Thursday, 31 March 2016

From Volos to Skopelos and Skyros by seaplane ...

In leading role Volos - Northern Sporades and Skyros ...

Source: http://www.taxydromos.gr

In  Magnesia created the first waterways network in Greece. Seaplanes of Hellenic Seaplanes SA will join initially Volos with the Northern Sporades and Skyros and then to regions across the country. The islands of the Northern Sporades and Skyros will have a leading role: because of their central position will interface with the islands of Northern Aegean, North Greece, the Cyclades and the metropolitan ydatodromio Thessaloniki. The activation of the first organized viable network is considered a matter of time. Since the summer is expected to launch the first services.

The environmental licensing of waterways Skopelos, completed nearly waterways Volos network - Northern Sporadon- Skyros.

According to a statement of the Hellenic Seaplanes SA signed the approval of environmental conditions to create waterways in the port of Skopelos, bringing closer the company's effort to create the waterways network in Sporades, Volos and Skyros.

The decisions approving the environmental terms of Skopelos Port Works include the creation of waterways with land and water facilities and water surface for safe splashdown, apothalassosi and ydatodromisi seaplane (maneuvering area). The onshore facilities are located in the southern part of central quay of the harbor and include prefabricated passenger facility. Organization of the project is the "waterways Sporades IKE 'subsidiary Seaplanes Greece SA / Hellenic Seaplanes SA

On the occasion of the signing of the decision of the environmental conditions for the construction and operation of the waterways, the president and chief executive of the company Hellenic Seaplanes Mr. Charalambous announced that the creation of the first network of waterways in Greece is now a bet with time while pointing the multiple benefits that their implementation will have on job creation, regional development, development of infrastructure and networks as well as the positive effects on tourism at this critical juncture where is Greece.

Specifically Mr. Charalambous said: "The construction works of waterways will start very soon and feature a significant number of waterways will be possible as soon as possible with a view to the forthcoming summer season.

Significant implementation factor of waterways network is the economic environment of the country and the overall investment climate that will stimulate a new development landscape in Greece.

The operation of seaplanes and the creation of the waterways network can create a significant number of jobs, both directly and indirectly, contribute significantly to the interconnection and development of local communities and improve the country's economy, but also to contribute the removal of small islands isolation, upland or frontier, where construction of airports is not possible and the connection between the boat is difficult, especially during the winter season. The creation of waterways in some islands of the country that do not have classic aviation infrastructure or regular transport, will contribute to a large number of social service urgency, such as patient transport and basic commodities. "

Minister YPEKA Mr. Skourletis a relevant statement said: "The Environment and Energy Ministry reported the waterways are awaiting environmental licensing and has initiated all appropriate action to accelerate environmental licensing of waterways.

At the same time we are in regular contact with the Decentralized Administration and the Minister subject to overcome bureaucratic obstacles and resolve any issues thus contributing substantially to the support of this investment initiative in creating the first viable waterways network and configuring a new development landscape in the country".

Connections across the country

According to the business plan of the waterways network of Hellenic Seaplanes SA, the waterways Sporades and Skyros because of their central position will interface with the islands of Northern Aegean, with northern Greece, in Cyclades, with Volos and the Metropolitan ydatodromio Thessaloniki .

The Hellenic Seaplanes, pointed o the company's General Manager Mr. Evangelos Zagorakis, has started the process for licensing, construction and operation of waterways and other islands and soon will develop a sustainable network of destinations and tourist routes.

In conclusion, Mr. Zagorakis said: "Our company's design includes more than 100 waterways and is expected soon to have ready a part of the network is a project clearly of national importance, a new transport infrastructure, which will give new impetus to the interconnection of all of Greece. The formulation and implementation of the new national transport infrastructure has already started dynamically by us for licensing, construction and operation of waterways to the coast, islands and lakes where soon will interface with seaplane together.

To date more than 50 waterways throughout Greece are in the authorization phase and preparation of the environmental report. If everything goes according to the timetable set by 2016 Greeks can fly with seaplanes. "

Wish them well, previously the service from  Volos with Argo was not a viable one ...

Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Missing something ...

I have said many times, Skiathos has something for everyone ...

