Often during my year of travel I found it very difficult to leave one place in order to discover another. A common dilemma of the traveler. The appeal of the ‘paradise found’ was so strong, filling my senses so completely that I could barely say goodbye. Even knowing another unknown and uniquely beautiful place was waiting to be discovered.
This is exactly how I felt during our ‘island hopping’ in the Cyclades. Each place, one so different than the next, became home in a matter of days, and I could imagine no other place so magical and idyllic. Until the next island.
Our adventure began in Mykonos, the island of hedonistic revelry. Or so it felt. Beginning in the early evening and ending perhaps at sunrise, this stylish island came to life. An endless array of restaurants, fashionable boutiques, bars and discos of Little Venice lining the Mediterranean, not to mention the hidden champagne bars. Time seemed to hold no relevance. Even the shops stayed open early into the morning, should you desire a little pre-dawn shopping spree. We managed to avoid the crowds and cruise ship contingent only during early afternoons spent happily lost in the maze of cobbled streets, while the sun seekers lined the beaches aptly titled ‘Paradise’.
I’m not a big fan of the ‘beach turned dance party’ concept and prefer to listen to the calm of the sea. A quick hitchhike or scooter ride from the town’s center and we found just this. I am privileged to say that I have walked the sands of many gorgeous beaches in my life. Agios Sostis is one of them.
Equally exhausted from nights of carousing and days spent beneath the formidable sun, we set sail for The Big Blue, the tranquil island of Amorgos. Here we found a home in the little port town of Aegiali. Hidden from the world. Mykonos hours away but long forgotten.
In this far away land we were joined by my friend from NYC, photographer Konstantino Hatzisarros, a native of Greece and adopted resident of Amorgos. I can well understand why.
Amorgos holds many treasures, the most impressive being the iconic monastery Moni Hozoviotissis, set in a cliff high above the sea. Within these holy walls lies a miraculous icon said to be found in the waters below, guarded by the few hospitable monks still in residence.
At the heart of Amorgos lies the old capital Hora. This sophisticated village positioned 400m above sea level, boasting old windmills, trendy bars, and a view.
Driving the length of the island revealed it’s wildnerness. The shadows of surrounding islands in the distance. An old ship wreck to provoke the imagination….the natural beauty of Amorgos is unique. Perhaps it’s the light. Impossible to describe and difficult to capture.
After nearly one week of living in what I can accurately describe as an untamed paradise with just the right amount of class, it was time to say goodbye. One last sunset until Santorini….