Thursday, June 08, 2017

Rodos log 4: Lindos and the seven springs

Yesterday we took an excursion which traveled on the western side of the island; today we traveled on the eastern coast to the 'resort' village of Lindos (where the big boat is on the map to the left), which is a 50 km trip. As opposed to yesterday, when we were the last to board (as our boarding place is on the west coast), today we were the first to board, so we could get the plum seats behind the driver. He drove back along the road along which we had just walked, turned left to go to the supermarket, where we picked up some more people, on towards the aquarium and thence down past the old city walls, through a very run down area of Rhodos Town and then onto the open road.

Our first stop was at a place called the seven springs (Epta Piges); no one should make this their final destination but it's ok to stop here on the way to Lindos. There is a little lake with seven numbered springs feeding into it (although we only saw six) and a larger lake with ducks. There are also peahens wandering around the parking area. A bit further on is another psychological exercise: there is a 100 metre long tunnel through which flows water to the depth of a few inches. People walk through this tunnel in the dark and come out the other end. I did this because other people did it; what did I get from this? Nothing. Why do other people do this? Maybe to test their level of claustrophobia. One person writes: if you go there, you really should walk through the tunnel, it's around 200 m long, and I wouldn't recommend it if you suffer from claustrophobia, because it's pitch black, water running under your feet, and it's really narrow ... but if you want something special to remember when you come home, go for it! It's said that if you go through the tunnel you loose all your fears and u [sic] will be 20 years younger, so now am 0 years then :) I saw a t-shirt yesterday evening with the legend "I'm not 50 years old: I'm 18 with 32 years of experience". So I've got nearly 43 years of experience ... but the above comment verifies the statement that "60 is the new 40".

The road to Lindos was fairly boring - to me, it's like being at home as the vegetation is similar.

Just before we got to Lindos, the driver stopped at a lay-by, where everybody gets out and takes pictures. Apparently Lindos is known as "the white town", which is very accurate as every building seems to be white. When we got there, we stopped at a junction outside of the town and took the shuttle bus down to the town square, saving a 1km walk down a hill (50 cents). From there we walked into the market ... and then proceeded to get lost (not literally) in the maze of little streets which were packed with people looking at all the items on display. This reminds me very much of the side streets of Sorrento. It bothers me less than the same thing in the old city of Rhodos town: there the streets are part of a historical site and should be viewed as such whereas here they are simply a market.

Probably the major thing to do in Lindos is climb up to the Acropolis, but as this involves walking up 500 steps (and walking back down), it was clear that our knees weren't up to the job. One can hire a donkey (for 6 euro), but after our experience with donkeys in Santorini, it was clear that this idea was a non-starter.

After about an hour of wandering around, we decided to stop and have a light lunch in one of the many rooftop restaurants. That's me on the left, overlooking some of the white town. After eating, we had to find our way out of the maze again, but this we managed to do without much difficulty. We discovered that we still had plenty of time before our bus was to leave, so we had a final cup of tea. To think that at one stage we were considering spending three days in Lindos: I would not recommend coming here to anyone who is on a tight schedule. The prices are also higher: the book about Rhodos which we bought in the old city for 7 euro costs 10 euro in Lindos.

In the evening, we went to the 3D cinema near the harbour, which is showing a twenty minute film, "The throne of Helios", which tells in very dramatic terms some of the history of Rhodos. Apart from being entertaining (the 3D effects were enhanced by moving chairs, "rain" falling from the sky and bumps in the back), the film also imparts a great deal of history. Following that was a six minute fun film about a chariot race: no dialogue but plenty of action. I had had the foresight to request a non-moving chair for this film as I was sure that my balance problems would give me grief. Everyone else in the audience was screaming whereas I was simply enjoying the film. This was definitely a highlight and strongly recommended. The history film costs 10 euro, and the chariot film an extra 3.

The evening finished by walking back to Mandilara street, having a light supper, then walking through the pedestrian area which was mainly composed of full restaurants with live entertainment. In the middle of the road was one almost empty restaurant - I wonder how they must have felt.

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