Our last day on Santorini so we got up reasonably early, had breakfast and then a Memorial meeting. We checked out of the hotel, piling all our luggage into the hire car, when the hotel staff kindly offered us to leave the car in the car park beneath the building for the day.
This was great so we set off to the shopping strip near the cliff face. we wanted to browse for some prezzies as well as getting a beach towel we could share. Having completed that mission we returned to the car, unloaded some items and loaded others, then off in a slightly different direction up the hill a couple of blocks to the pickup point for our afternoon/evening boat trip.
We were picked up in a mini van and after several other pick ups we headed down to the port area - heck that road is scary!
Our boat trip was on a beautiful wooden sailing boat, everything polished to the point of gleaming. Our first point of call was at the old port where we picked up a few more customers then set off for Volcano island. Landing here Liz and I set off up the hill, a long trek that many of the boaters decided against due to the heat. It was a long hot climb but worth the view at the top. This island is made entirely of volcanic rock from the various eruptions that have taken place over thousands of years, the last being in 1950. There is black burnt rock everywhere without and hint of soil. The rocks move as you walk because it is nothing but rock
Sailing on we went to the hot springs on the small island across from Volcano. We dived off our boat into the cool waters of the bay and swam into the small inlet. To our surprise the water hardly got any warmer! Obviously the Greeks feel this is hot water coming from the volcano base down deep but it didn't really feel much warmer to us. Another boatload of people came swimming in to the inlet and suddenly a lot of Aussie voices were commenting on the water not being warm! It was amazing, all of a sudden we were amongst a group of Australians and we were all comparing notes on all sorts of things!
Anyway, we had a nice swim back to the boat, feeling somewhat invigorated from the swim and the freshness of the water.
It was getting late in the afternoon so the boat sailed below the village of Oia so dinner could be brought out. Amazingly this meal (traditional Greek again) was lovely with plenty of it.
Now it was getting close to sunset so we sailed out beyond the island heads and sat there as the sun slowly sank into the sea. We had previously noticed an Aussie who was travelling on his own so we had invited him to eat with us instead of on his own during dinner. Aged about 45, he is from Adelaide and recently single but a very nice guy to chat to. He stuck to us for the evening, obviously really enjoying the company and prattled on about his 8 week trip, where he had been and where he was going.
Returning to port the mini bus dropped us back where we started so we walked back to our car under the hotel. We had noticed earlier that there were toilets here which we used, at the same time realising there were showers here. Great! We grab some clothes and quickly washed and cleaned our hair etc. Unfortunately we only had our cheap beach towel to dry ourselves with which felt like paper so I really felt fully wet when getting dressed. Due to the heat we were dry within minutes and felt heaps better. Piling into the car we set of for a coffee down the Main Street as it was 11pm by now.
Then it was down that horrible road to the port, return the hire car and sit there until our 1.00am ferry arrived for Rhodes Island. As predicted by our car hirer, the ferry turned up about 1.20am but then had to unload trucks, cars and motorbikes as well as passengers. We went aboard, were allocated our room and put our gear in the room. Then we decided to walk outside to watch the loading - imagine our surprise to see we were already half a km from the wharf!!
As it was now about 1.30am we decided it was time to sleep, especially as we had to be up about 8.00am to have breakfast and be ready to leave the boat at 10.00am when it docks at Rhodes Island.