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Greece

Stones, stones, and a lot of history

Katakolon

We arrived Katakolon sunday afternoon and monday morning we woke up in the marina. This is a cruiseport and we could see that this week, up to 3 boats in one day! The fun side of it is that I was thinking I`ve heard about Katakolon before but I didn`t know why. Yes, I have heard about Olympia, but it was something about the name Katakolon. After some days here I realized that I`ve said that name many times in my job at the travel agency when I was selling cruise!

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This town is pritty special because the shops are only open when the cruiseboats arrives. If the shops are closed it looked like a ghost town…

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In the morning, before breakfast, Astor and I took a run around the peninsula

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And after breakfast Ingela and I had a shopping tour in town. Very service minded people here!

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We invited Ingela and Lars for waffel lunch

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Tuesday we rented a car from Dias, and Janis and his collegue were really friendly and serviceminded! Our main goal for the day was to go to Olympia, but first we went to a monastery up in the mountain.

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The information at internet said that Moni Fragkopidimatos should be open until 11.30

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But it was quiet and there were no people around. We walked around but couldn`t come inside somewhere

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An amazing view from the monastery! So quiet, you could only hear some roosters and goats!

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This monastery is climbing in the hill, here we can see down to the church where we parked the car

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We had a short stop in Pyrgos on our way to Olympia. Bigger city than the other ones we have seen the last weeks. I went crazy on a shop for sport clothes…

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We drove to Olympia and parked the car there before we walked 30 minutes to Olympia Land Estate for wine tasting! (it was worth the walk 🙂 )

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What a surroundings!! And the people working there were amazing! If you go to Olympia I will really recommend you to go here! Check their homepage and book now!!

https://www.olympiagi.gr/

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This photo could be from a Ingmar Bergman movie! (swedish)

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Luckily we were the last guests this day and Amanta stopped by and had a chat and we asked if we could have a look around, and of course! She told us about the history and we met her father. He started all this in 2008 but he had it as a hobby many years before that.

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We bought some oliveoil before we left this beautiful place! A big thanks to Amanta for having time!

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Olympia

Olympia is a small town half an hour drive from Katakolon. The town is most famous for the archaeological site. This site was a major Panhellenic religious sanctuary of ancient Greece where the ancient Olympic Games were held every four years throughout Classical Antiquity from the 776 BC to 393 AD. It took 1503 years before the Olympics returned in Athen.

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We where there late and they closed at 18. The temperature was nice at that time and the sun started to go down. We were surpriced they closed it so early but of course it is nothing to see when it is dark

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Over 40.000 people, athletes, philosophers, politicians, artists, poets and other pilgrims travelled from the whole Greek world to watch the games.

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We have now been at some archaelogical sites in Greece and we were a bit disappointed about Olympia. It is to much stones spread around, but we saw they are still working! But it was fun to be where the Olympic Games started!

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We had a look into the museum before we went back to Katakolon. We should have seen more of Olympia, but we had to go back to deliver the car…

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We had a stop at Lidl in Pyrgos where they already are selling christmas chocolate… in the beginning of october…

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Wednesday we just relaxed in the boat and did some boatjobs, waiting for the weather to be better to sail south.

Astor tried out the small beach in the west side of town center

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A cruiseship this day as well

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In the afternoon we had a walk along the nice beach. It so hard packed you can drive the car here, and it is perfect for running

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Thursday morning we woke up early to sail to Pylos. Ingela and Lars started before us because they have a smaller boat (slower boat). Before sunrise and already two cruiseships in the harbour.

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The marina in Katakolon is okay. You have to pay through your bank, I guess many people forgot to do that after leaving here.

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Pylos

Yes, Ingela and Lars has a smaller boat, but it is not always the most important thing in sailing, we also need good wind, and since they started before us, we had different winds on our sailing.

The castle in Pylos. Guess if we are going to visit that place??

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We went to the marina where Lars found a place for us. It costs nothing to stay there. But no facilities.

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We moored at the end of a pir

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Pylos, a nice small town, worth a visit! We, together with Ingela and Lars, went to the castle friday morning.

