You really can't complain about the view of Pedi Harbor frrom our room.
There was something wonderfully chill and relaxing about the place; though I had a hard time falling asleep because it was so quiet.
And for some reason we were famished.....
And I do enjoy tomatoes and cucumbers with breakfast.
After breakfast we took a walk and sat in front of the general store watching folks going to church. As it got a bit hotter we headed back to the room, showered, checked out, and caught the bus back to Gialos. Somehow, time had passed quickly and we were getting a bit hungry. So we walked along the waterfront and alleyways looking for a place to eat.
Most looked like tourist traps and we weren't inspired by the looks of the food. We decided to head back to Taverna Trata, where we had a pretty good meal the day before. The gentleman running the front of house recognized us and was happy to see us back. No, we didn't order any Symi Shrimp this time, something I kind of regret, but we did have a decent meal anyway.
The Missus really enjoyed the garlicky eggplant salad the last time, so we started with that.
I decided to try some Taramasalata - Cod Roe Dip, looking quite pretty in pink. At least it didn't have too much food coloring.
This was a likable version. Not too fishy, slightly smokey flavor, more creamy that gritty, perhaps a bit on the salty side, but this was much better than many versions I've had.
This, while not the best, was still filling and tasty.
By this point we were joined by a local resident......
Like all of the tavernas in the area, Trata has a fish case, so we decided to get a grilled fish....
Nicely grilled, well seasoned, crisp skin.......
Taverna Trata Near the bottom of the Kali Strata steps Gialos, Greece
We still had a good amount of time before our ferry arrived, so we decided to head on over to the other side of the harbor, passing the clock tower which guards the harbor.
There's no denying just how picturesque Gialos Harbor is. Every shot is postcard material here.
Once past a couple of shops and bars, you start seeing a bit more of the residential side of the colorful harbor.
As we reached the other end of the harbor, the Missus noticed a church up on the hill. She decided to walk on up to check it out.
Me, well, I was feeling a bit hot and bothered so I decided to have a nice cup of coffee, check email, and I even got a post done.
And while the Missus got some pretty good photos from up on the hill.
I had a table at the waters edge, where the view wasn't too bad either......
Soon enough, the Missus returned, our boat arrived, and before you knew it, we were headed back to Rhodes. We enjoyed our time on Symi. It gave us just the short break we needed, a diversion, after which we were ready to continue on........
I think breaks like this during trips lasting multiple weeks are a must; at least for us.
It gets a bit hot in the afternoons on Symi. Folks fill their time by catching the water taxi, finding a beach, getting some sun, or taking a nice little nap like us.
Waking up to a view like this ain't too shabby.....
We especially needed a nap after the filling lunch we had earlier. After waking we just hung around the area, taking a seat in front of the tiny store on the waterfront, watching the locals return after work, socializing....... the pace is truly slow and laid back here.
So while the interior of the hotel seemed a but drab, with a certain amount of "geriatricness" to it, it was all balanced out by the rather sedate surroundings.
Earlier in the day, while taking our walk, we noticed this covered "pier". There were tables and chairs set-up making it look like a make-shift a fresco dining area.
We initially had thought of heading back to Gialos for dinner, but decided to walk on over to the pier, to find all the tables made up and a grill heated and ready to go. We thought this would make for a really nice dinner.
After all, there was no one else around except us, the staff, and most of all, the view.
There was a certain stillness, as if time stands still here on Pedi Beach, barely a whisper of a breeze.
The menu was full of Greek Isle standards, grilled seafood and kebabs. The cooked food, drinks, and other items came from the building across the street. The grilled food....from well, the grill of course.
We started with the eggplant, which was nicely seasoned, with a bit more umph than the usual.... the folks running the grill looked Turkish. I may be wrong, but considering the fact that Rhodes is about an hour ferry trip from Mamaris and Symi just a short ride from Rhodes.....
The one item I got excited about on the menu were the Symi Shrimp.
Even though I'd had almost two full plates to myself earlier in the day, I just wanted more. Simply seasoned with salt and pepper, these had the condensed shrimp flavor....think of the intense savoriness of dried shrimp, in a sweet, light, and crunchy form. These were so good.
The grilled octopus looked tough, but wasn't bad by any means.
We threw in the towel after this.....we'd had quite a meal for lunch and this filled us up.
Things were nicely finished by the complementary fruit plate.
By now, several of the tables were taken, which was our que to head back to the room.
The moon was rising over the mountains and we took our sweet time walking back to the room.
Earlier in the day I'd taken a photo of a sign on one of the buildings. Perhaps this used to be a bakery? I thought about the sign as we walked back to our room. Thinking about that little slogan on the drawing, I made up my own version of it; "life is my cake......you have to take a bite and savor the sweetness and richness of it."
Not bad for someone who doesn't have much of a sweet tooth, huh?
For our trip to Istanbul and Rhodes, I really wasn't sure what to do. So I started reading through things and the words, "the most beautiful harbor in the Greek Islands" popped out at me. The harbor is named Gialos and the Island Symi. Once the home to master ship builders.....the "Argo" the ship used by Jason and the Argonauts was supposedly built on Symi.
