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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