Holidays in Lakka Paxos – what are they really like? Day 6 & 7

Paxos Travel Guide by Rick McEvoy

Day 6 is on us before we know it. Nearly half way through our holiday.

What are holidays in Lakka Paxos really like? Well in todays post I will describe days 6 and 7 of your holiday in Lakka Paxos. And these are two days dedicated to one thing – relaxing. I originally titled this post “the art of relaxing” – this is how we relax on holiday.

But I changed the title as I want visitors to my website to be able to find out what it is really like holidaying on Paxos – not from a travel guide but from people who have actually been there – people like us.

Day 6 – our wedding anniversary

We are quiet people and have a lovely quiet day by the pool. Cards exchanged, tea drunk and off to lax by the pool. That was the plan. To work on the art of relaxing.

We did not have breakfast – some mornings on holiday we skip breakfast and have an early(ish) lunch.

So no breakfast – no it was straight up to the pool with our travel coffee mugs. We got there nice and early and adopted our usual position in the corner.

The art of relaxing – getting comfortable

We are definitely creatures of habit, and always go for the same corner of the pool. If you get one of the corners you get more space and are less close to other people.

Now this might sound a bit anti-social but as I said we are quiet people and we just want to be left alone to relax.

Together that is.

A question of personal space!

Corner secured, the next job is the slight rearranging of the furniture to maximise our space whilst subtly moving other people further away.

Does anyone else do this?

Or is it just us?

Some people don’t seem bothered by being shoe-horned next to strangers – no not us.

Now we are settled it is time for the usual relaxing activities, which this morning are

  • Dozing
  • Kindle reading
  • Dozing

Repeat as necessary

And that is it.

And before we know it time for lunch!

Blimey – such a busy morning. And now it is time to walk the length of the pool for lunch. And time for a nice cold one from the bar.

We are not that hungry so we share a cheeseburger and chips, which was very very nice indeed.

Food and drink done it is time to get back to the hard graft of relaxing.

The afternoon by the pool was lovely and quiet.

The importance of celebrating

We stayed at the pool till quite late, and celebrated our anniversary with a lovely bottle of Lanson. Milestones like this should be celebrated – we face lots of challenges in our life together which face head on and jointly.

Off down to Lakka

We walked down to the waterside in Lakka, and reserved a table at Arriva, a lovely restaurant right by the water.

This is one of those things that I love about Lakka. It is so small you just walk down to the front and browse the restaurants. We rarely have trouble getting a table – possibly as the Italians tend to eat later than us and with them being in the majority we are fine with our preferred dining time.

Having booked a lovely table by the water we headed back to Harbour Lights for an anniversary cocktail.

Enjoying dinner at the restaurant by the water called Arriva in Lakka

After our cocktails we were sat down at 8pm (as usual). We had a lovely table right next to the water with lovely views across the harbor of Lakka as the sun faded away leaving all those lovely bobbing boats and the activities of a small harbor.

A lovely carafe of red wine was brought o our table, which we drank slowly while we perused the menu.

We shared a lovely starter of giant beans accompanied by fresh bread which was excellent.

For our mains I decided to have stifado (for a change), with Nickie choosing the ravioli.

All the food was lovely, the service was great, attentive and not rushed.

A lovely way to finish our lovely wedding anniversary day on the island of Paxos.

Day 7 – Thursday – its raining!!

Halfway through the holiday and guess what – its raining in Paoxs?

We were woken up by thunderstorms this morning. Yes thunderstorms in Paxos. Not just rain.

It has clearly been raining in the early morning, as the table on the balcony is covered with water

And this is the balcony.

I decide to do the decent thing and get rid of the water on the table so we can use it.

I slowly and carefully move the table to the planters on the front of the balcony to tip the water gently into the planter. I get this disastrously wrong and pour all the water all over my legs. Not good.

I hate having damp feet – thankfully even in rubbish weather like this it is quite warm and I dry out quickly enough.

Morning tea storm watching

It is time for a cuppa and to watch the storms – good old fashioned thunder and lightning with bouts of light/ heavy rain. I have never seen such weather certainly not in Paxos – here if there is a cloud in the sky this is considered a disappointment!

Check out the video “Rain in Paxos Greece” of this from my YouTube channel!

