Πέμπτη, 23 Οκτωβρίου 2014

Autumn in Crete

Plakias is a small fishing village on the Southwest of Crete when the summer going on until late October!!
Travel Greece, Visit Crete...

Greece: Visitor Arrivals Reach Record High In August

The number of foreign tourist arrivals to Greece in August this year reached 4.88 million people, rising by 25 percent compared to the same month in 2013, Bank of Greece data revealed on 22 October.Photo: Hellenic Society for the Protection of Nature
According to the data, the number of tourists visiting Greece from January to August 2014 surpassed 15.3 million people, an increase of 22.1 percent.
Of these visitors, some nine million tourists came from European Union countries (14.6 percent increase), while the remaining are arrivals from countries outside the EU-28 (33.1 percent increase).
During the first eight months of the year, Greece saw a major increase in arrivals from the United States (24.8 percent), France (20.7 percent) and the United Kingdom (15.6 percent).
The increase in tourist arrivals had beneficial effects on revenues, which grew by 11.1 percent compared to the same period of 2013 and amounted to 9.37 billion euros.
(source: Bank of Greece, GTP )

Τετάρτη, 22 Οκτωβρίου 2014

Lost treasures reclaimed from 2,000-year-old Antikythera shipwreck

After spending the last month at the historic wreck site, the <a href='http://www.whoi.edu/news-release/antikythera-finds' target='_blank'>Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute</a> (WHOI) announced that an international team of archaeologists had recovered new items from the Antikythera wreck. Pictured, Greek technical diver Alexandros Sotiriou discovers an intact "lagynos" ceramic table jug and a bronze rigging ring. The new items have indicated the wreck site is much bigger than previously believed, scattered across 300 meters of seafloor.
World's first computer found at wreck
In 1900, sponge divers from the Greek island of Symi anchored along the eastern coastline of the island while waiting for a ferocious storm to pass. What they would stumble upon would stun the world.
Underneath the crystalline waters, lay the incredible wreck undiscovered for thousands of years. And as the site was explored over the next year, they would uncover life-size bronze statues and remarkable artifacts. But it was the 1902 recovery of a clump of calcified stone with mysterious inscriptions that would push the wreck into archaeological lore.
The heavily corroded bronze fragments would turn out to be what has been described as the world's earliest known "computer," designed in the first century BC -- the Antikythera Mechanism. Built to track the astronomical calendar and lunar movements, later radiographic image analysis of the mechanism revealed 30 intricate gear wheels.WHOI diving safety officer Edward O'Brien "spacewalks" in the next-gen atmospheric "Exosuit," during the 2014 Return to Antikythera project, which ran from September 15 to October 7. The divers are planning to return to the Antikythera next year to continue excavating the site following a successful first season.
"We hate to speak of treasure but in this case, it's actually a treasure ship and there are just no two ways about it.
Brendan Foley, archaeologist from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute
Famed underwater explorer Jacques Cousteau visited the site in 1976 to film a documentary and returned from below the surface with treasures galore. Since then, the site had remained dormant under the aegis of the Hellenic Ministry of Culture for almost 40 years.
"The Antikythera shipwreck is maybe the most important, most famous shipwreck from antiquity," Brendan Foley, an archaeologist from WHOI and co-director of the expedition told CNN before the dive began in September. "We are hardcore scientists and archaeologists. We hate to speak of treasure but in this case, it's actually a treasure ship and there are just no two ways about it."
(continue here:cnn)

Lighthouses of Greece.

The Greek lighthouses network is considered the largest and densest.
The spread of Greek coast has a length of 15,000 km. and is equivalent to 6/10 the coast of Africa!!!

Greece Talks About Developing Special Interest Tourism On Crete...

