17 Oct Postcards from Greece | Autumn 2021
This was my first road trip. Since we got Else getting on a plane became a luxury and we had to change the way we travel. We used to do home-exchange every year and leave Greece for several months each time. Now we had to reinvent the way we travel and adjust to the fact that there’s a new baby in the house. Luckily she loves car rides and this made our lives easier. It was a great opportunity to discover Greece. Which for me, was never a travel destination, just a place I was looking to get away from. Funny how life works sometimes…
Summer is not my cup of tea, Greek summer that is. So we’ve spent our summer days hiding from the scorching sun and decided to save our holidays for autumn. When all the leaves are brown and the skies are grey and we can blast ‘The Mamas and the Papas’ on the radio like there’s no tomorrow.
We recently bought our first car (which I think I’ve never mentioned here before as everything happened so fast and still feels surreal) and we welcomed the opportunity to hop on and drive till we can’t drive anymore. Nafplio and Orini Arkadia was our final destination but we felt free to stop anywhere we fancied in between.
Nafpaktos was surprisingly beautiful, with a rich historical and cultural heritage, built amphitheatrically on a pine-filled hillside. Contemporary but preserving its original, traditional style, it was a great region to stop, rest and recharge.
When we finally reached Nafplio, it was already dark and murky. Which is a good thing in my book. According to mythology, the town was founded by Nafplios, the son of god Poseidon and the daughter of Danaus (Danaida) Anymone. The town’s history traces back to the prehistoric era when soldiers from here participated in the Argonautic expedition and the Trojan War alike. The town declined during the Roman times and flourished again during the Byzantine times. Frankish, Venetian, and Turkish conquerors left their mark in the town and strongly influenced its culture, architecture, and traditions during the centuries.
The duality is always thought-provoking.
The old city is beautifully preserved and well-polished while the rest of the town is unworked and stereotypically Greek.
Next stop: Piana, Arcadia, located on the slopes of Mount Menalos, at an altitude of 1,150 meters, right in the center of Arcadia, just two hours away from Athens. All I wanted was to be immersed in nature, enjoy the rain, the fog, and the black pin trees. Piana delivered. We stayed at Papanikola Hotel, which was masterly tacked in the forest. Surrounded by folk and local elements, phones turned off, and laptops back at home, we were left with the breath-taking views and homemade, traditional food in abundance. I took some pictures for you, which I hope you’ll enjoy.
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