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Spinalonga, Crete #12

Venetian fortifications in sunlight on the island of Spinalonga, Crete

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The story behind this image

During the two week holiday that my wife Liz and I enjoyed on the beautiful Mediterranean island of Crete one of the places we kept on driving around was the northern end of Mirabello Bay,.

Specifically, the stretch of coast between the towns of Elounda and Plaka, with the island of Spinalonga just offshore.

Spinalonga is a fascinating place, with a rich and diverse history culminating in its use as a leper colony up until 1957.

Liz had a special interest in Spinalonga, having read the book 'The Island', which was based here, so Spinaonga was on our list of 'must visit' places during our stay on Crete.

I was also keen on a visit, having viewed Spinalonga from afar and noted the rather imposing fortifications, a relic from Venetian rule in the middle ages, which looked highly photogenic if you're into dereliction like me!

There's a path that you can follow that takes you right around the circumference of the island at sea level, passing a number of those imposing fortifications in various states of dilapidation.

Right at the end of our circumnavigation of Spinalonga, as we arrived back at the little harbour to await our ferry back to Plaka, I took the opportunity to photograph the most imposing of the Venetian fortifications, this impressive crenellated turret controlling the approach to the island.

I thought about photographing this feature when we first arrived on Spinalonga, but with the sun high in the sky and beating down, the light wasn't very good.

A couple of hours later in the day, with the sun dipping down towards the western horizon, the light was much more flattering, with a nicely graduated shade across the round tower bringing out the shape and texture of the magnificent old stonework.

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Image data

Filename - crete spinalonga 12.jpg

Camera - Canon 6D

Lens - 24-105mm zoom @ 90mm

Exposure - 1/60sec @ f11, ISO100

Filters - Polarising filter used to reduce glare and enhance colours.

Location - Spinalonga, Crete

This image - 800x533px JPEG

Conversion - Adobe Lightroom

Comments - Handheld exposure with lens stabilisation.