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Messages - Stuart & Hilary

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Holiday Companies / Re: Easyjet
« on: October 16, 2015, 06:04:58 PM »
October 22nd.

Holiday Companies / Re: Easyjet
« on: October 12, 2015, 10:56:08 AM »

As I understand flights 27th June to 4th Sept 2016 released mid Oct. Flights 5th Sept to 30 Oct released early Dec.

Interestingly we have already booked our flights with Ryanair for next October. We found easyjet release dates were far too late for us and our planning.


Holiday Companies / Easyjet
« on: September 10, 2015, 08:15:59 AM »
Easyjet spring flights released today.


Plakias / Re: Taking Currency for holiday
« on: April 29, 2015, 09:39:42 PM »
"But my advice to you is to be a bit more sceptical with what you read on the Internet."

I am sorry but I am not sure why you think I need to be more sceptical, or how you have come to that conclusion. There is a lot of information on the internet & in the national press, not to mention the regular updates on the world service. The advice from John seems pretty sensible especially as Greece is moving into unchartered waters. Hopefully the situation will become cleared as the summer moves on.

Plakias / Re: Taking Currency for holiday
« on: April 29, 2015, 08:05:50 PM »
"Only repeating what the Greek tourist board advises"

Thanks John  for the good advice. There is certainly plenty of information out there for people to read & judge. No way should we be looking to censor information. We were in Crete on Black Wednesday (1992) & extra cash would have been very helpful. Anyway we are off to Corfu this week and will be carrying more cash than usual.

Gossip / Re: Cheaper Holidays?
« on: March 04, 2015, 08:39:35 AM »
I am not aware of Olympic holidays but travelling out of Bristol means that our flights must be half the price that they were previously. With a choice of either Easy Jet or Ryanair our return flights come out at under £150 each. It is difficult now to see how they can get cheaper.


Gossip / Cheaper Holidays?
« on: March 03, 2015, 10:24:21 AM »
It looks as though Crete holidays should work out considerably cheaper this year with the exchange rate as it is. Just back from the Canary Islands and our credit card statement is showing one euro at 74p. It doesn’t seem that long ago that the euro was almost £1.


Gossip / The Cretan Lyre
« on: December 21, 2014, 08:59:51 AM »
Just a short video (5.20) which beautifully captures that special Cretan atmosphere.


Published on Dec 18, 2014
A cinematographic "work in progress" about "Holy Wood", the Cretan lyre and its legendary performer Vasilis Skoulas by Corinne Falagaris and Bengt Danneborn
Take a look at their facebooksite, www.facebook.com/VasilisSkoulasHolyWood?¬ref=hl
And "like" it.

Where to go / Re: The final organised evacuation from Crete 1943
« on: December 16, 2014, 10:25:30 AM »
Hello Richard,
We bought the booklet in Sougia in the supermarket by the beach. However in the book it says "For more information or to order copies of this booklet or the DVD of the 2013 commemoration events please contact Dr Ian Frazer <ian.Frazer@gmail.com> or John Irwin <johni@clear.net.nz>

Plakias / Re: Easyjet 2015
« on: December 07, 2014, 10:04:32 AM »
Having used Easyjet previously we have also already booked with Ryanair. We originally switched because the Ryanair flights are released some two months earlier than Easyjet. We now find Chania a much more comfortable airport to use (mainly because of size) and Easyjet return flights (Sept/Oct)would be £342 whereas Ryanair are £250.

Plakias / Re: Winter warmers
« on: December 01, 2014, 09:00:41 AM »
Like you Graham & Karen we put Crete & Plakias at the top of our list, with the addition of Sougia & Loutro. We hope to make Corfu again next year because it is very beautiful & there is much for us still to see.  Advantages with Corfu are the shorter flights & an easy transfer to probably most resorts. The Islands are very different and it is noticeable that Corfu has had a much longer Northern European influence. We also believe the peoples of the Islands are very different but I would find it difficult to say exactly how.

Plakias / Re: Winter warmers
« on: November 28, 2014, 08:47:42 AM »
"So, pot-luck, I suspect. That said, if wild-flowers and walking are your thing, then April is grand"

Very much the case. Although much further north we were in Corfu for the first two weeks of May this year. The first week was wet and cool albeit with some sunny periods (great for walking) but it was not until the second week that we enjoyed proper beach weather. Some tavernas open but most were opening up as we left. A plus for us was that the  resorts were much quieter than the summer, and were delight to walk around.


