A Hidden Gem of an Island

It was thanks to a nice lady in Siros (who fixed my watchband for free), who said we must go to Folegandros, that we ended up here.

We arrived after a long sail with geneker pulling us along nicely. The wall is quite small but we found a spot and did the usual anchor out the front and back tied to the wall with the gangplank out the back.

Later that evening two Greek guys from Samos, Dimitri and Christos, pulled up beside us in their motor boat, a traditional Greek fishing boat that had been fitted out for cruising. I helped them tie up and in return they gave us a gigantic bottle of wine. I suggested they come on board and help us drink it. We had a great night with them, first on La Mischief and later on their boat. It was interesting to get their perspective on the Greek crisis and life on Samos. We left them when they hopped on a bus up to the Chora, somewhere they had specifically come back to go to.

The Chora was indeed the highlight of the island. It’s perched on the side of a cliff face, a sort of mini Santorini. Still further up the cliff is a church, with a wonderful meandering path up to it. To get the best possible view, you climb on top of the church to look down onto the Chora. Great spot for sunset.

The Chora is an oasis of shady trees on an otherwise barren island. Its largely enclosed in a medieval kastro dating back to the 13th century, a tangle of narrow streets spanned by low archways bursting with colourful bougainvillea and hibiscus against the backdrop of white houses and blue frames.

The whole chora comes alive at night, lit up beautifully with restaurants and little shops. Perfect place to stop and eat Greek food at one of the many restaurants.

Next day we went to hire some scooters but got turned away because of a lack of international drivers license. Uh??? They did however rent us a car, so off we went to explore the island. We drove up and down the entire island, stopping off at a number of the beaches, which were delightful. It didn’t take long. We nearly got stuck driving up a steep road from one in a thoroughly gutless front wheel drive car but somehow managed to get enough grip to keep going. We also went back and explored the chora during daytime.

Next day we said goodbye to Folegandros – a real hidden gem of an island – as it was off to Ios.

For photos of Folegandros see https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10202316501586830&type=1&l=76ea69b34f

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