Tag Archives: Greece

Links page

On this page you will find the main links that we use, either for the purchase of equipment, or to visit Ashtanga Yoga teacher friends, etc.


A specific nature of Ashtanga Yoga, it is that a carpet is enough to practice. Below a list with some addresses for you obtain this material :


Web sites on Ashtanga Yoga

Official website of Sri K.Pattabhi Jois, Krishnamacharya, BKS Iyengar

Other sites of our friends

Belgium :

France :


Rennes (Bretagne)

  • Cécile Dalibard Raout : La Basse Lande, 35190 CARDROC – Telephone :
  • http://www.aray.fr Yan & Anne-Marie Le Boucher, Luc Carimalo & Mireille Drouet, etc.

Fourmies (Nord of France)

Greece :


The “Greek Orthodox Easter” in Greece

In spring, in Greece, the most important religious celebration for Orthodox Church is the celebration of “Easter” (unlike Catholics who regard Christmas as a great feast, without nevertheless symbolically competing with Easter). Christmas is obviously celebrated by the Orthodox, but with much less magnitude than among Catholics. The Orthodox really reserve themselves for Easter. It is the celebration for the Greek people. The Orthodox speak of “the feast of Easter” and not ” the feasts of Easter” as do the Catholics…

Indeed, “Christ” resurrects at the same time nature chooses its vegetable renaissance.

Procession of the Epitaph

Very important in Greece, the Holy Week moves crowds. Different processions prepare for the “Resurrection” of Christ. On Holy Friday, the procession of the Epitaph (epitaphios) symbolizes the shroud of Christ and his funeral, it is followed by the faithful holding lighten candles, they go around the parish and the various quarters, rose petals are thrown on the passage of the procession.

For the faithful Orthodox, Easter week begins on Monday with a week of fasting, very much respected by the practicing Greeks (Lent lasts 40 days, meat, eggs and dairy products are not consumed by those who respect the fast), not only on Thursday as for the Catholics. Easter Sunday thus turns into a “debauchery” of food, with the paschal lamb etc., in order to celebrate the resurrection and the end of the fast.

On the Saturday evening of Easter, one prays and attends mass celebrated in the church. At midnight, the priest announces the resurrection of Christ in the forecourt of the church: “CHRISTOS ANESTI”, then he lights the candle of a faithful with the flame of his own (the light of Christ) . The faithful transmit this light to each other, pronouncing “Christos Anesti”. Then the church bells ring with full blow; people shining with joy, embrace and congratulate each other by calling each other “CHRISTOS ANESTI », and carrying the candle lit in their hand, every one goes home.

Before entering his house, the head of the family draws the sign of the cross on the top of the embrasure of his door with the smoke of the candle. Then, these candles will be kept all year near the Holy icons.

Sitting at the table, but before eating the traditional soup (maghiritsa), red eggs are broken, two by two, each person strikes his egg against another person’s egg, holding it between the thumb, the forefinger and the middle finger of his right hand. “Chritos Anesti“, (“Risen Christ“) is pronounced again. The winner is the one who manages to keep his egg intact, an undamaged shell is a sign of luck. Everywhere in Greece, on Easter Sunday, spits for roasting the paschal lamb, coated with a mixture of oil, oregano and lemon, are placed either in the courtyards of the houses, on the terraces or on empty grounds in the country.

In any case, it should not be forgotten that religion is really the cement of the Greek nation. During the 400-500 years of the Turkish invasion, it was the only way for the Greeks to keep their national identity, the Turks having forbidden the teaching of the Greek language and the practice of the Orthodox religion. Relatively speaking, the Greeks acted as do the courageous Afghan women today: learning secretly to read and write, and cooking traditional dishes…



In the Christian Orthodox tradition, icons and their reproductions are still an important tradition. “Easter” is an opportunity to paint magnificent icons about the passion of Christ and the pain of Mary, and to offer them.

Eggs, painted or coloured in red, are offered to family and friends. Eggs are lucky charms associated with rebirth and new life. Eggs are omnipresent in the symbolism of Easter, ancient, Jewish or Christian.

In some families it is tradition to organize an egg battle on Easter day.

Kαλό Πασχά ! (Kalo Paska !) Happy Easter! 

Χριστός Ανέστη ! (Christos anesti !) Risen Christ !


