Crete. Land of green, winding roads, blue skies, most of the time, and beautiful coastlines. What a treat.
|I called it quits here!|
We had a leisurely drive from Heraklion to the city of Chania, second larges city and one - time capital of Crete. The country sports many wide, modern roads as well as the typical narrower highways that wind through the mountains and coastal areas. However, traveling through the city streets was not quite the same. We were, quite literally back to Japan, with tiny winding streets meandering between buildings set right on the streets, frequently without a sidewalk I between. Unlike Japan, the drivers are impatient, expecting you to drive on the shoulder so they can pass. Our navie system is usually up to the minute with information but I'm afraid not so here. She took us through a series of one-way streets...the wrong way a couple of times before I started being much more critical of what she was telling us to do! We spent a long time trying to find out hotel...I finally stopped in the middle of the road, rather a footpath if you really want to name it correctly, and waited while Jeff searched it out.
|Original boathouses with snowcapped mountains!|
The Casa Delfino is a delightful hotel, set in the middle of old town; a collection of (touristy) shops with lots of things available to buy to remember your trip. Better, though, is the history story woven around the old buildings. The buildings are primarily built with stone, a very common building material here. They're faced with stucco type materials, or concrete now, and painted with a wash of different colors. The island has been invaded by numerous groups, from Minoans to Venetians as well as Germans (and quite a few others), so the influence of the different cultures shows through.
The lighthouse at the end of the breakwater is probably the most photographed, iconic symbol of the city. You can walk along the breakwater out to it, finding a gorgeous view of the town; perfect just as the sun is setting - a striking picture with the snow covered mountains behind.