A Special Return

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Re: A Special Return

Postby silverfox » 13 Jul 2022, 07:57

Tuesday 12th July

Well today is one of those rare days on Symi where it’s planned and you actually stick to it.

We are up and around about 8am and I’m off by just after 9am for a stroll down the road in Gialos, with Liz taking the 9.30am bus. We meet in the Comfy Seats and have a Latte and we are joined by a few of the Rainbow regulars. Let’s just say it’s like a Saga day out.

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We climb aboard Yiannis Poseidon and take up position up front on the Starboard side.

We set sail at 10.30am prompt and head out of the busy harbour and through the channel near Nimos. The colours of the shallow waters are amazing and through fairly choppy waters we reach our first stop at Aghios Emilanos with it’s tiny monastery. I get off the boat to stretch my legs, some stay on and the adventurous are in for their first swim.

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This is where the drinks are now available with Coffee, Retsina, red and white Wine, Ouzo and even water. Biscuits are also available. Liz goes for Coffee and I have my first Wine.

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We stop at another very nice bay of which I didn’t get the name before making our way to Sesklia Island where we stop for lunch. The island has a small pebbly beach and Yianni has tables and benches set up each year for these lunch stops.

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While the Chicken is being cooked and the food getting laid out I take a small walk up by the church and around the path to a meadow where there are sheep and goats grazing.

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Back at base camp where the food is now being served we let the queue of the really hungry die down before filling our plates with all the gorgeous dishes of Salad, Rice, Beans, Spaghetti, Beetroot and Chicken etc… See the pictures! I go back twice for a little extra rice which has a slight curry taste which is really going with my taste buds. I also help myself to a little more wine.

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We take one last stop at St George’s Bay where the younger people on the boat spot a turtle in the water but it soon out swims them bobbing it’s head above the water a few times before heading out to sea. I didn’t manage to capture a picture.

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We make our way back to Gialos and this last part of the sail is windy and choppy so we all get a good soaking with the spray of the sea.

Back to a chaotic harbour with boats everywhere Yiannis uses all of his skill to weave his way through and a great outing comes to an end.

Considering you are out from 10.30 am to 5.30 pm going all around the island and having a fantastic lunch and unlimited drinks available it’s great value at €45.00 per person. Even if you don’t swim, don’t worry, it’s still a great day out.

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We share a drink in Dimitris before Liz gets the bus back and I walked up the road.

A shower and early night is all we can manage as the sea air has really made us so tired.

Nothing to do with all the wine and Ouzo on the Poseidon at all.

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Re: A Special Return

Postby silverfox » 14 Jul 2022, 18:35

Wednesday 13th July

Well up at 7.30am to try to catch up with the blog as you will have already seen, mission accomplished.

We have nothing in for breakfast so we are out and about quite early with the intention of a slow walk down into Pedi to see if the new place where the shack used to be is open for a snack and a drink. As we leave Taxiarchis Apartments Liz has a slight dizzy spell so we stop for water and G&P are there thinking of going down into Gialos. Liz recovers quickly but decides to head down into Gialos where I will meet them later.

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So I’m off down the road in the hot sunshine but there is a slight breeze which is nice and the bus passes me on they way down. I find the new place still closed so instead of the long walk back I jump on the bus. Back up at Kampos Liz, G&P get on and Liz never spots me but G does and I gesture her to keep quiet. E&K also get on the bus below the apartments and don’t notice me till later down the hill. How I managed to keep Liz from finding out was great and they all get off the bus in front off me. I manage to hide behind K until Liz had started walking. I then jog past her nudging her shoulder as I pass….Her reaction was a treat “How how you got down here so quick” “I jogged down to Pedi and back up and down the road” Everyone is laughing and of course after a few spilt seconds Liz is calling me names! Wish we had filmed all this.

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We all decide on Comfy Seats and try to order coffees and toast etc...this takes a while and we do wonder what we all receive but I think it’s more or less right and we get our morning snack. Liz is feeling fine after a bit of toast and jam and a nice latte.

We all go our separate ways with G & P off past the clock tower to read, Liz wants to take a few small gifts to our neighbour who is looking after the chickens and E & K are off somewhere.

Liz finishes the shop and we make our way towards the clock tower where we are enticed in by a fresh Lemonade sign and an Ice Cream. I think this is our first time sat in Roloi Gelateria with great views of the harbour as usual. The Ice Cream and Lemonade hit the spot before our view is rudely interrupted by the Nickolaus coming in with it’s hordes of the brolly followers from Rhodes, Rodos as the locals call it.

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We let the hordes dissipate into the sponge shops and head back round and across the bridge and spot E & K in Dimitris so we join them for a drink. As we are about to leave G & P turn up and I join G for a while until P comes back with his noodle take away. If you are here a while you can get overfed with lemon potatoes and either Lamb or Chicken so sometimes a snack type meal is just what you need.