Quinoa & eggplant roast

Ingredients :

  • 4 tablespoons sesame or olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 350 gr aubergine, cut in 8 thick slices
  • 200 gr quinoa
  • 2 tablespoons tamari
  • 1 large red pepper sliced
  • 50 ml lemon juice
  • 2 courgettes cut in cubes
  • Parsley springs to garnish

Directions :

Preheat the oven to 180 C. Heat half of the oil in a frying pan and cook the aubergine slices until browned. Place them in a baking dish. Combine the tamari, lemon juice, water and ginger and pour over the aubergine slices. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes. Turn the slices over and bake for another 10 minutes until most of the liquid has been absorbed.

Place the quinoa in a pan with double its volume of water, bring to the boil and simmer for 15 minutes until tender. Put the remaining oil in a frying pan and sauté the red pepper and courgettes until soft. Add the quinoa, mix well and spoon over the aubergines. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes. Garnish with the parsley springs and serve hot.

Baked stuffed tomatoes and peppers


  • 4 large tomatoes, 4 large green peppers, 4 large red peppers
  • For the filling
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 50 grams of pine kernels
  • 2 carrots grated
  • 4 table spoons raisins
  • 2 courgettes grated
  • ¼ cup fresh basil finely chopped
  • 2 red peppers cut in small cubes
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley finely chopped
  • 150 grams mixed parboiled & wild rice
  • ¼ cup fresh mint finely chopped
  • 150 grams basmati rice
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • Olive oil, salt, pepper and freshly ground coriander


Preheat the oven to 180 C

Cut a thin slice off the top of each tomato to make a lid and reserve. Scoop out the pulp of the tomato using a spoon chop the tomato pulp in small pieces and set aside. Leave a 1/2-inch shell of the empty tomatoes. Place the tomato shells in a baking dish and sprinkle the insides of the tomatoes with some brown sugar and salt.

Cut a thin slice of the top of each green and red pepper to make a lid. Reserve the lids, discard the seeds and place the empty peppers in the baking dish.

Heat 4 tablespoons of olive oil in a large deep frying pan or casserole add the chopped onion and sauté for a few minutes. Add the pine kernels and sauté until lightly browned. Add the grated carrots, courgettes and chopped red peppers and raisings and sauté for a few minutes. Add the tomato pulp rice and 2 cups of water. Add 2 teaspoons of brown sugar, salt, pepper and ground coriander to taste and cook for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the casserole from the heat and add all the fresh herbs (parsley, basil and mint) and stir well.

Using a spoon fill in the tomato shells and peppers with the rice and vegetable mixture and put the lids on top. Place any extra filling in the baking dish. Add some water in the baking dish and sprinkle the stuffed tomatoes and peppers with some olive oil, salt and pepper. Cover the baking dish with an aluminum foil and bake in the oven for about 1 hour then remove the aluminum foil and bake uncovered for about half an hour until the tomatoes turn golden brown.

Serve hot.

The origins of the Ashtanga Yoga Institute in de Brussels

Jean Claude, dig the foundations of the Matrimandir, Auroville, India

After coming back from India where Jean Claude taught Yoga to Vinobha Bhave and to Indira Gandhi at Paunar Ashram, dig with a Peruvian friend the beginning of the foundations of the Matrimondir in Auroville

the adventure of transmitting yoga starts in September 1973 at “La Maison de la Culture de Rouen” (France).

Success is immediate, there are several classes everyday in different places, at Mt St Aignan University, at St Claire’s church etc. …. Jean Claude transmits either Iyengar’s technique or Pattabhi Jois’s technique. The workshops take place at the “Château d’Ernement sur Buchy”, where he was living.

Still in Rouen, in 1974, he founds the C.R.Y. (Centre Rouennais de Yoga) with   Dr. Louis Creyx, 264 students follow the morning or evening classes.


He then founds the “Centre Padma” in Elbeuf in 1979 to host residential training workshops. Many workshops are held in France, Italy, Switzerland, Holland etc. …. Since then, Jean Claude exclusively teaches “Yoga Korunta” (Ashtanga Yoga as transmitted by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois) .

Many seminar take place, in the South of France, in the Community of the Ark, founded by Lanza Del Vasto.

Life changes ……. Jean Claude meets Anne and goes to live in Brussels in 1987. He teaches at the “Maison Américaine”, chaussée de Charleroi, then rue des Glaïeuls, Uccle, in 1988. More space becoming necessary, the Ashtanga Yoga Institute moves to rue Jules Lejeune, Ixelles from 1989 until 2003. Finally, with the help of his friend an architect Simon de Wrangel, the Ashtanga Yoga Institute moves into it’s own premises 610 Chaussée d’Alsemberg in Uccle, with a yoga room that follows the explanations given by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois.