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A nice church, and can you believe, both Ingela and I have been singing in the church choir at home! So we had to sing together. She also sang Pie Jesu for other guests coming here. It was a nice moment to share!

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We realized this could be our last day (for now) together so went to a restaurant to have dinner this evening. It has been so fun to meet this swedish couple and I really hope we will meet next year somewhere around! Thanks Ingela and Lars for beeing who you are!

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Friday morning we said goodbye to Ingela and Lars and sailed further into the bay to hike to the next castle, the old Navarino Fortress. You can go here by car too. We anchored and took the dinghy ashore.

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The castle is at the top of this hill

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You can park the car at the end of the road and start walking. It says 45 minuts on the sign, but it takes only 25 minuts. Very nice to have a swim after the hike!

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Nice trail and it was easy to find the way

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This fortress is open for everyone and it is free to go in.

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And it is really worth the short hike!! The view from here is spectacular!!

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And someone has actually brought a chair up here!!

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On the way down again, took the dinghy back to the boat and had a swim before sailing out of the bay.

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This arch is right outside Pylos so you are passing it on the way into the bay. We didn`t had more time to explore this

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Because we had to sail to our next destination – Methoni

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Methoni

The sail from Pylos to Methoni is short so we arrived in the afternoon. I hoped we could reach out the castle before sunset, but it was not time for that.

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We anchored in the bay and woke up to this view next morning.

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Methoni is a cozy small town. Probably more activities and tourists here in the high season

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The entrance to the castle

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The castle occupies the whole area of the cape and the southwestern coast to the small islet that has also been fortified with an octagonal tower and is protected by the sea on its three sides

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The Turkish bath

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The old church of st.Sofia, build in 1833.

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On the northern part you have a nice view over Methani town

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The bridge over to the Bourtzi

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Felizia is anchored in the middle of this photo

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We had an icecream before we head back to the dinghy. Its a nice beach on both side of the jetty

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Here on the jetty you can put your dinghy

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Koroni

We lifted the anchor and sailed south and around the corner of finger nr. 2 of Peleponnes to Koroni

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We first anchored right in front of the city center, with a great view, and close to town. It started to be more windy after our visit to the castle so we took the boat to the south side of the peninsula.

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A nice little town with narrow streets, stairs and amazing colours!

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I hope they are not bringing new furnitures here…

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Our goal for visiting Koroni was – the castle… One of the few castles in Greece that remain inhabited, so totally different from other castles we have visited!

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The view from the entrance

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It was in greek letters so we couldn`t understand, but it says 1914, so I think it has something to do with WW1.

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On the south side of the peninsula you will find the church St. Eleistria. Beautiful place.

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Grigorios Bistis was savagely tortured by the Turks and while still alive dumped from the castle ramparts at this location during the Greek revolution in the year 1821. A lot of sad stories during all the wars..

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Beautiful paintings in the church

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The view from the church. We moved the boat here later that evening.

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When you are going down the stairs to look at something you have to go up again the same stairs when going back..

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Another church with a greek name… with a big cemetery in front

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I have already started collecting shells!

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After 17 you can visit the monastery and meet the nuns. I put my pants on and a jacket, because womens need to hide knees and shoulders. If someone know why men don`t have to do that, please let me know!

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A really beautiful place. Some of the nuns sat outside the church and talked to some of the locals.

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Pritty special door, and I regret I didn`t took an extra photo when we came back. Because when we come back and saw the door from the other side, it was black!! If you are colourblind, this is blue 🙂

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“Nearer my God to thee”… or… “Stairway to heaven”…

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A relaxed cat

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On the top you have an amazing view over the monastery and the castle

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The nuns had their own shop with things they have made and we got a candy from one of them.

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On the way back to the town again

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We already had dinner in the boat to heat up, so we didn`t stop here. We took the dinghy back to the boat and moved to the other side of the peninsula. You see the church in the castle in the photo.

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Sorry for this long post. I realized there is more than 800 castles/fortresses in Greece, and we will not visit them all. We have also seen there are some interesting ones in Turkey…

Next weeks post will not be so long, but we will visit Monemvasia, the most amazing place until now!!

See you next time!

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