Agios Dimitrios to Trachila

Trachila is a small fishing village, virtually empty in March at the end of the road from Agios Dimitrios. The narrow road runs under great cliffs and past olive groves and coastal scrub and was only recently constructed so access was previously only by boat. It is a place of wide views across the sea to the western peninsula.

Under the cliffs there are crag martins sitting on narrow ledges in the caves and overhangs; the constant clear song is blue rock thrushes that glide down on bent wings, and there are the ringing calls of rock nuthatches. A pair of ravens flys by and has a nest somewhere in a narrow gorge. There are breeding kestrels and peregrines here too, as well as ubiquitous Sardinian warblers, linnets, chaffinches, song thrushes, blackbirds and blackcaps. It is also a place with an endless variety of wildflowers. There are chasmophyte species or rock plants on the cliff and at the base a rich variety of herbaceaous and annuals, surely the inspiration for many English gardens. Wall lizards bask and hunt with a rapid dash on the rock faces.

Near Trachila, the plants of the rough ground and olive groves are appearing earlier than anywhere else. The first Ophrys orchids are bizarre; their outlandish but oddly beautiful designs are to fool various wasp species to land expecting to mate but only to pick up pollen. The beautiful small blue iris, the Barbary nut Moraea sisyrinchium is abundant and flowers at midday for a day.

Olive grove near Trachila

The colours are vivid and spectacular under blue sky with a fresh breeze and the sound is of bees and the distant waves crashing into the coast.

The weather is mostly sunny with a cooling wind, but storms and clouds creatwe dramatic scenery.

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