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Friday, May 25, 2007

RETURN TO PARGA

MAY 24

This is my third visit to this pretty little town. Parga spills down the mountainside to a small bay flanked by coves and islets. On my previous trips here I visited the Nekromanteion (Oracle of the Dead) and made a couple of other side tours such as to Dodona (Olympias' home) Greece's oldest oracle. This time I wanted to return to Zalongo, site of another Greek tragedy. Unfortunately there were no tours available and it wasn't possible to reach by local transit.

Zalongo is the spot where the women and children of the mountain villages of Souli jumped to their death rather than be caputred by the Turks during the prelude to the Greek War of Independence. Their brave act of sacrifice is marked by a moment erected on the cliff-side by the Greek army.

Instead, Ingrid and I explored the Venetian castle that dominates the harbour of Parga, a remnant of Venice's 400 years of dominance over Greece in the the 1400's. I've been to the "Kastro" before but this time was delighted to find there had been extensive restorations made including the rebuilding of the army barracks which is used as a reception centre and cafe.
We enjoyed a light lunch and frappe there and took lots of photos as the views from the castle ramparts are stunning.

We've lucked out in Greece as far as expenses are concerned (after expensive Venezia). We stayed in the oldest hotel in Parga, Hotel Acropol, built in the 1800's and refurbished in 2001.
50 Euro a night (for two). And this morning before leaving stepped into the lovely old Church of the Ten Apostles next door, the oldest church in Parga. A fitting way to end our visit there.

Then it was off on the 10.45 bus to Lefkada Island.

NEXT: LEFKADA, Vassiliki -- the 3rd best wind surf centre in the world!

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