Rising, as usual on this holiday, early in the morning we did our little bit of last minute packing and walked the two kilometres into Kalambaka from Kastraki. Arriving a bit early for our bus we had time to sit at a small café and have some tea and a bite of breakfast before getting on the first of four buses which would eventually see us arrive in Delphi in the afternoon.
Our first bus arrived on cue and saying our goodbyes to Kalambaka we set off across the flat, agricultural landscape of the Plain of Thessaly en-route to the town of Trikala and our first change of bus. We pulled into a bus station on the edge of town (the edge of nowhere really – take note Albania!) and had a few minutes to wait before bus number two took us on to the larger town of Lamia at the southern edge of the plain.
Waiting an hour or so we had time to eat and drink a tea or two before taking the next bus to the small hill town of Amfissa. This took us off the main routes again and into the mountains for more spectacular views of mainland Greece and its upland country.
Another fairly lengthy wait in the small, no-horse town of Amfissa saw us bored and tired and really just wanting the journey to be over. Finally the bus arrived and we were on the final leg of a long day’s trip. Taking a detour via the small coastal town of Itea we soon headed up again into the mountains where Delphi is perched above a valley full of beautiful, dark green olive trees and pulled up at a hotel on the far side of the village where we alighted tired, but glad to finally be here.
We went into the bus station, which is conveniently located in a tavern across the road from where we got off the bus, and purchased tickets for our journey the following day to Athens before getting directions to our hotel which was back along the main road.
We checked into the Hotel Aiolos and found our room to be very nice with a small balcony which gave us a view of the distant sea by the town of Itea we had just passed through.
Feeling a bit peckish we explored the main street through the village and popped into a restaurant just a couple of hundred metres along the road from our hotel. I ordered up a veal and onion stew while Mrs M decided to attempt the moussaka which she was determined to enjoy despite her experience in Kastraki. My stew was absolutely lovely and Mrs M finally had a moussaka she was more than happy with. We had a couple of drinks alongside this while we enjoyed the amazing views from the restaurant balcony.
Having picked up a couple of leaflets from the hotel we knew that the ruins of ancient Delphi closed fairly early in the evenings and we had decided to take a late afternoon bus to Athens, so we had time to explore there in the morning before travelling on. With that in mind we just decided to relax that evening and took a walk along past where the bus had dropped us off earlier. This was in the direction of the ruins so we knew where we would be going the next morning, and in the meantime, we could enjoy the fantastic views out over the valley and the mountains beyond.
Turning back into the village I felt a sudden inexplicable thirst coming on and we turned into one of the local tavernas which wasn’t as plush as most of them and this was no bad thing. It turned out to be the taverna favoured by the locals and prices here were about half what they were in the more touristy places further up the road. We enjoyed a couple of drinks here (Greek Mythos beer for me and a local wine for Mrs M) and sat on a terrace which was filled with flowers and enjoyed the view before grabbing some beers from a small supermarket and ending the night relaxing on our balcony.