zante zakynthos 13: horrible sweet revenge, fab olive tree, p’s , meze , tsilivi restaurants and shops

after the day on tsilivi beach doing lots of sunbathing and swimming we watched the football this afternoon and had a good few pints , and a few points for the win  !

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afterwards went and looked for somewhere to eat, deciding to use olive garden or  sweet revenge and looking at the menus outside but found the aussie staff really nasty and arrogant at sweet revenge … good god what is their problem at this restaurant ? pfft like you need to see that attitude on holiday ! while outside olive garden all of a sudden sweet revenge started attacking two of their customers [male and female , maybe american, or italian ??] and kicking them on the floor outside their restaurant , about 5 or 6 staff beating a woman with about 20 people outside watching and a whole load of diners in all the local restaurants . disgusting this happens in tsilivi . there was no way we were going in that place . shocking , absolute bloody animals who work there and several tripadvisor reviews mention this too ! decided not to go in there and to donate our hard earned cash elsewhere where they give a damn . looked at contessa , p’s , meze

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but eventually settled for olive tree. had a really nice meal here , it was packed out every table , and the lady who owns it is a really nice and hard working ex pat english woman unlike the rats at sweet revenge. food was tasty but it really looks unspectacular in the pictures . but we had a particularly good meal here with fantastic service . highly recommended . food here : giant beans , and beef sofrito. think desert was baclava ?

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heres a walk round tsilivi showing area, how busy it is peak summer, shops and things you can buy for tourists, restaurants etc. raw footage … making sure to avoid sweet revenge and their beating up customers policy ! good god it was shocking


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zante zakynthos 12: a yard of taste vegan organic restaurant, base bar, gyroland, tsilivi beach

want cheap daytime snacks in tsilivi ? try GYROLAND on the main junction in the town centre of tsilivi. everythings fresh and the service is great. its open from midday and is a restaurant / snack bar / ben & jerry’s ice cream parlour / bar . they even have lots of posrts on various screens like most places in tsilivi .




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after spending the day on tsilivi beach we decided to go to our favourite restaurant again , cos you can get amazing home made organic vegan and vegetarian food , along with the meat dishes to keep us both happy ! ive already had pics in a couple of previous posts a few days back, but here is Η Αυλή των Γεύσεων (A Yard of Taste) once more . to find it head to the main town square next to the marina in zante town and its only 1 minute walk two streets back , ask someone ! easy the highest quality food we ate in zante . we had good food in most places we carefully chose , but this was by far the best .  gets busy too so consider booking expecially at the weekend ? cocktails fab also 😉  sorry some pics show half eaten or drunk things , was hard to resist diving in when they came haha !!

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after here it was a trip to the coolest bar in town,  base bar . brilliant cocktails served and playing proper underground house music with some good guests on . this was the best music in zakynthos along with barrage club where we saw culo de song at this amazing club . there is no edm or chart music here its legit underground electronic house . afterwards we enjoyed a walk round the old streets of the town centre where there are lots of cool finds along the hidden back streets .dsc02131 dsc02133



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zante zakynthos 11: lighthouse, damianou caves, andronio venetian wells, tsivouli emu park, sunset point taverna

after the jet boat lunacy yesterday it was off on adventures today on the bike . on our way we noticed a sign , tsivouli park with an emu picture . we got there , there was nobody around , no game plan , no staff , no signs … nothing except just a whole load of penned in birds with little water and all looking very hot and sad. the duck ponds where empty albeit for 2cm of green filthy water , birds stood under trees sheltering from the heat with open mouths and clearly over heating . its was 40* peak of season early august . sorry was not into this at all . not recommended as the birds looked particularly unhappy . we drove in on our moped , stayed 10 mins and left without seeing or speaking to anybody ?


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so we carried on towards keri lighthouse . like all the island , the roads are superb for driving / riding twisting wildly up over the mountains [see previous videos]

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you reach the main lighthouse area with fantastic views , a hippy ish snack bar with bales of hay seating . infact its an almost mexican looking ranch feel  , and a walled off closed gated light house . while we where there a mini tornado came out of nowhere and created a funnel shaped dust storm for about 1 minute that zipped around the car park . amazing [but didnt want my camera out with all that dust swirling round so no pics of that phenomenon just the tail end you can see where the guy is running and sheltering from it!]