The weather forecast is showing the storm will continue until 11am/ 12pm/ 4pm depending on which weather app we try. I tend to try all the weather apps and go with the one that gives me the news I want to see!

I know – my choice of weather app will not influence the actual weather but it makes me feel better. And I really cannot accept rain till 4pm!

Breakfast

Breakfast is the stuff we bought from the bakery last night on our way back after our lovely meal – biscuits with cream and a thing that was a rustic version of a cherry bakewell. All rather nice with a coffee.

We were planning on eating these snacks last night but couldn’t manage all of them so they were welcome breakfast snacks.

What to do when it is raining on Paxos?

Well there is no point rushing to the pool, even though I am sure that this weather will clear up in no time.

It stopped raining at 11am so we ventured out into a rather soggy Lakka full of people milling about all looking rather confused. Nickie went shopping. I went for a beer. And here it is!

Ok here it was!

Well it was a slow day so why not!

We reunited at the hotel and made our way up to the pool for another busy day of reading, eating and dozing.

Lunchtime already

Lunch/ brunch today consisted of a club sandwich and sausage on toast, both with chips which we ate at the bar at the pool – the tables and chairs had already completely dried out.

People gradually drifted in over the course of the afternoon leaving it full when we left at 5.30 for drinks on the now completely dry balcony.

A word about doing nothing

We both need time to recharge our batteries. This is one of the reasons we are in Paxos. To relax and take it easy.

This is very easy to do in Paxos, and especially stopping in Lakka. Everywhere is easily accessible on foot, and there is plenty of choice of places to eat and drink.

Basically Paxos is a lovely place to relax and unwind.

And with this it is time for dinner

Another busy day, the only thing left to sort is where to eat tonight. We deliberate on this weighty decision, perusing the menu at Mandis Bar, which is off to the right of the bay in Lakka, giving great sunset views, and is also quieter that other locations with less people walking by.

Weather update

Oh yes, the weather. The sun came out, the temperature increased like an oven being slowly turned up and when we left at 5.30 it was hot but the clouds had come in to seal in that heat nicely for the evening.

But no more rain.

Back to downtown Lakka. When I say downtown that is a tad of an overstatement.

It is overcast, which means there might not be a sunset tonight. We head over to Romantica for more drinks, and manage to get a seat upstairs. Not only do we get a seat upstairs, there is no one else up here so it is just us and the lovely relaxing scene in front of us.

Cocktails at Romantica on the Greek Island of Paxos

And this is when I realise for the first time that you can actually see the mainland of Corfu from the first floor of this bar. I must check to see if I can see the mainland from ground/ sea level – I don’t remember being able to, which is quite unusual for me.

Being a photographer I am always looking out for views and always need to know what I can/ cannot see.

We have a Mohito each and sit there looking at Mandis Bar, all sad in the cloud and the shade. We have a change of mind and decide to go to one of the restaurants in the square – we might as well take advantage of the cooler weather and light breeze. And Mandis Bar is the prime spot for sunset, so we might as well go there when there is an actual sunset to see.

Dining out at Stasinos Gardens

We walk round Lakka checking out the restaurants, and end up in the restaurant called Stanisos Gardens, where we are seated to a nice quiet table by a very friendly and enthusiastic waiter. A carafe of red delivered (a large one it has to be said) we ordered our food.

We have eaten here before last year and it was very nice.

We went for a Meze starter as we haven’t had one for a while. Nickie went for Moussaka again, and I went for the P beef dish similar to but not Stifado.

Honest it is not Stifado. We also had a lesson from our waiter in how to pronounce not only my main course but also stifado – turns out we have been saying it wrong up till now.

I cant remember the name of the meal that I had – lets stick with the P beef dish.

I am delighted to report that everything about the meal was lovely – the food, the service, the timing, the atmosphere – all good.

How much does dinner cost in Lakka?

Starters, mains and drinks all for €48. That is excellent value for lots of lovely food, drinks and really friendly and efficient service.

Definitely somewhere to return to.

Tipping on Paxos

A quick word on tipping here. I tend to tip 10% if I have experienced good service and good quality food. If I am not happy I expect every cent of change. If I am really unhappy I try to get a reduction on the bill.

