We may have missed 2 or 3 km of paved road, but other than that we pretty much covered the island of Patmos today. And what a great way to cover it we discovered. Scooters! Not our usual biking fare, but the island is very hilly and we wanted to cover more ground.
So, we got off the ship and made the short walk to Moto-Leo. A distinctly family run scooter rental operation. Father and daughter, with no deposit or arduous paperwork to rent for the day. Which the daily rental was only 15 euro. So it was also a very cheap way to see the island.
The whole island reminded us of small town living. Although Patmos is a Christian Pilgrimage destination, and they obviously get cruise ships stopping in, the island has not succumbed to that overly touristic feeling. We loved it.
The highlight of the island is the Cave of the Apocalypse, where St. John wrote the book of Revelations. Its pretty small, and they don't let you take pictures inside, so other than saying it looked like a small cave-like chapel there is not much more to say.
Above the cave sits a monastery and this was our second stop for the day. After parking the scooters and starting the walk up the hill I noticed something that was definitely out of place on the top of Patmos. A "Hawkeye Rd" sign. Really?! An Iowa Hawkeye sign on this tiny small island in Greece. "Iowa Hawkeyes!" I exclaimed. Then I met Jimmy. "Are you from Iowa?" he asked? "yes, from Decorah" I said. "Oh, thats just north of Independence isn't it?" Clearly this dude knew his Iowa geography! "Yes" I said. "Well, people from Iowa get free coffee, come in, come in!"
We learned from Jimmy that he had lived in Iowa some 13 years until he inherited this building, which brought him back to the island. He has a fantastic view, and is obviously doing quite well with the restaurant and the gift shop.
After doing the only two touristic things on the island we took off on our scooters to explore the nooks and crannies of the island. We saw lots of beautiful little secluded beaches and coves that would be perfect for swimming or snorkeling.