Ithaca Summer Lodown 2008
 
These pages are for all the fun, activities, parties, festivals, news and visitors coming to Ithaca in Greece for the Summer of 2008. You'll still find Who's Here, Around The Villages and Ithaki General, but this year they'll all be packed into one. Enjoy the Summer, be it on the island or online. It's bound to be huge!
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Thur 3 July - Above - Ag. Marina ferry from Lefkada into Frikes Bay. Tonight Ithaki celebrates navy week at Polis Bay in Stavros with music and food. Get along and have a good time. Right - In the steps of Odysseas celebrations this weekend and other surprises, none of of which will include the weather. It's hot, was hot and continues to be hot.
Fri 4 July - Left - Arthur and Jenny are almost Lefki locals this year, staying at their family home until end of October. They religiously make their annual journey to Ithaki and when the poem says 'may your journey be long' I don't think Cavafy had the long haul from Newcastle Australia in mind.
Right - Kevin and Jackie are here from South Africa. Each year they come to Ithaki, they brighten up the island for a short time with their wit and enthusiasm for the traditions of Ithaki.
 
Sat 5th July - Right - The night was warm and mild and the stars were out and reflecting on the bay. A perfect summers' night. If you've ever been to a Frikes Panighiri, you may have been tempted to have stayed home for the 2008 one, but if you did, you would have missed a really great night. There was lots of Kefi, the band was fantastic and the community was in the mood to party. As with all Panighiri, it's all about food, wine and dancing, and on this occasion there was no shortage of any of these ingredients. Click here or on photograph right for more pics.
Left - Every 2 years Navy week begins its celebrations at Polis Bay with free food and live music from the greatest little band on Ithaki. Click here for more pics.
Still no word from the holiday company that saw fit to infringe the copyright of the Walks of Ithaca. Copy Paste Easy. It's something I'd expect from Homer Simpson, not Simpsons Travel. Maybe I should put a generic copyright infringement apology on the site and then they could just copy and paste it back to me?
During the formalities and ceremonies of Odysseas Footsteps, some Vathy locals demonstrated against the Council decision to keep the village Square open to traffic during the Summer. A line of cars traveled the 25km assigned for the road, beeping and honking while an announcement through a loud speaker hanging out of the car window, informed everyone of the groups understandable discontent. The Odysseas Steps ceremony was somewhat interrupted, but everyone in the Square was too intent on having a good time to take time out to consider political issues, even one that could have consequences for the safety of the Summer population and children as noted by the demonstrating group.
Left - So you dream about living on a Greek island, getting yourself a little job on the bayside, drink tea and swim the days away? Life would be so easy. Well, not if you're a vegetarian gay/lesbian polish grill man from the Netherlands, who doesn't like wearing shorts or sandals and who is stuck behind the coals of the charcoal grill on Panighri night with 500 souvlaki down and another 501 to go. You too can have the Greek island glow, but can you handle it? Rien Post can, but just barely by the looks of it.

Mon 7 July - To see a 2 part video of Frikes Click Here.

Late yesterday afternoon, locals and visitors followed in the footsteps of Odysseas with a symbolic race from Aetos to Vathy Square. Professionals mingled with amateurs and children with adults on the 5 km run. After the run came ceremonies, music and dancing. Click Here or on photo below for more pics.

 

Temps in the 40Cs predicted for this week. Yes, it's definitely steaming here. If the temperature isn't a sign of Summer, then the people currently coming to the island definitely is. It's getting very, very busy now.

Tue 8th July - Click here for the video of the Frikes Panighiri held Friday 4th July.