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these are the views you get

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WIDESCREEN PANORAMIC SHOT >dsc01888 dsc01893 dsc01899 dsc01905 dsc01906

video link >

upon leaving we headed thru the island villages on our bike adventure towards a cave and some venetian wells i found on a map . we stopped part way in the hills with an insane view , and made a picnic spot on the foundations of an unbuilt house where we ate the rest of last nights indian with a few cold beers looking at turtle island where we swam yesterday . turtle island had over 30 nests and you often get around 100 eggs per nest .



ater lunch we arrived at the andronio venetian wells . around a dozen or more wells are sat right in the middle of nowhere between massive grape fields , some red some green . all the wells except one where locked, but one was left open uncapped for people to lower a bucket on hoist it up full of fresh water . we sat on the wall with some fresh grapes washed in the water and ate them in the scorching sun . except for a family who came and went in a few minutes nobody else was there. it certainly isnt  a frequented tourist spot with coaches et al . thankfully !

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after our grape stop we travelled a couple of miles to damianou caves .


they are on top of a large hill with great views . its a double cave with more nearby . you walk down some gravelly footpaths to the caves for about 5 minutes . with some good skills you can actually get up to the second cave which i did. the mrs stayed on ground level with our belongings ! its a bit tricky , a bit foolish , but you can get up to it with a touch of bravery and a good scramble .

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at the car parking area next to the caves is ‘sunset point’ . there is also a taverna here . its the taverna that has created the whole parking and seating area , and what a magnificent job they have done. with several large individual seated areas , a tree house [which you could stay overnight if a matress on the floor of the tree hut appeals – think backpacker no frills absolute back to basics – see inside on video], a car park , pathways, lighting and large restaurant. its a totally self sufficient place with its own chickens etc . the owner/chef/mama is a lovely hospitable woman who speaks no english but one whom you instantly bond with . we got lunch, then we tore into this insane apple pie she has just cooked mmmmmm, and then bought some olive oil off her to take home too . sadly she didnt have baclava desert that day . this is a must do at the end of your journey if you retrace our route . we almost didnt leave and wanted to stay in the hut for a laugh but pehaps another time. so we grabbed some beers and wine [that she also makes!] and sat off for a couple of hours with nobody else there peak season enjoying the views.

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widescreen panoramic shot > click >dsc02056 dsc02057 dsc02060 dsc02061 dsc02063 dsc02066 dsc02068 dsc02069 dsc02070 dsc02071

widescreen panoramic shot >dsc02073 dsc02075

map of route


and lastly my favourite picture , i applied a red filter in my cameras filter settings while the rest is black and white on the road to nowhere , quite striking .


this is a video from sunset point – where its so quiet, welcoming and the air is so fresh .

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zante zakynthos 10: dare devil jet boat laganas, taj mahal indian restaurant, laganas strip clubs bars at night

saw a new thing online for zante this year , a high powered racing boat with jet engines. having some of that please ! the mrs was a bit apprehensive about it , but a few beers and a few tequila shots beforehand on the beach bars watching the planes land over the bay and she was right up for it hahaaa


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it operates out from the far end of laganas bay and has strict speed limits in place as it is a turtle conservation area. however once out to see past turtle island the captain lets rip ! handbrake turns, 360 spins, hard banking, power braking , inside caves, visiting turtle island beach, zipping in the cave wall outcrops at high speed … what a blast ! the boat holds around 20 passengers and you book on the main road or via their facebook page . the scenery is spectacular along the cliff faces . must do … 20 euro and worth every ‘cent’ .

heres the full video of the trip which last about 1.5 hours .

after here we jumped into the beach bars for the late afternoon sun. beach was really skinny and packed with loungers, not my idea of a beach at all but the 18-30 gang love it here with a great fun vibe to the place for the afternoon .