I of course round up my tips, so for this meal rounded up to $55, which we were still more than happy with.

And now for dessert

On the way back to the hotel we stopped at the bakery and got some sweet snacks to have with our Metaxa and also some cereal bars for breakfast.

No, we are not ones for staying out late drinking – we are far too old and boring for that. It was an early night for Nickie, whilst I stayed up on the balcony for a while trying to fathom out my other website photosofsantorini, which will be all sorted by the time you are reading this.

I had it in my mind that I needed to do stuff, and was really not tired, so a late night working for me.

And that is what Paxos does

I have switched off in 7 days on Paxos. I have managed to relax and refresh my head and my body. So much so that now my mind is beginning to start working again.

Going to Paxos is like rebooting a computer – I have been reset and am thinking clearly again.

Blimey, I did not expect that!

And with that it is off to sleep with the holiday just about turning the corner of half done, which is a disappointing fact what feels like being too soon after arriving.

What else have we go to look forward to then?

Now that there has been some serious relaxing it is time for me to get out and do some stuff. Nickie will join me for some of it but some of it I will do on my won.

Photographing the sunrise on Paxos

I am going to get up early three or four mornings and go and photography the sunrise. I have a pretty good idea of my locations of choice.

Sunrise is my favourite time of day, when I am all alone out and about watching the dawning of a new day.

This is a special time for us photographers – a rare time alone to concentrate on taking one photo. Sure, I take more than 1 photo, but that is all I am after.

You can read more about this on the post How To Get Sunrise Photos Of Paxos Greece.

What else is planned for the rest of the holiday?

We have got a hire car booked for two days, and most excitingly a rental boat which we can use to go all around the island of Paxos and also head off down to the lovely tiny island of Antipaxos.

This will be such a great day out, and the perfect antidote to the days of doing not a great deal.

Relaxing vs doing stuff

We can’t travel all the way to Paxos from the UK and just lie by the pool for a fortnight. And neither can we spend two weeks going out and about doing stuff.

To be fair on Paxos that would be a challenge in itself.

No – there is a balance to be sought, which we have perfected that works for us both together and individually.

The art of relaxing on Paxos

Paxos makes it easy to relax – it is the natural consequence of being here. And we both take our rest and relaxation seriously.

Tomorrow it is time to get back to being a travel photographer – I am going to head off on foot with my trusty Canon 6D and find stuff to photograph – join me on this post which will contain photos taken in and around Lakka.

Day 5 on Paxos – Gaios or Lakka? Difficult Decisions…

OK – today is the day for the first trip out of Lakka since we arrived. If we can be bothered that is.

Gaios or Lakka – which is it going to be? Gaios it turned out was the venue of choice for day 5 on Paxos. We were both looking forward to returning to the capital of Paxos and having lunch and mooching round the shops.

Gaios is a lovely place to visit.

And as we are on day 5 and have not left Lakka yes I guess it was time.

The dilemma of being on holiday

There is dilemma when on holiday of doing nothing or not. Do absolutely nothing and you might as well stay at home – weather being the notable exception to this of course, especially in the UK. And of course the break from day to day life.

One day of doing stuff followed by one day of doing nothing other than relaxing works for us.

So today is our trip to the big city of Gaios. OK – hardly a big city, but Gaios is the capital of the island.

We decided to get the bus to Gaios from Lakka.

After our usual morning tea we got ourselves sorted and shuffled out of the hotel – it was already baking hot out there.

Missing the bus

The plan was to get the first bus which leaves Lakka at 8.50am. Not surprisingly we did not make it, mainly down to me and my morning lethargy. Well I am on my hols, apart from the work I am doing on this website of course.

We didn’t make the 8.50 bus so decided to take it easy and get the second bus at 11am. 

Giving us time spare in lovely Lakka. 

Missing the first bus gave us time to have a morning mooch around Lakka and grab breakfast at the lovely café called, well I’m not sure!

Breakfast consisted of a nice coffee and a cheese and ham toastie sat watching the world go by.

It is at times like this that I realise how seldom we take the time to sit down and have a coffee when we are at home – not often enough. Such a simple but enjoyable thing to do but something we do not do anywhere near often enough.