The others had left to grab a Taxi or the bus and I decide it’s time to scale the Kali Strata. Now this set of steps up to the village is difficult, especially on hot days but it’s well worth the effort. In older times this was a thriving business stairway as well as magnificent houses from the riches of sponge diving and ship building. I would have really loved to see it in it’s thriving days but the wars really forced many to leave Symi for other Islands and even Australia.

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I take my time knowing that this will be my last walk up or down and trying to get everything in the memory until we can return once more.

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I reach the Rainbow and Yianni who on seeing me instantly pours me a cold beer.

Liz doesn’t join me as there are plans for tonight. Yes plans.
We shower back at number 20 and we are off up at just before 7pm and catch up with the rest of the Saga group as we are now being called.

We are soon in Scena where we had a group of tables all together to suit the 12 of us.

White wine and water is soon on the tables as we all ponder the menu. A few of us, me included, change our minds a few times before ordering with a lovely pair of waitresses, one Irish, one Greek try to understand a group of Sagalouts.

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Chicken Gorgonzola


Now there is only one chef and meals come out in fits and starts so most had finished their meals before mine came. We had starters of Onion rings with a nice dip, Garlic bread, and Liz had Chicken Gorganzola and I had the Chicken Curry which was more of a Thai style, mild but very nice. Liz reports the Chicken was good too.

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Chicken Curry


We are presented with complimentary wine and desserts which is very nice.

It’s a great night with much laughter and fun which ended with some usual suspects in the playground next door.

We parade back to the Rainbow bar with the locals thinking we are a wedding party with Neils elaborate hat and Anns floppy hat, for more drinks before ending up with a few in Ringos. I chat to Ann, another Ann, who I have met in the distant past who lived on the same road I was born back in Sheffield and even went to the same school but left a few years before me.

It’s our latest night out but I still manage to get a picture of the full moon.

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It’s our last full day tomorrow and we plan a simple one but who knows what may happen.

It seems so slow to begin with but the last few days fly by and the blog may be posted a little late.

The magic dust is still here waiting for you all to arrive.
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Re: A Special Return

Postby silverfox » 16 Jul 2022, 12:40

Thursday 14th July

Well it comes to us all. The last full day on our holiday and what to do? We usually try to cram everything in and have one last meal out but we have instead try to take it steady so we feel better on the way home.

As there are no Olympic reps on the island you can download an App to keep in contact and find out your return details. They also send a Whatsapp message so we have all the details. We are on the 7.45am Sebeco on Friday.

I’m awake at 6am and take some video and photos of the fantastic sunrises you get on Symi. It’s not the best island if you want to see stunning sunsets.

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Liz decides she wants to start the packing and read for a while on the terrace but I get itchy feet and I’m off just after 9am with my water in hand. As usual, up by the windmills and down the road in the heat.

There are 2 identical cruise liners in Nimborio bay with it’s shuttle boats bringing the tourists into Gialos which is good for the economy of the island.

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I make my all round passing over the bridge, past the clock tower and round by the boat yard and all the way to the zig zag path. Up to the church taking my last photos of Nimborio and then down the road and back into Gialos.

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I buy a couple of Sausage rolls from the bakery near the bridge and walk slowly back up the road taking in my last day views as I go.

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Back at number 20 we have our Sausage rolls which are still warm and a soft drink before a shower and change of clothes.

We pack up all the foodstuffs we have left and take them up to the Rainbow Bar for the boys to use rather than wasting them.

The time warp kicks in and it’s soon time to say our fond farewells to all our friends at the bar until the next time. I have my last “you are Silverfox” moment from a lovely lady from Australia who thanks me and says how they love to read all the blogs on this fine forum and mention D & E too who they have also missed this year.

We don’t feel like going out for food so back at number 20 we order Pollo Al la Creme spaghetti and a Carbonara Pizza from the Dolphin which arrives promptly and hot.

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A few glasses of wine before an earlyish night.
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Re: A Special Return

Postby silverfox » 16 Jul 2022, 15:18

Friday 15th July

Well the dreaded day has come and It’s the long journey home to come.

I’m up very early at 5am and feeling ok as I didn’t go mad on the food and drink last night.

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I have a good shower and take some wine and juice and leave outside at G & Ps apartment. If you don’t know anyone it’s always nice to leave anything left with anyone close by rather than throwing away.

I take some more pictures of the sunrise and we are ready to go. As mentioned yesterday we are on the 7.45am Sebeco and we are to be picked up at 7am. We make our way down the lane 10 minutes early and our pick up is there instantly and we are to go to Pedi to pick up another couple and their child before down to the harbour. We have a few minutes wait so I take some more pictures of Pedi which is so sublime early in the morning. This couple finally emerge with 3 slices of toast in their hands, we had to wait until they made breakfast.

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No real issue as we are down at the boat and our driver, who is a great guy by the way so friendly, hands us the ferry tickets.

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We sit in our usual place inside as we know this boat can bounce depending on the weather.

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The Sebeco


I have one last picture and video opportunity as we leave this wonderful little rock on the back of the boat.

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A fantastically smooth sailing into Rhodes and we are finally met with our minibus driver as we were about to ring the rep as he was not there to meet us.

