Several mornings during July, I ran into Kardamena from where I was staying. My hotel, Acti Beach, is around 2 miles away from Kardamena. Getting up early and watching the sunrise develop during the Golden Hour is an unforgettable experience. Two years ago I was here in August and the sun rose over the sea. In July, the sun rises behind the mountains. Therefore I saw the sun start to rise by the golden colours appearing on the white buildings of the town as I ran towards Kardamena.
I run with my iPhone13 and I was able to stop for a few minutes and capture the golden rays. The fun is getting back to the hotel and seeing what the results are like. These pictures were taken on different mornings and when posted on my social media, they received a positive response. I certainly want to get back to Kos in the future and experience more sunrises on this beautiful island. This is the last of my Kos Island sequence and hope you enjoyed them.
A return visit to Kos and more pictures of the beautiful seaside village of Kardamena. An idyllic spot and a perfect base for the rest of the island. The long straight harbour front with the tropical trees adds character to the place and there are some delightful places to eat out and watch the world go by. Food is a must in Kardamena.
Thomas’s Meze is a favourite restaurant of ours and I enjoyed the traditional Greek foods that were served. The sea bass was particularly tasty and the bones were expertly removed by our waiter. The pictures show the before and after result. Other favourites included home made Moussaka and Feta Filo.consisting of feta folding in pastry, sprinkled with sesame seeds. The local honey that is poured over the pastry comes from those bees that I saw in the mountains. It was also a chance for me to become re-acquainted with Retsina. The taste of this Greek resinated wine is not to everybody’s liking with some people spitting it out as soon as they taste it! For me it is a refreshing taste and goes well with fish and other Mediterranean foods.
We also dined at the restaurant, Avli, which is based in one of the oldest houses in Kardamena. The restaurant is in an old courtyard which is cool and adds a local greek atmosphere to the proceedings. My choices here were the home made stuffed vine leaves to start with followed by the catch of the day which was red snapper. Both were delicious and prepared well.
Breakfast was taken at the Harbour lounge on the sea front where you could watch the yachts and the various ships such as the Pirate ship leave for a tour of the islands. The owners prepare a sumptuous breakfast which can either be English or Greek depending on your tastes.
Coming back from Kos Town on our final evening, we had our last meal at Chris snack and cocktail bar. A friendly family run restaurant where we had some simple but tasty home cooked food. The seating is on several tiers and we sat close to the sea, enjoying the sight of local children catching a crab and watching the pirate ship come home for the evening.
Eating out in the town was excellent and was a welcome break from the all-inclusive food at our hotel, which was fine but unadventurous. After breakfast or evening meal, then it was only natural that we wandered along the streets of Kardamena. There was a chance to see the shops, view the boats in the harbour or see the antics of the local cat population. Here are a selection of photographs out and about Kardamena during the day.
The album “Reach for the Sky” was released by Sunderland Brothers and Quiver in 1975. The cover is very evocative and has an eagle flying across the sun. My picture of the Lesser Kestrel flying over the valley between Kardamena and Pyli reminds me of that LP record. It is one of many pictures taken on a day out with the wonderful photographer Sarah Longes (Twitter @miradordesign). With my 200mm lens working to its limit, Sarah taught me to be patient on taking photographs. Not one of my strongest virtues but I am learning.
Sarah spotted where the lesser kestrels were hunting on the edge of the valley. The view from our photography spot was spectacular and one of the interesting features were the large number of bee hives scattered across the landscape. Sarah has a sixth sense of where to find wildlife. I have known her virtually for a few years now and luck would have it we were both on Kos at the same time. She is a super photographer and teacher.
We left the Lesser Kestrels hunting in the mountains and moved onto Pyli to walk around the village. Pyli features a natural water spring. Although it was the heat of the day, there were several people filling up containers with spring water. It was quiet when we visited, although two coach tours did descend on the area whilst we were having lunch in a local restaurant in the square.
