I have noted before my frustration that I always pass through Arta by bus and gaze at its spectacular bridge with restaurants at either end, but never visit the place. Thanks to my partner’s crazy plan of heading down to her sister’s in-laws in the Southern Peloponnese my frustration is at an end. We left Albania at 6.30 AM on a bust for Ioanina. It is less than 100 kilometres but a happy two hours spent at the border as officials on both sides showed their true flair for incompetence meant that we did not arrive until well after noon.
I managed to persuade the bus to drop us off at the airport and felt rather proud of how clever I was to achieve this feat and we then picked up a car and headed South. After about ninety minutes we arrived at Arta.
The story of the bridge is that it kept on falling down until the bridge builder was told that if he immured his daughter in the structure it would stay up. That he did and happily for us, if not for her, it still stands today: in a curious but spectacular shape.
I hope that the photos below (including one of my partner scuttling over to the other side where the best restaurant lies) capture the magic of the structure. Thereafter we gazed at it as we ate lamb cutlets (the DL) and grilled entrails (myself). After the spectacular heart and liver of Albania the rather clumsy liver of Arta was a bit of a let-down. But the bridge more than made up for it.