Trip Start Aug 15, 2005
Trip End Oct 12, 2005

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Flag of Greece  ,
Sunday, September 11, 2005

Naxos was a short ferry ride from Mykonos but the difference in the two islands could be felt pretty quickly. Naxos seemed even more relaxed and less touristy despite it being the biggest of the Cyclade islands. We were lucky enough to accept a room from a couple and it turned out to be the nicest we've had yet--our own bathroom, balcony, kitchen, room service everyday...for a very affordable price. Now this was more like Paradise...

The first day we headed to the nice sandy beach of Precopios a few kilometers away. The water was super clear but very, very cold. After swimming and lounging on the beach, we wandered into town and made a delightful discovery...a used bookstore with an entire English section! We also found crosswords and magazines in English. We loaded up. That evening we hiked up to Apollo's Gate to enjoy the sunset. On our way home we passed a small store with local foods and wines. Barrels filled with different types of olives lined the entrance and the owner encouraged us to choose an assortment.

The next day, after consulting the oracle, we decided to tempt fate and rented a scooter to ride around the island. Pat warmed up in the driveway and Mel looked on with well fonded fear. But Pat quickly mastered the bike and off we rode to Filoti, an area towards the interior of the island. We drove along the countryside passing olive groves and small villages, old churches, and ancient ruins. We slowly winded our way to the trail head for Zeus' cave and hiked up the steep, rocky trail to the entrance. Later, we went into the town of Filoti for Greek salads and gyros, our staple food. After such a hot day it was back to the beach to cool down. We visited another beach, Agia Ana, even more beautiful and less crowded than Precopios.

At this point we made the decision to extend our stay in Naxos. We spent the next two days just relaxing, lounging, eating more olives, and exploring the city. We also decided to have a "nicer" dinner one night along the waterfront where Mel had octopus and we were served Ouzo on the house.
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