Having had a very nice relaxing breakfast we decide to book a table for dinner at a place we have walked past hundreds of times but never been in called Taverna Nionios in the square in Lakka.

After all that exertion it was back to the bus stop.

The bus was late!!

Yes – the bus was late – not a big shock but not a problem either. We had the luxury of not having any deadlines other than dinner that evening, so time just did not matter.

Well apart from having our first drink in Gaios that is! Should be beer’o’clock when we get there.

How much does the bus from Lakka to Gaios cost?

12 euros return for two – that’s not too bad at all is it? You get on the bus and the lady comes and takes your money and gives you the tickets. The bus is old but perfectly fine and clean.

What is the bus journey from Lakka to Gaios like?

The local bus from Lakka to Loggos and then onto Gaios is an experience. There is one particular favourite thing of mine after departing the bus station at Loggos. Ok bus stop.

Loggos is a small town with shops and bars along the waterfront. And the road is just wide enough for cars to pass.

But not wide enough for a car and a bus to pass. It is barely wide enough for a bus to be honest.

The bus dominates the road and the entire scene, passing worryingly close to not only the harbours edge but also the tables and chairs on the other side of the road.

I did not take a video of this spectacle which is a regret – I was hoping to get the bus again just so I could film this incredible scene but did not get around to that. So I will have to go back!

We sat on the front seats on the bus, behind the driver and next to the lady who collects the money and issues the tickets, with the best view out of the enormous windscreen of the upcoming scenery.

And there was a local chap sat down at the front whose job appeared to be talking and smoking – not sure how he fitted in!

We have arrived at Gaios

The bus journey from Lakka to Gaios takes about 45 minutes. In Gaios you get off at the top of one of the main shopping streets, also by the main town supermarket, which is the biggest shop in the island as far as I am aware.

It was strangely cloudy in Gaios, and very humid making for hot and sweaty mooching.

Beer’o’clock in Gaios

We walked down the main shopping street straight down to the waterside frontage. Well we did not get that far before stopping for a beer at the bar we went to last year.

Such creatures of habit!

And what a lovely beer it was. The bar is called Cafe Kalimera and is in an excellent central location.

Shopping in Gaios

We continued our walk down to the waterfront, turned left then took the first street back into the centre of the town. Having just written that I realised that this is detail that you really do not need to know!

We bought some nice things in the shops, lovely t-shirts, a couple of pieces of Babylonian jewellery and some stuff for the house. All lovely stuff I have to say.

And fairly typical of our holiday shop. The important thing is that we buy stuff that reminds us of our travels and is also stuff that we can’t get at home.

Walking along the waterfront of Gaios

When you get down to the waterfront from the bus, if you turn left and follow the path by the sea you will eventually end up at the port of Gaios, a rather low key but perfectly adequate facility. Can’t believe I used the word facility!!

We walked all the way to the other end of the water frontage, stopping at Mediterraneo, an intriguing fish restaurant with tables dotted amongst the rocks, which must be lovely in the evening, not that we have been to Gaios in the evening!

Mediterraneo On The Rocks

On the walk there are lots and lots of boats to look at, both moored up and passing through the channel. There are also lots of shops, bars and interesting buildings. It really is a very nice walk. And when you get back to the church at the foot of the main shopping street keep going past lots more bars and restaurants and you get to this statue called Anemogiannis Monument.

Picture of the Anemogiannis Monument with a burst of sun in Gaios on the Greek Island of Paxos

I will write a separate post all about the things to do in Gaios, along with a selection of my photos of Gaios.

And also about my taking photographs on Paxos (ok this was taken on another day).

Lunch in Gaios

We had the lunch in the main square at Piazza Massa, right next to the Church Analipsi, watching the world go by.

Lunch consisted of chicken gyros (with fries and salad) and a pizza washed down with a cold beer sat amongst the constantly growing crowds.

This might be basic fare, but this is seriously good local food. The best meal we had in Santorini was chicken gyros!

And then in came the boat from other islands, bringing masses of visitors. Our empty restaurant filled in minutes – a complete transformation.

The church is a tiny church that receives hundreds if not thousands of visitors every day – it is one of the first things day trippers see as they get off the day boats and hit the land.

