Archive for the ‘Chania’ Category

On the morning of the last full day of my holiday I walked around the old town early(ish) in the morning taking pictures. Quite by accident I also found the town’s indoor market, so I took more pictures in there. I really enjoyed this couple of hours – I was using a small camera (Canon EOS 100D/SL1, for those interested, marketed as the world’s smallest DSLR) with a very small lens on it (24mm EF-S f2.8 pancake), and they makes for a small, efficient combination. Not having a zoom lens helps in that situation – just raise the camera to your eye, quickly compose and press the shutter.

Here’s a link to a Picasa page with the full set.

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A Sunset cruise



I did a 1 hour ‘Sunset Cruise’ from the harbour one evening. It was in an old boat, just out of the harbour for 15 or 20 minutes to a picturesque spot a few miles along the coast where we stopped, a couple of people swam and snorkelled, refreshments (fruit and raki) were produced, and then we sailed back. And on the way back I got some pictures of a Cretan sunset.

That’s it, really – it was an enjoyable way to spend an hour. Here are a few images. Btw, I learned after the couple in the water came back on board that she couldn’t actually swim…..

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The best things about Chania are the harbour and the old town. The harbour consists of two parts – an outer harbour which is older (although the buildings around it have been renewed and replaced many times) and an inner harbour built by the Venetians in the 16th and 17th centuries during their time in control of Crete. The images above are all of parts of the outer harbour, which today is ringed by restaurants and bars.

The old town is a maze of little streets behind the harbour. It’s also occupied by bars and restaurants, but there is also a wide range of shops selling art, memorabilia, souvenirs and even occasionally some useful stuff – I’ve seen one fruit shop. the shops themselves hit all price points and styles – an art shop with ceramic and/or jewellery costing hundreds of Euros will be next door to a souvenir shop selling the most awful tat, but that’s the way it is in most of the historic ports in the Mediterranean.

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Off to Greece!

I’m having a week in Greece – specifically, in Chania on Crete. I flew out on a very early flight on Tuesday morning – 6:25 from Manchester, which in turn necessitated a stay at a hotel at Manchester Airport the night before, and even then, a 4am start to the day. And after all that the flight was 30 minutes late leaving.

It’s almost four hours to Crete and what with the time change it was two o’clock local time when I eventually checked into my small hotel, El Greco. It’s very small and so are the rooms, and it only does breakfasts, no other meals. That’s not a hardship as you can’t move along along the harbour front or in the lanes of the old town without falling into a bar/restaurant. Actually, the main problem is to stop yourself being physically dragged into them by the at times over-enthusiastic greeters.

Anyway, I spent the afternoon walking around the harbour and the old town, stopping at one point to have a lunch of meat balls with cheese in a tomato sauce which was very tasty. I had to spend some time later sorting out the air-con in my room – it’s tied to the general electrical supply to the room which is only ‘on’ when you’ve put your magnetic room key into the relevant slot, which means that during the time i’m out the air-con is off. But having persuaded it to aim for a lower temperature I was able to reduce the heat in the room. Overnight I just left it on, and in fact slept well.

I ate dinner at a small cafe in the back street just outside the hotel, and had a pork stifado (a goulash). Very tasty; but they served it with fries! Maybe experience has taught them that’s what tourists want. Then it was more walking around the old town and harbour and then to bed.

This morning (Wednesday) I have had a purpose. First I went out and took some photos with the camera on the new light-weight travel tripod, and after that I explored the new town. I was specifically looking for ways of getting to other places, which given that I haven’t hired a car means the bus. After a deal of walking and enquiring I found the main public bus station, which actually looks efficient enough. I hope to go to Rethymnon tomorrow. Now it’s nearly lunchtime, but before that I shall visit the local maritime museum.

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