Totally Frenched Out

From the blogger formerly known as Samdebretagne

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Greece

Continuing on with the anniversary theme, C & I will be celebrating our 5th wedding anniversary shortly.  And because he starts his masters program next week and I'll be leaving for Australia, we decided to get out of dodge and take our anniversary trip a few weeks early.

We spent a fantastic week exploring the Cyclades, a chain of islands off the coast of Greece.  Normally I enjoy trip planning, but I was in the midst of a major travel spree when we booked this trip and the though of having to plan one more itinerary - even a fun one - put me over the edge.  So we booked a trip through Promovacances that included all the transport, boats, hotels and breakfast, and I'm so glad we did.

Our trip had a great combo of culture - including two stopovers in Athens:
Day trips to several different islands, including Santorini and Mykonos:
One of my favorite day trips was to Delos, which is basically one big ancient excavated city that you can run and explore as you please (there's basically no shade on the whole island though, so bring your sunscreen and a hat!):
And then we had a day puttering around the islands on a local boat:
We just cruised around and stopped off every hour or two to swim in these gorgeous turquoise waters:
And they still left plenty of time for relaxing on the beach or just wandering the beautiful streets:
We were based on one island the whole time (Paros), which was nice since we didn't have to pack up and go each night. I'd definitely recommend staying there for future trips - it's a fairly large island with good boat connections, and it's also much more affordable both hotel and food-wise than Santorini or Mykonos.  It took about 5 hours to get there by boat from Athens (but you can also fly in), and it was about 2h by boat to Santorini and 1h to Mykonos/Delos.

I think as far as Athens goes, one day would be enough (and it's worth it to by the city pass that covers all of the sites). We walked everywhere, so we didn't use the metro at all, but it is apparently affordable easy to use.  The one thing that surprised me about Athens was how cheap it was - both hotels and food were much cheaper there than in the islands.  C and I often grab food at bakeries or grocery stores for lunch when we travel, and both days we were there, I got a large freshly blended juice and a sandwich for under 4€!  Not bad for a capital city.  Though if the number of boarded-up stores give any idea, it's just an indication of how much the mainland is still suffering after their economic crisis.  (It seemed to be pretty much business as usual out in the islands.)

Has anyone else out there been to Greece?  If so, where did you go and what did you think?

Labels: ,

4 Comments:

Blogger Eileen said...

Congrats on five years! I'm tempted by those package tours---it does seem like it would be nice to have someone else take care of everything!

September 21, 2016 at 8:59 PM  
Blogger Ksam said...

Thanks! We ended up being really happy with it - and I especially appreciated not having to figure out all the logistics for the boat, getting around the islands, etc. It's definitely doable, but it would have taken a lot more preparation on my end before leaving. We also made sure to choose a package that had tons good reviews from past participants, so that probably helped too (the only complaint for ours was that not all the guides/drivers were Francophone lol).

September 22, 2016 at 9:04 AM  
Blogger Pierre said...

Funny stuff: I was there on my honeymoon three weeks ago!

We went to Santorini and Rhodes and from Rhodes did a little day trip to Symi (we didn't go to Athens, except that we had to fly back there as a stopover because flying from Santorini to Rhodes through Athens was much faster that boating from one island to the other). All in all it was amazing!

Rhodes had a much different feeling than Santorini, so it was great to visit both.

Congrats on your 5-year anniversary!

September 22, 2016 at 10:45 AM  
Blogger Aeldra Robinson said...

this is a great article. thank you so much for sharing your experience. i am planning a vacation to europe and your article is so incredibly helpful. i think i may need to visit the French Riviera. and i never knew about the Cinque Terre region in italy.. this is the first time i'm hearing of it. wonderful! glad to hear you had such a fulfilling experience. :-)
route trip planner

October 30, 2016 at 9:37 PM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home