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video link :

we walked around the shops and bars early evening , then went for a curry to make a change to greek twice a day ! taj mahal seemed to get good reviews and we enjoyed it too.

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heres the polarising laganas strip at night – peak season about midnight [clubs just starting up time!]

video link :

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zante zakynthos 9: black caves, earthquake ruins, alykes, varkarola, movida, portokali,

got the bike for another adventure today. started the day with another session on arguably the best beach in zante , alykes . crystal clear waters [isnt everywhere on the island?] and set with a spectacular moutain bacdrop, lovely sand , less crowds than the southern beaches , so nice …. and the water clarity – fantastico !

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VIDEO: come and hang out on alykes beach for 20 minutes …

after here we had a drive around alykes town fora  while , then headed inland several klm to black caves. youll find these signed on the main road on a T-junction.

after turning at the sign and crossing the main village x roads , the road kind of ends and goes to gravel mountain tracks and the ‘black caves trail’ goes cold. clearly there where missing signs somewhere [turned out it was a fork in the road part after main junction we should have taken a left but a sign was missing, we only discovered on the way back the point we should have gone left rather than right]. but that was ok, we came for an adventure and we got one. you need good bike skills to negotiate the potholes and gravel tracks for sure !! but wow, what a view/place we found amongst the old earthquake ruins a residential house it looked like , all on its own perched on the mountain side … the boxes in the pic below are bee hives . the ruins are the great earthquake ruins .

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after we left this area we decided to keep exploring round on the bike when all of a sudden we found another tiny black caves sign yehhhh ! a few mins more riding and we arrived . there was a small sit off area , incredible views , a drinks stall [nobody was there it was locked up?], a collection tin we put a few euro change in, and a rough mountain path to scramble up … [for the able bodied that is] . its pretty ‘off the radar’ and nobody else was there. we went around 6pm in august, a couple of hours before sunset when it was a bit cooler from the 37* heat. you can see for miles right down to alykes and alikanas bays etc where we had been for the day . stunning view and complete silence apart from a windchime . check out video below .

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video link : black caves zante >> click play >>

after viewing the caves and hanging out for a while we rolled back down the mountain paths passing more ruins . this crumbling old church was great . the village really is stuck in a timewarp .

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after rejoining the main road we stopped for cakes . they also have ice creams and chocolates all made on site , so fresh NOM NOM ! worth stopping .

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we got back to our hotel , showered and changed and headed out to zakynthos town area for a meal . first we went to argassi and a place called portokali orange. a cool n funky restaurant , but things for a vegan where in short supply . so we had a change of mind. it looked a really good place tho and you should try .

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we did a u-turn back to zante town and tried another tip we had off a local ‘varkarola’ on the promenade . made the right choice for sure ! the food here is AWESOME ! starters deserts and mains all A+++++ .  in the pictures you can see a skordalia starter , stuffed peppers and tomatos , chicken and bacon souvlaki , and for desert i cannot remember the name now but it was tasty [shame cream was from a can but apart from that mmm !] . opposite the restaurant a mega boat registered in jersey called virtue had most people taking pictures as we ate !


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we lft very happy with the 34 euro bill plus tip and headed up to the top of the hill to BOCHALI where there are late night cafes and bars . movida was the place we wanted to go to but discovered lots of other things up there too . it was pretty busy with a lot of cool hip people up on hte hill overlooking the town centre . probably the best cocktails we had all holiday where here , and the most expensive too. get what you pay for hey 😉

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end of a perfect day …. beaches , caves , adventure , dining , cocktails ……


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zante zakynthos 8: porto zorro / roma / gerakas beaches, tranakas bakery, wine & roses tsilivi

more adventures out on our 125 today . decided to do the south eastern peninsula today and visit a few places . boy was the whole place rammed down there , first week of august it was crazy busy ! firstly porto zorro , parked up , saw the beach and got off ! too much , it was heaving ! looked nice tho …

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so decided on elsewhere when we stumbled on a nice looking bakery called TRANAKAS . got a ham and cheese pie [lol] , tasty ! 2 euro i think it was . everything was so fresh from there