“The ideal Yoga room must be well ventilated. Do not open all the windows, only those on a same side that are situated high up. The floor must be perfectly flat, the room very clean, on the ground floor (not above nor below because it is not good for the breathing), in a quiet place, far from the surrounding noise and far from people involved in an activity other than yoga.”

The Ashtanga Yoga Institute’s reputation spreads; daily lessons, workshops and seminars are given in Belgium, Greece on the Island of Andros and in Athens,and in India in Mahabalipuram.


The Ashtanga Yoga Institute’s aim is to transmit “Yoga Korunta” (better known as Ashtanga Yoga) as it was taught by Shri K. Pattabhi Jois during his life-time, at the « Ashtanga Yoga Resarch Institute » in Mysore (South India).

Today, a lovely team participates in the evolution of the Institute. Below is what is offered :

  • Daily classes (except during the Christmas holidays which is the only time the Institute closes)
  • Introduction class to Yoga
  • Beginners class
  • First series class
  • Second series class
  • Third series class
  • Intensive mornings (3 hours class)
  • Teacher training in Ashtanga Yoga in Brussels, Greece and India
  • Ashtanga Yoga sessions in beautiful places:
    • In Greece:
      • Athens
      • Andros Island
    • In India
      • Mahabalipuram, Tamil Nadu, South India
  • Events :
    • Concerts of traditional Indian music
    • Indian and Ayurveda cooking lessons

Om Shanti

Pasta Avocado

Ingredients for 4 portions

  • 500 gr whole-wheat penne
  • ½ red chilli
  • 3 ripe avocados
  • 25 grams chopped pine kernels
  • 2 limes
  • ¼ cup fresh basil finely chopped
  • ½ teaspoon fresh grated garlic
  •  ¼ cup Fresh parsley finely chopped
  • Salt & pepper and olive oil 


In a large pot put some water, salt and olive oil and bring to the boil. Cook the pasta until it’s ‘all dente’. Drain the pasta and reserve half a cup of the pasta water.

While the pasta is being cooked put 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a pan and slightly sauté the garlic, chilli and pine kernels and then move them in a large bowl. Add the lime juice, avocado cut into cubes, basil and parsley and mix well. Add the reserved pasta water and 4 tablespoons of olive oil and mix well. Stir in the pasta and add some salt and fresh pepper.

You can serve with some grated parmesan or nutritional yeast flakes for a vegan version of the dish.

Mediterranean chick peas


  • 225 gr chick peas soaked
  • 2 red peppers, chopped in cubes
  • 3 table spoons olive oil
  • 1 green pepper, chopped in cubes
  • Pinch of ground coriander
  • 450 gr tomatoes chopped in cubes
  • Pinch of ground ginger
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Pinch of grated nutmeg 


Place the pre-soaked chick peas in a pan and cover with fresh water. Add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and some salt. Bring to the boil, half cover and simmer for about 1 hour until tender. Drain and set aside.

Heat the remaining oil in a heavy frying pan. Add the spices, peppers and tomatoes and sauté until the vegetables are tender. Add the chick peas, mix well and cook together for about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and serve hot.

Health information in Greece, Ashtanga Yoga workshop in Greece (island of Andros and Athens)

In Greece, an informed Yogini being worth (at least) two, you can safely leave with a light heart and joyful soul and enjoy your stay, full of fragrance, colour and sonority…

The Greeks are very warm and welcoming, but the public health system could be much better… In case of necessity, it is better to go to private hospitals (better monitored hygiene). It is a good idea to take out a travel insurance, as “Europe Assistance”).

The European card of health insurance (public service).

For the French :

You get your European insurance card from your social security centre or via it’s website. You will receive it within 15 days. It is valid 1 year, free and personal.

For the Belgians :

Ask the equivalent from your « Mutuelle ».

The card is valid for all countries, members of the European Union

No vaccine is mandatory for Greece (that does not mean that the traveller should not update his vaccinations).

If you have a current treatment, don’t forget your medications. You can take a basic emergency pharmacy with you. Beware of the sun and heat, which can cause sunstroke and dehydration. In Greece, there are many pharmacies where you will find all you need.

Turista (diarrhea)

It is caught, in general, by water or food containing of relatively common bacteria. Some tips and a trip pharmacy containing good medicines are often useful. Prevention remains the best method.

  • The first reaction is to drink clean water, slightly salty, bought in sealed bottles to avoid dehydration.
  • Charcoal capsules.
  • If insufficient, take the Immodium. If there is no effect, then take antibiotics such as “Fluroquinolone.
Toilet paper ?

Toilet paper ?