Gossip / Patrick Leigh Fermor
« on: November 27, 2014, 09:48:32 AM »
Dolores Payas was talking on the BBC radio 4 Midweek programme yesterday about her time with Patrick Leigh Fermor during his final years. Her book “Drink Time”

A few quotes from reviewers whilst I await my copy.
“Dolores Payás has written a delightful and moving account of colourful adventurer, Patrick Leigh Fermor, a snapshot account of his final years surrounded by his drinks, his guests, and above all, his books. This short book conveys a portrait of a man who became indomitable, proud and charming in old age, while retaining his other attributes. An original and witty study in nostalgia, mixed with personal fortitude, right up until the end”.
“I really enjoyed this memoir by Dolores Payás about her time spent with Paddy Fermor during the last two years of his life while translating some of his books into Spanish. She spent considerable time with him as a guest at his house in Kardamili, in southern Greece while they worked on points of translation and a close friendship developed. Yet it was over the dinner table and during the strict schedule of `drink time' (hence the title) that Payás gained some stunning insights into the workings of Fermor's inimitable mind, and his glorious and unique private world in Greece”.

Where to go / Re: Food For Thought
« on: November 17, 2014, 05:12:57 PM »
Many people on the forum have been travelling to Plakias & the south coast of Crete a lot longer than us,  but in the eighteen years of our visits we have seen many changes albeit slowly. Plakias has changed and has grown and will continue to do so. However on visits to other resorts the main problem, we understand , is the viability of the small taverna because of  the growth of the all inclusive holiday. This we are told impacts dramatically on the character and atmosphere of the smaller town.

Where to go / Food For Thought
« on: November 11, 2014, 11:17:49 AM »
Extracts from Yesterday's Daily Telegraph. By Oliver Smith

Are traditional Greek holidays under threat?
Greece plans to attract an additional 9 million tourists annually by 2021 - but what does that mean for the unspoiled island life that lures so many Britons?

The tourist board claimed too that early signs indicate 2015 could be another record year

A record 15.3 million holidaymakers visited Greece in the first eight months of the year, with arrivals from Britain rising 16 per cent, according to the country’s tourist board.
This was a 22 per cent increase on 2013, a year in which Greece had already improved significantly on the losses felt in 2012 following the Arab Spring, receiving a total of 17.9 million arrivals.
The tourist board claimed too that early signs indicate 2015 could be another record year.
And there’s no evidence that the country is resting on its laurels. The Association of Hellenic Tourism Enterprises recently said it expects at least 27 million to take a holiday in Greece each year by 2021, up from around 18 million in 2013.
Olga Kefalogianni, the Greek minister for tourism, suggested the country’s continuing popularity is down to the value for money it offers to both budget and high-end holidaymakers.

Licenses awarded for new accommodation have risen by up to 150 per cent, with an emphasis on luxury properties. There are also plans to increase the frequency of flights to smaller islands, and even - overambitious, perhaps - talk of a “gastro-taverna” culinary revolution.
Such plans are likely to raise fears that the unspoiled island life that attracts so many Britons to Greece is under threat. For many, it is rustic accommodation and simple cuisine that make the country so alluring.
These worries are unfounded, according to Ms Kefalogianni.
“This is a major consideration for us – our strategy is towards sustainability,” she said. “The natural environment and the culture should be maintained and preserved. This is what brings tourists to Greece.”
Instead, she wants to encourage holidaymakers to visit lesser-known parts of the country, and for Greece to be considered more of a year-round destination.
“We want to expand our offering to new parts of Greece, such as the mountainous area in the north – it’s not just about sea and sun,” she added. “There’s also the recent discovery of ancient artefacts at Amfipolis, which will attract new visitors to that region.”
Thessaloniki is being touted as an alternative city break destination (“a history spanning 2,300 years, a burgeoning food scene and a vibrant nightlife”), and base for exploring Amfipolis, the Halkidiki peninsula and Lake Kerkini, a haven for birdwatching and outdoor activities such as canoeing and riding.
The “beautiful, well preserved” region of Epirus, meanwhile, has also been earmarked. It is “one of the most exciting destinations for adventurous walkers and hikers,” says Ms Kefalogianni, and is bisected by the world’s deepest gorge.
And for those in search of a more recumbent holiday, the Pelion – between Athens and Thessaloniki; the Peloponnese – the southernmost part of mainland Greece; and the Small Cyclades – a sub-group of the Cyclades (which include Santorini and Mykonos), all of which are known for their beaches, are being targeted for growth.
Interest in Greece’s cultural attractions remains strong. Visits to museums leapt 20 per cent between January and June, compared with the same period last year, according to the tourist board. That included a 20 per cent rise in visits to the Acropolis Museum; 14 per cent to the National Archaeological Museum; and 95 per cent to Heraklion Archeological Museum. To further entice classical enthusiasts, there are plans to extend opening hours at dozens of museums and archaeological sites and develop smartphone apps to provide information to visitors.

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