Following lunch, we made our way to the Alikes Salt Lake that was next to the town of Tigaki. The lake was teeming with wildlife in spite of the serious levels of pollution present. The salt works are no longer operational and are visited by a few tourists and locals. More interest is from the paragliding sails that pepper the horizon. The salt lake was interesting with graffiti on old abandoned buildings, several varieties of birds and even some turtles swimming around. It was here that once again I learnt to be patient, as I photographed the birds, resisting my natural temptation to rush forward to get as close as possible.
Our final stop was the Traditional Windmill of Antimachia. This is a restored windmill and the intricate sails were quite magnificent as they turned around. I chatted to the owner of the Windmill and accompanying restaurant/bar and showed him Chesterton Windmill near Leamington Spa. The owner was very interested, and I hope that I have forged an international link between the two windmills.
A memorable day and thank you to both Sarah for allowing me to accompany her on her photography tour and Simon her husband for chauffeuring us around Kos. Hope you as the reader enjoy the pictures.
The village of Kardamena was not far from the hotel where we stayed for Natasha and Rob’s wedding. It is a small resort with an attractive harbour and a big heart. I was very impressed with the place. It has many backstreets which are pleasant to stroll through and are relatively cool in the midday sun. The harbour front contains many bars and restaurants which come alive in the evening. Every morning, I ran into Kardamena and took many iPhone pictures which often included the sunrise. This did depend on whether I got up in time.
The light on the Island is best in the early morning when the first rays break though over the waters. At night the sun sets behind a small mountain ridge but some of the last rays of the day still make for a pleasant picture. In the town we ate at several restaurants and the food was always tasty and delicious. It was also good to drink Retsina again which I know is an acquired taste but it brings back memories of my time Greek island hoping when I was a student. These are some of the pictures that I took which are all on my iPhone. It was not practical to bring the grown up camera out on either a run or in the evening when alcohol was flowing. However I know that I will visit Kos again taking my cameras to catch the beautiful light.
The final picture is not in Kos but taken at the Sunset Taverna in Zia on the mountains. It was an adventurous journey in the mini bus up and down the steep mountain roads from Kardamena to Zia but as the picture shows is was worth it for the sunset. This was taken with my Canon 5D with two pictures stitched together.
The corona virus almost scuppered Natasha my daughter’s wedding plans. She and Rob wished to tie the knot on the Island of Kos in August. The planning started at the end of last year and everything was in place, hotel booked and plane tickets all sorted. What could go wrong? The rest of 2020 does not need an explanation but it did cause the family much stress and anguish. The government were opening and closing travel corridors to different countries. Luckily Greece had a low infection rate and the wedding was on. It was touch and go and there were causalities as some of the family were unable to come due to work restrictions.
Kos is a beautiful island and we were booked into the Akti Beach hotel complex on the south near to the village of Kardamena. It was very safe on the Island as most hotels and restaurants were lightly booked and there was not a large number of tourists present. The weather was glorious and every day, it was on the right side of 30oC.
Natasha and Rob’s Wedding took place on the beach. There was a small secluded part of the beach that was set up with chairs and a horseshoe decoration. The scenery could not have been more idyllic. Following the simple but moving ceremony, there was a short walk up to the reception. This took place in the Malibu Beach Bar. There were only 14 close family that attended the wedding and we had the Beach bar to ourselves. The setting was very tropical with bar and swimming pool. Following the cutting of the cake there was the bridal meal consisting of tasty BBQ food. There were the speeches and a video collage of well wishers of people who could not get to the wedding. This had been put together by Kirsty, Rob’s sister and there were some surprise guests included. Following some fleeting fireworks, most people took a dip in the swimming pool and enjoyed the rest of the evening. Natasha was so happy as she finally had her wish come true.
After the wedding? I went banana boat surfing on the sea which is an exhilarating white knuckle ride. We also made it to the Sunset tavern restaurant in Zia on top of one of the highest mountains in Kos.
As for the travel. It was a weird experience wearing facemasks on the flight there and back plus all the quarantine form filling that had to be done. Everyone got there and back safely without any infection from the corona virus. On reflection it was a highlight of 2020 and we were so pleased that we could be there to celebrate Natasha and Rob’s big day. I was pleased that I was able to take my cameras out to the event and was happy with my unofficial photographs.