If you wander down Papadiamanti, its hard not to catch a waft from the creperie. The most popular being the 'Nutella' version. However in Greece its Merenda version, which is the chocolate spread of choice ...

My Greek friends will not forgive me, if I did not tell you Meranda tastes best. Tsak Mpam's creparie has a tower of the drums, which reaches roof level around the end of August ...


Today the famous domestic goddess Nigella Lawson, has just posted her 'recipe of the day' ...

Nigella Lawson ‏@Nigella_Lawson 
Lazy but lovely: Nutella Pancakes are #RecipeOfTheDay!
https://www.nigella.com/recipes/nigellas-nutella-pancakes-5304


Nigella Lawson ‏@Nigella_Lawson   
PS should you wish to make your own crepes, however, for the Nutella Pancakes (tweet just below), here ya go https://www.nigella.com/recipes/crepes

Nutella or Meranda? - 'Your taste of Skiathos' cooking time starts now - away you go...

Perhaps we should invite Nigella down to Skiathos, for a taste test, what do you think ...

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Καλημέρα! Kαλή εβδομάδα σε όλους ...

Good Morning and Good Week to everyone ...

Skiathos in 1967, and a view of the old harbour, with what may be sardine fishermen ...


A time before tourism, and the very different island we know now ...

Monday, 28 March 2016

Renovations at the Hotel Xenia (Update - 28/03) ...

Thanks to 'Steve in Skiathos' and 'Skiathos Island News' for very kindly, allowing us to share the following update, and photos of the ongoing works ...

Steve has been out and about, with the camera, once again, He advises 'Increased activity now at the Xenia Hotel, (24th March) lots more building materials been delivered and more workers now.

According to the guys there, the work will continue throughout the summer, and is due for completion in May 2017'...









Lest hope the rain stops, and they can meet the completion date ...

Thanks again Steve, and Skiathos Island News, for the shared info. Further photos to follow in due course ...

Friday, 25 March 2016

25η ΜΑΡΤΙΟΥ - Independence Day ...

Greek Independence day - Ελευθερία ή θάνατος - Freedom or Death ...


Χρόνια πολλά στην Ελλάδα και σε όλους τους έλληνες ...

Greek Independence day, like everywhere else in Greece will be celebrated with a parade, on its National day ...

'On March 25, 1821,  Bishop Germanos of Patras raised the Greek flag at the Monastery of Agia Lavra in Peloponnese, and the Greek War of Independence from the Ottoman Empire was officially born. The battle cry “Freedom or Death” was taken up by thousands, and war was waged for 9 years (1821-1829) until a small part of modern Greece was finally liberated and declared an independent nation'

The Monastery at Evagelistria, was where the Greek flag was first raised. It celebrates its birthday today

Photo: Ιερά Κοινοβιακή Μονή Ευαγγελισμού της Θεοτόκου Σκιάθου

The cafes and tavernas will fill early as the townsfolk line the parade route. Traditional music will be played over the loudspeakers, to put everyone in the right mood for the parade. Flags to the ready, and off we go ...

The ladies in traditional Skiathiti dress, will pass by the Mayor, Pappa Giorgos and assembled dignitaries on the paralia. Then after that parade, greetings from friends, invitations for coffee, tsipourakia, and passing the time of day.

Tonight will be the Λαμπαδρομια - or candlelit parade from Tries Hieraches ...

For me, this is what living in Skiathos is all about. The traditions and the time spent, enjoying the way of life on the island. Something that is missing, or hidden from view in summer ...

Congratulations to friend of the blog Stig, the famous 'Troll' from Norway, who has journeyed down 'to the rock' and will witness the event. Kalo Taxidi to Simon and Donna en route to Thessaloniki ...

Spring is loading ...

Thursday, 24 March 2016

ANES fast ferry to Glifa (Mainland) ...

ANES lines have confirmed the start, of their new fast ferry service ...

The catamaran SYMI II will transfer to the Sporades after a refit, and operate daily between Glossa, Skiathos and Glifa, on the mainland in the mid/high season ...


The services will begin on June 19th and will operate until the September 18th. Journeys twice a day, in each direction Monday to Thursday, and then a slightly amended service in each direction, over the weekend periods ...


Should be handy for the KTEL bus service, being around three hours distant from Athens ...

