Greece is one of those countries we haven’t really explored yet. I’d only ever been with a friend to Faliraki on the island of Rhodes around 12 years ago, and Mr ESLT to Kavos on the island of Corfu on a boys holiday when he was 17. Both of the islands we visited are party towns, where the streets are lined with late night bars, night clubs and take away shops – not really the traditional beautiful whitewashed buildings that Greece is famed for. Therefore, when Mr ESLT and I were invited to our friend’s wedding in Lindos, a notoriously stunning town on the island of Rhodes, we jumped at the chance!
Arriving late, we’d already lost the light, and so unfortunately we didn’t get the opportunity to witness the amazing views as we drove into Lindos. As we pulled up to our apartments – Lindos Comfy Suites – we were happy to find that it had an on site bar, The Skybar. After a swift and much-needed beer at the bar, we checked in. After a long and hot day traveling, and upon seeing the big comfortable bed and feeling the cool air conditioning, it took all we had to get showered and changed to go and meet friends, but we did. Armed with our map from reception and Google Maps, we established that they were at the furthest restaurant possible from our hotel. Oh well, we felt it would give us the opportunity to find our feet and hopefully acclimatise to the balmy weather.
Lindos is not massive, and is completely pedestrianised, barring the odd little truck which brings supplies into the town and a few motorbikes. It is also extremely walkable, as you can walk from one side of town to the other in around 30 minutes. We set off on our journey down hill into the throng of the town. Be warned, many of the paths are slippery, steep, and uneven, and there aren’t any lights for you to see where you’re heading. After a few slips and trips we made it to the bottom. Following Google Maps, we headed through the town’s narrow streets – home to numerous bars, restaurants and shops – before arriving at Lindos Bay, descending the steep hill and arriving at the Pallas Beach Taverna. Beer and laughter ensued before it was decided that we would head back into town. So, once back up the steep hill, we enjoyed drinks at The Court Yard Bar, which offers great views over the rooftops of Lindos, before heading back up the uneven steps to our apartments for a much-needed night’s sleep.
After a very welcome lie in, we showered and dressed in preparation for a day at the beach. We had decided the previous evening to return to Lindos Bay, grab a couple of sun loungers, slap on the Factor 50, and have a chill out day. That was, until we got lost. We followed the route we had taken the previous evening until we reached a tour group of around a bazillion people completely blocking an entire street, with absolutely no regard to people wanting to get past. In my wisdom, I thought I knew a short cut (even though I had never visited Lindos before!). Turns out I didn’t, in fact we ended up at the start of the trail up to the Acropolis and nowhere near the beach. We had the Acropolis on our list of things to do whilst in Lindos, so, seeing as though we were there, we decided to go up to the top there and then. Here’s a top tip – don’t try to do it in flip-flops! We stubbed our toes, tumbled over and slipped more times than I could count. But we did it – we got to the top, paid our €12 entrance fee, and wandered around for a couple of hours admiring the views, especially of the heart-shaped St Paul’s Bay.
With our stomachs grumbling, we headed down from the Acropolis and tried again to find Lindos Bay, this time with success. We grabbed a table at the beachfront restaurant, Alex Taverna, where we enjoyed chicken gyros and a refreshing Mythos! Ready for a chilled out afternoon, we handed over €10 for two sun loungers, and found a couple in a great spot right at the water’s edge. iPods on, we enjoyed an afternoon of nothing but sun bathing, dozing and paddling in the crystal clear Mediterranean waters. As we were meeting friends for dinner at 7, we gave ourselves plenty of time to get back to our apartment and get ready. As with many streets in Lindos, the street leading from the beach up to the town is steep, and in the hot summer sun it is quite hard work. So, cashing in people’s laziness, there are many men offering rides on donkey’s backs up the hill. Surely this is animal abuse? These poor little animals carrying overweight, middle-aged women in the midday sun up the hill. It genuinely upset me and, not one to bite my tongue, I made my feelings known to everyone over the age of 8 who I saw riding one.
At 7pm on the dot we met at Agostinos, located right next to the main car park in Lindos and, luckily for us, only a 5 minute walk from our apartments. It was a great evening which allowed friends and the bride and groom’s family to meet and get to know each other ahead of the big day. Unfortunately, they forgot to cook my meal. So, as everyone else dined on lovely local Greek food, including Mr ESLT who had a traditional Greek stew, stifado, I patiently waited for my vegetarian Moussaka. When arrived, it was delicious – loads of veggies and cheese, yum! Just a shame I had to eat on my own. The evening continued into the early hours, with everyone excited for the wedding.
THE BIG DAY! Finally the day arrived – the wedding of the year was upon us. I’ll be honest, I was suffering quite a bit with a hangover (tut tut), so the day itself was pretty much a write off. I managed to drag myself out of bed and across the road to the neighbouring Lindos View Hotel for lunch before heading back to our apartment for an afternoon nap. My alarm woke me from my slumber, and excitement for the wedding hit me. Once showered and dressed we took a slow walk down to St Paul’s Bay, where the wedding chapel was situated. The wedding was scheduled for 5.00pm, and, even on the last day of September, the sun beat down heavily. With no shade to be found, it was HOT. The wedding itself was beautiful, with one of the most stunning backdrops imaginable. After a short, yet very sweet ceremony, we headed to the Tambakio seafront restaurant where we enjoyed fantastic food, fantastic conversation and a fantastic sunset! A PERFECT day to end a PERFECT trip.