Crete

Ah, Crete. I hadn’t exactly planned on going there, but after travelling through the Middle East I was in need of a holiday. I was thinking about maybe going to Ios, but I’d heard good things about Crete, and it has history for New Zealanders. It is pretty much a package holiday place though – something like 80% of visitors are on package tours. Still, I was in the mood for somewhere where I could drink the water out of the tap, and flush the toilet. I guess I mostly succeeded in that (those who have used Greek toilets will know what I mean).

This is the view out the window of the place I was staying at. Not that cheap, but right in the middle of it. Restaurants immediately below the window, and the water right there. Plenty of bars within 1-2 mins walk.

View out the window

Some other shots, one looking over the old town, the next looking back across the harbour. The place I was staying at is roughly in the middle.

Across the old town Across the harbour

Since lying on a beach all day, and drinking all night wasn’t going to do my body any favours, I decided to walk the Samaria Gorge.

Top of Samaria Gorge Strange Rock Formations Sag Wagon

Approaching Iron Gates The Iron Gates

Souda (also spelt Suda) Bay is the Commonwealth WWII cemetery on Crete. There’s around 1500 servicemen buried here, including around 500 New Zealanders. Something that really struck me here was the large number of unidentified soldiers – I guess that came from the fact that the bodies were moved around several times, having first been buried around the island when the Germans took it. I was there just a few days after a ceremony commemorating the 65th anniversary of the battle of Crete, so wreaths were still around.

Approach to Souda Bay Rows of NZ graves Unkown NZ soldier

I wanted to go somewhere with working municipal facilities, and for the most part, they were. However I did particularly like this pedestrian crossing – after crossing from right to left, where are you meant to go? There’s no footpath, it just goes straight into a fence.

Cretan pedestrian crossing

And of course, here’s the main reason I enjoyed myself so much on Crete – this is Linda and Pia, who work at DNA. Huge amounts of fun, just don’t try and outdrink them, you will regret it…

Linda and Pia