The ferry arrives around midnight in Kissamos on Crete. I stay in a hotel next to the port, as well as Dominik, a young cyclist from Germany. We happen to have the same rough goal for our journeys, and so we venture out together on the next day. The plan is to get the Paleochora, take a ferry from there to Hora Sfakion and then cycle on to Sitia, where ferries depart for Rhodes.

Ancient olive tree happy me On the camping

We cycle picturesque but busy tourist roads to Paleochora in the South West of the island. Ancient olive trees grow on the side of the road. We ride along rocky gorges and arrive already at noon. On a campground we meet Greek dropouts with guitars and Austrians that have been coming here for years. They invite us for BBQ. It's a long night with them and I feel like in heaven.

Next morning, the helmet won't fit on the head. So I stay, spend nights talking with the Greeks and days practising guitar and hiking nearby Canyons. A heavy storm is coming in. Dominik, who went on after the first night writes that the storm blew him off the road and he has been to th hospital.

a view from above the ferry that won't depart today

Miss Sunday plays songs to me that go deep under the skin. After two more days, I make another attempt to get away, but the ferry to Hora Sfakion is cancelled. So my plans to get to Sitia in time for the next ferry dissolve. Alkis, one of the Greek musicians I meet by chance that morning, advices me to go to Sougia - not for a week but for a month.

in the mountains between Paleochora and Sougia view from my room pigs bay

I play Sitting on the dock of a bay on the dock of Paleochora, and then climb the mountainous roads in the storm, arrive in Sougia and receive a call from the ferry company telling me that the ferry to Rhodos has been cancelled, and there might be no more ferries this year from Sitia. So I decide to forget all plans to get to the Promised Land and rent room in pension named Paradiso. I'm suddenly relieved, and I stay about two weeks, working in the morning, hiking, swimming and snorkeling in the afternoon. Other tourists in the pension have been coming here for years, know each other and happily tell me all the secrets and gossip about Sougia.

smart goat mountain roads

Then, one by one they return home. The tourist season is over on Crete, and most pensions and restaurants in Sougia close for the Winter. Kali kimonas says everyone - Enjoy the winter. Suddenly, there are ferries announced online from Sitia to Rhodes again. With one of the last ferries I get from Sougia to Hora Sfakion - ready for new adventures. I follow the southern coast roads, find myself on wonderful beaches with nice people. Sometimes, I hear the songs of the greek underground singers I learned about in restaurants. In the former Hippie village of Matala I actually meet a cave man who invites me to visit his place, or even to stay. Many of the places feel a promising invitation, now that the crowds are gone. Eventually I get to Sitia and find myself with wet eyes on the ferry to Rhodes. Crete disappears in a magic sunset. Kali kimonas.

Matala beautiful church

The first square in old city of Rhodes is full of young party people when I arrive there 5AM. After a sleepless night on the ferry I'm awe-struck by the spirit of the city. A traveler from Germany tells me it is Museum day today, and advices a simple accommodation right in the center. The history of Rhodes is amazing and breathes everywhere the narrow streets of cobblestone. 2000 year old greek mosaics and plastics intermingle with the giant city walls and other remains of mediveal times. After diner, I stumble into a bar with fantastic life music. So instead of going on to Turkey I decide to stay for a few days and kinda get around the island.

city walls and gate Grandmasters palace 2000 year old mosaics exhibited in the Grandmasters

On a small beach restaurant, I meet an old lady, an immigrant from Russia with Greek roots and her daughter that perfectly speaks English. She has to translate her mothers complaints to me, that her daughter is not married. And why am I not married anyway? It's funny. In Lindos I marvel once again on the picturesque greek village, the small bays and the ancient Acropolis. And in the mountains, I ask for a place to stay and accept an invitation to help picking olives for a few days.

Lindos and its Acropolis Olives Sunset in Rhodos

Instead of a ferry to Fethiye in Turkey, I decide to visit a third Greek island - tiny Kastelorizo, just a stone drop away from Kas in Turkey. The tiny island became somewhat famous with the movie "Mediterranean" that has been produced here, and maybe because of the beautiful Blue cave and stone graves from the Lycian culture. Since Kastelorizo is really close to Turkey, it is heavily armed. A warship of the Greek navy has to leave the narrow harbor every day the ferry comes in. There are many young man in trainers hanging out in the Cafes in the village - soldiers in the free time. I enjoy a hike and stay overnight. On the next day, I get to swim in the blue cave. A German real estate agent who has been living in Kas and Kastelorizo since years tells me some gossip about the island. After lunch, a small tourist boat brings me to Kas in Turkey.

Entering Kastelorizo by ferry View of Kastelorizo and the Turkey coast in the Blue cave

Hallo Welt