Greece

L. E. Travel Tip: Thalassino Ageri

Chania is a gorgeous and vibrant port city in Crete with a long and rich history dating back to the Byzantine era. There are plenty of options for dinner along the port, however most of them feel a bit touristy. For the real local experience, you need to head a bit east to a neighborhood called Tabakaria. That is where you will find Θαλασσινό Αγέρι, otherwise known as Thalassino Ageri, a unique and picturesque waterfront restaurant.

Upon arrival, you will wonder if you are in the right place. The street is dimly lit and most of the neighboring waterfront buildings are empty and in various states of decay (most were tanneries from the 19th century). The night I arrived, the restaurant was very busy and no one greeted me. Thus, it felt less like a restaurant more more like I was joining a large greek family reunion.

There's indoor seating, but the tables on the beach are a must. The restaurant basically fits tables where they can on the beach between the waterfront buildings and the sea. Small wave breaks crashed against the ancient rock formations just a few feet from my table as I took in the view. The restaurant and the surrounding area were lit up beautifully creating a very romantic setting. The service was fantastic and the fish was fresh and delicious. I can easily say this was one of the most unique settings I've ever experienced for dinner. Oh, you should expect some wild cats on the beach, but they leave you alone if you don't feed them.

This spot shouldn't be missed!

A picture of the beach from the restaurant's website:

 

The dimly lit street as you approach the restaurant.

Dining on the beach with the old tanneries in the background

L. E. Travel Tips: To Psaraki

Do you have plans to travel to Santorini? One of the best things I did last time I was there was to rent a motor scooter for the duration of my stay. It allowed me to visit and see more parts of the island and to get away from the crowded areas such as Fira, Thera, and Oia. I also felt closer and more exposed to the beautiful views and landscape. 

One of the girls who worked at my hotel recommended lunch at To Psaraki and time on the black sand beach of Vlychada, which is a short walk from the restaurant. This area is located in the southern most reaches of the island, about 30 minutes on a scooter from Fira. 

Fresh fish grilled at To Psaraki.

If you've traveled along the Mediterranean Sea, you know there is nothing better than fresh fish simply prepared and grilled. If you love this as much as I do, you will love To Psaraki. The restaurant has seating inside and outside the restaurant, as well as seating across the road on the cliff that overlooks the marina and the Aegean Sea. Stunning views and a lovely breeze if you are lucky.

The narrow area of seating on the cliff. This is the view east, though the view south is much better.

The food and the view are spectacular! You can pick the fish you want from their display unit and 20 minutes later you are eating it right off the grill. Simply outstanding! 

The beach at Vlychada comes highly recommended too as it is large and not as crowded as some of the other beaches on the island. The beach offers an organized section with lounge chairs and umbrellas for rent and plenty of space if you just want to throw down a blanket.