Getting busy in Gaios

Gaios is fairly quiet in the morning until the boats start arriving from Lakka, Loggos and more significantly from Corfu and mainland Greece.

I have been in Gaios just after sunset when it was ever so quiet and lovely (see the photo above). Just be aware that if you go to Gaios at lunchtime you are probably hitting it at the busiest time.

And it stays pretty busy until the day trippers get back on their boats and leave from whence they came.

We have not been to Gaios in the evening – something for another time.

The streets were much busier, full of tourists shopping wearing swimwear which I always find rather odd!

Time to get out of this big bad city

By 3pm we had had enough and decided to get a taxi back rather than wait for the bus back, which was not until 5pm.

Getting back to Lakka from Gaios

We wanted to get back for the pool and some late afternoon sun. The taxi from Gaios to Lakka cost 10 euros which was absolutely fine. Taxis drop off and pick up at the bus stop by the supermarket in Gaios – the same place we got off the bus.

And it was nice being driven back to Gaios in a nice Mercedes.

Back at the pool at Hotel Bastas

By 3.30pm we were back at the pool, which was unusually quiet for that time of day. 

After a nice cool down by the pool it was time to have a lie down and a read, before completing a very pleasant day with a late sunshine beer.

I have to say that it was very nice going back to Gaios – the first time we visited was on a day trip from Corfu where we returned on the ferry laden with shopping and a bottle of prosecco. This was our third time in Gaios and each time we have had a very nice time indeed.

Back to the room to write this, and then time to get showered (with a bit of shower curtain gymnastics!) and walk back down into Lakka.

Lakka – where we spent every evening on holiday

We spent every evening of our holiday in Lakka. We did debate having dinner in Gaios, or even somewhere inland.

But we didn’t. Lakka is so lovely, and we were so chilled that a big part of both of us just could not be bothered venturing into the unknown somewhere new. There is plenty of choice of places to eat in Lakka – having spent a total of three weeks in Lakka there are still lots of places to eat and drink that we have not tried yet.

There is nothing worse than going somewhere new and finding it rubbish – no we just stuck to the lovely small town where we were staying. If the food was rubbish somewhere we always knew of other places we could go to.

And with it being such a short walk down to the waterfront why would we go anywhere else of an evening?

A typical evening out in Lakka

We tended to leave the Hotel Bastas at around 7.30pm. It is funny that even with all the freedom of being on holiday and having no time restrictions it turns out we went out at virtually the same time every evening.

I guess we are just creatures of habit.

Drinks at Romantica in Lakka

Talking of creatures of habit, it was back to Romantica for your cocktails of choice, namely a mojito for Nickie and a Bloody Mary for me.

This is the view from our table. Remember the boat on the right!

The view from Romantica in Lakka Paxos

Now I have to say I have not had a Bloody Mary in years, but the ones they serve at Romantica are lovely.

We sat in the upper balcony and watched the sun disappear over the hill. Drinks finished, snacks eaten it is time for dinner.

Dinner at the Taverna Nionios

We ordered a carafe of house red wine which was chilled and not nice. We asked if we could change the order for a bottle of red which they graciously did.

Taverna Nionios in Lakka

Time to eat something different

I had stifado. Rabbit stifado no less. An interesting choice, and I am glad that I tried it.

But not for me.

Nickie had a lovely authentic (well it would be!) Moussaka. Very nice food and very good service all round – a place we will come back to time permitting.

A word on us and desserts

You might have noticed by now that we don’t have many desserts. We struggle between us to eat a starter and a main each to be honest, so dessert is rather unlikely. We often end up sharing a main course having had a starter each.

This is met by restaurants with a variety of reactions – we try to do this as nicely as possible.

And then there is the bakers in Lakka open late at night

Yes, we buy the odd sweet thing from the bakers in Lakka of an evening.

Which tonight was a macaroon and a very sweet but nice local cake.

We took our snacks back to our room and ate them sitting on the balcony enjoying a Metaxa night-cap.

Blimey – what a long and busy day – there is only one way to get over this – another day doing nothing.

What has five days on Paxos done for us?

I have switched off from reality pretty well now. There is of course the daily writing and my photography, but these are both things that I enjoy. If my job was doing this all the time it would hardly feel like work.

