Our first day in Naxos was a truly amazing day. One of my favorite days in Europe. The day started our very well. It was drizzly and damp when we went for breakfast. We found a restaurant open near the water that served bottomless cups of coffee. I know that doesn’t sounds very amazing but it is, especially on a rainy day. We lingered over breakfast for a few hours enjoying cup after cup. Like I’ve said before, I had no idea how important my two morning cups of coffee were until I couldn’t have them. When you go for coffee here you get an espresso, the largest drink being a cappuccino in Italy. You can sip it if you please, but it will still be gone in 10 minutes. A cup of coffee means you can sip for 30 minutes and chit chat while the world goes by, then someone comes by the fill up the cup again and you linger some more. Shane also had the most Canadian breakfast we’ve enjoyed so far, bacon and eggs with toast. Yum!
We walked to a grocery store after breakfast (well to the post office first) and bought a few things for breakfast to save money the next two mornings as well as a bottle of wine. Not just any wine though. It was in an unlabeled plastic water bottle. I picked it up and asked Shane “What the heck is it?” I thought it could have been canola oil but it was on the wine shelf. The owner spoke up “It’s my father’s wine, from home.” Yes!!! Of course we spent the 3 euros. It’s actually very good.
We brought our loot home as most of it went in the refrigerator. Once we were ready to go again, it was around 1130. We walked down the hill to a rental shop and asked to rent an ATV. The (very nice) lady made it so easy! We got an orange, 150cc ATV with a box on the back for 18 euros a day! Because it totally doesn’t fit in the budget I’ve decided it is an ‘I Love You’ present for Shane and he is so excited. He’s like a 10 year old racing go-karts! We filled up the tank with gas (13 euros) and raced out of town. We cruised into the mountains, headed to the interior of the island. We did make a few wrong turns before we figured out what the dead-end signs look like, but after that we did good.
As the sun came out we drove to Chalki, in the center of the island, which used to be the capital city. We had some very over priced lunch and went for a walk around town, and to see a Byzantine Church. There are thousands of tiny little white churches all over Naxos. I’ve heard this is much the same all over the islands but it’s insane just how many there are. Most of the churches are built in the middle of no where. They are tiny little things that could maybe fit 12 people in them, some are even smaller!
When we got back to our ATV we noticed it wasn’t in the same spot we left it, it was across the street! Someone had moved it! That kind threw us off, because if you could move it without the key, you could steal it as well. We decided to go back the way of the coast. Shane was feeling quite confident by now around corners and picking up speed. We went down to water at Cape Mikri Vigla. We were blown away by how beautiful the beaches are. And there was only a handful of people on them! We had frappes at a restaurant on the beach and rested for a while. We chose to ride back on the dirt roads along the water, it is so nice to have the wind blowing over you in the scorching hot sun. Little coves peaked their heads out here and there as the sea came and went. We came back into town and found a place to park at the base of our hill. We walked on up to our room.
We showered and had a glass of wine on our patio before leaving the room at 1930. We walked to the Temple of Apollo, which is only the entryway to a temple that was never built. We talked and watched as the sun went down until the water. It was a stunning sunset, and I’m afraid the pictures don’t show it as true.
We were in need of dinner and had only 10 euros left in our budget, but we wanted a nice way to end the day. So rather than gyros or pita standing up we went back to the restaurant we were at for breakfast because it had a really great deal. A whole dinner for two, wine included for 17 euros or so. We were happy to pay it of course and had a fantastic dinner. After dinner we headed to the bakery for baklava for me and gelato for Shane. A delicious end to an amazing day.