Matt's Santorini Scrapbook Page 2

Joerg owns Thirak-Tours and takes people around the island to see things they won't find in the guidebooks. He was an actor-singer-dancer in Germany who gave it up to live in Santorini. Besides the Forum and the sea turtle he also showed us some of the things on this page.

This is the old tomato processing plant on the beach at Vlichada (my favorite beach by the way). It is now closed. The island had a cherry-tomato convention this year that was a big success and hopes to have one every year so come on down and bring the kids.

Artspace in the small town of Exogonia is a former winery and tomato processing plant that has been turned into a gallery by Antonis Argiros whose family has owned it since the mid-nineteenth century. Probably the most interesting setting for a gallery in Greece. This room was formerly a giant cystern. The art was not bad either.

Antonis still makes wine and at the end of the tour he gives free samples and if you like you can buy a bottle which he fills from the wooden barrels and wraps so it can withstand the trip home. Ours didn't last that long. We drank it the next day. Take the Art Space Tour

You would not expect to find an ostrich on a Greek island but there are two in the village of Emborion on the road to Perissa. They share a pen with a bunch of chickens.

Of course it is great to have ostriches on the island but the best part of Santorini is the volcano and it seems that everywhere you go there is a place to stop and see an amazing view. This is taken from Akrotiri looking towards Thira. This is why a car is recommended too.

Besides picking up guests at the port and the airport and playing bouzouki at night, George Papalexis also makes beautiful worry-beads and sells them in a small shop in the Villa Mathios. He gave me a set and even gave me a lesson but I have not gotten very good even though I worry all the time.

Thira was full of fancy cafes and restaurants, expensive jewelry stores and tourist shops. But it also had the Akrotiri museum which was pretty interesting and a great view from any of the cafes. But the most authentically Greek part of the town was this guy who sells sponges on the street. His sign says "These sponge I dive myself from 50 meters.and deeper all over the Mediterranean. Before you buys a sponge compare my quality and price". And when you think about it what could be a better gift to bring back from Greece?

They have a saying in America that you can tell how good a restaurant is by the bathrooms. If they are clean that means the kitchen is clean and they take care when they make the food. In Greece my rule of thumb is the sadziki. If it has lots of garlic then chances are there is a good cook in the kitchen who makes food the way it should taste and not how he thinks the tourists want it. The Limanaki in Vlichada won the sadziki award.

It is hard to get an idea from photos just how spectacular the caldera is. But if you have something to put it into perspective like these cruiseships you can get some idea of the height of the cliffs that the town of Thira sits on.


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