So, 5 days in Paxos has helped us to unwind and relax and be ourselves again. This happened last time, even though we were only here for a week, which is just not long enough.

5 days down and 10 days to go.

And having published our planned schedule of activities yesterday there is one thing that I have not mentioned yet which I have to plan into the remaining days.

My photography

I have not taken my camera out of the safe yet with the exception of that post lunch walk to Arcoudarki Beach.

And I have some sunrises to capture.

In Gaios today I was reminded of this, and also of the fact that I have yet to work out where to takes photos of the sunrise in Gaios.

I have worked out Loggos – that was dead simple. And for Lakka I know where I need to go – well there are a couple of possibilities to be fair.

But Gaios is the one that I am not sure about – will this be down by the waterfront, or somewhere else? I have some work to do here before I return to Gaios. And I only have the car for two days, and one of them is for Loggos, so I have one shot at this!

A job for tomorrow then is to research sunrise photography locations in Gaios.

Lakka Paxos Holidays – Days 3 and 4 – The Art of Relaxing

Paxos Travel Guide by Rick McEvoy

Day 3 – Sunday. Having spent a day getting to Paxos, and a day doing virtually nothing, it is time to plan to move!

What are Lakka Paxos Holidays really like? Today I will continue the theme of resting and recovering on the Greek Island of Paxos. And I will drift into day four where I start to plan the rest of the holiday and get out of the hotel grounds for a bit doing some exploring.

I said time to plan to move – well it is Sunday. We can’t rush these things now can we.

A late start to day 3 for me

I woke up at about 9.30. Nickie was up and long gone to the pool. I was clearly going to have a tired day today – I could sense it. Maybe it was the lack of food the day before – I do need my sustenance. If I don’t eat properly I can be quite pathetic.

I woke up at 9.30 but couldn’t summon up the energy to get up till about 10 and got myself up to the pool at about 10.30 starving and tired.

When I say up to the pool and not down to the pool remember that the pool at Hotel Bastas is unusually above the hotel at the back.

Time for a lie down

Next job was to lie down on a sun lounger for a bit and catch up on the amazing cricket action from the day before in England.

Lying down was a tremendous success that I did an excellent job of. I might have forgotten to say that there are toilets below the pool which are a great place to apply sun cream in the shade. More stairs to negotiate.

I have to tell you it is not easy being tired!!

Lunch at the pool at Hotel Bastas

Lunch was a delight – I had sausage on toast, which was hot dog sausages fried which I split in half and put on buttered toast with lots of ketchup. Nickie had the club sandwich, which was very nice too. Food accompanied by a large beer.

I know – I had a beer before any food – well I am on my hols after all!

And when I am on my hols my lunchtime beer has an inevitable effect – more sleeping!

Time to lie down again

After all that exertion it was time to lie down again and have a rest. I caught some more of the cricket, luxuriating in the experience of the Apple Air Pods Nickie got me for my birthday. 

These things are truly excellent, if expensive. They work with just one ear-piece in, meaning that headphone use does not have to be completely anti-social.

That and you can double tap the pod to stop what you are listening to, and double tap again to start listening again.

Minimal effort which is good, especially on a day like this.

I can wear one of these guilt-free knowing that I can converse when needed, when I am awake that is!

My achievements today

Today during the day, I achieved the following

  • Sleep – 12 hours
  • Sleep by the pool – 1 hour
  • Dozing – 2 hours
  • Eating – ½ hour
  • Drinking – 1 hour
  • Reading – ½ hour
  • Listening to the cricket – 4 hours (combined with the above)

So, the cricket won today

And this is what Paxos does to you. It makes you unwind. It makes you relax.

It is such a lovely, laid back place that I find it impossible to do anything other than turn into a useless unproductive but ultimately relaxed sloth.

And that is one of the things I love about Paxos, and the pool at Hotel Bastas.

Time to move

We left the pool early today, with a plan to get up a bit earlier in the morning. Leaving the pool early is 5pm for me. I can stay there till the sun goes down.

There is a limit to my slothness, but I am nowhere near hitting that point yet.