We drop one couple off at Annixis Apartments who must have a later flight before we are whisked to the airport.

We get through check in and no queues at security in less than half an hour and I check on the Flightradar App to see that the incoming flight is on time so all looking well. We are soon through the passport control for us English and await our flight at gate 2.

We are pretty hungry so I have a Cheeseburger and Liz has a breaded chicken fillet with chips and some drinks from Goody’s. Not cheap at over €30.00 but I have to say the burger was very good.

We sit patiently with a horrible woman close by who did nothing but complain about everything, including the prices and give her partner hell. The thing is he had hearing aids so was shouting at him all the time...we did feel sorry for him.

We let the queue for boarding go down and we were on the front seats with great legroom but no where to store the bags, the cabin crew sorted it.

We are delayed again by 37 minutes due to congested air space in Germany but are in the air at 1.47pm Greek time. We arrive at Doncaster at bang on 4pm UK time and we are first off the plane and through passport control. The bags are soon here and we contact our son who’s stuck in a little traffic.

We are home just after 5.30pm after doing a little shopping on our way back from our sons house.

It was a great holiday on Symi for a full 3 weeks. We were very lazy, we ate too much and drunk too much. We are fitter now even after all the nice food and drink. We have loved being back on our favourite island meeting up with the locals and many of our friends both past and new.

I've really enjoyed doing the blog and trying to capture a little of the magic this place can bring. It's also quite hard work and I'm still in awe of the best D & E who we really hope return here soon. Many thanks to all of you who have said hello this year and do try to post the odd picture or comment which will keep this fine forum alive and interesting.

One of the highlights was our dear friends Gwen and Pete returning who seem to have come back just for us.

Also the boys and Yiannis of Rainbow Bar.

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We do feel we need to visit other islands as was the normal before we found Symi but will it ever happen? Watch this space.

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Symi 2022 Just magical!
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Re: A Special Return

Postby D and E » 17 Jul 2022, 08:57

Hi Silverfox,
You will inevitably know the joy your blog has brought us every day over the last three weeks. Thank you ever so much for taking the time each day to recall the previous day (we know how tricky that can be at times :D ); the superb food photos that made us feel as if we were sitting opposite; and all the news of the day to day happenings that anyone who has visited magical Sými will recognise with great fondness.
The three weeks has flown by.
We are totally impressed and envious of your journey times - wow ! Maybe we should move to Sheffield :D
And that photo of the yachts in Pedi on your final morning - wow, wow, wow.
Your such kind words are always appreciated and we are certainly planning May of next year - D has even been looking at going via Kos for a change and he has always thought about Athens and the ferry after reading about how the boys have journeyed that way - but as usual it will be the quickest way to get to The Rainbow :D
So all we can say for now is efheristo our good friends.
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Re: A Special Return

Postby Jan » 17 Jul 2022, 14:28

D and E - we returned tot he UK once via Kos (some years ago, so *maybe* things have changed) and on the basis of that one journey wouldn't really recommend it. The airport itself is 'out on a limb' in the south of the island whereas the port is at the north tip - somewhat different from Rhodes with its frequent buses and ample supply of taxis. And there are now fewer boats between Kos and Symi than there used to be. Of course, if you want to spend a few days in Kos to explore the sights, that's another matter.

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Re: A Special Return

Postby D and E » 17 Jul 2022, 19:20

Worth knowing Jan - thanks.
D has these flights of fancy :D
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Re: A Special Return

Postby Oor Willie » 18 Jul 2022, 01:00

We have been travelling via Kos on most of our trips for the past 7 or 8 years and over that time the airport has been massively improved while it is a longer run to Kos town than it is in Rhodes it is not that much dearer and in our case the flights from Glasgow to Kos are much cheaper than to Rhodes. The only drawback is the ferries as the Dodecanese catamarans no longer call at Symi on their way South so in addition to a night in Kos we also have to stay one night in Rhodes. Easy Jet have now introduced a flight from Edinburgh to Rhodes so we may look at that for next year but this September it will be Kos again.
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Re: A Special Return

Postby D and E » 18 Jul 2022, 09:23

Thanks Oor Willie - more useful info - enjoy your September visit.
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Re: A Special Return

Postby Allan » 18 Jul 2022, 17:44

When you mentioned Kos I immediately thought of Oor Willie so was very pleased when he replied to you with up to date information. It's many years since I went to Kos and I've never used it on the way to Symi so can't really comment. What I have done, though, is to travel via Athens and can strongly recommend that route.
It takes a bit of planning but I know D likes that. It was a few years ago now (2019 in fact) so things will have changed but we flew Easyjet from Manchester on a Friday, spending two days exploring Athens before getting the (I think) 16.30 Blue Star, which after a quick stop at Santorini and then, in the morning, Kalimnos and Kos, arriving in Symi early morning on the Monday. Something I should mention that you will probably appreciate: While on the ferry we had one of the best meals we've had anywhere. We had to keep reminding ourselves that we were at sea!

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Re: A Special Return

Postby D and E » 22 Jul 2022, 10:17

You know how to temp us Allan :D
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