After an relaxing week of sleeping 10 hour nights for a good 5 days; meeting new people and spending more time with the people I care about.
Julia and I after talking became aware we haven’t spent a day to ourselves since 2002.
Let that sink in, 14 years later not enjoying someone’s company.
Like something from a novel.
So after a good conversation we decided to visit one of my favourite places to date on the planet, the Hellenic (I prefer the word Hellenic to Greek) Island of Aegina.
Soon the 25th of April, we set off for a day to Aegina.
Trpadvisor link if you have thoughts of visiting.
Getting up early e headed ferries to catch it to the island.
The tickets are around 8 – 9 Euro’s depending on which company you travel with (there are a number of different companies that go).
After an one and a half hour ferry ride we reach the Islands largest town Aegina (yes the town’s got the same name as the island) soon we’re walking the streets to hire a scooter, knowing the hills and mountain sides, I knew I’d need a 150cc scooter minimum with two of us plus my camera gear adding another 8kgs.
After visiting all the rentals we found one that had the scooter we wanted and the price was ok at 30 Euros at Scooter Center.
the we were off, I was informed a number of days ago to visit the only bird sanctuary in Greece, again let that sink it the ONLY ONE.
On the way to the Sanctuary we stopped and took in the view of the Hellenic islands Agistri and Moni (Now if you want to ask for the island you say Mo-ni not Mon-i, the latter means pussy and not the feline kind)
Ater some very nice sights and 30-minute ride (we did a few stops) we arrived at the sanctuary called The Hellenic wildlife hospital, meet some dogs and a few cats we meet Georgios who showed us the sanctuary, you could easily see when the country was doing ok before the GFC event the sanctuary had more money.
Now it’s got cracks in the roads that were made, overgrown grass and run down due to lack of funds.
Whenever an economic crisis happens I guess the animals suffer first on so many levels and seeing that in the only bird sanctuary was so open like a wound that won’t close.
I took a few photos but I think I was more interested in the cat he had around the place looked like a cross rag doll and tabby but it’s Greece who the hell knows.
They take in any bird that’s been injured or unwell due to humans, they give them a place to rest till they are 100% and then released, most of the birds are from northern parts of Greece and others migrate, those that migrate they release on Aegina and some even have returned to the sanctuary to nest and have young, that in itself shows it’s safe for them.
It’s run down but they soldier on doing what they love, it wouldn’t surprise me that they live in near sub-par conditions.
Un -sung heroes.
Share this blog on every social media platform you got and raise awareness for the sanctuary.
make a donation here.
Also here is a video.
After the sanctuary we made our way to the eastern side of the side simply riding along enjoying every moment, Even Julia was giggling at me when we’d pass another Greek I’d slow down with a nod and greeting “Yassas”, maybe it was more the irony of the situation a Greek that looks English and an Australian that looks Greek and I’m saying hello to everyone we meet like I belong (my soul definitely does and I hope to spend more time in Aegina).
Once we saw the water I wanted to see what was around and see where we’d end up, I’m a very curious guy and happy to wonder, you’ll never know what’s around the corner.
We found a gorgeous taverna on the water called ταβερνα ο Θανασης (not a clue what it means but I was very happy to stop and have a good traditional Greek seafood meal)
It was awesome, not only the food, the setting and the company.
After our meal, we headed off towards Agia Marina a town on the eastern coast of the island and from memory huge with the tourists.
We arrived, it was quite being April (Spring) but we rode around had a look some tourists around, the only thing I really noticed was there are a lot of a lot more hotels meaning it’s the lifeblood of the town.
We didn’t stay in Agia Marina, I was riding slow so Julia and I could talk and I told her about the ruins on the mountain top, it was cute she had no clue about it.
It’s the temple ruins of Aphaia.
When we arrived it was fenced off and a toll booth at an entrance, I knew they fenced off many of the ruins in Athens and put toll booths but here on Aegina I’ll admit I was shocked.
Julia went to ask and it’s 6 Euros for everyone, so now the Greek government in its infinity of idiocy is making Greek pay see their own ruins, like Australia, charges Australians to see our own wildlife.
Julia was quite infuriated about the whole situation that she a Greek had to pay, honestly I agree with her. fucking outrageous.
Due to a road closure for maintenance, we double back past Agia Marina then went west into the island and swung north, we both wanted to see Souvala another community familiar to us both.
When we arrived like much of the island, quite and easy.
We stopped for a drink and rest.
Once we did that we had enough and left for the main town Aegina and caught the next ferry back to the mainland.