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La Chasse aux Trésors de Paris 2013

A city-wide trasure hunt – why not?

The Mairie de Paris hosted its 8th edition of Chasse aux Trésors on Saturday 6 July and for once, I was around to play! It is a brilliant initiative to discover Paris better, as each hunt is set to cover the streets, parks, shops and other nooks and corners of participating arrondissements. A total of 13 arrondissements were up for adventures this year, and there were also 2 inter-arrondissement challenges to be had. Intimate knowledge of the arrondissements is not necessary. In fact, it’s even better if you don’t know it well already!

The clue sheets were to be collected between 10am and 1pm, and the hunt completed by 3.30pm. No other time limitation imposed otherwise. Teamed together with Anne and Chloé, we signed up to discover one of the inter-arrondissement trails. We had no idea before hand on where we were going, just that we should retrieve our treasure hunting clues at the Mairie of the 3rd arrondissement. This year, we were to help Erasme recover the name of his long-lost lover, guided by the Oracle. I just want to share some photos from our hunt, and hover over them for descriptions extracted from our clue sheets.

La Chasse aux Trésors 2013

La Chasse aux Trésors 2013

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Chóra, Hora or Náxos Town?

The island of Naxos is the largest among the Cycladic islands and lies within the heart of the archipelago. With over 60 villages scattered around the island, there are much for visitors to see and to do. However, when you are short in time – in our case, we had mere 2 days – then it’s better to play it smart and stay put in Chóra. Or Hora. Or Náxos town. (Hint: they refer to the same place.)

The ferry from Athens-Piraeus to Naxos takes about 6 hours through the vast Aegean Sea and the first sight that greeted us near the port was the Gate of Apollo, also known as Portara. This large marble gate dated back to approximately 500 BC is the remaining structure of a temple dedicated to Apollo, standing tall but alone on the islet of Palatia. The temple was never completed, but the remnant of what was the intended dimension can be seen. Naxos town from here is also a very pretty sight.



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Postcards: Sunsets in Oia (GR)

Santorini is one of the most beautiful islands that I’ve been. After wistfully going through photo albums of several friends who visited this very Cyclades island last year, I decided to push it up high on my priority list as well as into my 101 goals list, which is met by F’s approval. It is a very popular holiday destination, and there are good reasons for it – picturesque villages, friendly locals, ease of communications, delicious food (and wine), fascinating (geological) history, sunny weather, intense sunset – take your pick.

The village of Oia (pronounced “ee-yah”, not “oy-yah”; also written as Ia) is the one spot everyone seem to converge come every evening. There are other view points on the island for beautiful sunset, but between various recommendations (and a good dose of clever tourism marketing I guess), Oia becomes *the* prime sunset-watching spot. We tried to photograph the sunset – something not particularly easy as we attempted to master our new camera – from various points of Oia and not just where everyone goes. It does get uncomfortably crowded with everyone clamouring for the perfect view of the sunset!

Sunset in Oia

Sunset in Oia

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