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we then made our way down to banana beach … again , rammed … so we left !


so we went to gerakas beach , thought it would be quiet being a turtle beach … wrong ! we pulled up and two huge car parks had hundreds of cars in and at breaking point , so we simply did a u-turn and left without stopping ! i had an idea of a junction i had spotted at a x-roads earlier might lead us somewhere a bit more off the radar . so we ended up following the road to PORTO ROMA . we ended up here for a few hours in a skinny strip of sand and very few people . a lovely peaceful afternoon in the end . shoreline had a lot of old washed up seaweed at one end , but it was clean and natural . quite a few boulders in the sea too around the shoreline , but rather that than sitting on top of other people 😉

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after here we needed some food so ended up in an unknown named restaurant where stuffed vine leaves where the highlight . lovely landscaped restaurant not near anywhere , but i guess the nearest places would be the bakery i mentioned earlier and the banana beach turnoff , right on a sharp bend .

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back in tsilivi that night we went for another visit to wine & roses . excellent again . stuffed peppers and tomatoes , and stifado i think it was that i had . mmm

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zante zakynthos 7: shipwreck beach, Monastery of St. George Kremnon, porto vromi, base bar, a yard of the taste

after a couple of days lounging on the beach it was time for the bike again , do some stuff ! shipwreck beach was the main event today , or rather the cliffs above shipwreck beach . its up on the north west coast of zante . its a pretty spectacular view hundreds of feet up on the cliffs . there is a viewing platform we qued for over half an hour to get on , but the best view was hanging over the gravelly cliff face a bit higher up [if youre brave / stupid enough … like me lol ] . considering its one of the most popular things to do in zante , they really could make this so much better , rather than a platform that only one couple at a time can realistically go on for a photo . maybe when they place the proposed ‘new’ wreck there they will update this as there isnt that much of the original boat left now its all rotted and rusted into the sea which cant be good either .



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check out the video > click :

after here we stopped at the monastery a bit further on , Monastery of St. George Kremnon 1508 . considering its age its well preserved . outside there are large bells on the tree plus a well , and a hot looking donkey . inside is their ‘safe space’ , a fortified tower inside the high compound walls .

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check out the video > click :

after leaving here it wasnt too much of a journey to visit another small cove on the west coast [similar to porto limnionas and port roxa i blogged a couple of posts back] . maybe a 20 minute or so drive perhaps . again , amazing driving roads over the mountains via the hairpins and onto the twisting west coast sheer cliff face roads [as in the first picture below] . this one is called PORTO VROMI . the cove is a tiny place , split into two parts as you will see in pics or video . there isnt a lot here , but the half we went to had an overpriced mobile canteen for light refreshments . fair play tho , they take all the tourists rubbish away . i suggest take your own food if you want more than chips or a can of lemonade . we swam way out along the peninsula and got a great view of both coves while keeping our eye out for boats !

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check out the video > click :

we were starving after the swimming and shipwreck/monastery rambling so decided to head over to the east coast to a place id seen on the internet and do some sun rays and food , passing random sights such as abaondoned cars , eathquake ruins , football pitches and beekeepers hives .

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its a place called SHOESTRING on the east coast , but when we got there about 4 oclock it was just finishing up , its a daytime place that closes early . looked good actually , but no veggie stuff so unusure we would have stayed anyway . maybe next time . cool place and great location .

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so we jumped back on the bike and went to a place alongside the river in alykes . its a local taverna we checked out the menu on previously , and was busy with locals too . food looked great so we took a ride there . its called PAVADOSIAKO . i had village sausage ,  mrs robster had stuffed vine leaves . painfully slow service and a lot of people were frustrated , however we both wished we had a chance to return for a proper evening meal as the food was tasty and everyones meals looked very nice at their tables . DSC01288 DSC01289 DSC01290 DSC01291 DSC01292 DSC01293 DSC01294 DSC01295 DSC01296 DSC01297 DSC01307 DSC01308 DSC01312

that evening we decided to go back to zakynthos town

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after trawling several restaurants and not finding what we wanted we decided to just go back to a yard of the taste . when somethings so good why not ! chicken for me , vegan pie for her ! see previous blog entry for the full menu . DELICIOUS , BEST IN ZANTE !!

