Dave and Gerry's Alonissos Island Information Site

Fish Festival July 2007

A couple of days before Wednesday the 11th July signs were posted up in Patitiri, one in English and one in Greek, advertising a fish festival to take place in Kalamakia.  A picture of the signs can be seen on the right.  The festival has been taking place every year but this is the first time we have been on the island and actually managed to make it.  As Kalamakia is a distance along the coast the Dimos provided a free coach which ran from 6pm when the festival started up until whenever.

As you walked down to the harbour from the road the Dimos had set up trestle tables to the left by the waters edge where they were loading charcoal into barbecue's made from 45 gallon drums cut lengthways.  A stage had been set up on the harbour front between the first two tavernas where there is an open area for dancing.  We sat at Taverna Margarita for an ouzo while the setting up was still taking place.  People started walking passed us with plates of loukoumathes (dough balls with honey) so we walked along to Taverna Corali to get some.  They were lovely, freshly cooked and crispy on the outside.

During the evening cloulds of smoke wafted around the harbour front and the smell of cooking sardines filled the air.  We went and joined the queue and got our plate of sardines with bread and a glass of wine.  We went back a couple of times for more fish and a few times more for the free wine.  The sardines were tipped from huge plastic buckets and put onto metal barbecue griddles to go over the hot coals.  As the sun went down and the sky darkened the harbour lights went on and the bouzouki band from the Taverna Koutouki in Patitiri started to play.  The teenage dance group that performed at the threshing circles the previous weekend performed a different set of dances, but this time rather than traditional island dress, they were dressed in the same outfits of blue denim trousers and white shirts and blouses.

By the time we left at 11pm there was still a throng of people walking up and down the harbour, the band were going flat out, a large gathering of Greeks and other nationalities were dancing merrily, the tavernas were all full, more sardines were going on the barbecue and the wine was still flowing.  A great night and a lovely setting.  We look forward to next year.


Trestle Tables by the Waters Edge

Smoke Wafting Around the Harbour Front

Queueing for BBQ'd Sardines

Dimos Staff Working at the Barbeques

Traditional Dancing on the Harbour Front
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