When you see Athens today, you will understand why the Greeks insisted to have earlier elections for new government.

The city is full of ruined old buildings (and I don't speak about the buildings of the Acropolis). The capital is full of immigrants. Most of them are selling stolen watches, fake Prada purses and Police sunglasses promptly displayed on blankets on all central streets and squares. There are also beggars and street musicians that bribe you while you have dinner in any open air restaurant. It is not uncommon to see people taking drugs on the central streets or in front of an important public building.

Don't get me wrong, I agree that all big cities have immigration problems to solve but the case in Athens is major. The city stinks.

Enough said. Now back to the things that I loved:

This turtle was very friendly. All ancient sights in Athens are full of turtles (And dogs. But cats are rare - it seems that they prefer the taverns).

The party tonight is at Herodes'. The Odeon of Herodes is still used for cultural events.

But that day it rained and here is a picture of the coming clouds.

When in Athens don't forget to drop by the New museum in front of the Acropolis. It was open this July and the ticket till the end of the year is just one euro (1 euro!). Inside it is neat and tidy - I really loved it.

The whole museum is build on columns and in front of it and inside on the first floor visitors can see the ruins of large old building from 7c. AD.

Lol, and this is a picture of the museum after my camera broke. From this moment I had only the movie option.

The metro in Athens is full of displays of the ancient history. All central stations have pictures or replicas of statues, info boards with history info and so on. There are no poster ads, banners or ad screens.

Here we have a nice piece of street art.

There is the kiosk of a political party that has the sign of the communists. The words read like "Krisi. Ftoheia. Anergia. Katastoli. Antistasi" but I have no idea what does it mean. I guess it's a kind of "equal rights for all".

At night even the central streets are full of people who don’t seem happy to see you.

Of course not everything on the streets of Athens is disgusting. We saw great zoo-shop that had displayed some of the goods on the street and there among the empty bird cages and the dog snacks we saw the rabbits!

And the more I was watching them, the more I missed Hihi, and then I realized it is time to go home.


I headed to Ios full of expectations. The travel websites were promising water sports paradise and beaches full of life and entertainment.

The trip started in excitement because we took the Hellenic fast ferries and they have great boats.

At the port in Ios we rented an ATV and we headed to the north.

Pushing the gas of the ATV is exhausting for the fingers so I was quite happy when Bo seated in front.

It didn't take long to realize that all these websites probably were speaking of another island - in September Ios is empty and moonlike.

We traveled miles and miles without seeing anyone until we reached the end of the island...

... and there we expected to see the supa-dupa Homer's tomb which was unpleasant surprise. At least the view to Paros, Antiparos and Iraklia was cool.

Wikitravel was right for just one thing - the beaches in Ios are fantastic - golden and fine sands, clear waters, nobody around you.

And again, water full of colorful fish.


Thirasia is one of the smallest islands I have visited so far. To get there we got the port of Amoudi in Santorini and for an euro small boat took us to cape Omos in Thirasia. The island was less than 20 minutes away.

The trip to the island is great if the waves are bigger because they shake the small boat as a ride on rollercoaster.

Small public bus took us to one of the highest points on the island where we had amazing view over the caldera and to Santorini. The road down is full of fig trees and cacti. I spent some time picking figs and kidding around.

Thirasia like elsewhere on these lands doesn't offer too much but quietness, good view and again, donkey rides. The alley along the port is full of small taverns, cheap CD stands and souvenir shops. All of them get empty when the sun approaches the horizon and the tourist ships leave the island.

Thirasia is among the places where you can se the real face of the Cyclades - blue, white and lonely.

Due to the specific erosion problems it is not uncommon to see falling rocks.

Thirasia's water were full of fish. Probably baby fish are born here because the water was black of fish. We spent some time feeding it with biscuits.

All the cats of Santorini

As I told you, some nations know how to respect the nature. You know my affections to cats so watch carefully:


Donkeys and cats are the animals that drive the travel industry in Greece. It is crystal clear – cats are adorable, but what could be said about the donkeys?

The streets of the villages in Santorini are quite narrow and usually full of stairs so the only way to get your luggage there is by donkey.

The Fira's old port is located on quite a remote place. There are two options to get down or up - cable car and donkey.

A view from Fira to the old port somewhere down.

We took cable car to get down - the trip is less than 10 minutes.

On the way up we took the stairs. There are 587 stars from the port to the town. The donkey trip costs 5 euros for the donkey and takes all your courage.

If you are not part of a travel agency group the donkey owners just mount you on the back of the animal and let it go without further explanations. Mine ran up the stairs so fast that I was unable even to look back and see if Bo is behind me. The ride was shaky and this donkey was truly dedicated to get me there in no time.

It usually selected the outer side of the stairs - this revealing beautiful view over the vertical road. Unfortunately in moments like this you don't have time for poetics because you're too busy to stay on top.

My donkey also enjoyed bumping into people and other donkeys going downstairs. Many people thought I control it and I drive it towards them. Ha-ha.

Bo came long after me. He complained that his mule was absolutely lazy and it was very hard to convince it to move upwards.

Do not miss

There are a few things you should not miss to observe and try in Santorini.

The first is the water. The island doesn't have any springs and the houses have special tanks for water. It was common to see huge cisterns delivering water or houses being supplied.

The island is also famous for its great quality wine. The vines are inland and after an earthquake in the 50's the vineyards were more or less damaged. There are a few wine museums inland all telling to story of the unfriendly climate, the winds, the dry years and lack of water. After the museum tour visitors can try some of the wines. I loved the desert types.

Katsouni is the name of the vegetable-fruit you see below. In the beginning they taste like cucumber and are served in salads. Later when the fruit matures it becomes sweeter and tastes like melon.


Honestly speaking the sunrises in Santorini are worth watching as long as you are not too sleepy to get up on time.
The sunrise in Fira – the day we arrived.

The new day in Exo Gialos. Our hotel was a few meters from the beach and I had great mornings there.


Santorini is famous for its sunsets. I love sunsets so I was looking forward my new encounter! It is surprising that the pictures taken with my old unpretentious camera now appear so pretty.

Oia offers probably the best sunset view. The neighboring island Therasia makes the picture completed. Some travel agencies offer sunset boat tours but we never tried them.

Probably hundreds of people go to Oia every evening to watch the sunset. One should be there at least an hour earlier to be able to find a good view and a seat. At the end most of the people are so bored with waiting that don't really enjoy the view.

After the sun goes down everyone is trying to get away from there as soon as possible.

The village of Imerovigli is another hot-spot for sunset lovers. Imerovigli is for the high-end niche of tourists and in recent years – very popular destination for marriages. Souvenir shops, hotels and bars are more expensive here. Buying property in Imerovigli starts from 1 million.
From this point tourist can see some of the neighboring islands of Ios, Nea Kameni and Therasia.

Near the beach of Gialos to the South is yet another great place for sunset viewing. The islands stay to the right and the sun quietly dives in the calm sea. (Wow. Poetic.) Further to the South there is a huge lighthouse but unfortunately tourists are not permitted to enter.