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and after all that food it was a small walk off round the streeets past the lights , the curiosity shops , pomegranates and graffiti , before hitting BASE BAR , pretty much the coolest bar in zante town with international dj’s on like culoe de song , anane vega etc … proper house music .

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finally a recap of the route we took earlier today to the west coast


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zante zakynthos 6: tsilivi beach, a yard of taste restaurant zakynthos town, barrage club house music

spent the day on tsilivi beach , watched the football on the screens in tsilivi centre , then went into zakynthos town for our evening meal . you see some amazing boats in zante , particularly in zakynthos town . heres a couple from tsilivi beach including “fair lady” from southampton uk . turn up the music , 35* here on the beach in the shade . blistering !

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A YARD OF THE TASTE in zakynthos town – easily the best food we had on our holiday , ended up eating here 3 times . quality food , shabby chic interior , they cater for all tastes and vegan / vegetarian organic food is a speciality . try and get the woman owner to serve you vegan diners , she loves helping you choose . hands down … THE BEST . the only tiny thing was the waiters were really rushed at peak times could do with another member of staff , but hey this is knitpicking for faults now . 10/10 . must visit , easy to find 1 minute walk from the main square at the end of the harbour .

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heres their menu

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and here is the millefeuille with walnuts and pomegranates [i think it was] , while i had pork chops .

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nom nom !!!

after here it was pre drinks in town then off to BARRAGE CLUB in argassi . this is a world famous house music club . there are about 5 big clubs on the argassi waterfront . while all the tourists go to laganas people in the know head here , far away from the 18-30 shots of bomba .

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what a great club …. top dj’s and music , good crowd and venue , and an absolutely boomin sound system  . perfect !  #housemusic

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zante zakynthos 5: tsilivi beach, mango bar, mojito bar, barracuda bar, wine & roses restaurant, relax taverna

spent the day on tsilivi beach today . walked along the beach to the harbour end , hot work in midday sun! we planned to spend the day in hte next bay but the shoreline was skinny and the beach was rammed. u-turn !


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VIDEO – click play

after our adventures last couple of days we wanted to give back the bike and let loose with a few mythos today … as you do ! here are 3 cool n funky places located on the end of the beach , aimed more towards the younger end of tsilivi crowd instead of family , sort of beach bar / lounge / night club venues , taking turns once a week with late night parties . its not laganas by a long way , thank god !


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large image to view menu – clickDSC01036 DSC01038 DSC01039 DSC01040 DSC01042 DSC01043 DSC01044


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VIDEO – click play

BARRACUDA BAR , and they did a mean home made burger too !

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VIDEO – click play

and in the middle of the bay RELAX TAVERNA for light snacks

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that night we decided to visit a place called wine & roses . probably one of the best services we had . and food was fresh and home made . cannot fault this place at all , no wonder its packed out every night with such great owners and waiters . plenty of local vino and mythos ,  plus cocktails on the house too … bonus ! if at tsilivi 3 way central junction walk 100m up the hill its on the left by the kiddies micro quad track . i had kokkinisto , a baked dish with red meat and tomato base with cheese and rice sized pasta pieces . i think the mrs had vegan briam but cant remember for sure


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zante zakynthos 4: porto limnionas / roxa, pups thrown in rubbish, courser chinese, gyri village

adventures on a bike – if you like riding or driving , zantes roads are great ! quiet , a good road surface in most places , visually breathtaking with insane mountain hairpins dropping into coves , old eathquake ruins meets immacualte stone houses , blistering hot bays rising to cool and cloudy mountain tops high up in the clouds . so much to see and really green too as you travel thru endless woods .

