Our good friends Joe and RoJean were spending 15 months living in Florence and so we decided to visit them.  As avid wildlife photographers we knew we had to find birds to photograph while we were in the area.  After some research we found that the largest and arguably the most beautiful pelicans winter in Northern Greece and found a photo tour going there.  So our trip took shape:

  • Athens – visit the cradle of democracy and get over jet lag
  • Lake Kerkini – photograph the Dalmatian Pelicans
  • Florence – visit Joe and RoJean and a beautiful city
  • Naples – a place neither of us had been before
  • Rome – a must see in Italy and our taking off spot for our return home

We left on Friday the 13th so what could go wrong?

1) There was an accident on 101 in Marin City blocking 3 lanes our way.  But we got lucky and it cleared up soon after we arrived so we lost less than 10 minutes and got to the airport pretty much when expected.

2) The headlines read “Arctic weather warning causes dozens of flight cancellations from Heathrow”
but luckily our plane out of London wasn’t cancelled.  But it was delayed 2 hours leaving London and so our evening flight to London was delayed by 2 hours.  British Air was on the ball (yes it can happen, airlines occasionaly do things right) and we knew in this morning so we pushed back our airport arrival by 2 hours. And it reduced our 5 hour layover in London to 3 hours!

We spent the first two days of our trip in Athens. Athens was founded over 5000 years ago and is well known for its ruins that date back many thousands of years. And the city has built around the ruins so as you walk down the street you might pass a modern building then a thousand year ruin

  

While in Athens we visited the changing of the guard at their Parliament, maybe not as impressive at Buckingham Place, but good nevertheless

Next it off to Lake Kerkini in Northern Greece and pelican photography.

Map generated by the Great Circle Mapper – copyright © Karl L. Swartz.

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