So we had the half day tour booked so we could see as many of the major sites in a short time as possible as we were only there for the day. The bus picked us up from the hotel at 7.45am but by the time it picked everyone else up it was 9.30 am before the tour even started. It was Ascension Thursday (a Catholic day of celebration) so the churches were bell ringing like mad! We thought the tour was good to get a feel of the sites and see around only to find later in the day that the bus that took us all morning to maneuver around to the sites we could have actually walked in 10 minutes!!! It was so funny, later in the afternoon we went up to the new garden roof bar on top of our hotel to find that the museum we went to on the bus was literally next door we could almost touch it from the roof) and the acropolis was just above us – a few buildings away. That made us laugh a lot!!
We thought the museum (the new Acropolis Museum) was done very well and it houses relics of the original carvings etc.
It also has outside original town ruins you can look down on.
We were most impressed with one of the original Olympic stadiums which last time the Olympics were in Greece the marathon finished in here. Can hold 7,000 people if I recall correctly.
The Acropolis was also amazing (of course!) – after a hike up hill on slippery marble! They are renovating it with rock from the original site and have been doing so for 10 years – they have 14 more years to go! We wonder how long it took to build the original…………..
Athens had just experienced the riots and demonstrations by the workers so it was even more full of graffiti. The city was all graffiti which is a shame.
We went to a little local restaurant next door to the hotel for dinner and had a lovely dinner. Peter again had pork chop and was very happy. I had chicken fillet – which is same as their kebab only net yet chopped up! The restaurant was so little we were sitting at the back and here is the lovely entrance way with all its flowers.
The next day we had to catch a cab to the local public bus station to get a bus to Patras Port to catch the overnight ferry to Italy. The bus trip was 3 hours and it was amazing scenery. Just about the whole way was olive groves interspersed with orange groves. The oranges are fruiting so between the two greens of the foliage and the orange it was so beautiful.
We got to the ferry alright only to find we actually had to check in somewhere else. Luckily Peter could take both passports to do it while I waited with the luggage. The ferry was gorgeous and was only 8 months old – so all clean and a bit posh still. We had a cabin so we actually got about 7 hours sleep.
At the other end the ferry was running late due to high winds and we had only originally 90 mins to get from the ferry to the train station to catch the train…….. by the time we got off the ferry and through security the train was only 25 mins from leaving – but we made it due to a high speed, through red lights, taxi drive! Phew!