Adventures in Greece
Despite all the recent financial issues plaguing Greece, it is still a magical place to visit and explore. I went to Sifnos Greece about 3 years ago now, but my parents were there right when the vote on the bailout plan was happening. This is what they said, “We are OK here on Sifnos. Foreigners can still get money from the ATMs – the restrictions only apply to those holding debit and credit cards issued from Greek banks”. This was merely days before the vote. Greece knows that it thrives off of tourism and can’t afford to alienate tourists.
Back when I went to Sifnos (which I consider one of the best Greek islands to visit), there were also threats of strikes among the transportation workers. One smart tip that I was told is to make sure you travel close to the weekend when the transportation employees are less likely to strike because the volume of tourists is so high. The second smart thing, I would recommend is to have your transfer from the airport to the Piraeus Port ferry pre-purchased and arranged, especially if you don’t have a long wait in between. If you don’t have a long wait, the bus is an inexpensive option (about 5.00 €), but as I was travelling on my own and under time constraints, pre-arranging my travel was a huge stress reliever.
The ferry to Sifnos is a nice scenic 3-hour route, but be prepared for a bit of chaos getting on and off. I ultimately decided to just wait until everyone else got off vs. trying to fight my way through the crowds. Besides, there is only one small road to exit the ferry, so you’ll just end up stuck there too.
OK, now on to the good stuff. The Island is surrounded by the South Aegean Sea’s stunningly blue water as well as beautiful white sands and sky-high mountains. I remember floating on my back in the sea, looking up at the sky and the mountains and knowing that this is something everyone should experience. The relaxation and the beauty are something truly to be enjoyed.
Because Sifnos is right on the water, the fish is incredibly fresh. The fish we ate was caught the same day by the local fishermen who began their day and the early hours of the morning.
Octopus is a speciality in Greece. So, I had to try it. Some liken it to Calamari (which I ate almost daily), but it is quite a bit more flavourful and chewy. It was not my favourite, but I am glad that I tried it.
Same with Ouzo. Try it. It is kind of like Sambuca.
Although Ouzo is very Greek, one drink that is not specifically Greek is Absinthe, although it is making a name for itself due to the popular restaurant of the same name. I went there for dinner a couple of times and the owners are very friendly and the food was great. Try the absinthe, if not for the fun preparation.
Our favourite restaurant is a classic Greek restaurant, called the Camaron, with the best service and food that I experienced in Greece. The owners, Panos and Irina, were so hospitable and have the most beautiful view overlooking the sea.
It is a good idea to walk off the amazing food either in the mountains (bring a walking stick!) or up the hills. There is even a route to walk over a mountain to get to Chrissopiggi with a small beach and taverna. I found some of the best days were walking to and from these little towns with the goal of a nice lunch and cold beer in the middle. Actually, one of the most fun things to say was that “we need a fix!”. Fix was one of the local beers 🙂
Ultimately, my time in Greece was a relaxing, serene and full of adventurous food and beauty.
Have you ever been to Sifnos or another Greek island? I didn’t have the chance to go to another and am interested in if the experience is the same.