Conquering Greece – Day 4 : Igoumenitsa to Patra

  • Weather: Blistering hot sun
  • Departure: 11h00
  • Arrival: 19h30
  • Date: 03/08/15
  • Distance: 340km

Igoumenitsa to Patra

I woke up late, having gone to sleep late trying to work through the backlog of things I had to write. No issues, today was an easy day of riding along the coast. Igoumenitsa being a port city, loads of Italians where disembarking from the ferries to go on they vacations here in Greece so the roads were packed and being at sea level, hot. Not that great. I was passing resort towns after resort towns and growing steadily uncomfortable from the sweating under my coat and the rash between my legs.

Coastal road in Greece

My private beachEventually, I got away from the craze and entered a nice stretch of coastal tarmac with barely any vehicle in sight. I had passed several rocky beaches before it dawned on me that I should really stop for a swim. Not even 50 Kms north of me were forests of umbrellas and folding beach chairs and there I could have my own private slice of the coast. So I did, and for an hour I was alone basking in the water. A generous soul even had installed straw umbrellas and a garbage can, which I took 5 minutes to fill with all the thrash that had washed up on this nice little section of the Greek coastline. Its odd that no one seem to knew about this place but nevermind. While I was changing myself back in my riding equipment, a Greek truck driver showed up to refresh himself just like I had done. So he was in on the secret…  We exchanged a couple of words and I left.

The journey to Patra was uneventful: nothing worth mentioning. There was only one hostel in the city, which took me a while to find. My fears of it being full were completely unfounded, it was as vacant as a Greek business. Located in a villa that had served in the second world war as a German headquarters, the place had charm, but looked like it had not been renovated since so much so that I think it has earned the title of the most disgusting hostel I have ever slept in. At that price though, I could not complain. On my way out for a gyros, I met two French that were heading in opposite direction. Fearful that they were looking for that place and that they would end up in my down (in which all my stuff was spread), I tracked back to clean up a bit. Turns out the guy was just helping his friend get to the hostel. She had suffered from an overexposure to the sun while on the ferry from Italy and wanted a bed for the night. Afterwards, he was to rejoin with his group of friends to get drunk and then nap somewhere before catching an early train to Athens. He kindly offered me to meet up with them for drinks after my quest for food, which I did. We had very interesting conversations and I stayed longer than I originally wanted to and had to sacrifice some sleep.

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