Monday, 19 June 2017

What Cat & John Did | Nisyros

 
Part two of this year's holiday diary, and this post is going to be all about John and mine's excursion to the tiny island of Nisyros sitting 20km off the coast of Kos. The island is home to a volcano and about 750 locals. It's diameter is 8km and I couldn't have been more amazed by the sights, the culture and the people in this place. But enough with facts, let me tell you all about our day in Nisyros.


 
If it wasn't for going to the Thomson welcome meet up on our first day in Kos, we probably wouldn't have even thought about going to Nisyros but after reading about the 'Volcanic Encounter' excursion, we booked it and ended up visiting this tiny little island. I thought Zante and Kos were small, but this was even tinier. We went right in the middle of our week and I think it was the hottest day we'd had so far.
Anyway, we arrived to the island on the only boat travelling in and out of Nisyros that day. We arrived about 1pm and were scheduled to leave at 6pm, so a good 5 hours to go around the island. We were shown around by a tour guide who handed everyone a little radio to listen to her tell us all about the island, the locals and the sights. The itinerary was to walk around the island's city, Mandraki and then visit the Stefanos Crater in the centre of the island before taking a detour to Nikia (home to only 35) before heading back to the port. There were only two other towns in the whole island, a fishing town called Pali and a town at the top of the mountain where only 17 people live called Emporios. 
 


MANDRAKI


Mandraki was beautiful to walk around. We learnt why greek homes are always white and either blue, green or brown and that it was part of greek law that their homes are painted those colours. We also found out that the island's claim to fame is the farming of Pumice stone as well as having the volcano at the heart. The streets were beautiful and you could see homes were built around the land rather than chipping away at it. John and I just walked around for about half hour before finding the square and sitting for lunch at one of four taverns in the whole square under the biggest tree I've ever seen.


The people were so lovely too. I think the name of the restaurant we ate at was called Irini. We sat down right under the shade of the tree and ate burgers and chips. The people were very happy and made you feel very welcome.


The photos of Mandraki speak for themselves really. I also loved the cats. Cats everywhere. 

 

STEFANOS CRATER

 

After spending just over an hour in Mandraki, we headed to the coach which took us through the longest winding road into the volcanic crater at the centre of the island.  At first, it looks tiny. But until you're in it, you don't really realise how big it actually is.


First of all, the volcano smelled a bit terrible! The sulphur smell was strong but after a while you got used to it. It was so hot that the ground under your shoes melted a little bit and you could feel the heat through your feet.
The guide led us down the one path into the crater and told us all about how the volcano was formed and where it's at right now. It was a crumbly way down but it was worth it to see the geysers of gas and hear the lava bubbling beneath the surface. It was quite an experience really and something I can tick off my to do list - even if it wasn't on there before!

 
After visiting the volcano we headed up to Nikia to visit the town and check out the panoramic views of the island and the volcano. The view was stunning and so was the town. We even went into the church and lit candles.
 

By this point John and I were pretty tired. We spent the whole day travelling and exploring this island that I didn't take anymore photos and we were on our way home. It was such a beautiful place and I'm so glad we went. 


If you go to Kos and love exploring, I'd definitely say visit this island. It's a beautiful one to tick off and learning about their way of life was an eye opener for how lucky we are and how easy it is to access things. These locals work hard to keep their island beautiful, working and as tradition as possible. The volcano is one to tick off too. It's no spitting cone to look over or rivers of lava to see but it's safe and as close as you might want to get to that. A great way to spend our 6 and a half year anniversary hey?
 
If you'd like my post about Kos is up too! I'd love it if you checked it out and leave me a lovely comment to reply to. I hope you're all enjoying this beautiful weather we're having!

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2 comments:

  1. How amazing! That's so cool to learn about how they live and why they have to keep their houses that colour! I love how they're always white and blue the majority of the time! I so want to visit Santorini!!

    Isobel x

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    1. Yeah it really was. It was so beautiful and I can't wait to go back! Just praying that everyone in Kos and the surrounding islands are okay at the moment <3 xx

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