Wednesday, 23 March 2016

From Libya with love ...

Sahara dust ...

Its blocking out the sunlight, its raining from the skies, its covering cars and houses alike. In case you are wondering, here is where its all coming from ...


Corfu with Sahara dust, and the early season Cruise ships ...




Sunday, 20 March 2016

The Vernal Equinox ...

The first day of spring ...

The astronomical spring in the Northern Hemisphere begins today, Sunday, March 20th. It's also Palm Sunday and the International Day of Happiness, so if you'd like to share your tips ...

The Spring (vernal) equinox in the Northern Hemisphere is also known as the March equinox. It's called the "autumnal (fall) equinox" in the Southern Hemisphere.

On Skiathos if you were up, then the sun should be rising half way over Skopelos. At least from my favourite viewing point, the spring at Taxiacharis. However on shore line its just as good ...


So if you are in the north, its time for a spring clean, If you are in the south its the start of autumn. Either way many of you will be finalising plans, for your summer break, or winter break back 'on the rock' - You all know who you are ...

The March equinox marks the moment the Sun crosses the celestial equator – the imaginary line in the sky above the Earth’s equator – from south to north. At this moment, the Earth's axis is neither tilted away from, nor towards the Sun.

This all happened at 04:30 am UTC (GMT).

So you missed it ...

To celebrate the last day of winter, I explained all the above to Junior, with the aid of a freshly returned tennis ball from our neighbours garden, Junior desperately wants it to get warm, and to get outside, and enjoy the oncoming 'Ice cream' season. Wobbly teeth or not, its a must do affair.

Rather like clearing the vegetable garden of borage. Its tough work, but I will be rewarded at a later date. At least the voracious Kolios mosquito will not suck my blood, carving out this vegetable garden, Unlike the ones that did in the olive grove, one April, leaving me sick and bad for days ...

Tuesday, 15 March 2016

Special delivery ...

Surprise, surprise ...

Every once in a while, something nice happens ...


Now imagine the smile, this put on my face last night.


For those of you who like a golden ale, but have never tried a Greek one. Argo is up there with the best, take it from me ...

Footnote: Excuse the Stella glass with the Argo ale, however if you purchase one, you get to 'Buy a Lady a Drink'For every limited-edition Chalice sold, you can help provide 5 years of clean water for 1 person in the developing world ...


Monday, 14 March 2016

Καθαρά Δευτέρα - Clean Monday ...

Well the streets will be clean ...

Kite or a brolly, what will it be ?


After all the rain of the last day of carnival, it seems there is more to come. Severe weather Greece advised last night

'Accumulated rainfall for today in Greece. The 265 mm in Zagora, Pelion, is not a mistake! As we already mentioned in our outlook, the accumulated rainfall would be the main problem for that area as well as in C and E continental Greece in general. Rainfall will continue tomorrow as well'

So if you are not up for a paddle up Papadamatis street for a fresh Laganas, then here is what one looks like, along with appropriate clean monday foods. As the cupboards are emptied for the start, of Orthodox lent ...

Photo © Skiathian

Καθαρά Δευτέρα - Clean Monday - 14th March 2016

The day after Tyrofagis Sunday is  'Kathara Deftera' , also called 'Kathari Deftera', or Clean Monday, which falls on 14th March 2016

Clean Monday marks the end of Apokries and the first day of Lent (Sarakosti). Fasting starts today and traditionally no meat, fish, eggs, dairy products or oil are allowed to be eaten for the 49 days leading up to Easter.

Clean Monday is a Bank Holiday in Greece and also seen as the start of springtime; it is celebrated by an excursion to the mountains or the beach to enjoy a Lenten picnic or taverna meal, and fly a kite.

Late News just in:

Kite flying cancelled, due to inclement conditions.
Flying Cat and Express Skiathos services canceeled due to bad weather.
A photo meze, has arrived from Donna in Skiathos,  Sea urchins and Fresh Mediterranean Oysters (Fouska) and thank you for that ...


Closely followed by the offering from Christo & Eleni at Taverna O'Batis ...

Photo: Taverna O'Batis

Closely followed by some more urchins, from Nikos in Papadamatis street ...

Photo: Nikos Restaurant
Photo: Nikos Restaurant

Now all we need is some of that tsipouro ...

