Skiathos

Skiathos is just under 20 square miles in size. it rained all day today. As I mentioned in my post yesterday we are definitely here in the off season. One web site I read today said that in summer the population can be 70,000 but in the off season it is about 4,000. It didn’t take us long to explore the west end of the island this afternoon. We saw a couple of beautiful beaches and almost no people.

Agia Eleni Beach
Aselinos Beach

We also went to a high point and visited Kounistra monastery.

Kounistra monastery

We have only seen 4 or 5 restaurants open. When we checked in here the owner of Hotel Rene recommended 3. We are eating at one each night we are here. Tonight we ate at Akrogiali.

Akrogiali

We started with a Greek salad to share. All our food was wonderful but my squid and onion in a special sauce was fantastic.

Greek salad
Squid and baby onions.

Volos to Skiathos, Greece

We took an 8:30 ferry this morning to the island of Skiathos. The ferry terminal was right across from our hotel in Volos.

Our ferry is the one on the right.

The ferry ride was about two and a half hours.

On the ferry to Skiathos.

In Skiathos we took a taxi to the airport and rented a car. Since it was a bit early to check into our hotel we went for a drive out to a point overlooking the town.

Skiathos

The runway at the airport in Skiathos goes from coast to coast.

Map showing Skiathos airport

This video that I found on YouTube shows how close to the end of the runway the airplanes can be when they land. When we drove around the end of the runway there was a stop light to stop traffic when planes land.

Skiathos runway.

There seem to be very few people on the island right now. We are staying at Hotel Rene. It’s a wonderful place with a great view. They can hold about 70 people but the owner told us that only four rooms will be occupied tonight. He told us that once flight stops coming from the rest of Europe there are almost no tourists on Skiathos. The hotel will close after this weekend. Most other hotels are already closed.

The view from our balcony.

For dinner we had a mixed seafood platter at Bakaliko Restaurant. It’s one of the few restaurants that is still open.

Our seafood grill to share

What we couldn’t eat the waiter scraped onto a plate and led the cats outside to eat.

Thessaloniki to Volos, Greece

This morning we took a taxi to the bus station in Thessaloniki and then took a bus south for 2 hours and 20 minutes to Valos. We are in Volos because tomorrow morning we will take a ferry to the island of Skiathos.

The bus station in Thessaloniki
Waiting for the bus

In Volos it was raining and there didn’t seem to be any taxis available so we walked to our hotel. We got a bit wet but it was a relatively short walk.

Walking to our hotel in Volos

Later when the rain had stopped we went for a walk.

Volos waterfront

For dinner we went to a small Greek restaurant. The service was wonderful as was the food. I think our favorite dish was the prawns in a tomato, feta and basil sauce. The octopus was excellent too.

Kritamo where we ate dinner
Octopus

After dinner we went for walk before heading back to the hotel.

After dinner walk
Church of St. Nicholas

Thessaloniki, Greece

After a great breakfast at our hotel we went for a walk and visited the Thessaloniki Archaeological Museum. One of the things I liked about the museum was that they often had photos of the items as they were discovered.

Walking along the waterfront near our hotel
Deed from a house from the 4th century BC. The Greek alphabet was the first phonetic alphabet
Duke in the archaeological museum
Marion in the archaeological museum

Bitola, North Macedonia to Thessaloniki, Greece

The view from our window at Ciflik winery this morning was beautiful. Fall has definitely arrived in Macedonia.

Today was a travel day. We relaxed at Ciflik Winery until checkout time when we had a taxi ordered. As we were waiting for the taxi we had a conversation with the owner of the winery, Filip. He had fond memories of his time as an exchange student in Enid, Oklahoma. I would recommend Ciflik Winery to anyone who wants to visit Macedonia

Filip, the owner of Ciflik winery and us before we left

Our bill at Ciflik for two nights inclusing breakfast, two dinners including a bottle of wine each night plus olive bread and wine each afternoon was just $244. What a great bargain.

Our taxi took us across the border into Greece to the train station in Florine. The distance was about 22 miles and cost us $45. We waited about 3 hours for the train that took us to Thessaloniki. It was a lovely day so sitting, reading and knitting was quite relaxing.

Knitting, listening to a book and waiting for the train
Our train

We arrived in Thessaloniki about 7 and took a cab to our hotel which overlooks the water.

The view from our balcony

For dinner we had moussaka, sardines and ouzo at a table overlooking the water and people strolling along the waterfront.

Ouzo
Moussaka
Sardines