There was an ad which fits very well my story here – “The Greeks Have Invented It!” Of course, I don’t mean the sea or the islands as such, or even the island of Crete itself, but the sea vacation – calm, slow, lazy and with good food. There, people don’t even swim at sea in order not to get tired; they rather walk inside with their sun hats and sun glasses, having arrived to the beach at some point between 11 and 12 AM after sleeping well and having a substantial breakfast.

These are actually my observations from general sea vacations in Greece, as the end of September on Crete Island does not offer too many encounters with Greeks on the beaches. We were densely packed in foreigners, including ourselves – couples or small groups of couples, only 20% of which were aged 20+; the rest were the so-called Third Age. I am pointing this out with the whole applause I am capable of; I can only hope to reach that Nirvana myself someday and walk my retired attire on various excursions instead of baby-sitting grand-children, so that their parents could go to excursions in my place.

That's what Greek sea looks like, at least at some points

In a typical island way, Crete has many beautiful beaches. The one on the first photo is the Small Falassarna, and thi sone here is the Elafonisi Lagoon. A very interesting place that I had not seen before – huge shallow basins of crystal water reaching maximum weist-height. Doesn’t invite for swimming at all, everyone is just wading around. And wen I say ‘everyone’, I mean big crowds of people. On the date of September 20th, we were accompanied in Elafonisi by some 700-800 people, at least half of whom had arrived by buses of 50 (I think there are daily trips to the lagoon from all points of the island). Good that the place is spacious or it would have been very unpleasant for visits. Many of our ‘colleagues’ did not even bathe but just walked around taking photos of themselves. Well, we decided to blend in –

An obligatiry element of sea vacations in Greece - the slefie on the beach

I insist to underline here how essential is the need of good planning and general serious approach to selfying. One should not act as an amateur like we did; the least s/he has to check first is if a sleeveless Italian in a manly posture has not placed himself in the shot. Whatever… The road to the lagoon from anywhere passes through a number of mountains and is quite curved and slow, so people have earned the right not to enter the water at all if they don’t want to (our neighbours at the beach didn’t even wet their feet, what a sea vacation!) or enter the photos of other people. Of course, being an island, Crete enjoys a lot of attention from winds and the weather changes really fast – you go to bed under an abundance of stars with the promise of sun for the next day, and you wake up at 34 m/sec of wind and waves of 3 meters.

The sea on an island can surprise you in hours!

What you do then, I will tell you later. But, being a professional tourist after all, I cannot but share some things about the sea vacation in Greece and the overall Greek service – tourist or other. Some very nice things! From our leaving the car at a parking lot in Thessaloniki Airport with quite a delay on our part, the instant transfer to the plane, the people from the local car rental company waiting for us at Chania Airport at 10.30 PM and driving us to the rented vehicle, the easy checking-in at our hotel around midnight – everything worked with a smile and without a problem!

My biggest complaint (and mind I am quite critical) on Crete was the need of passing 130 km for more than two and a half hours. But that was because of the already mentioned Third Age who were unable to travel at more than 60 km/h. What to do – may God give us to reach that age, I suppose we’ll be quite the same. About Greek cuisine, I believe I don’t have to write sonets; I will only show something:

Salad with toasts - anohter obligatory element of sea vacations in GreeceSeafood - another obligatory element of sea vacations in Greece