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.

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.


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 is keen to walk down to the Seven Martyrs Church,   I’m less keen and quite happy to stay within the kastro walls.   The view down to the church really is spectacular.  I photograph it from every angle possible.


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 its sunbathing being interrupted.  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 vigilant about wherever I walk!
We have about 2 hours to wait before the next bus arrives to take us back to Apollonia so we slow walk around the pretty streets of the Kastro and down to Cafe Konaki.  Café 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.  Do check the bus timetable so that you can plan your trip accordingly.
Back in Apollonia we walk to the village of Exambela.  The late afternoon light on the whitewashed buildings is sheer perfection.
We walk back to the centre of Apollonia and think it would be nice to eat in a restaurant there.  We find  a restaurant called Oraia Sifnos which has a lovely (and deserted) courtyard where we are able to watch the sun set 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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