Fancy travelling to a place where ‘time’ doesn’t exist?
A place where the word ‘stress’ is non-existent?
Do you think I’m joking? Well, I’m not!
Remove your watch and … reset!
We’re off to IKARIA!
This island rings a bell, doesn’t it?
Well, remember the myth of Ikarus and his wings of wax?
He flew too near the sun, they melted and he fell into the sea – now known as the Ikarian Sea.
This is a rugged island with so much to explore; a week is not enough but that’s all we had and we tried to make the most of it.
I had always wanted to visit Ikaria – I had heard so much about the people and how laid back they are, etc.
Two summers ago, my husband and I decided to finally take that trip.
We had had a tough winter, working too hard and just got lost in all the craziness of living in the city with a million obligations and tight deadlines.
It was either Ikaria or the Asylum!
We decided on the former of course.
A WORD OF ADVICE!
Remove your watch the minute you arrive at this unique island; if you don’t I guarantee, you will be looking for the next boat out.
I always say: When in Rome – you do as the Romans!
Nobody’s in a hurry in Ikaria!
Time has no meaning whatsoever!
But how do they do it?
Well, nature plays a significant role!
The earth provides and the people gratefully accept the treasures of mother Nature.
Their cuisine is based on whatever grows on their island; and a blessed island this is no doubt.
Ikarians believe that, the earth offers mankind all which is necessary for their wellbeing.
If it grows – you can eat it!
Wild-grown mountain greens, herbs, vegetables, fruit, etc.
The sea bears a wealth of its own and fresh fish is a staple food in their diet.
Another factor which contributes to their good health and consequently their longevity is sleep.
Their afternoon siesta is a must; it ‘reboots’ the brain and heals the body.
After lunch, most stores close and everyone takes a much-needed nap.
Mind you, businesses only get round to opening much later in the day.
What’s the rush anyway?
Beaches to visit!
Ikaria has some of the most amazing beaches I have ever been to. The beautiful beach at Nas is without a doubt my personal favorite.
We had lunch at “Thea’s Inn” and I fell in love with the view. We asked if there was a vacancy and we were in luck.
We stayed there and went down to the beach every day before heading off to explore the other many treasures of the island.
We’d get up in the morning, have breakfast; fresh eggs and goat’s cheese with freshly baked bread.
We visited Seychelles beach near Manganitis – a fishing village.
It is a lovely fine-pebbled beach with crystal clear waster.
The color of the water is almost emerald green. We snorkeled and sunbathed till late.
Another lovely beach worth a visit was Faros beach; a more secluded type for those who want to avoid the crowds.
One morning at breakfast, we heard a couple talking about ‘Therma’ – a natural spa!
Despite it being quite a distance, we decided to go and experience the natural hot water spa.
The water was very warm, and it is supposed to have therapeutic qualities.
Many elderly people suffering from arthritis swear by it.
YOU DON’T WANT TO MISS THIS!
Between Armenistis and Evdilos, is a Monastery called, Theoktistis Monastery. The name means, “built by God”.
It was spectacular! Two massive rocks serve as the roof of the monastery.
The atmosphere around the monastery is unbelievably peaceful … divine! After our visit and prayer, we were filled with such peace … I cannot explain it in words; it was just … beyond this world!
We sat at the café nearby, ordered two cups of coffee and sat in silence taking in all the magic around us.
Enjoy hiking, biking, boulder climbing, cycling, diving and so much more. The terrain is perfect for all these activities.
IT’S UNIQUE – ALMOST UNWORLDLY!
Ikaria has something different to other islands we have visited. It has a unique rugged, character which brings you closer to what’s indeed more important in life.
You feel connected!
You feel free!
You feel whole!
At first, if you are not prepared, you might feel aggravated by the slow pace of the locals.
Once you realize that YOU are the imposter, and it is YOU who should conform to their ways … you will experience a sense of freedom like never before.
Ikaria is the island you will definitely want to visit over and over again … perhaps even want to stay there forever.
So, remember, leave your watch at home. I’d even go so far as to say … your phone as well.
Detach from your world for a week and reap the benefits of it.