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Heidi's Diary of a Backpacker.
Guest Book

Boat Gaios.
Boat Gaios.

When arriving to Paxos and its main village Gaios, I can't help noticing how beautiful and unique it is. Arrival to town is through a narrow isthmus like path. There are two islands just in front of the town and this gives you the illusion that you arrive through a narrow canal. Gaios is right on the waterfront and it spreads to every direction covering a vast area. As I get off board there are people offering accommodation and as I have none yet, I start asking one old lady more about the rooms she is offering. She takes me with her to see the rooms. She has two apartments quite far from the harbour, behind the post office. Apartments are too big for me and also too expensive, 50 euros per night. I don't need that much room and I intend to save a few euros. I leave and start looking for another place. I walked back to the harbour and started walking to the right. I soon reached the end of the village without finding a sign for rooms. I was just going to turn back when I noticed one sign. I walked to the garden and I saw a Greek couple that had arrived on the same boat. They had been knocking on doors but there was no answer, just a phone number on the wall. They called but no answer still. We find ourselves in the same situation: no room found yet. I offer them my book, the Lonely Planets Guide for Greece and he starts calling the numbers mentioned in the book. As he asks for the room for them, he also asks a room for me. He finds a room for me as well as them too. We end up in different hotels but very close to one another. I was so very grateful for their help, it saved me a lot of time and also my feet.

Kaki Langatha.
Kaki Langatha.

Now that I had a room waiting, I started to walk back the way I had come. I had seen the hotel San Giorgio already when I came from the boat, I didn't recognize it as the same one mentioned in my guidebook. I was now in the wrong end of the town and was having to turn back. Again I passed the harbour and started walking to the left. San Giorgio was high on the hill and there were a lot of stairs to get up there although later I did find an easier way. The landlady was already waiting for me and took me to my room. It was a tiny little room with a double bed, which almost filled the whole room. The bathroom was so small that it was difficult even for me, a small person, to turn around. But the room was fine and cheap too. I paid 30 euros per night. San Giorgio is a family-run hotel and very well kept. I was invited to their roof terrace for a drink and chat. We had so much fun with the little English they spoke. I tried to cope with my Greek but when I ran out of words, we signed and I even used Finnish. They were very interested in Finland and Finnish people, and I was very proud to tell.

Anti-Paxos Voutoumi beach
Anti-Paxos Voutoumi beach

My first night on Paxos was spent exploring the town and sight seeing. I checked the timetables for busses, because it was the best way to travel on this little island. The town was easy to figure out as the harbour is the centre and almost everything is situated either on the seaside or on one of the two main streets. These two streets run from the harbour inland and on to the bus station. The town is beautiful and very authentic Greek. I enjoyed my quiet little walks in the evenings down at the marina watching the fantastic yachts and sailing boats and my meals at the restaurants with great Greek dishes. On my second day I took a boat to AntiPaxos and to the beach called Voutoumi. There are several secluded beaches on AntiPaxos and boats will take you to either Vromi Beach or Voutoumi. Both are equally good, and have some limited facilities. There are restaurants on both beaches but sun beds and parasols are few. The water is unbelievably clear and blue here and also perfect for the children to swim and play. Many sailing boats visit these beaches and there are passenger boats too for tourists.

Lakka
Lakka

On my second night I took a bus to Lakka. It's a small village in the northern end of the island and one of the three main villages on Paxos. There was a music festival going on that night and of course I wanted to see that. I had a walk from one end of the village to the other and then dinner before I headed to the small school on the other end of the village. The music festival was a part of a bigger annual festival with drama and music. The famous Greek singer Lukianos Kilaidonis was performing there and people were very exited about him. I hadn't heard about him ever before, maybe because of my young age, but it seems that he is a big star in Greece. It was fun listening to him outdoors under the sky full of stars. He wasn't my favourite though, but people around me were singing the songs with him and it was great On my way back to Gaios by bus I could see how impossible roads are in Greece; how very narrow! Our bus was leaving from Lakka but it was not possible to move at all because there were cars parked on both sides of the road! I think practically all the cars of Paxos were there as there were no parking areas and people just left their cars on the side of the road We moved on little by little, while male passengers were lifting the cars aside to make road for the bus. It took a little while longer to get back to Gaios but eventually we got there and  not one car got scratches from the bus passing!