Naxos is known as the island of Ariadne. Legend has it that Theseus dumped her there after she helped him escape from the maze and the Minotaur. She didn’t pine for long as she took up with Dionysus and found happiness on this island. Well I can see why!
Getting off at the port in Naxos, we instantly realized how different this island would be from Mykonos. It is much larger yet because the cruise ships don’t stop here and the airport is basically non functional to major traffic, the island has retained a quiet, agricultural atmosphere.
Upon leaving the ferry, we walked a short distance to the main waterfront area and found another quad to rent. We enjoyed our last adventure so much, we figured this would allow us to get to the hotel easily and tour the island. Leon loaded up the luggage and in his excitement didn’t secure it very well. We almost lost his suitcase on a busy street in the town but I managed to hold on to it before he stopped and secured all again. Crisis averted! Ok, this has been the biggest crisis so far, so we aren’t too worried about these little things. Just part of the adventure.
We drove past the airport and a great windsurfing bay into our little town of Agia Anna (Santa Anna). Our hotel was 40 metres from the beach, with a secluded pool area. The studio was entirely done in white, marble floors, stucco bed and walls, with green shutters on the doors and windows. Very charming.
We took a short walk to the beach and checked out the many restaurants for our evening meal. Then we headed to the pool for a swim and later to our room for a pre-dinner nap. We made it to the restaurant in time for an amazing sunset and a great dinner on the beach, complete with a wedding reception at the neighbouring restaurant.
Sleep did not elude me that night, finally! We were up for breakfast early and out to visit the old town (Kastro), which was built by the Venetians in the 16th century. Next, we walked over to Apollo’s arch, which is the remnant of a temple that ended up in the sea after a major earthquake. Our last stop was the temple of Dionysus, an excavated site discovered as recently as 1982. It boggles my mind that something so old can have remained hidden for 3000 yrs!
Next stop was our hotel pool for a desperately needed swim and cold drink. I decided to wash my hair before dinner. I didn’t mention my hair. It was such a tangle of knots that I could have passed for Medusa. A good shampoo and conditioner remedied that!
Dinner was on the beach again, with 2 weddings happening that evening. We tried a different taverna and I had the most delicious grilled fish! Leon had a Greek salad but he wasn’t complaining. Another wonderful sunset to watch, a nice glass of wine… Ambience everywhere!