Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A few things to know about Mykonos

The Greek island of Mykonos is one of the most popular holiday destinations of the region. Images of windmills, narrow street with quait white-washed houses, beautiful beaches, a thriving nightlife and more spring to mind when thinking about Mykonos. It#s all there but there are a few practical things to know too to avoid disappointment. For starters, Mykonos has two ports where ferries dock: the old port which is close to Mykonos town and the new port which, unfortunately, is far, far away in the midlel of nowhere. I arrived on the big ferry from Athens, saw the town of Mykonos approach and then the ferry went right past and docked at the new port. What greeted me when I walked off was....nothing. A vast concrete parking lot, a bus stop with no buses in sight, a taxi rank with no taxis, a tiny shack which I misstook for some kind of tourist information but wasn't, in short, I was stranded with no means to get away. Mykonos town lurked far in the distance and I couldn't even make out a road to walk there! Nobody awaited me to take me to my destination and I wouldn't have known what to do if I hadn't remembered a fried who ran a restaurant at the other end of the island. I phoned him and he came to the rescue. Facit: make sure you know where you arrive and arrange for transport in advance. My friend told me that taxis are a rarity on the island and during my stay I found that out to be true. Another thing: there are, in my view, far too many cars and scooters on the island. The roads are narrow, steep and winding and in the summer season are clogged with cars which have nowhere to park and tourists on scooters who have little regard for the safety of pedestrians. I found it quite uncomfortable to have to jump out of the way all the time to maintain life and limbs in tact. So, be aware of these things and enjoy your stay and a marvellous very rare silver sunset.

Monday, September 13, 2010

A boutique hotel in Salzburg

When during my travels around the globe, I find a boutique hotle which is particulalry suitable to the single woma traveler I write bout it on this blog. I happened upon a lovely specimen on my recent trip to Salzburg/Austria. The hotle is called Hotel am Dom, which 0erfectly indicates its location: in the heart of the historical center of Salzburg, near the Dom and the Goldgasse it couldn't be more conveniently located for explring the wonders of the Mozart city. The hotel is very welcoming, modern with a hint of minimalist but not cold and uncomfortabel as such hotels often are. The rooms have every amenitiy including WiFi and are reasonably priced from EUROS 90 for a single and EUROS 130 for a double depending on season. See the website for further information.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Victoria Hislop and Spinalonga

My recent trip to Crete and the island of Spinalonga inspired me to write my latest article for Literary Traveler. Of course, following Victoris Hislop's book 'The Island' and its intricate story was a brilliant guide.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Romantic Prien am Chiemsee

I'm just touring the south of Bavaria/Germany and used Prien am Chiemsee as the starting point for trips to the two islands in the Chiemsee, Herreninsel and Fraueninsel. What makes Prien so romantic is that it still uses the world's oldest and still operaitng steam tramway which runs from the Hauptbahnhof to Prein/Stock which is the dock from which the small ferries depart.