Planning a trip to Turkey from Rhodes

by CameronM Thu, September 25 2003 05:33

Today we explored the island of Rhodes, well maybe not the whole island, but at least the Old City area. It was amazing. The walls withstood centuries of attempted invasions until the city finally fell during the crusades. They are huge and it's impossible to think that anyone got past them.

The old city streets are narrow, yet the moped riders still motored along with little regard for their own safety, or more likely our safety. The place was filled with the last die-hard tourist, milking every ounce out of the summer, swimming, enjoying the cafe scene and generally having a good time.

After much debating and haggling with travel agents, we decided to head to Turkey via the Greek island of Kos. This was supposed to be a cheaper alternative, although it would mean an extra night in Greece, which was turning out to be quite expensive. The choice paid off however, with a memorable 3 hour ferry trip, when we travelled with Greek islands on our left and Turkey on our right.

We stayed overnight at Alexi’s Pension, where our host Sonya made us feel extremely welcome, which was in stark contrast to our Ouzo drinking host from Rhodes. Sonya was even able to provide a guide to ‘good places to eat’ and I don’t think any of the proprietors were her relatives.

Armed with Sonya’s advice and a hand-written map, Tan and I went out to explore the culinary delights of Kos. The meal was nice and for the first time in Greece I felt that we were paying the same price as the locals. It is always nice to see locals dining at the same restaurant as you and getting the same menu – albeit in Greek instead of English.

The only detraction to an otherwise pleasant meal was my own fault. Having sampled Retsina, the resinated wine (resin-flavoured wine) produced in Greece, when I worked for a firm of Architects I had expected the local variety to be somewhat improved. I was however disappointed to discover that even here is Greece, Retsina still tastes like Mentholated Spirits. I guess I won’t be buying a bottle duty-free!

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Greece

Planning a trip to Turkey from Rhodes

by CameronM Thu, September 25 2003 05:26

Today we explored the island of Rhodes, well maybe not the whole island, but at least the Old City area. It was amazing. The walls withstood centuries of attempted invasions until the city finally fell during the crusades. They are huge and it's impossible to think that anyone got past them.

The old city streets are narrow, yet the moped riders still motored along with little regard for their own safety, or more likely our safety. The place was filled with the last die-hard tourist, milking every ounce out of the summer, swimming, enjoying the cafe scene and generally having a good time.

After much debating and haggling with travel agents, we decided to head to Turkey via the Greek island of Kos. This was supposed to be a cheaper alternative, although it would mean an extra night in Greece, which was turning out to be quite expensive. The choice paid off however, with a memorable 3 hour ferry trip, when we travelled with Greek islands on our left and Turkey on our right.

We stayed overnight at Alexi’s Pension, where our host Sonya made us feel extremely welcome, which was in stark contrast to our Ouzo drinking host from Rhodes. Sonya was even able to provide a guide to ‘good places to eat’ and I don’t think any of the proprietors were her relatives.

Armed with Sonya’s advice and a hand-written map, Tan and I went out to explore the culinary delights of Kos. The meal was nice and for the first time in Greece I felt that we were paying the same price as the locals. It is always nice to see locals dining at the same restaurant as you and getting the same menu – albeit in Greek instead of English.

The only detraction to an otherwise pleasant meal was my own fault. Having sampled Retsina, the resinated wine (resin-flavoured wine) produced in Greece, when I worked for a firm of Architects I had expected the local variety to be somewhat improved. I was however disappointed to discover that even here is Greece, Retsina still tastes like Mentholated Spirits. I guess I won’t be buying a bottle duty-free!

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Greece

London to Rhodes, Greece

by CameronM Wed, September 24 2003 05:23

The Gatwick Express whisked us from London's Victoria station to Gatwick Airport for our early morning flight to the island of Rhodes in Greece. Unfortunately once on board the plane we didn't whisk anywhere for an hour or so. I started to worry when the captain explained that they were having difficulty storing the fuel required for the flight!!! Surely my backpack didn't weigh that much that they needed more fuel than was usual? I think this was merely a story to cover up the fact that after a night on the town the pilots had forgotten how to fly and were getting last minute tips from the ground grew on how to take off.

After a relatively short flight – well you need to remember that I am used to the 24-hour trip from Australia – we arrived in Rhodes and caught a taxi to the Old City and wandered the streets for a short time before deciding where to stay. We had planned to stay at a local backpackers, but upon arrival we found that there were no staff in sight and were told by one of the residents that we shouldn’t expect them anytime soon. Thank Lonely Planet for that great reference – maybe next time you should actually send someone to Rhodes to check your facts.

We ended staying at a Pension – which is basically the same as a B&B with the family living downstairs and a small number of bedrooms upstairs. The accommodation was clean and well located, although the proprietor neglected to mention that he and some visiting relatives were planning an Ouzo drinking binge, complete with late night ranting. Welcome to Greece!

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Greece | UK