Travel: Longest Travel day EVER (III)

Finally emerging from Bari Castle, I was absolutely starving! I dragged my bedraggled and tired body back on route to the port hoping to grab some food on the way. Unfortunately, being a smaller coastal town, there weren’t a lot of options. I didn’t really have time for a sit-down, and the one food truck I passed didn’t have anything available! (Or simply didn’t understand my pointing or limited and slaughtering of the Italian language).

As a result, I finally make it to the port! (and consequently purchase my sustenance on board)

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The important thing to note is that the journey from Bari to Patras lasts for a minimum of 18 hours. The basic ferry ticket does not include a bed or an official seat. There’s some assigned seating in the form of small auditorium, but the rest is a lounge or public space. As a poor, traveling, recently graduate student, I opted for the base charge that went with my EuroRail pass. Therefore, I ended up sleeping on one of the booth seats that you often see in diners. Not exactly the most comfortable way to pass the night, especially if you are carrying all your earthly possessions in a backpack.

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Fortunately, I passed the time with some avid reading of my Kindle, some book-keeping for my expenses in my beloved Moleskine, and the uploading of all my media onto my Macbook Air. When it came time to pass out, I used my carabiners to strap the loops of my backpack to my belt-loops (This way I didn’t have to sleep on top of a lumpy bag, or cuddle it on my stomach. (Carabiners are my best friend).

18 crawling hours later, we dock in Patras Greece, exiting the ferry doors to the smell of the sea and fresh sunshine. Finding the bus-stop required to take me to town, I met up with some backpackers, a few traveling solo, and a few with friends.  1 hour later, we arrived at the main bus terminal. From there, it was either a 30 min walk to the train station (with questionable service) or tickets on a bus for about $25 Euro. We just went for it. (At this point we were waaaay too exhausted to even consider the alternative option).

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Starving, we used the time we had to venture up the street for food. And I got my first official taste of grecian food in the country of Greece at a placed called Snoopy’s!

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Granted it was a Gyro, which is actually pronounce yero, but for about $3 Euro, I got two Gyro’s and they were absolutely fantastic!

A 4-hour bus ride later, we reached the outskirts of Athens. (We meandered about confused for awhile until an english-species grecian helped us out).

The ride into the city center took us about 45 mins. Getting off, we had to take a bus in the opposite direction because the bus driver failed to notify us of our stop.

So let’s sum up my estimated travel time from Rome to Greece.

  • 3-4 hours train
  • 18 hour ferry
  • 1 hour bus
  • 4 hours bus
  • 45 min bus

Equals, it took me MORE than a FULL day to successfully physically relocate my body from the peninsula of Italy to the Peninsula of Greece. Whew!

 

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