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Sunday, May 26, 2013

Travel - May 23 – Thursday – Katakolon, Greece Before the cruise John and I decided we would stay on board at Katakolon and do laundry.  When we arrived on board we discovered that there were no “do it yourself” laundry facilities and everything had to be done by the ships laundry.  That freed us up for the day.  We had seen Ancient Olympia and were not really interested in another long bus ride.  The small town of Katakolon beckoned.

Katakolo (GreekΚατάκολο) is a seaside town in the municipality of Pyrgos in western ElisGreece. It is situated on a headland overlooking the Ionian Sea and separating the Gulf of Kyparissia from the rest of the Ionian. It is 11 km west of downtown Pyrgos. The small village of Agios Andreas lies northwest of Katakolo. A railway connects Katakolo with Pyrgos and Olympia, but along with the rest of the rail network in the Peloponnese, services have been suspended since 2011 for economic reasons.

The port of Katakolo is a popular stop for cruise ships, offering an opportunity for passengers to visit the site of Ancient Olympia. Low hills with forests surround Katakolo. The lighthouse of Katakolo was built in 1865.

Going out on a trek always allows for new photos and the possibilities of finding interesting materials to work with.  Katakolon is a port town, in modern times prepared to entertain the tourists.  As we walked along the long break water wall we took many pictures of the port.  Once we arrived in the dock area it was all for the tourists.  Any type of transportation you might want was available, from horse drawn cart to modern tour bus and…taxies galore.  All indicating they would take you to see the sights, from Olympia to a tour of the local villas.

John and I elected to walk the streets of this small port tourist town.  It seemed as though most of the shops were selling jewelry.  The wares ranged from the standard Chinese made fair to the very expensive gold and silver jewelry shipped in from the Middle East and elsewhere.  It is sad that each place we visit has more of the same to offer and less unique to their special area.  So many things are made in China.

We did find one shop that delighted us.  On prior visits to this part of the world I remember seeing stores full of items made with olive wood.  We stumbled across one in Katakolon.  It is the only one we have seen.  While

talking to the shop owner she said that she and her husband decided they would open a shop that wasn’t based on Chinese goods.  We applauded them for their effort.  The shop had beautiful olive wood beads and I had a large bag of them before we left.  We found another gem amoungst the clutter.

If you are ever visiting Katakolon, I’d highly recommend that you stop by 
Aristoteles Olivewood workshop   If you are interested in taking a look at their shop you can find them on Facebook.

We are on our way to Corfu, Greece.  This is one of my favorite places.  I’m looking forward to a new adventure in Corfu.  Stay tuned…there is much more to come.

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