Friday, August 17, 2018

Greece: Cruisin to Kalamos Island, Fallen Asleep on the Beach and Dolphins Sightseeing

Hello! Kalimera!

So this is the second part of the day cruise tour we took during our summer holiday in Lefkada 2 years ago (2016). Yup, a very delayed post. You can find the link to the first part here: Greece - Cruisin to Cave Papanikolis, Kastos Island, and a Swimming Dip

Dutchman and I always grab the chance to visit smaller islands during our Greek Island summer holidays. We either take a boat cruise tour or just hop on a local ferry (with our rental scooter or car) and visit the nearest island, like we did last year and the years before that.

[To read the rest of the post and see more pictures, click the READ MORE link below]

The scenes we saw as we sailed on...

Lunch on the Beach

After visiting Kastos Island we were told that we will be sailing to Kalamos Island where we will get off the boat and on to a secluded beach and have lunch there. The boat cruise includes a simple lunch and drinks. I wasn't really expecting a lot because it wasn't pricey nor was this a private charter, to begin with. These types of boat cruises are offered in Lefkada for the public and actually in many holiday-oriented Greek islands.

So we arrived at the island and everyone got off to settle in their chosen spot on the beach. We were too late to realise that the beach is an open beach with rocky edges and almost no vegetation, which means we need to shelter ourselves from the scorching sun.

Then we noticed the parasols. Why do most people from the boat have a parasol? Where did they get it?!

We learned that the boat owns the parasols and was lending them. We didn't know about this beforehand and were too late because all the parasols were already taken. The Dutchman was super irritated because we were with the mother in law. So we had to walk to the end of the beach in search of some meaningful vegetation that can rescue us from the heat. There, we found some trees just enough to fit us under.

The upshot to this is that we have a bit of privacy in this spot, being far from everyone else.

Here is the mother in law taking a shelter under the tree.

Then lunch was ready and everyone queued up properly to get their food.

We had some Greek Salad, Keftedes (Greek Meat Balls), Tzatziki and bread. For drinks, we have a choice of orange juice or local white wine. The cruise people brought enough food and some people even came back for the second portion, including us. Not bad at all, huh.

Then we had a little bit more beach time for ourselves before we heard the captain's whistle to remind us that it is time to return to the boat. Yup, I managed to swim here as well.

Greek lunch on the beach.

Kalamos Town Sneak

So everyone is piled up on the boat and excited to see where we are going next. Perhaps we are going to the main town of Kalamos island?  Our experience at the earlier island we visited, Kastos Island, was okay. However, we were searching for a more laid back, charming and engaging island with cafes, similar to what we have experienced in the past during visits to other smaller yet lovely islands.

The need was a bit amplified I guess because we have the mother in law with us and we want to show her the little charismatic islands in the Greek Isles. We have so far, only seen Kastos but it was rather small with not so much happening in the main town and harbour. We were really planning on sitting on a cafe terrace to have drinks and enjoy the island-life surroundings. You know, chilling, which we really love doing.

The boat managed to reach the main town of Kalamos and as the boat turned around in the harbour, we looked at the many empty beautifully laid out cafe terraces. From the deck of the boat, I was already actively surveying which cafe terrace we should choose when I realised that we are actually not docking but slowly sailing away. WTF?

Dutchman had the same reaction and was completely annoyed. We took this boat cruise because we thought we will be visiting 2 islands, not just some beaching and swimming. It looks like it is not happening. #frustrationbrewing

The main town of Kalamos Island.

The small harbour of Kalamos Island.

The nice (empty) cafe terraces / tavernas waiting for customers, waiting for us! I am sure the owners were just as disappointed as us when we did not stop to go off board.

Fallen Asleep and Almost Left Behind!

With a large lump of disappointment in my throat, we sailed off again. Dutchman, on the other hand, was completely annoyed, not the slightest though. He wanted to sit somewhere nice, in a cafe, on a charming island, by the water, rather than on this boat. Like what we always did with other boat tours. And that with his mother! *sigh*

Instead of going to the town of Kalamos (which we wanted), the captain brought us to another beach for more swimming.

Again, we did not sign up for a swimming cruise. We thought we will be visiting towns of 2 small islands?!

Anyway, we have no choice. Dutchman was sulking at this point and didn't want to get down to the beach when we arrived. He said he will just read his book in the boat. So the mother in law and I went down to the beach, and this time bringing with us a parasol. We have learned our lesson very well.

We laid down our beach towels and settled in. It was quite a nice white pebbly beach and we had a nice view from where we were lying down. I guess because of the soothing sounds of the waves, and we were the only group there so it wasn't that noisy, the mother in law and I quickly fell asleep.

An hour later, we didn't notice that it was time to go so while everyone else was back on board, we were still snoring away. The boat was practically waiting for us, tooting its horn several times and we were still deep REM sleep, haha. Everyone on the boat was quite amused including the Dutchman who has been calling me on my mobile phone several times already.

It was actually very funny to see everyone all packed up in the boat while the mother in law and I were still sleeping on the beach. Anyway, the captain finally sent one of the stewards to wake us up. #hallelujah!

Scenes during the sail to the next beach stop.

The last beach we hit during our boat cruise.

The view from the beach where we fell asleep.

Dolphin Spotting

The mother in law and I quickly recovered from the shame of almost being left behind because we fell asleep, haha. The Dutchman had to laugh as well. He was earlier very annoyed at the chain of events of this boat cruise, but I guess our falling asleep on the beach act had cured his frustrations. All I can say is that I must have enjoyed that short sleep on the beach, haha.

Bonus point! As we sailed back to the harbour of Lekada, we spotted dolphins!

There was a small school of dolphins swimming along with the boat and they were jumping on the water. The dolphins followed us for a while which caused a massive merriment on the boat. You can just imagine everyone oohing and aahing, taking pictures and running to the corner of the boat where the dolphins are easily spotted.

I managed to take a few only because the dolphins were quick! And you would rather be watching them than taking pictures all the time.

Well, I must say that this was a nice end of the day.

A school of dolphins followed our boat.

For the rest of the journey back to Lefkada, we just sat on the boat and enjoyed the scenery. Although it wasn't our ideal boat cruise / tour, it wasn't a bad day after all.

Travel Period: June 2016
Destination: Kalamos (Ionian Islands), Greece

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All pictures were taken by a point and shoot pocket camera or a smartphone.

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