Sifnos – Visit to the Kastro

We head out for the 10.00am bus to Apollonia again.  For the last couple of days there has been the same crowd of people waiting at the stop – two Dutch couples who are on a walking holiday, a middle aged American couple who tell us the snow is still thick on the ground back home and an elderly Greek couple who don’t speak English but always greet everyone when they arrive at the stop.

My first mission is to find a shop in Apollonia that can save the photographs on my memory card to a CD as I’ve already used 8gb’s of memory on my SLR.  Maria from Morfeus tell us that we are more likely to find somewhere in Apollonia than Kamares.  Kostas tells us that there is a shop near to the second petrol station – not the first petrol station but the second one!

Using our powers of deduction we work out which is the second petrol station and we come across a photography studio which seems to have a machine where you can download and print your photos.  Unfortunately it doesn’t take flash cards.  The lady tells us in broken English to wait whilst she phones her son who is at home. Within 5 minutes her son arrive on a moped.  His English is good and he tells us that he will take it home and download it for us and it will only cost 4 euros.  It cost us 8 euros in Athens last year and I’m sure his petrol would cost that too.  Whilst we wait we go to the bakery next door for breakfast.  This is a busy old bakery and clearly popular with the locals.

I have my memory card and cd of photographs back in 20 minutes which is excellent! (I will buy more memory cards for our next trip!)

We have a little while before the bus to Kastro arrives so we take the opportunity to walk around Apollonia again and in particular some of the churches that we didn’t have time to explore previously.

There are lots of trendy cafe bars and little boutiques amongst the more traditional buildings.

We catch the bus which drops us at the entrance to the Kastro which sits up on top of the cliff overlooking the famous Seven Martyrs church.

We enter the Kastro by climbing whitewashed steps.  We pass Cafe bars that can only be described as ’boutique’.

The view from the Kastro inland is as stunning as the views out to the sea

We walk around the Kastro perimeter until we reach the coastal side.  Peter walks down to the Seven Martyrs Church whilst I stay at the top to take photographs.

Peter seemed to take ages coming back up to the Kastro.  When he did come back he looked a bit flustered and then proceeded to tell me about his encounter with a snake.  When he was walking back up the path to the Kastro, he must have disturbed a snake who didn’t take too kindly to it’s sunbathing being disrupted.  It reacted by striking a threatening pose and rasping it’s forked tongue at him.  Peter says his only reaction was to throw himself backwards out of its way but he wanted to make sure that it had moved away before continuing up the stone steps.

I am now being extra EXTRA vigilent about wherever I walk!
We have about 2 hours to wait before the next bus arrives to take us back to Apollonia so we walk around the pretty streets of the Kastro.
Cafe Konaki had caught our eye when we first arrived and not only does it have spectacular views over the landscape is has a good vantage point to see approaching buses.  We have tea and ice cream and then more tea. We are the only customers apart from one other couple during the hour or so we were there.
Back in Apollonia we walk to the village of Exambela.  It is late afternoon and light on the whitewashed buildings is perfect.
We walk back to the centre of Apollonia and think it would be nice to eat in a restaurant there.  We find  a restaurant with a lovely (and deserted) courtyard where we are able to watch the sunset on the mountains whilst we eat under a vine covered pergola.  Their garlic sauce is fantastic – one of my favourites.  Peter has the pork and I have lamb washed down with some lovely red wine.
We catch a taxi back to Kamares where we catch the tail end of the sunset.  The moon is full and lights up the town below.

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