Καλή Σαρακοστή σε όλους! - Happy Lent to all ...

Sunday, 13 March 2016

Καλό Καρναβάλι ...

Today its the last day of carnival ...

Tomorrow its the start of Orthodox lent. However its a tad wet, and getting wetter soon,

Severe Weather Outlook valid from early morning of Sunday till afternoon of Monday.
The current weather system delayed its course for about 6 hours so it will start affecting E continental parts from Sunday morning. Gradually, phenomena will move to C & N parts as well as E Aegean by the end of the day with strong thunderstorms locally accompanied by hail. 

A special notice for C Greece (esp. Thessaly & parts of Macedonia) where the accumulated rainfall might be enough to cause problems. Wind will gradually blow from N directions till the end of Sunday. In C & N Aegean they will be stormy (locally 8-9 Beaufort). 


Total precipitation the last 34 hours from some weather stations across Thessaly and Macedonia.


OK - A little rain ? This is Volos, the local city to Skiathos,  and its flooding ...


But its carnival, and a little rain is not going to put the dampers on lunch, or the parade ...


Σκιάθος Καρναβάλι 2016

Photo: Skyframe.gr

Καλή Σαρακοστή ...

Saturday, 12 March 2016

Stormy weather ...

Καλημέρα κ καλό σαββατοκύριακο ...

Severe Weather Outlook valid from early Saturday 12.03.2016 till early Sunday 13.03.2016

'Strong thunderstorms with excessive precipitation are expected esp. within the yellow area, starting from C-NE Peloponnese till Thessaly. Hail is also expected (esp. in Peloponnese and E continental Greece). Possible squall line development with embedded supercell over S Ionian sea towards Peloponnese. A tornado event (esp. over Peloponnese and E continental parts) cannot be ruled out'



The storms of the last week have improved the Skiing conditions in Greece - If you can dodge the electrical atmospherics. Over 30 cm of new snow at the Lailias ski center, Serres, N Greece.

Source/Πηγή: https://www.facebook.com/katafigiolailia/



Blog post 1600 and counting. Much to my surprise still very popular in the Ukraine ...

Friday, 11 March 2016

Renovations at the Hotel Xenia (Update - 11/03) ...

Works are continuing apace ...

Thanks to 'Steve in Skiathos' and 'Skiathos Island News' for very kindly, allowing us to share the following update, and photos of the ongoing works ...

Steve has been out and about, with the camera, once again, He advises 'The side of the Xenia hotel all shored up - columns being reformed, and it looks like a lot of work has been done inside too'

Photo: © Skiathos Island News
Photo: © Skiathos Island News
Photo: © Skiathos Island News

Thanks again Steve, and Skiathos Island News, for the shared info. Further photos to follow in due course ...

Thursday, 10 March 2016

Getting to Skyros ...

Any adventurers out there? ...

Looks like the (Long awaited) weekly connection from Skiathos has materialised,  The Skyros shipping company ferry 'Achilleas' will operate as follows ...

Sunday ferry service to Skyros

Volos         06:45 Skiathos 09:25
Skiathos    10:00 Skopelos 11:05
Skopelos   11:20 Alonissos 11:55
Alonissos   12:05 Skyros 14:45

The service from Skyros is on a Saturday

Skyros 12:15   Kymi         14:00
Kymi        15:00   Alonissos 17:20
Alonissos 17:35 Skopelos  18:10
Skopelos 18:40 Skiathos 19:40
Skiathos 20:15 Volos         22:45

It is only mid-June (20th) - Mid September (11th), so you have to choose that period 

The ferry also goes 2/3 times a week from Skopelos/Alonissos around 12:30 arrives Skyros about 20:00 with a connecting bus to Chora. return is at 07:00.

It is only mid-June (20th) - Mid September (15th), so you have to choose that period otherwise there is no easy way except from Evia.

The timetable is here http://www.sne.gr/

Wednesday, 9 March 2016

Mixed bag ...

Looks like another stormy day ahead ...

Photo: –Severe Weather Greece 

This warning is valid from the morning of Wednesday, 9/3/2016 by the morning of Thursday 10/3/2016. mainly the eastern mainland which is likely to be affected by local powerful thunderstorms, 

Areas a. Attica, evia, Northern Sporades, a. Thessaly and k. Macedonia. Hailstorms locally or even the possibility of tornado/waterspout in yellow belt, although they have relatively small chance, are not excluded.

