Till now only once I was travelling with previously booked holiday package. It was a trip to Crete, the biggest Greek island. There first time in life I had this absolutely touristic holidays, when we were living in a hotel with all inclusive package and taking travel agency’s offered inland trips. I am totally not a fan of just lying in shezlong and getting suntan seven days in a row. I need to go, to see, to do, to move. So during this trip we took some excursions and for a few days – rented a car. Previous move, in my opinion, is just essential if you are having holidays in the island.
So, what I remember the best from touching this island of Greece? It’s quite a task! I definitely want to mention this destination because of the first two sentences of this text. But if speaking sincerely, it passed so much time after that and a lot of moments disappeared. However, I can try to remember what kind of deepest impressions my personal Crete left for me till today?
- The man-made caves of Matala, carved out the steep cliffs thousands of years ago. In Sixties and Seventies this place became home for Flower children. They found out ready made home in the caves, beautiful Libyan sea and absolute sense of freedom. It was just a perfect scene for hippies, for their creation, self expression and enjoying free love. When I visited this place I could feel that atmosphere till now. I would love to live in caves for a while as well.
- The Cave of Zeus, full of beautiful stalagmites and stalactites deep inside. The place is located on the slopes of Mount Ida. I remember that long way up on foot during the heat, because I totally refused to use poor donkey. But what a bless was to get into the cold and dark cave after that!
- Traditional Greek dance Sirtaki lessons. I could never remember how it supposed to look like, but it was fun to do that in the middle of nowhere together with all our group and a guide as a teacher.
- During the dust storms in Africa, red dust approaches Crete as well. What a miracle, when you are having in mind Libyan seen in between, which is around 300 km wide!
- We saw so many skeletons, what in previous lives were cars, fallen down from mountainous roads. It’s not complicated to drive a car there, but those views are whispering to be a bit more careful.
- There’s quite a fact, that after 3-5 years after funeral graves in Crete are being opened, all the bones washed in a wine and removed to another place, usually – to the family grave or special vault in the church. As our tour guide told, this tradition is alive due to lack of space in cemeteries.
- In the end of those holidays I remember myself buying so many pieces of that green natural olive oil soap. That strange and at the same time very particular smell just enchanted me.
- Bananas, bought on the way to so called Malibu beach, located towards the East end of the cost of Malia! They were so small and so tasty.
- The best traditional Greek salad with huge pieces of Feta cheese we had only in small tavernas at the roadside: they were so good, so local, so real.
- Crete as well as all Greece is very famous for olives and olive oil, so it is not surprising that tasting of them is easily possible in villages. But at that time I was looking at olives with a safe distance and could not understand, how they can be edible. Times changed and today I totally disagree with previous me.