Notes from Thessaloniki

The Aristotelous Square in Thessaloniki is a fine place for shopping, sitting in cafés, strolling around, and taking photos.

The statue of Aristotle at Aristotelous Square – the bottom part of the sculpture was littered with some trash on Sunday morning, which shifted my photography focus a bit towards the heavens.

This was a good choice, don’t you think?

This Bedestens bazaar in Thessaloniki only caught my attention, when a tour guide stopped there with a group. This bazaar was right around the corner from our hotel, Superior One Boutique Hotel, and we ended up having a quick lunch right across from it, while the tour guide explained all the interesting features.

This open door takes you into a big fabric shop, in which I nosed around a bit. In former days, this was quite an important place (an Ottoman monument). More about its history on The Caravan.

Off topic, but worth mentioning, since I care about waste-reduction and recycling. Bottled water is very cheap in Thessaloniki at 50 cents a bottle. At one bakery, we even got a free bottle with our order.

In the summer, with temps ranging in the high 30°/low 40°, I imagine an awful high number of water bottles turning up as trash.

What happens to all these bottles..? I read up on it: FODSA, a public company, manages the waste of two million inhabitants living in the prefecture of Thessaloniki.

The roads and sidewalks in Thessaloniki were rather clean. But we still produce too much plastic.

Putting Up the Christmas Tree in Thessaloniki

On Friday, 23 November 2018, the city started putting up the Christmas tree in the Aristotelous Square.

What looked initially like a single lop-sided tree (with missing branches on one side) turned out to become a little collation of trees to make it into a 20-meter-high Christmas tree.

We noticed this on Sunday morning, when we took a final stroll through town. Several trees of different sizes were being put up and arranged to form this single giant.

And yes, Thessaloniki occasionally gets snow.

On a different note – orange trees are loaded with fruit right now and add much to a southern flair in 15°C weather in late November.

 

Dining Out in Thessaloniki

“The discovery of a new dish does more for human happiness than the discovery of a new star.” – Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin

In general, I’m not much of a big-meal eater, I prefer appetizers. And there are plenty of them on menus in Greece. This aubergine (at € 4,50) was filled with feta cheese and tomatoes.

Dipping fried zucchini into tzatziki was a very tasty treat.

My travel companion opted for bigger meals. With this one, in authentic Greek style, you had to peel the prawns yourself.

Eating out in Thessaloniki is a real treat: delicious, reasonably priced, and occasionally a feast for the eyes.

Aristotelous Square, Thessaloniki

 

Three November Days in Thessaloniki, Greece

In late November, I spent three days in Thessaloniki, having booked in at the Superior One Boutique Hotel. The Hotel is very modern (compared to its surroundings), has very spacious rooms and bathrooms, and is in a great location. Being the Black Friday weekend, it was a busy time of year. If you are sensitive to noise, then ask for a room not facing the street. I myself had no problems, but traffic was definitely noisy.

I took this photo from one of the two balconies of my room.

Ionos Dragoumi Street

We had arrived in the late afternoon, and walked to the sea shore to see the sun setting.

It was a fairly short walk (1.6km) from the hotel to the White Tower. When you get there, be prepared to get hassled by mobile phone and perfume vendors scouring for easy-to-spot tourists.

In late November, they still offer some short boat trips from the White Tower towards the sea port and back again. The boat tickets are € 3, and a beverage service is also offered on board.

The photo actually shows a sail boat on tour, which we only watched from a seaside café.

Most places had out-door heaters running in the evening (daytime temp was around 15°C) for the many people who still want to eat outside.

Then there is also the heat from within, when you order a glass of ouzo. 🙂

Most traditional taverns, which serve the best local food, are located – as usual – in the little side streets. Around the Aristotelous Square, you find mostly cafés, fusion food restaurants, and many stores.

Eating My Way Through Devon and Dorset

For our first evening in Exeter, we chose Harry’s Restaurant for dinner. Most of the dishes seemed very American (as in choice and size), such as the Hog & Mac (pulled pork sandwich) with cheese macaroni, cole slaw, and barbecue sauce. It was good, but it should be served only to very hungry werewolves. 🙂

Hog & Mac at Harry’s Restaurant, Exeter

We had to have fish and chips at least once, while in England. This mini order for £ 3,50 was just the right size at the Cobb Gate Fish Bar in Lyme Regis.

Mini fish & chips in Lyme Regis

My husband had an interesting dinner of fried potatoes with cubes of black pudding, mushrooms, and scallops at the Cobb Arms Restaurant in Lyme Regis. The serving was bigger in size, but only remembered half-way through dinner to take a photo of it…

Things to do for entertainment in a pub,  when you have plenty of coins in your wallet.

Sure fail for us – and success for charity.

Pub entertainment

We had a lovely light breakfast of poached eggs with salmon at our B&B Lyme Townhouse on Pound Street in Lyme Regis.

At Axminster Trainstation, we found this nice offer to the general public. Yes, the Cheese and Tomato Quiche was good!

Axminster Train Station

What do I like best about England? I like riding the trains, the food, and rummaging through charity shops.

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