Click here for the video of yesterdays' symbolic race - Tracing the steps of Odysseas

 
Wed 9th July - Above - Polis Beach is under the guidance again this year of Lucky Laki. The family beach has boat hire, umbrellas and sun lounges, and this year there is also a Polis Cap you can buy. Wow! Very cool. Something almost as cool is the cooler breeze that started up around midday today, blowing the heatwave we've suffered under for the past couple of weeks, out to sea. A fresh change that we are all very pleased about. Below - The early signs of figs starting to fruit on the tree of temptation at Polis Beach. Keep your eyes out for a little video of Polis Beach coming soon...ish.
Sat 12 July - On Ithaki, even when in the height of the tourist season, you can still steal away to a traditional corner where life is little changed by the Summer influx. Above - Ag. Sarantas corner shop. Right - The Raxi donkey filling up on hay. Below Right - Looking at the blue Ionian sky through a northern Ithaki ruin.
Fri 11 July - Polis Beach just beneath the northern center of Stavros, is the areas favourite family beach. Not only are there two beachfronts to choose from, but also a great Cantina with succulent calamari and fresh greek salads. For a short video of Polis beach, Lucky and some Polis regulars, Click here.
Left - LIttle fishes feeding on biscuit crumbs thrown into the Piso Aetos waters by travelers waiting for the 4pm ferry to come into the port. The feeding frenzy has fish leaping out of the water.
Right - There's a real art to getting out of the water without shoes on. The Ithaki pebble walk can be very embarrassing for some, but the veterans have mastered the walk without looking too bad.
Sat 12 July - Only 5 days to go before the beloved Ag Marina Festival in Exoghi. If you've got good legs, then park around Yefuri in Platrithia and walk up. It's a nice walk up and even better walk down the path that has been recently restored. Below - Kioni views. Still Ionian waters look idyllic with little boats sailing into the harbour.
Right and Below - Swimming around Kioni bayside. It's amazing how clear the waters are at Kioni beaches, considering the yacht and Day Tripper traffic that comes into the bay side of this village.
Right - This month the ferry from Lefkada started to come into Frikes twice per day, once in the morning and once at night. Last night it brought with it a large group of backpackers whose guide carried Vathy Ithaca on her placard. Hope the group was ready for the big long walk ahead of them.
Sun 13 July - Below Right - Vanessa (center) is here from Altona in Melbourne visiting relatives and friends in Platrithia. We caught up with her at Yefuri for Sunday brunch with relations through marriage, Kathy (Right) and
Sia (Left). Vanessa has 1 week on Ithaca as part of her travels around Europe. Below - Most porches on Ithaki have a resident gecko patrolling the outer buildings for insects.
Tue 15 July - Shock horror, but the day actually started cloudy and grey this morning. Northern Ithacans especially, woke to a dull and humid morning that took most of the day to clear away. A fresh breeze still blows and seems to be getting stronger as the day goes on. A refreshing change. Right - Lots of beautiful old boats sailing around Ithaki and into Ithaki bays lately. Every day another boat out does the previous in regard to size, vintage or speed.
 
Left - Thank you!!
Above and Left - Holly, the ball-catching Dalmation is looking for a partner to play some basketball hoops. Below Left - Vathy bayside is just buzzing with sailing traffic, whether from Day Trippers or the yachting community that sails around the Ionian each year.
Vathy along the bayside - Ithaca
Wed 16 July - Below - Shopping in Vathy can be a traditional experience.
Above - View to Perahori from Vathy. Perahori village is Ithakis Eco friendly location. Above Right - Fishing off the pier outside the Port Authority building in Vathy. Left - Ithakis Port Authority share the same building as Ithakis Tax Department. Today it seemed the air-con units were getting a little attention with some workmen showing an interest. Right - Luke Sikiotis and family are back at Apostolata, on the outskirts of Stavros, from Newcastle Australia. We caught up with Luke catching up with his friends in Frikes and will hopefully catch up with the family before they all return to the sunburnt country.
A slightly windy day today with a much cooler air. A nice change. The wind has cleared the atmosphere and the views, making everything crispy clear. Don't forget the Exoghi Panighiri is on tomorrow night. Yes, it's that time already. This festival is one of Ithakis favourites. Exoghi always has a very special atmosphere. No shops or restaurants to be distracted by, only the village church, Ag. Marina, the village Square and the wonderful people of Exoghi and Ithacans coming to Exoghi. Walk up, take a moped or a taxi. Parking will be hell as usual.
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Click on this photo for more pics of Polis Beach - Navy week Frikes Panighiri. For more pics click on pic Click here for more photos of Tracing Odysseas Steps - Symbolic Race