We left Gatwick at about 11.30pm on July 4th, arrived around 5.45am on the 5th, flew with Monarch which was quite uneventful. Reps shepherded us onto the coaches efficiently and we were off, via three drop offs. The journey took just over an hour, as the sun was rising which was a great way to start the holiday. The drop off at Lindos is at the very top of the village, an old guy with a rustic bike/trailer takes the cases down and a rep walks everybody down to the various apartments and hotels. It's quite a steep hill to walk down but it's a very good opportunity to work out the lie of the land without it being full of tourists as it is during the day and evening. I think we arrived at the apartments around 8am and got to the sea about 8.15.
Avra is the last accommodation down the hill, it's perhaps fifteen minutes from the drop off to the apartments, of which there appeared to be about 30 spilt into 4 blocks. A nice touch is that each apartment has its own patio with table and chairs, and a clothes drier thingy. We had A1, a ground floor one with an oblique view of the sea. Upon entry the first room had two single beds, a large wardrobe containing 50+ hangers, bedside cabinet, small table, small kitchen table and three chairs, sink, two ring electric hob, fridge, three small kitchen cupboards and a 1970s style lamp dangling from the ceiling. To the left was the second bedroom, containing two single beds, a chest of drawers with mirror and another wardrobe behind the door. To the right of the main room at the rear was the shower room which had a tiny shower, wc, washbasin and mirror. Fixtures and fittings were all as expected, functional if a little dated. The main peeve was that the shower curtain didn't reach the floor which meant as soon as the shower was used the floor was flooded. Not really a problem as it had a drain in the middle of the floor but it was mildly annoying to have wet feet when one least expects it. The kitchen stuff was all fine, only had 3 glasses of a suitable size & only two cups. Hob was next to useless, very low power, had to improvise lids for hot drinks and cooking pasta. Cutlery a mishmash, only two forks which would have been a problem had there been more than two of us. The two main rooms had shutters which were very good, no need to close the windows at any time so it felt quite airy. Aircon was offered, I believe the quoted rate was 50 Euros per week. At no point during the fortnight did I feel the need to have it, maybe we got lucky with the apartment but the heat was never unbearable.
Towels and sheets were changed every 2-3 days, some of the towels were threadbare but they were always very clean. The bins were emptied by the cleaning lady (let's call her Rosa) every morning between 10.30 and 11.30, including the bathroom one. She's a sweet lady, able to communicate despite only speaking about ten words of English. She would sweep the floors in each room, which was nice, then go get the mop, then she'd mop throughout, starting with the bathroom then the kitchen room then the bedroom. The mop stunk, evidently having been used in each room that morning with no bucket in sight. Then she'd get the cloth out and wipe the toilet seat, followed by the bathroom sink...... I was a little surprised by this!! But I suppose it goes on quite a lot, and it was quite amusing that we left the apartment for 5-10 minutes until the smell subsided. I'd recommend an air freshener for the bathroom as the air does not circulate very well in there.
The other main issue was the small matter of ants. Everywhere! There was a colony just outside the front door which invaded from day 3 onwards, the best advice is to bag things up before putting any food leftovers into the bin and to keep everything in the fridge the rest of the time. There is a big bin (usually full of cats) close to the entrance to the complex which is accessible throughout the day and night which we used after the 3-4 times we cooked in the flat. We only had one cockroach, quite a large one with wings which we were able to remove from the bathroom. We were also visited by a locust, a grasshopper/mantis thing, a hedgehog and about half a dozen of the bin cats, as well as numerous flying insects. No mosquito bites though.
The sewers blocked about three times during our stay, thankfully it wasn't in our block but in the one nearest the sea. It was very unpleasant and seemed to necessitate the floors being hosed down, so I would advise following the instructions about not putting anything unnecessary down the lav.
I have to say the location is fabulous. The beach was about 30 paces from the front door and it's a stunner. There are two restaurants on the edge of the complex, Nefeli was the better of the two and it also offers 15% off the total bill for Avra guests between 6.30pm and 9.30pm when it's always empty. There are numerous mini-supermarkets throughout the village, all of them frighteningly overpriced. The closest one, at the top of the road down to Avra, was the worst and also the most overpriced. It is worth trekking into the village to find a wider ranch of produce which is also fresh. Eating out was a bit of a lottery, I do love Mediterranean food, but some of the stuff we were served was terrible, microwaved tinned veg and reheated potatoes have never floated by boat... Steer clear of Maria's. Ironically the one next door (called Mario's) was great and we might have had a couple of fry ups there. Also worth searching for is Dionyssius, it looks very expensive and imposing but it was well priced and the food was the best all trip. Our first meal there was two pints, hummus with pitta to share, a mozzarella and tomato salad (huge) and chicken a la creme (also huge) for about 27 euros, second time we shared moules mariniere, had a chicken main and a swordfish main and one beer and one vodka and it was about 40. But well worth it.
The last day is quite stressy, out of the flat by noon and not picked up by the coach until 2.30am. Heard rumours that people went back into their rooms to shower as the keys are left in the doors & the new tenants don't arrive till we get on the plane but we just hung out at the beach till about 1.30.
All in all it was great, we got a great deal through teletext so we paid £288 for 2 weeks. I'd consider coming back despite the little faults
- Also Known As:
- Avra Apartments Hotel Lindos
- Avra Apartments Lindos, Rhodes