“Tourism in Crete is a key area of wealth,” Greek Tourism Minister Olga Kefalogianni said while speaking at a conference in Heraklion, Crete.
The conference took place on 17 October and explored possibilities of developing special interest tourism types (agritourism, wine tourism and pilgrimage/religious tourism) to create a development strategy for South and inland Crete.Photo source: incrediblecrete.gr
“The biggest challenge is to balance development between the southern part of the island and the inland… But Crete can utilize the many unique elements and proceed towards a balanced development,” Mrs. Kefalogianni said.
The tourism minister underlined that all stakeholders must join forces to support tourism on Crete.
More into her speech, she spoke in regards to the initiatives of the Tourism Ministry for the further development of special interest tourism.
wine_northern GreeceMore specifically, Mrs. Kefalogianni highlighted amendments made to a bill for tourism that set the standards for the development of agritourism and wine tourism in Greece. The amendments defined agritourism-related activities and the types of businesses and accommodation units that can practice the alternative form of tourism and receive the special agritourism seal or wine tourism seal. “For the first time, minimum requirements for the activity of agritourism and wine tourism businesses were set,” she said.
On pilgrimage/religious tourism, she highlighted the cooperation protocols signed between the ministry and the Church of Greece that see to the promotion of Greece’s unique religious monuments to visitors.
Mrs. Kefalogianni added that the implementation of the national plan for tourism resulted to the industry developing into a “catalyst” for economic growth. In 2014, revenues and arrivals increased by 13.4 percent and 15.6 percent, respectively, according to data from the Bank of Greece.
Source: gtp

Sifis, the elusive Cretan Croc, resurfaces in new video.

Watch the new video that was released yesterday, showing the famous croc basking in the sunshine on the edge of the lake.

 Sifis, the elusive crocodile that has become something of an attraction since he was first spotted in July at the area of the Rivers’ Dam near Rethimno, Crete, continues to roam the Cretan countryside, successfully avoiding every single trap set to capture him.
Not even Olivier Behra, one of the world’s finest erpetologists, could capture Crete’s famous crocodile when he visited the Greek island in August, although he intends to return to Crete for a second attempt next week, as was revealed yesterday by local media.
However, despite his amazing talent in eluding his captors, Sifis didn’t manage to escape the scourge of all celebrities, the paparazzis with their cameras!
This is the new video that was released yesterday, showing the famous croc basking in the sunshine on the edge of the lake.

Mediterranean cooking: Yemista!!

Tomatoes and peppers stuffed with a mixture of rice, ground beef, herbs and chopped vegetables for extra flavor.

Serves: 6 Preparation time: 30m Baking time: 1h 50m Ready in: 2h 20m
Tomatoes and peppers stuffed with a mixture of rice, ground beef, herbs and chopped vegetables for extra flavor.
6 ripe tomatoes, medium
6 green peppers suitable for stuffing
2 onions, chopped
1 horn pepper, cubed
1 small zucchini, grated
250g. ground beef
1 carrot, grated
1½ cup long grain white rice
1 cup chopped parsley
4 tablespoons chopped mint
3 large potatoes, peeled, quartered
1 cup olive oil
5-6 tablespoons breadcrumbs
Salt and pepper
Preparation method
Step 1
Preheat oven to 180 ° C. Wash the tomatoes and slice the tops off, setting them aside. Using a spoon, scoop out the tomato flesh. Dice half the quantity and process the rest in a food processor until you have a chucky liquid.
Step 2
Cut the tops off the peppers and set aside. Carefully remove and discard the seeds. Place the peppers for 2 minutes in boiling water to soften them and drain well.
Step 3
Heat half the oil in a large deep skillet and sauté the onions along with the carrot, the pepper and the zucchini. Add the ground beef and, after mixing with the rest of the ingredients add the rice, the parsley, the mint, the salt and the pepper. Add the diced tomatoes, a little extra sugar and some more salt and pepper. Allow the stuffing to reach a boil and remove the skillet from heat.
Step 4
Place the tomatoes and peppers in a baking dish and sprinkle the inside with a little salt and a little sugar. Fill them with the stuffing you just prepared about 3/4 full and replace their “caps”.
Step 5
Salt and pepper the potatoes and place them between the tomatoes and peppers. Mix the pureed tomatoes with the remaining olive oil, salt, pepper and pour over the stuffed vegetables. Add water as necessary so that the fluid level reaches the two centimeters.
Step 6
Sprinkle the yemista with breadcrumbs, cover the dish with foil and bake in the preheated oven for 1½ hour, until the rice is cooked.
The uncover the dish and bake for a little longer, until the top is crisp.
Source: Olive magazine
Chef: Ioanna Stamoulou