Today as always, we ask the Grandadults if they’d like to join us for the day – giving them the option to say ‘yay’ or ‘nay’. We tell them that we don’t have a particular plan in mind but were thinking to catch the bus into town and go and visit the beach Paralia Grota. This is not to be confused with Grotta Beach close to the straight that leads to the Portara. This latter one I’ve always called Choppy Beach because of the constant rolling of large waves onto the shore. This isn’t an attractive beach as the waves throw up large stones, dead birds and a whole array of detritus. I don’t know much about Paralia Grota but Google Maps shows it to be set in a horseshoe shaped bay. My hope is to find a beach that isn’t too busy. I have no plan to sunbathe but I like to explore new places.
I’m surprised when we actually get a taker. Maddox says he will join us for the day. Being the youngest of the three at 14, I suspect that he has felt under the authority of his two older sisters for the duration of our trip. I’m delighted to have him with us. After a nice breakfast at the hotel we catch the bus to town.
From the bus station we cut across ‘choppy beach’ and climb up the hill to a cluster of hotels and apartments. The one thing that Grotta Beach does have to offer is the view of the Portara.
Once past the whitewashed buildings it begins to get a bit industrial with a large courier depot taking prime position on the main road. At some point there is a dirt road that leads down to the beach – an almost deserted beach. There is just a couple of Greek family’s down there with their own parasol and deck chairs. As an unorganised beach, there is not many opportunities to find shade. A have a little spot in the shelter of the cliff but that won’t last for very long.
Peter and Maddox walk around the bay and I watch them talking to the Greek man from one of the groups. I can then see that the man is picking up plastic from the beach and Peter and Maddox then join him. I can see a lot of plastic at this end of the bay and also get the beach cleaning bug. Between us we gather enough to fill a bag.
I’m glad to have seen this rugged beach but it doesn’t have much to offer us. Apart from the lack of shade the sea is a little choppy. I suggest that we head back and try and find somewhere near Agia Anna where we can swim. After climbing the steep dirt track again, we call into a supermarket for supplies and then head off on the next bus. We spot a nice bit of street art along the way too.
Walking down the boardwalk at Agia Anna we find a spot close to the rocks and this is where we spend the rest of the afternoon. I have a swimming race against Maddox – he wins. I challenge him to do a handstand in the water – he masters it on the third try.
I spot a couple of people on pedalo’s and think that this will be good fun. Peter and Maddox are up for it and I message the girls to see if they want to join us. They are with us within minutes. I’m quite happy to sit and watch them for the next hour circle the bay.
We are hungry and are all in agreement that we will go straight from the beach to eat. Along the back of the beach is a nice taverna called Sunset. The sun is about to set so I think that this will be the perfect place to eat. Going straight to a taverna without the rigmarole of showering and getting ready is one of my favourite things to do. Sometimes the expectation of going for a meal in a less spontaneous way diminishes the experience. I can’t explain it – just one of those strange things I guess. We bathe in the golden rays of the setting sun until it dips behind the landscape.
That’s it for today. Tomorrow we will be up early to do the South Beach bus tour.