Tuesday 17th August 2021
Mostly Business as Usual
Part of the arrangement I’d made with Hotel Sonia that enabled me to stay here until I [hopefully – more on this below] leave Kos on Saturday involved changing rooms a couple of times to fit around their existing bookings. Though it was a bit of a hassle packing my luggage, I didn’t really mind and it was definitely preferable to finding another hotel!
After breakfast, I got my bags ready to switch from room 12 (a small room just off the reception area) to room 14. This turned out to be a much larger, though perhaps slightly less modern, suite with a small dining area and a much larger bedroom. It was tucked around the back of the hotel, past the veranda where I’ve been having breakfast each day, in an area that I had no idea existed!
I was expecting to leave my bags in my current room and for housekeeping to move them later in the day, but it turned out that the previous occupants of room 14 had already left, so I could move my luggage myself. The room needed cleaning though so I still had to vacate the room for a while.
Gym, Swim, Eat, Repeat
Aside from switching rooms, the rest of the day was much the same as the routine I described in this post: gym, swim, lunch at Sunburnt Arms, then more swimming and sunbathing. I returned to the hotel mid-afternoon, pleased to find that the new room had been cleaned so I was able to get in, take a shower and chill out until it was time to get ready for dinner.
Finally Sorting My Next Island!
It had been a few days since I last checked for availability of accommodation on Amorgos, but this time I got lucky and managed to reserve a room for 1 night in Aegali for the coming Saturday (21st). This was the key to unlocking my departure from Kos as the ferry only runs once a week and Amorgos has proved to be very popular in peak season.
The booking wasn’t ideal though, as the ferry I planned to take goes to the other port on Amorgos – Katapola – so I would have to take a bus across the island to reach my hotel. It wasn’t a big deal though: I’ve visited Amorgos before and had confirmed online that a bus was running to coincide with the ferry’s arrival.
From Amorgos, my plan was to stay just one night – like I said, I’ve been before and didn’t really have anything I wanted to do on the island – then hop over to Naxos for the next several nights. Originally, I had intended to visit Dounoussa, Schinousa and Iraklia, but as they are all tiny islands I was again having difficulty securing accommodation to fit in with possible ferry routes. Naxos is one of my favourite Greek islands, though, so I was glad at the opportunity to visit it again.
Neratzia Castle (or not) and Getting My Ferry Ticket
With accommodation on Amorgos booked, I wanted to ensure I had a ferry ticket sorted so I could rest easy knowing my onward travel plans were taken care of. As the ticket office is towards the eastern end of the marina, I decided to try visiting Neratzia Castle before getting the ticket. However, it turns out that not only does entry close at 3:30 pm, it’s also closed all day on Tuesday! So I ended up just getting the ferry ticket and made a note to visit the castle tomorrow instead.
At the ticket office, I was told that I would need to pay for a Covid-19 Antigen test at a pharmacy (as I’m not fully vaccinated), despite this contradicting the information I’d seen online – ferry journeys between the same ‘regional unit’ are supposed to be self-certifiable, and since Kos and Amorgos are both in the ‘South Aegean’ unit I thought I wouldn’t need to pay. Wanting to be cautious though, I decided I would pay for a test and made a note to book this for the Friday before I travel.
A New Direction for Dinner
As I promised myself yesterday that I would find a new restaurant to try this evening, I spent a bit of time in my room looking on Google Maps and TripAdvisor to get some ideas on where to go. It turns out there is a popular part of Kos Town not far south-east of the hotel, known as Kos Old Town.
Kos Old Town is an area of narrow streets lined with shops, cafes and tavernas. I must’ve walked past it on my way to and from the bus station, but never really noticed it before! According to TripAdvisor, there were plenty of good tavernas in the area, so rather than heading to a specific one I decided to take a stroll around and see which restaurant had the nicest menu.
This turned out to be a taverna called Ambrosia, where I had a great meal: feta cheese saganaki coated in honey to start, followed by a very nice moussaka (still not quite the best, but good enough) and I even treated myself to a delicious chocolate mousse for dessert! I also pushed the boat out on drinks, having a glass of red and a glass of white wine (they didn’t serve carafes) so it ended up being one of the more expensive meals of my trip at just under €30, but still pretty reasonable given what I’d ordered.