Back to the room

Back to the room and time for a quick bit of writing on the balcony in that blistering evening heat. This is not the most productive time of the day to write, as I can barely see my iPad screen, and have to have sunglasses on as it so bright.

So, what I do is type away pretty much blindly and accept that I will have more correcting to do than usual.

Another problem is that when I concentrate on writing I tend to get in a zone, one where I forget that there is a can of Mythos warming up nicely on the table top that you could fry an egg on.

Shower time.

Have I mentioned the showers at Hotel Bastas? There is an art to not flooding the bathroom floor, and also to not having the shower curtain clinging to you. I managed to master this on day 2, much quicker than last year, or maybe the showers have improved over the course of the last year. Or maybe our room was better than last year?

Air con is on for getting ready to head out for the evening.

Back down to lovely Lakka

We head off down to the water again, and this time get to the waterfront and turn right, walking the lovely waterfront to a bar called Mandi’s. They don’t do cocktails unfortunately, which was a shame, so we try the house red which was actually nice and cost a princely 5 euros.

The setting is wonderful, sat on a table looking over the harbour of Lakka full of boats and lovely warm flat water.

But I’m hungry

Starving having had a sausage sandwich/ club sandwich and some crisps we walked back and took a lovely waterside table at the restaurant called Arriva. As we were so early we caught sunset at the restaurant while we were having a drink waiting for our food. I was convinced that it was going to be a stunning sunset, but it turned out to be quite a non-event. Oh well. I have mentioned this before though, so I won’t go on here.

What did we eat?

A basket of bread to start with. Basket means 4 slices by the way in case you were thinking of like a large basket! No photos yet of the food – I have not got into full flow yet, but they will come don’t worry!

No starters tonight, just the bread then into the main courses.

I will let you into a secret here. We seem to struggle with a starter and a main course each. We cannot manage to eat both, so end up either skipping starters or sharing a main.

  • Is this unusual?
  • Is this an age thing?

We often look at the sizes of portions of food that people eat with amazement. And sometimes when we are sharing a main course we cannot even manage that.

What did we eat – finally!

Tonight, I had the traditional Greek dish, stifado, and Nickie had pasta with prawns in a cream sauce. All rather nice.

An amusing thing about Paxos and the waterside tables is that there are fixing points for boats all along the waterfront, so when you are sat there one of the small RIBs from one of the big boats could appear and tie up at your table.

This happened to us.

An Italian couple appeared, but they moored up at the next table, got out of the boat, did a bit of shopping, came back, put the shopping in the boat then sat down to eat.

How cool is that? Maybe next year…

We were shattered so went back to the hotel and fell asleep with the air con on. Nickie woke up at 3am again and turned the air con off and opened the doors – I obviously did not feel the cold as I was fast asleep.

Day 4 – Monday – time to do stuff

Today is the day for planning stuff to do. I said planning to do stuff, not doing stuff. I need to get on with this holiday in Lakka – we have travelled a long way and there is lots to do.

I set the alarm for 7am, got up, put the kettle on and then went back to bed and fell asleep. I got up again a little while later and we had two rather strange fruity Yorkshire teas and took coffees up to the pool, where I started writing this bit about yesterday.

Remember the travel cups from going to the airport? This is where they were (not being dramatic here) a virtual lifesaver!

Relaxing by the pool

I had to plug my headphones in to block out a naughty child’s name being repeatedly shouted out by one of the parents in an otherwise completely silent pool area.

9 am at the pool you can sit in sun or shade – it is entirely up to you. I sit in the shade to write – apart from that I am in the sun. Why travel all this way to sit in the shade?

And now it is time to plan the rest of our holiday in Lakka

The plans for our remaining time here are as follows

  • Today (Monday) – book stuff to do. I know that involves effort!
  • Tuesday – get the bus to Gaios in the morning
  • Wednesday – nothing
  • Thursday – Car
  • Friday – Car
  • Saturday – rest
  • Sunday – rest
  • Monday – Go to Antipaxos
  • Tuesday – whatever we want to do again
  • Wednesday – who knows
  • Thursday – nothing – last full day
  • Friday – get the early ferry back to Corfu

Breakfast at the pool at Hotel Bastas

We shared an excellent full English breakfast with coffee, toast and fresh orange juice – 14 euros.