Now we could have easily just done a day trip....but I decided why not stay on this island with a population of 2500....and not even in the main city, but on the other side of the island....in a little fishing village named Pedi Beach? Which is how we took the ferry and arrived on the island of Symi with a boat load of day-trippers.
When they say that Gialos Harbor is the most beautiful in the Greek Islands, they aren't kidding....
The vivid colored buildings lining the mountains contrasts with the blue waters in the harbor to create a dramatic and romantic backdrop. The clock tower, named Roloi guards the harbor.
After disembarking the boat, we wandered a bit looking for the "bus" to take us to Pedi beach, eventually finding it near the South side of the harbor. We were off to Pedi Beach.....
The bus actually drives on the side of the harbor, right along the deep blue Mediterranean,which is a bit disconcerting as it looks like you'll be treading water at any moment. It then maneuvered it's way up then down the winding roads of mountain, some that seemed scarcely wide enough to hold the bus. At the end of the line you end up at Pedi Beach and if you're staying there, the Pedi Beach Hotel.
The Missus took a look around; all the occupants seemed to be older couples, many of which were tanning on the lounges in front of the hotel or couples with kids......asking me, "so, this is where we're staying huh?"
And the actual "beach" seemed to be a tiny spit of something...which wasn't quite sand about 10 yards long in front of the hotel. "So, this is the beach, huh?"
And yet; there was something quite idyllic about this place..... in spite of all the people there was a kind of quiet.
I'd gotten us a superior room, which had a wonderful view of the harbor. You had no choice but to decompress looking out from the deck.
We'd definitely get in a quiet night here, but that would have to wait, as we unloaded and the Missus decided we'd head back to Gialos for lunch.
We caught the bus back and had them drop us at the top of mountain. We'd walk down taking in the view of Gialos Harbor all the way.
I'd say this might be the most beautiful harbor in the Greek Isles, what do you think?
We wandered about peeking into the tavernas that dotted the harbor. Most were rather uninspiring....mostly expensive tourist fare.
For some reason, it was this little taverna a bit away from the water's edge near all the jewelry shops, that caught our attention. Named Taverna Trata (Trawler), maybe it was the little rough around the edges look of the place, perhaps it was the two tables of what looked like locals eating here. But something drew us to the place.
It did have the look of many of the other tourist type tavernas, with plates of prepped ready-to-go-in-a-minute seafood dishes.
But the place was just a bit more quiet and relaxed, so we decided to have lunch here....
This is Greece, right? So of course we started things off with some of the house wine...it was pretty warm so we went with the house white, dutifully delivered in the standard tin cup.
We started off with the house version of Eggplant Salad. Not bad, lots of garlic flavor, better than we expected. This seemed to revive us in a way.
The Missus is a big fan of Horta, the boiled wild greens.
This was nice, not over done and mushy, still a bit firm, lightly seasoned, quite good with a squeeze of lemon.
I was interested in how Mediterranean Urchin would taste. These were small, a very bright, almost orange color. Doused in olive oil, the flavor was more briney than I was used too....not quite as sweet as well. The texture was much more mushy....
Then came something both the Missus and I had heard about, Symi Shrimp.
These tiny shrimp are a local delicacy in Symi and now I know why. The shells are thin, but firm and really crisps up nicely. The shrimp have an amazing, almost condensed shrimp flavor and sweetness. Seasoned simply with salt and pepper, man, these were so good, you just pop them in your mouth and crunch away to your hearts content.
The Eggplant Imam, stuffed eggplant had nice seasoning.
The tanginess from the tomato paste, nice black pepper, onions adding a bit of crunch and sweet-pungency. Though the skin was really tough, the flavors were nice.
And for dessert???? Are you kidding me? Another plate of Symi Shrimp of course!
The tall, husky, fellow running the front of the house was a man of few words, but very nice.....he laughed when we ordered more Symi Shrimp, "very good....very good, huh?"
Very good indeed!
Taverna Trata Near the bottom of the Kali Strata steps Gialos, Greece
Mission completed, we headed back to Pedi Beach. It was time for a nap!
I hope you've enjoyed this series of posts. We're headed into the home stretch of our vacation, so this will be the last for a while.
From Tunisia, after a day layover, we headed to our next stop. The main attraction, other than the beaches is a fairly large walled city. The town itself really stirs the imagination. The terms Knights, Grand Master, and the location of one of the ancient wonders of the world really grabs the attention of a person who read about the Crusades and knights as a young boy.
To give things perspective. We're staying in a converted house that is over 700 years old!
While most of the folks I know talk in years, here they talk in centuries..
Of course we had to eat......
We also visited a village with an ancient acropolis towering over it. Very impressive..again it stirs the imagination. There was also some alternate transportation available for those interested....we actually felt sorry for the poor animals.....
We also visited a village with one of the most beautiful harbors I've ever seen......
This dish was a nice surprise for us.
We spent a night in a nearby village. The hotel seemed like a converted geriatric hospital. But I gotta say the view from our table during dinner was priceless.
So that's it for now. Next time you hear from me, I'll hopefully be home. Let me know if you enjoyed these posts and maybe I'll try to do them the next time we take a trip.