The Israelis love Crete and Spinalonga ...! - Extensive tribute of a major newspaper to our island
Extensive tribute has the leading Israeli newspaper "Jerusalem Post" on Crete, with a dominant description and advertisement of Spinalonga and Agios Nikolaos. "Tourist groups aim to make Crete a new travel destination for Israelis," writes the journalist Sharon Udasin on last Sunday's newspaper, July 24, 2011 and in the sector "Trips", which traveled to Crete invited by the Israeli tourist travel agency Kavei Hofsha.
"Crete is only an hour flight from Ben Gurion Airport in Israel and an entire family can be transported to a lush island full of tourist resorts, hotels, sports facilities and swimming pools, all inclusive. With Greek buffet and activities for all ages, many of which are in sandy coves with sapphire waves and pristine beaches, "notes in her introduction the journalist. She continues:
"Crete, the largest of the Greek islands, may have the Greek flag, but it is entirely its own culture. It is the birthplace of one of the most ancient European civilizations, the Minoan, in Knossos, where the historic palace can still be browsed by one.
After successive changes in owners, by the Romans to the Byzantines, the Venetians and the Ottomans Crete finally gained independence and united with Greece. " The reporter commenting on the poor in recent years Israeli-Turkish relations writes that "amid tensions with the Turkish government, the tourism company Kavei Hofsha tries to steer the Israeli tourism from Turkey to Greek islands" citing the views of Israeli tourist agency.
"One of the most picturesque places to visit in Crete,is the island of Spinalonga, which even a native would avoid to visit it a 100 years ago. By ferry link from Elounda, the boat carries visitors to the beautiful island that the entire first half of the 20th century was an organized leper colony, with chairman, school, hospital, three Orthodox churches and cafes. The main church, a tour guide explains, is that of St. Panteleimon which most who have health problems continue to pray.
Because on the island there was no water, the people built a pipe system for the needs of residents. The lepers of Spinalonga were isolated from the rest of the healthy population of Crete, as the people of the opposite village of Plaka, just 900 feet away, were working during the day, but always disinfected before leaving the island. Meanwhile, many healthy babies born to parents lepers, according to our guide, who lacked immediately from their parents and placed in orphanages and leprosy is not transmitted by the mother's blood. Today a large part of the old infrastructure of the island remains untouched, and guests can explore this distinctive way of life that once flourished and many people were convicted.
After a day in Spinalonga, visitors can make a sea journey around the island of Kolokitha, enjoy a swim in the calm sea and a traditional Greek barbecue lunch."
Pretty close to Elounda, is the coastal town of 75000 inhabitants of Agios Nikolaos, which has a charming European atmosphere with the "bottomless" lake that actually has a depth of 84 m. From this a beautiful staircase in raising higher with wonderful views Bay of Mirabello. Alongside Lake City there are a multitude of restaurants and taverns, where the waiters will literally drive you to enjoy their cuisine "la Italiano" and if you are identified as Israelis, they will add a «Sababa» in crosstalk that follows. "
Then the reporter refers to other areas of Crete and finishes by writing the impression of the Israeli tour guide, that "what visitors can find on this island are cheerful and nice people like us in Israel.
To see the nature and to realize on the way back, that Israel is really a good place."