Day 4 - There’s no such thing as ‘free’….!
We could hear the wind howling outside our room this morning but when we threw open the balcony doors we were greeted with blue skies and hey, not a cloud was in sight. To be fair it didn’t seem as windy as yesterday so we decided we were going to stick with our original plan, Plan A and make the most of the ‘free’ sun-beds at the hotels private beach. First things first though, breakfast. We managed to nab a table outside by the poolside and even though it was a bit blowy we didn’t think it would be too bad down on the beach.
Plan A also incorporated a frappe at the Ipanema cafe where we headed to after we’d packed our bags. Honestly sometimes it seems that our beach bags are heavier than our suitcases there’s so much ‘stuff’ in them. We lugged them down to Ipanema and ordered a frappe and enjoyed the heat of the sun. Ah, this is the life and what we’d been looking forward to since we arrived…..drinking a lovely frappe in a nice cafe where the seats are comfortable and the staff are friendly. We’re happy to report that the Ipanema cafe fulfils all that criteria.
We sauntered down to the beach but the closer we got the wind seemed to get worse and the temperature dropped significantly. We found our sun-beds on the ‘private beach’ and chatted to Nikos, the night barman who was not only on sun-bed duty but was there to provide a ‘drinks service’. When he stopped chatting he said ‘so that will be €6 per sun-bed’! Okay, so they’re not free sun-beds after all, but we do however get a free cold drink!! So once again us ‘savvy travellers’ had mis-interpreted the sign in reception that read ‘Tropical Sol private beach reserve your sunbed at reception’. Having paid the €12 and wanting to get our money’s worth we had no option but to stay on the beach and go into battle with and suffer the windy weather. We grappled with our towels, trying to make them stay in place on the beds but they seemed to have a mind of their own and were flapping madly out of control. Finally we made it onto our sun-beds, lay down and literally froze. We recited the mantra….’I am warm’, I am warm’ over and over again but the body was saying ‘I am freezing’ and ‘I have goosebumps all over my body’. After enduring some 90 minutes of pure hell on a sun-bed we were that cold we were shivering uncontrollably, our bodies were being battered by the wind and we needed the loo. We’d had enough and admitted defeat to the weather. We therefore opted for an early lunch and at midday we made our way to the Dana Taverna where the lovely waiters moved our table into a sunny spot where we sat and began to thaw out!
After lunch we regrouped to discuss the day thus far. We’d spent €12 on sun-beds and only spent 90 minutes on them so as we wanted ‘value for money’ we reluctantly opted to return to the beach and to once again do battle with the weather. Had it been a warm wind we could have tolerated this but it was a cold wind and after persevering for another hour we made the executive decision to leave the beach. We couldn’t battle with the wind anymore so collected our ‘free’ water from Nikos and headed off to the Ipanema cafe where we sat in the sun on a comfy chair out of the wind and enjoyed an Aperol spritz…….hey, what’s not to love.
Back at the hotel we decided to spend the last hour or two sunbathing around the pool as there was very little wind there so we laid down our towels and felt the sun on our bodies for what seemed like the first time that day. Gosh, what a difference a day makes. You see, it’s all about location, location, location!
We’d decided we were going to eat ‘meze’ this evening, you know, a bit of this and a bit of that and thought we’d give Taverna Nisiotiko a try. It’s always packed and we’ve seen people queuing to get in so we thought we’d find out what all the fuss was about. After our meal and observations we concluded that the taverna was a victim of its own success in that the food was lovely but the service was not the best. The waiters were far too busy, running here and there, everything felt frantic and it wasn’t the best service. When you compare it with Taverna Dana where the owners and staff are very attentive, they chat to you, make sure everything is ok, Dana wins hands down. Just sayin’
After supper we went for a stroll and came to the Hamam which is very close to Taverna Dana. Well, what a difference an evening makes. The fountains outside the Hamam were all lit up and the water was dancing to music, it was all rather lovely and colourful. We’re contemplating using the facilities at Hamam sometime over the next three days due to the weather forecast forecasting thundery weather!!! So, we need to be prepared and come up with a number of plans!
Having wandered almost to the top of the Main Street and back we decided to forgo our evening cocktails and instead have an early night. Having battled with the winds all day we were both feeling rather tired and felt a good nights sleep was in order. Yes, us party animals won’t be partying tonight, thats for sure!!