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Villages in the Pilion


Home -> Europe -> Greece -> Travelogue Greece -> 18 June 2018

Monday 18 June, villages in the Pilion

Terrace in Agios IoannisJust like yesterday we first have breakfast in Agios Ioannis, which we liked very much. Then we get into the car and drive back into the mountains towards Zagora. It is less than 18 kilometers away (as the crow flies maybe only half that distance) but the travel time is longer than 45 minutes according to the navigation. The roads go up and down and occasionally we pass through a village. At a certain moment I have a local farmer behind me, a real tailgater. When I have an opportunity to stop I do that and make a gesture like 'drive on', but of course the farmer can hardly avoid me and he stays next to us and shouts something. I ask in my best Greek why he driving is so close to our car and we almost get into a fight. Luckily I have not learned many bad words yet ... In the end I just drive away, ahead of him and this time he takes a bit more distance.
Memorial for unknown cases, Karavoma Turtle on the roadWe regularly come across roads where whole pieces are gone, just vanished into the ravine. Often these places are only marked with a ribbon. We also regularly see monuments along the way because the Greeks obviously have a long history and the various wars of the last two centuries still live strongly in the national psyche.
And once in a while we see a turtle on the road, which, when we put it on the roadside, turns around and just crosses the road again.
Little square in Zagoras Old cart in ZagorasZagora is the largest village in the Pilio region and is known for the apples that are grown here and which are processed in all kinds of traditional dishes, sweets and drinks. There are, as in many Greek villages, several village centers, actually different villages which have been merged into one new village. We walk around one of the squares and the narrow surrounding streets with shops full of local products. The old library is famous for its thousands of old manuscripts and attracts many visitors.
More earthquake damage, ZagorasAgain we see earthquake damage on the roads, but actually we rarely see that such spots are being repaired. We have no idea how one deals with such damage and who is responsible for the recovery. Often there is not even a warning sign and it can be quite frightening when the road suddenly partially stops just after a turn.
From Zagora we slowly descend to Chorefto on the coast, through another beautiful but also exciting (scary and dangerous, according to Elisabeth) road.
Chorefto beach Beach at ChoreftoOn the coast of Chorefto it is quiet, there are almost no visitors and we have the choice of many empty restaurants. In the summer it will undoubtedly be much busier here. We drink something and then find a spot on the empty beach. It is not very hot but very pleasant to spend an hour reading and swimming.
At the end of the day we only have to drive 10 kilometers back to Agios Ioannis, but it takes us almost half an hour. So it went all day: this is a beautiful area but you should not be in a hurry, the roads go up and down, sometimes quite steep, and there are many sharp turns. I like this kind of roads, although I do get a sore my neck because of the many turns with all those curves.
Again we have nice foodIn Agios Ioannis we look for a restaurant and are served by Vasilis who comes from Larissa. It is not busy so he has plenty of time to talk and likes to talk to me in Greek, another good opportunity for me to practice. He tells he works 6 days a week, about 10 hours a day (with some breaks) and gets 800 euros per month for that. He also has free food (what is left in the restaurant) and lodging (a small room).
We talk a lot about the Greek crisis and we hear the sentiment that most Greeks have: the people pay the price for the mistakes of former politicians.
When we are back at the hotel, the Macedonian ladies are sitting behind our room and their noise becomes so bad at a certain point that I am going to complain about it. Not much later they have to retreat inside because it starts to rain and really heavy. I still have a small piece left where I can sit outside, but when the thunder starts, I flee inside.

 


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