I am fortunate that my husband loves off-road driving and often takes us on fun adventures. These are a few magnificent sights from mountain tracks.
We are members of INCO an international community organisation in East Crete, offering a range of clubs and activities throughout the year. In October 2019 a group of INCO members joined us for an off-road jaunt.
After meeting in Kritsa, we took the 16 km asphalt road up to Katharo Plateau pausing to view the theatre next to the ancient Kritsa/Katharo path. Used for an annual party in September, this area is near the road but unseen by most people.
Once on the dirt road of Katharo we turned towards the Lassithi Plateau. Before leaving Katharo we paused at the head of the Havgas Gorge. It was a good job we didn’t plan a refreshment stop here as the picnic tables were otherwise engaged.
After bumping along the dusty road we paused at the bend 300 m above Lassithi to take in the dramatic view.
Inquisitive goats came up close and here are my three favourites.
Half way down the track towards Lassithi we diverted to a remote place called Aloida to see a remarkable sculpture by Kritsa resident, Nigel Ratcliffe.
During the early days of the rebellion against Ottoman oppression this spot was the hideaway of Captain Kazanis. Nigel’s monument shows Captain Kazanis leading his men, including Beardless Manolis a female in disguise. This heroine of Kritsa is the subject of another wonderful sculpture by Nigel called, Kritsotopoula, meaning Girl of Kritsa sited 3 km from Kritsa.
In the photo below, my husband is sharing information from Nigel to explain the importance of this special place. Sadly, I didn’t know about this rebel haven when I wrote my first novel, Kritsotopoula, Girl of Kritsa and one my motivations for writing Rodanthe’s Gift was to describe this fabulous place. Here’s a link to my books.
Back on the asphalt road of Lassithi we piled into Skapanis taverna for drinks and their famous orange cake. This photo is from a different day, but it has blue sky!
Our next stop was the village of Mesa Lassithi to view the newest work by Nigel Ratcliffe.
Although this features a woodcarver called Marakis the monument honours the whole tradition of religious woodcarving between 1860 and till 2nd World War. How clever that Nigel has old Marakis carving his own monument.
Our trip ended in the village of Krasi where we enjoyed a delicious lunch before we went our separate ways. It was a fun day and we’re already planning more drives.
We welcome new members to INCO – with a wide programme including information sharing, quizzes, camera club, gardening club, bowling, ballet, opera, walking and now driving there is something for everyone. You can use the contact form below to ask for more details.
Finally, here’s a road winding south across the Thripties – do you want to drive it?