The toilets

In Greece, one does not throw toilet paper into the toilet bowl; the risk of clogging the pipes is serious. One throws it in the bin prepared to this effect. The other reason is that toilet paper acidifies seawater and our Greek friends are very attached to the quality of the blue of the sea…

On this subject, you can visit the sites :

  • ‘Question-health’
  • “Health trips”, health info by country.
  • S. Adventure, several shops in Belgium and Brussels.
  • Website: traveling-doctors.com 

Other additional information :

  • Travel information, ” flights ” and ” transfer “
  • Find a ” hotel ” in Athens
  • ” Greek Cuisine “

Avocado of carob and cocoa

Wonderful recipe dessert of Sophia, Karanasos Hotel – Andros island, Greece, Ashtanga Yoga Wokshop

Ingredient for a person : 

  • 1 avocado
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 s. flour of carob
  • 1 s AC. 100% cocoa

Preparation :

Place all ingredients in a blender, mixer 1 minute.
If too strong, add a little water or vegetable milk
Decorate with almonds.

Bon appétit !

« Travel » Information to Greece

How to get to Greece ?

By plane :

There are many flights to Athens from the main European airports. Book your flight early to get a better price.

Airlines : 

Aegean Airlines (Olympic Air) est membre de la Star Alliance. Aegean has been honored with the Skytrax World Airline Award for the sixth time, as the Best Regional Airline in Europe.

Skytrax World Airline

The Security (or safety) air

Be carefull : All batteries in devices must be charged (TSA). If your mobile phone, your tablet… are discharged, the boarding security service may think you are a terrorist carrying a bomb… 

Control of airport security : 

Security checks are unfortunately necessary to travel by air, some passengers find them more annoying than anything else.

Here are some tips to make sure that everything goes as well as possible :

  • Remove all metal objects such as keys, mobile phones (charged battery), coins, wallet, belt if the loop is metal, etc. and place them in one of the available plastic bins.
  • Remove your coat, jacket, Sleeveless Jacket and place them, as well as your hand baggage, in one of the plastic bins.
  • Remove all liquids and gels from your hand luggage and place them in a separate bin. Don’t forget that you are allowed to carry, only liquid containers and gels up to 100 ml maximum, in your hand baggage, sprays are prohibited.
  • Remove your laptop and tablet from your bag so that they can be analysed separately (battery charged).
  • Follow closely the instructions given by security personnel

And everything should go smoothly, with a smile…

By boat :

It is possible to go to Greece, by ferry (with or without a car) leaving from Italy.

Departure : Ancona (Venice or Trieste) custom and police formalities are quick, arrival at Patras.

Remember to book your crossing : www.greekferries.gr 

To get to the island of Andros

Take the boat from the port of Rafina (20 to 30 minutes from Athens airport (metro).

There is 2 hours of journey – price per person: 19, -€. Dimitri, Sophie’s friend is responsible for all the boat bookings.

You will arrive at GAVRIO. The port of arrival of the ferries is surrounded by sandy beaches but the village itself is far from being the « liveliest » place to reside, the village « goes to sleep » as soon as the ferry leaves. There are many terraces to have a drink or a meal.

You will be greeted at the arrival of the ferry by Sophie or Dimitri, a car will take you to the hotel KARANASOS, Batsi (at 7km from Gavrio), where we stay.

Karanasos hotel

Karanasos hotel

Karanasos Hotel


Batsi – Andros
Batsion 845 03
Greece +30 2282 041480

For more information about the island of Andros see


To get to Athens

  • Taxi 
  • Beware of swindling on the on prices, which tend to increase for tourists!
  • Normal price: € 35 during the day and € 50 at nighttime. 


  • Clean, quick, no waiting, a means of transport that I recommend
  • Athens centre to airport: € 8
  • Classic unit ticket: €1.40

Express bus

  • Airport-Athens centre: € 4

Rent a car on spot

Example of price: € 240 for a week and € 500 for 15 days (book through your travel agency, the vehicle will be waiting for you at the airport). 

Formalities :

(For European nationals) valid identity card, or passport

Car: national driving licence + grey card + green card (gasoline prices can vary from a station to another and is very expensive, more than €2 per litre for diesel).  

Practical information 

  • Time difference between France or Belgium and Greece: + 1 hour
  • The currency is the Euro

Opening of banks :

  • Monday to Friday: from 8:30 to 13:00
  • 24 hours a day at Athens airport.
  • There are ATM’s only in big cities. 

Other additional information :

  • Find a ‘hotel’ in Athens
  • ‘Greek Cuisine’
  • Health information in Greece