Source: Severe Weather Greece 

But at least some of the waste cardboard mountain, has escaped the oncoming storm ...

Photo: Skiathos recycling-Ανακύκλωση Σκιαθου
20 tonnes of paper left this week from the island!

The paper that, having undergone special washing, inking, mashing and pressing, will regenerate and be in a usable form again. Who knows, maybe return to the island in the form of a book, a newspaper or a magazine that will keep us company this summer on the beaches...

Quote of the day: 'The skiathos economy is such that the islander's, will not tollorate the freeloaders that are plaguing Europe'

No its not mine, but from a Skiathos expert, due back for his second ever visit - Wait for the complaints, if he does not get a complimentary dessert this summer ...


Sunday, 6 March 2016

Skopelos - Fire planes in action at Agios Efstathios-Karya ...

A large fire started at around 2.30pm, burning pine woods in Agios Efstathios-Karya Skopelos.

Photo: Ilias Provias

Local are terrestrial and aerial firefighting forces, while aid from Skiathos, and elsewhere rushed to the island to assist in extinguishing the fire ...

Photo: Ilias Provias

Photo: Ilias Provias
Two firefighting planes "Canadair" made ​​water drops until sunset.

Skopelos reached hastily by helicopter from Athens and step 12 people-firemen of EMAK led by captain 1st EMAK Brigadier Kolokouri, giving a tough fight to flames.

From Volos departed for Skopelos afternoon and great power firefighting forces led by commander of the fire Service Volos,  Charalambos Pozoglou, while expected to ferry embarkation and forces from Skiathos.


Sourced via: http://www.zougla.gr/
Source: skopelos-news.blogspot.gr

Thursday, 3 March 2016

Short sharp shock ...

Of the electrical kind ...

The island has been bathed in warm sunshine, perfect for topping up the Vitamin D levels ...

Courtesy - Go Skiathos FB page

With just two short months to go, until the first flight of the tourist season. Its easy to believe winter is over. Today it may be a little different, with a weather warning in place. Little summer may be over for a day or two ...


Severe Weather Outlook 
Valid from 03/03/2016 - 09:00 UTC (Thursday) till 04/03/2016 – 12:00 UTC (Friday)

Weather is changing finally in our parts. Strong thunderstorms will start affecting western Greece, from late morning. As the cold front passes through, scattered showers and thunderstorms will affect the ESE continental parts of Greece, parts of the Cyclades, the north and east Aegean, and the Dodecanese. Snow showers will occur from noon, first in the NW parts, then the Central, and by the end of the day on the Peloponnese. Some showers will affect also Crete. Rain is needed also there. 
Strengthening winds, especially during the phenomena around 8 Beaufort.
Keep an eye on the sky and stay safe!


Lets hope the weather stays fine for the barbecues, after all its tsiknopempti today - Charred thursday of carnival. The day you eat your last meat before orthodox fasting...

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

Proteus ferry...

The ANES Proteus will start its summer services on 21/04/16 ...

Source: http://www.anes.gr/

Operating on the routes, Volos-Skiathos-Glossa-Skopelos-Alonnissos, and Mantoudi (Evia) -Glossa-Skiathos-Skopelos-Alonnissos-Volos.

Just in time for the pasca rush, to the islands ...

Timetables yet to be published: http://www.anes.gr/

P.S. Good luck to SWMBO @fightforlife5 - Chemotherapy course no 21 today. #another #tough #week #ahead

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Kalo Mina - Μάρτιος ...

Good Month - Mártios - March is here ...

Pinch, punch, 1st of the month,

St Davids day, when thousands upon thousands of daffodils, and leeks will be sacrificed across the UK. Today the children go to school wearing something yellow.

'I wander'd lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o'er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host of golden daffodils,
Beside the lake, beneath the trees
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretch'd in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced, but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee: -
A poet could not but be gay
In such a jocund company!
I gazed - and gazed - but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought.

For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills
And dances with the daffodils' (William Wordsworth)

Its a bit windy outside, also something that happens if you eat too many leeks ...