Summer holiday, day 1 & 2
|05.07.22||Prinos||210m (OSM)||110m (est.)||Lefkada, Greece|
|05.07.22||Rouda||226m (OSM)||196m (est.)||Lefkada, Greece|
To Lefkada, Greece, July 4 2022
Monday, July 4: We left Årnes in eastern Norway 4am in the morning, to reach the 7:20am flight from Oslo Gardermoen to Preveza airport, Greece.
Given the recent technician strike and the possible upcoming pilot strike, plus reports of chaos in European airports, I didn’t really look forward to the trip. In addition, issues at work bugged me and then there was this headache which I always get when I go on vacation.
The plan left on time, which was a good start. The next good thing was that this flight would only take 3h:30m, instead of 4h:30 which I thought at first. And then I got the headache…
From time to time, I enjoyed looking out the window. This was the first time I had seen the Dolomites.
We also passed above Venice, but I was too late with the camera…
It was 35 deg. C. when we landed in Greece. It’s always a shock for those who feel that 20 deg. C. is super-hot. The entry to the country was smooth. The next good thing that happened was that there was no one in queue at the Avis office. It took the clerk a whooping 30 minutes to hand out the keys, but OK…
The car – a Toyota Corolla was alright. Finding our way from Preveza to Lefkada island was easy enough thanks to navigational assistance from Google. Switching from Nordic to Mediterranean driving takes a little while, but I was soon with it. We’ve been traveling before…
We found the hotel – Coralli Beach in Nydri right away. We had lunch in the hotel garden while waiting for the room to be ready. The first impression was good. It looked like a family-driven enterprise with a limited number of rooms and a small garden just by the shore. Anne was very happy, and I just wanted to go be to shake off the headache.
Later in the evening, we went out for the dinner. We only walked for 5 minutes and went into the first restaurant we found – Kalypso. We actually had all our dinners here, except for one. We enjoyed the food, the atmosphere and the waiters. My new favorite dish became Moussaka and Greek salad – combined.
I went to bed with headache, hoping for a better tomorrow.
Prinos & Rouda, July 5 2022
Tuesday, July 5: I woke up with headache and feared that the whole day would go to waste. But, after breakfast the headache faded, and I was soon all fine again. I proposed to Anne that we should go hiking. While she’s kind of used to this transition, like “you were looking dead 5 minutes ago and now you want to go hiking!”, it always takes her a couple of minutes to readjust. She had probably pictured a long day on a bed by the water.
To begin on a low key, I proposed we could drive to Geni and see if we were able to get to the top of Prinos. Anne was OK with this, and off to Geni we went. Thanks to Open Street Map and Google, we were able to see smaller roads that helped us throughout the week. The maps show a mountain/forest road from Geni and up to the pass between Prinos and Rouda and then – seemingly – across the top of Prinos.
We found the mountain road – signpost “Villa Panorea” – and followed it up the forest.
The road did not take us to the high point. We scrambled up some rocks and found the traditional summit marker (N38.69348 E20.71604), but I didn’t really think this was the summit.
So, we headed into the bush just north of the summit marker and this was a truly painful experience. Anne stopped by a fence while I climbed over it and found a place that had to be the highest point on the mountain (N38.69472 E20.71564) – some 3 meters higher than the marker.
On our way down, I tried to sell the idea of also visiting Rouda – you know – “since we’re already up here..”. Anne knows me well and wasn’t surprised.
From the Prinos – Rouda pass, we followed a mountain road in the direction of Rouda.
There was all sort of interesting things to see along the road. The number of butterflies was astonishing! And – other creatures that we typically don’t see in Norway.
On the maps, there are no roads leading to the top of Rouda and a bushwack here was simply out of the question.
But there was actually a road leading us up to the summit area. We didn’t find any marker but decided on a place that was just as good high point as any other place up here (N38.68302 E20.71572).
Where the high point truly was – potato potatoe – we had traveled all the way from Norway and now we were here!
We took the same route back down to the car and went back to the hotel for swimming in the ocean. We had brought snorkeling gear but there was nothing to see except for some fish swimming close to the beach. The water temperature was stunning. At least 26 deg. C.
In the evening, we went back to the Kalypso restaurant where we had our first encounter with the local troubadour – seemingly touring all the restaurants on the shoreline. “Welcome to beautiful Lefkada. I sing you a local Greek song”.
What we didn’t know at the time, was that we would meet him every single evening for the rest of the week. Same opening sequence, and probably the same songs. I couldn’t tell.
No complaints though. We were in paradise. The temperature above and below water was amazing, the headache was gone and we had two new mountain tops on our first day here!
Trip statistics: 6,9km, 350 vertical meters, 2h:21m
Pictures (Iphone 13 Pro Max) from the travel to Greece:
Pictures (Canon EOS RP/ Iphone 13 Pro Max) from the July 5 hike:
Continued on day 3…