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Author Topic: first timers  (Read 1541 times)

Offline karen waugh

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first timers
« on: May 12, 2018, 05:12:08 PM »
Hi all, our first stay in Plakias this June, we are staying in Tasomanolis Studios for thirteen nights, (our first night spent at the Sofia Hotel in Heraklion..late flight arrival), pick up our hire car and tootle off towards Plakias, any advice for first timers would be more than welcome.
 I like to plonk myself on a sunbed and read,( I'm a nurse and this fortnight is to completely recharge my batteries)  watching the world go by, shuffle to a taverna for lunch and a mooch around the shops etc  and OH likes to wander off on local (hour long) walks.

we intend to use the car on alternate days to get out and about to local villages and visit the Matala festival on saturday 23rd June (led zep and AC/DC tribute bands :) ) we have stayed in Crete many times although have so far not travelled to Plakias and around xx

my husband also likes to scuba and snorkel, are there good places around the bay for this ??? many thanks xxx

Offline JackieatUrbanAgenda

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Re: first timers
« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2018, 12:16:09 PM »
Hi......I think the simple answer is 'you're going to love it' ! It is perfect for relaxing on the beach or round the pool (loads of sunloungers), fantastic tavernas (some really excellent food and a great welcome), a few shops and loads of walks of all sorts of lengths and types. If you don't mind not having the loungers there are some amazing secluded beaches (some of which are clothes optional). There's nothing like lazing in a warm sea, looking up and watching an eagle flying above you.....or, better still, being woken up by the cry of an eagle hunting. It is that peaceful.....even though there is music and entertainment if you want it...a sort of all inclusive resort in one village.

The two closest villages Sellia and Mirthios, are well worth a visit...especially for dinner at sunset overlooking the bay and you have some lovely places to visit...including Preveli (both the palm beach and the monastery) and the local life museum at Asomatos. Along the coast, going west, are the villages of Rhodakino (split in two by an earthquake), the Imbros Gorge, the fortress at Frangokastello and, eventually, the port of Chora Sphakia (ferry to Samaria). There are some great tours on offer too if you decide you don't want to drive and the bus can get you in to Rethymnon. Matala has a great vibe to it too so enjoy that....oh, and it's always worth having a closer look at the two gorges that lead in to Plakias...some amazing landscapes.

There is a Dive School on the seafront at Plakias so it might be best to ask for advice on the best places to scuba but there are some excellent reef structures and if you take the road out of Plakias, there is the tiny hamlet of Souda which has a great beach and cave swimming (did that a few years ago).

I'm not going to recommend anywhere to eat or drink in particular as they are all excellent and it's just a matter of seeing what they offer. and what you fancy..... I really hope you enjoy it.

It will be my 31st visit when I get back there in September......so, like me, you'll be hooked hopefully ! Enjoy !

Offline Colin & Sandra

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Re: first timers
« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2018, 02:11:08 PM »
31 Times!!!

That's 62 trips through Bali.

 :D
« Last Edit: May 14, 2018, 02:13:42 PM by Colin & Sandra »

Offline JackieatUrbanAgenda

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Re: first timers
« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2018, 09:39:38 PM »
Yup and, boy, has that place changed !...in fact, back in 1987 when I first landed I don't think there was anywhere to stay in the village so we didn't stop there. It is 62 x+ though the gorge(s) though. You'd think I was used to it by now but it gets me every time !

Offline karen waugh

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Re: first timers
« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2018, 04:14:22 PM »
thanks Jackie and especially the advice re; the cave swimming for him xxx it all sounds perfect xx

Offline JackieatUrbanAgenda

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Re: first timers
« Reply #5 on: May 19, 2018, 09:41:56 PM »
I dont swim that well but even I managed the cave just off Souda beach. It is very easy to find......head out on the beach road in a westerly direction as far as you can go. Souda is the tiny hamlet just before the road turns to go up the valley. The 'reef that protects the whole of the bay is great for diving and snorkelling - my friend David found a Moray Eel..or, rather, it found him ! All teeth and the like...scared the bejabers out of him ! I really hope you enjoy Plakias. It is a very special place.

Offline Davos

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Re: first timers
« Reply #6 on: May 20, 2018, 12:23:09 AM »
Hi.
Don't try to over plan it. Plakias is, what it is. Just arrive, and (as the beatles said ) let it be.
You wil love it.
I could tell you lots, but in a nutshell, start making plans for you next visit .
Davos.
Smile you are in Plakias. :)

Offline Dave&Les

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Health Centre Plakias
« Reply #7 on: May 28, 2018, 06:52:26 AM »
We understand that a Health Centre is being set up in Plakias. Things are in place &  they are just waiting for the arrival of the Doctors.
It is in the building in the area of the old council offices which is opposite the Apollo which is further up from the 'Cozy back Yard'
If we get anymore information we will post it.