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this is porto limnionas , a tiny blue inlet in the middle of the west coast . theres good ‘jump in points’ , freezing cold caves , aqua blue water …. and quite a few people peak season . with one small taverna at the top its a brilliant day trip . in the distance one person has a caravan perched on the cliff face under a canopy from this blistering sun …what a spot 😉


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taverna porto limnionas with its lanscaped cliff face and tasty food .


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nearby is an almost identical place called porto roxa . i preferred it here as it was less busy . i can see why limnionas is most popular however as there are more places to sit . neither place has a beach or anything , its basically sitting on concrete slabs or gravelly bits of hillside rock or anywhere you can . roxa is a bit more of a small working harbour, where limnionas is just an inlet . there are two places to eat at porto roxa . both places have car parking .

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when we where on our way back home we went back over the mountain pass at gyri . as we went thru it we saw a tiny red door with a sign on it [as in below video of village ride] and u-turned back to have a beer . its next to the church bell tower on a small square in the centre . we sat under the grape vines with the hosts kitten , the only people in ‘our’ rooftop sanctuary . try and find this place , lovely woman who runs it too , i think shes a secret hippie as this place is a garden cafe straight out of goa , but didnt speak much english so convo was limited sadly . she even brought a freshly plucked bunch of grapes to have with our beers . perfect moment .

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on the way home we freewheeled halfway down the mountain from gyri for over 5 miles until we noticed 2 puppies next to a rubbish dumpster in the middle of nowhere . we stopped as something didnt seem right . on closer inspection one had its front paw snagged under its chin thru its collar and cuoldnt really walk . we freed it up and hung out for 5 minutes trying to work out whos they could be as they both had collars . the wife went and opened a large box nearby and found a third pup that appeared dead . she burst into tears and walked away so i opeend the roped box and saw it wasnt dead yet we could save it . these pups , riddled with lice and fleas , had been thrown with the rubbish and left to die . i dont know why one hadnt managed to escape and two did . the one in the box didnt have a collar either , mysterious . the wife ran to a local house and asked for water [turned out owner later said to interpreter she thought it was for my mrs as she didnt speak english lol, thought she was nuts and desperate!!!]. we managed to get the pup to drink some off my palm and fingers down its mouth but it was so poorly it couldnt raise its head and its eyes were rolled into the back of its head , practically dead .

we had two fish we got from porto roxa we where taking home for the local cats and we boned them and fed them to the livlier two they ate the lot , starving ! it really was horrific to find animals like this first week of august in 35* heat . what kind of person does this ? occasional passing people started to stop as 2 tourists where sitting on the road and one woman openeed a big bag of dog biscuits and fed the two pups . we tried to find somewhere on our phones to take the sick one. a farmer on a tractor came by and said he would try a vet but after an hour he hadnt come back . by chance we got talking to a local and he gave us vague directions of an english woman who helped dogs . i left the wife and managed to locate her and she agreed for me to bring the sick one in . i raced back to get the wife and sick pup and we made it back to her [sue] , and while we returned again to get the other two she had given the sick one some tlc . within an hour she had it bathed , fed a honey solution and massged it . it actually had some life put back into it and was now alert , enough to open its eyes and focus on us . amazing . we left all three and she said she would try and find homes , result !

sue survives on donations and had about 40 dogs and 10 cats . she works non stop in the day then comes home to the crazy gang and works again all night . she pretty much works to support the animals so relies on donations . anyone who can help or raise support for her unselfish dedication im sure she would appreciate it . sadly since being home we found out a couple of days later the third pup died [gutted] , but the other two have made it , the white one has a home in zante , the brown one still hasnt been put up for adoption yet [so if youd like it give sue a message quick!] . its an easy process to get a dog to the uk so if anyone needs a zante bred dawg she [and the animals] would love your help 😉

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the boxed they where left roped up in ;-(DSC00858

rip , looked to be improving once we left him . disgusting .DSC00876

after eating greek non stop we fancied a chinese after our apparent result saving the pups for a few hours that evening , so went to courser in tsilivi that had good tripadvisor reviews .  was pretty good too . beef crispy noodles and vegan fried rice were the mains

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route :

porto limnionas



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