.

Following our return to Elounda we had a very late lunch of gyros followed by a bit of a wander around the shops, before returning to the hotel. Mike and the girls went for a swim from the waters edge in front of our hotel down to the adjoining beach while I sat writing the blog.

We decided we couldn’t be bothered all getting showered and changed for a meal out, so had a casual meal of pizza and chips in our hotel bar before turning in for the night.

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