Offline Richard

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Re: first timers
« Reply #8 on: May 28, 2018, 10:37:03 AM »
I've just arrived home from my 20th trip to Plakias, so I'm a bit of a 'newbie' compared to some people on here. I was taken to Plakias by mistake in 1994, a mistake which turned out to be one of the happiest of my life. I did a quick calculation on the way home and it seems that I've spent almost 8 months in Plakias on hols.

I think you will love the place. For your OH, one or two hour-ish walks include :

- Souda Bay (follow the coast road to the west)
- the old mill and then on to Myrthios, a lovely village with an old outdoor laundry and great views across the bay
- Sellia, lovely village to the NW of Plakias 

Longer walks include :

- the old monastery above Souda Bay, whose renovation has come in fits and starts for about ten years but now being renovated fully, as far as I could see (although spoils the character a bit, to my mind at least)

- the chapel on the peak of the hill to the east of Plakias, above the village gf Lefkogeia; two ways there, either the road, which is not all that pleasant, or following the irrigation channel, which you can pick-up on the road to Myrthios (head east out of Plakias and turn left at the junction as you leave), the road back, or a longer coastal route.

Lance Chilton (sadly no longer with us) wrote an excellent pamphlet with a number of local walks - https://www.amazon.co.uk/Walks-Plakias-Southern-Crete-Chilton/dp/1905333080

Not sure that it's still available, but I've found it really helpful. Bought my copy at the supermarket on the seafront, next to 'Morpheas' apartments. I'd make a copy for you but I suspect that copyright means that I can't.

Imbros and Samaria gorges are stunning but these are full day activities. Kourtaliotiko Gorge is much closer - you will likely drive through it fifteen-twenty minutes before arriving in Plakias - and is very impressive. Despite having travelled through it dozens of times, I only actually stopped a couple of years ago and walked to the bottom, from the parking space by the road. I was able to see Lammergeirs, umpteen sorts of raptors and a whole load of pigeons that wisely stayed put in the trees at the base! I have seen a Golden Eagle in this gorge, truly magnificent.

If archaeology is your thing, then Agia Triada, Gortina and Festos are relatively close-by and well worth a visit.

And if you just fancy a quick snorkel then don't overlook the small beach beneath the Creta Mare hotel, a surprising variety of fish can be found around the three rocks at the western end, about fifty-hundred yards out.

As far as food goes, it's pretty good everywhere. I have my favourites, which you can find in my other posts. The only thing that I dislike, and a relatively recent thing, is the staff from two of the tavernas on the beach side of the seafront road that hassle you as you walk past in an attempt to draw you in. From experience of at least one of them, once you are in you almost cease to exist as far as customer service goes. I won't name them, but they are very close indeed to Gorgona, which is excellent, gives me and my wife a warm welcome each year we return, and doesn't need to try and drag customers in.  Only caveat her is beware of Gorgona's portion sizes! Some starters can easily pass as a main meal.

Anyway, ramble over, sorry for being so long-winded, and I hope you enjoy your stay in Plakias.
« Last Edit: May 28, 2018, 10:46:01 AM by Richard »

Offline Yvonne

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Re: first timers
« Reply #9 on: May 28, 2018, 12:14:44 PM »
What a good, comprehensive read. Fab information not just for newbies, but us oldies, too. We first found Plakias in 1992, and although we missed a few years, made it up by having twice yearly visits occasionally.

Offline Richard

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Re: first timers
« Reply #10 on: May 30, 2018, 09:41:45 PM »
Thank you Yvonne, you are kind - although I could ramble on for the rest of the week about Plakias, in text or verbally! So many good walks as well as the beaches,

Maybe some of us could consider updating things? With Plakias having gone down from four travel agents to one, for people travelling from the UK, I'd hate to see it forgotten. Not presuming to fill Lance's shoes, but perhaps something for more recent visitors?

Anyhow, just a thought, don't mean to be intrusive.

Richard

Offline karen waugh

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Re: first timers
« Reply #11 on: June 06, 2018, 10:11:16 PM »
Wow Richard, thank you so much, I have printed out your reply , sorry for taking so long in thanking you all but I have been studying non stop for the past two weeks !!!! I am so looking forward to our visit, it sounds perfect. will definitely pack the binoculars now xx he will be away hiking for hours !!!
Thanks again,
Karen xx
« Last Edit: June 06, 2018, 10:19:18 PM by karen waugh »

Offline karen waugh

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Re: first timers
« Reply #12 on: June 06, 2018, 10:13:31 PM »
Thanks Jackie, i think I could manage that, it sounds lovely !! I have previously been swimming in Makrigialos, Milatos, Panormos and Ligaria but they are all relatively sheltered xxx I'm just a big scaredy cat :) :)

Offline Richard

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Re: first timers
« Reply #13 on: June 16, 2018, 09:41:25 PM »
Karen, you are more than welcome - I love the place. I suppose this website supports the view that many others also do!