22.05.2009 - 22.05.2009
Up before 6.00 am (not Jan’s favourite time) to get the ferry. The seats in economy (no seat no.) are just loose seats at tables dotted around different parts of the large ferry. Found a table for 2 in an area which would get lots of fresh air (to combat the smokers and, hopefully, help Jan from not getting seasick). Not that we needed to worry as you could hardly tell the ferry was even moving across the water. Why aren’t there any waves??
We had chosen Naxos mainly because it was more varied than many others and not as tourist oriented – not only does it have the normal beautiful beaches, but a wide range of types of countryside (from plains to mountains and valleys) as it is the most fertile island of the Cyclades, and reputedly had many enchanting villages and the potential for lots of walking. The island’s total population is around 18k, and only about 20 or so km E to W and 35 or so km NS. And another feature is it’s marble, which has been used in buildings since well BC.
5 ½ hours later we arrived, picked up our car and off to find the village where we are staying. The village, Mili, is very small – in the hills about 15 mins drive from the main town and port, Hora. No cars in the village. You leave your car on the road and walk down a set of steps. The village seems to be spread over the hill and doesn’t really seem to have a centre (not one we have found). The house is a bit odd. There are 2 buildings. One has the bedroom and the living area; the other, the kitchen and bathroom. A covered courtyard area ‘joins’ them. From the courtyard you can climb steps to the roof of the kitchen/bathroom, which is used as a patio and the area to hang clothes. There is also a garden, but, unfortunately, without some major gardening, is unusable. Jan had a go, just to try and get to the orange and lemon trees we had been asked to water.
Having said all that, it’s rather nice – quaint, atmospheric, etc.
The view from the kitchen/bathroom roof is great – steep, scrub covered hills with tracks winding through them on which you see goats, their herders and people on donkeys (well only once but there are many donkeys around). At sunset, the hills glow. Like this place – Naxos, more than the house though.