We finalised our plans and then went and did our bookings. We got the hire car from Babis at the hotel, and the boat from Sam the Olympic Holidays rep.

The timings didn’t work out quite as planned, we got the car for the Tuesday and the Wednesday, and the boat for the Sunday.

This is what we are going to do then

  • Day 4 – Today (Monday) – book stuff to do. I know that involves effort!
  • Day 5 – Tuesday – get the bus to Gaios in the morning
  • Day 6 – Wednesday – nothing
  • Day 7 – Thursday – no car – to be decided!
  • Day 8 – Friday – to be decided!
  • Day 9 – Saturday – rest
  • Day 10 – Sunday – Go to Antipaxos
  • Day 11 – Monday – rest
  • Day 12 – Tuesday – Car
  • Day 13 – Wednesday – Car
  • Day 14 – Thursday – nothing – last full day
  • Day 15 – Friday – get the early ferry back to Corfu

Of course, when you are on holiday whilst it is nice to have a plan it should be too rigid other than actual bookings!

This all worked out fine though and gives us the variety we need.

And that essential last day of doing nothing.

Work done it was time for the pool

I forgot to say – the path from the pool

Whilst ordering breakfast we found out about a path that went around the back of the bar that it turns out took you to the beach.

After an hour of reading I went off for an explore, armed with nothing more than my phone, a 20 euro note and my t-shirt.

I eventually made it to Arcoudaki beach (insert photo of the sign), having mistakenly wandered onto a private estate and being shouted at by a local lady, to who I apologized profusely.

This beach was shall we say small and rocky. I went in the water up to my knees then regretted doing that as it is impossible to walk with wet flip flops, so I sat on a rock for a bit and waited for everything to dry.

Which took about a minute.

The beach was not deserted

Accompanying me on the beach were too men and a woman with a golden retriever. There was nothing there at all, no bar, shops.

No sand.

Off I then went to the next beach, navigating using my instinct and Google Maps on my phone. I could barely see the screen in that ever so bright sunshine, but I made it there after getting lost a couple of times.

This was a walk inland, not along toe coast in case you were wondering.

So, this is Orkos Beach

An interesting beach, with an eclectic mix of Italians and English upper classes – it was like something from a Hugh Grant film! And there was a house on the beach that apparently belongs to the former footballer Bruno, who used to play for some famous football teams somewhere.

I am sure I saw him.

There is a sign at the entrance to the house saying private house, but the number of people in there made it look more like a bar than a house – very strange and confusing.

The beach was pebbly with no facilities but a lovely place with crystal clear waters and lovely views.

Getting back to Hotel Bastas

I walked back in the searing heat regretting not bringing any water. I got lost three times but made it back to the hotel in 21 minutes, not bad considering. And I didn’t offend any of the locals on the way back which was good.

A quick dip and then a salad for lunch with Nickie, accompanied by a most welcome beer, then it was time to cool off in the pool before settling down to crack on with The Russia House, which I am reading on my Kindle. I started reading this book over Christmas and am determined to finish this in the first week so I can start a new book I have.

And I checked my emails – it is a Monday after all

I checked my emails, nothing urgent that needed dealing with, and then the iPad was off again until the next day. Well until I got back to the room to write this.

Back on the balcony

Now I am having a beer on the balcony completing this section of my daily journal, before we head off down to Lakka for cocktails and dinner. An altogether lovely way to spend a day in lovely Paxos.

Monday night in Lakka

We went to the bar on the waterfront for cocktails, but they didn’t have any mint, so Mojitos were off the menu. They wouldn’t have any for a week apparently – small island life! We tried their alternative, which was too sweet.

Back to Romanticos we went, where they had the full recipe for mojitos Thankfully so all good again!

Then it was down the road to the number 1 rated restaurant in Paxos, Paxomadi. Service was at island pace, but the starter of baked feta cheese was excellent and very filling. The house red by the carafe was nice too.

They were clearly very busy, and possibly understaffed, so the service was hit and miss. Mains were ok – prawn saganaki and roast chicken and fries. We had the same problem with being full of starters and bread, unable to eat our main courses completely. We had a drop more wine before heading back for a night’s rest.

I think that this eating thing is not helping with our restaurant experience!