Greece by car - what to photograph and film availability

Discussion in 'Travel' started by bozovic, Jun 14, 2003.

  1. Hello everybody<br><br>
    In a month or so I'll be leaving to Greece. The journey is by car and
    I'll be situated around Nafplio, Peloponees (just south to Athens).
    <br>Does anybody know if there is something special to see and
    photograph except the usual things mentioned in Greece-Guides? No
    destination is too far so any recommendations are welcome!<br><br>
    Second question: What film would you recommend? I usually shoot Provia
    100F but I'm unaware of the situation in Greece - is it available
    everywhere or not? Should I buy tons of film and carry it with me or
    can I buy Provia also in Greece?<br><br>
    I made the mistake and shoot Astia in southern France and nobody
    seemed to have it. Then again, I made the mistake and used Provia in
    Corsica where everybody seemed to have Sensia or Astia but no Provia.
    Does something like this apply to Greece too?<br><br><br>
    Thank you in advance.<br>
    M;los
     
  2. As for film, in big cities you should be able to find at least one or two photo equipment shops with Velvia or Provia. You should also be able to find Sensia, even in smaller shops. I would guess that you should be able to find this kind of film in Nafplio, but it's better to stock up a bit before going there. On your way, you'll either pass through Athens or Patra (depending on your route, which by your name I assume is probably down from former Yugoslavia to Epirus and through Patra) both of which are good places to look for a photo specialty shop.

    Nafplio is an interesting place with a lot of photo opportunities around, especially if you have a car. I can give you some ideas, even though none of them is entirely original:

    - Epidavros, the ancient theatre. There's a festival in the summer with ancient tragedy being played, so one possibility could be photos from the play. For the day, look for the excellent scenery.

    - Ancient Olympia. Beyond the ancient site of the Olympic games, it is a beautiful region altogether.

    - Arkadia, the central mountain region of the Peloponese, has some excellent landscapes and well-preserved villages (not the ones that have been made to look picturesque, the ones where you can actually smell the goat-*X&$#**X&$#**X&$#**X&$#* and feel how a village was decades ago)

    - Dimitsana (small town in Arkadia, close to Tripoli, the capital) is magnificently placed literally hanging from a huge rock in the middle of a green valley. It's a developed little town, but looks great from a distance and has interesting thing close by (see below)

    - Further from Dimitsana there are many villages and nature on the higlands on a mountain road that eventually leads to Olympia. You won't regret this road trip. Tripotamia is a particular spot where three rivers meet in a big valley on the highlands... the surrounding region is very nice.

    - On the same area there's the temple of Epikoureios Apollon. The mystery about this thing is that it has been observed to move slightly (rotating around its axis) over the years. It's been digged up at the moment to figure out whether it's some sort of mechanism or geological phenomenon. The area is spectacular.

    - Mystras and Mani are both unique places with old castles and monasteries. Any guide should have plenty of information about them. Above Mystras, the mountain of Taygetos has some great trekking paths with good views and pleasant nature.

    - Monemvasia is also a worthwhile place - a scenic, fortified sea-side castle city. There's plenty of stuff to photograph in its narrow cobblestone streets, if you can keep your frames clean of the hundreds of tourists that crowd them.

    Tell us what kind of photography you're after and I might be able to give better, more specific, suggestions.

    A final note: In selecting film and filters, keep in mind that you're up to some seriously bright sun here in Greece. The sky and the sea have excellent blues, but you will need a graduated neutral density, and/or a polarizer to keep them from whitewashing the frame.
     
  3. Thanks a lot Nikos! You really gave me some good piece of advise! I simply cannot wait to drive there! :)

    Okay, as for the route, we will be coming over Patra (the sea way from Italy) since we're from Switzerland. But, I must admit, your guess was pretty exact (Belgrade, Yugoslavia). :)
    From Patra we will drive to Korinthos and then down to Epidavros, over Kranidi to Portocheli, where our stay will be. We plan to visit smaller towns and villages and avoid the bigger ones with a lot of traffic and/or tourists.

    As for the equipment, I plan to take a Contax RX along with 25/2.8, 35/2.8, 50/1.4 & 135/2.8 with me. Since the lens diameter is the same on all lenses, I'd probably buy some filter sets from Cokin before departure. I think I have to seriously consider this because of your advice - you must know. :) Or would it be better to take a Canon EOS 3 with 20/1.8, 28-105/3.5-4.5 & 70-200/2.8? The problem here is different diametres (82mm, 58mm, 77mm).

    We planned to drive down to Kalamata and Sparti so all of the Peloponnese should be within reach. Even to the oracle of Delphi we want to go. As far as I know, there's a ferry between Egio and Ag. Nikolaos on the other side of Korinthiakos Kolpos and so we should reach Delphi too. What about Korinthos? Is it worth visiting? And what about the Islands Spetses and Idra?

    Primarly we want to shoot anything from the ancient world or the middle ages. Our interests are culture and therefore also people, their homes and villages, landscapes surrounding them and places of belief like chapels, churches, oracles etc. and of course theatres, arenas and such. I'd definitely take my tripod with me and shoot everything with 100ASA film, probably Sensia. Something like this picture from Tony Dummet I'd like to take but I guess such a scenery one can only find on the Cyclades...
    What are the prices in Greece for, let's say Sensia 100 (with development) or Provia 100F (also with development)? Just approximatively.

    I don't know the Greek people. Are they reserved or would they allow taking a picture of them or their houses? How is it with strangers in their villages? Do they dislike them? I'm asking because of some experience in Sartene, Corsica. How about criminality? Probably I sound silly but I've never been to Greece and I'm so much looking forward to go there.

    Well, that's been a lot of text up to here and I think I'm over for the moment ... :)

    Thank you very much!
    M;los
     
  4. What about Korinthos? Is it worth visiting?
    No, it's an ugly city.
    And what about the Islands Spetses and Idra?
    Scenic but very crowded, and usually it is a posh crowd, too. They are not bad per se, or ugly, and they could make a nice side-trip if you have time. But they are not among the top destinations, at least not among the first things I'd recommend. If you want some islands, too, it's easy to drive to Piraeus and hop into a ferry to Naxos. This, you won't regret.
    Primarly we want to shoot anything from the ancient world or the middle ages. Our interests are culture and therefore also people, their homes and villages, landscapes surrounding them and places of belief like chapels, churches, oracles etc. and of course theatres, arenas and such.
    The Peloponese, and Greece in general, is full of this stuff. A village around every corner, ancient stones everywhere you dig.
    What are the prices in Greece for, let's say Sensia 100 (with development) or Provia 100F (also with development)? Just approximatively.
    A sensia should be around 3-4 euro and development would be around 8-11, depending on the store and the quality of service. A Velvia could be 6-10 euros. Those are wild approximations, can't be too sure.
    I don't know the Greek people. Are they reserved or would they allow taking a picture of them or their houses? How is it with strangers in their villages? Do they dislike them?
    The Greek people are generally welcoming, with good humour, and easy to approach. Particularly in small villages. The more touristy an area is, the more you are being looked at as yet another tourist. In villages people will be interested in you as much as you are interested in them. Try to meet people before you take out your camera. A little chat, a smile, or even having a drink together at the village main square can open doors for you.
    How about criminality?
    Greece is probably one of the safest countries in Europe. Especially in rural areas. Crime is only a problem (and then again not a very serious problem, at least not yet) in very big cities such as Athens and Thessaloniki. In many villages people don't have lock on their doors. Standard precautions such as not flashing very expensive equipment, valuables and money are always a good idea though, everywhere in the world.
     

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