Take a look at Leonard Cohen's Greek island retreat on a trip to charming Hydra, where the only means of transport is Donkey
- Leonard Cohen spent six years in Hydra – one of the least known Greek islands
- It's a two-hour ferry ride from Athens and has a population of just 3,500 people.
- Over the years, many have fallen in love with Hydra, but it remains a closely guarded secret.
Unlike Elvis 'Graceland and the Beatles' Liverpool, Hydra is not a sanctuary for Leonard Cohen.
The Canadian singer of & # 39; prophet of doom & # 39; He lived here for six years with his Norwegian girlfriend Marianne, but there are no Cohen trails or signs celebrating his favorite bars or the charming hilltop home still owned by his family.
Instead, this beautiful, mountainous mountainous island (3,500 pop) follows its harmonious business. The only mode of transport is by donkey.
Fishing boats moored in the harbor in Hydra town with the island hills behind
At the pier, a squad of butts awaits the arriving tourists and takes them to small hidden hotels here and there.
Fortress walls, canons, and multicolored stone houses climb the hills on either side of Hydra's harbor as fishing boats rock in the bay.
Leonard Cohen lived in Hydra for six years
"Construction is only allowed on the site of an old house so nothing changes much," says Hilda, my hostess at the Phaedra Hotel. I take a walk to Kiafa, the island's oldest city, high above the harbor, overlooking the neighboring Peloponnese across the Aegean Sea.
Later, I stop for dinner at Techne Restaurant & Social, where I talk to Horst, a middle-aged German who has just returned from his evening ritual – swimming naked under the nearby cliffs. Like Cohen and countless others, he fell under Hydra's spell. Among them, Sophia Loren, which premiered here in 1956 to film Boy On A Dolphin.
She played a Hydriot diver at a time when the island's economy depended on the sponge industry. Loren did well in the movie; Hydra looked sensational – and people like the Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton and Cohen were on their way. You can reach Hydra from Athens in a two hour ferry. Once there, it seems to be millions of kilometers from the Greek capital – and that's half its charm.
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