Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Greece: Crete & Santorini

After a night on the ship, our next stop was Crete.  We were only there from 7:30 am-11:30 am, which was definitely not enough time - especially since we slept until 9:00 am.  It was also kind of an icky day, so although we did leave the ship and walk a little ways in to town, we didn't get to see much of Crete.

Crete - on an icky day   :(
From there, we set sail for Santorini - the island that we were all looking forward to the most, and it did not disappoint!!  When we got there, we were scheduled for a tour - our tour took us up to the highest point on the island as well as around the island with stops in two small villages.  It was a really great tour and we got to see a ton of really cool things!

View from the highest point

The first place we stopped was Oia (pronounced ee-yuh)Village.  It was beautiful!  I took SO many pictures on this island and there are so many that I loved!  We stopped in to a beautiful Greek Orthodox Church before we started through the villages small walkways...

As we walked through the village, there was beauty every where you looked - between the white washed houses and the beautiful blue water, it was such an amazing place to just walk and look around.

This little book store was so whimsical - I took this pic because
I knew my cousin would absolutely love it.

On the bookstore wall

After a little while in Oia, the bus took us back to Fira, which is on the same side of the island as the port, but WAY above it.  This was our last stop and we had a little over an hour to enjoy a wine bar with a great view and even better wine - and of course, our last chance for some great Greek food.

Wine, Saganaki, Pita, Tzatziki and a view
I also got to FaceTime with J while we were here

View from the wine bar

A little dessert wine - on the house

If I lived in Greece, I would drink wine EVERY DAY - it is by far the best wine I've ever had and I didn't try any of their wine that I didn't like... it is so smooth, but also has so much flavor, especially Santorini grapes.

To get back to the train, we took the cable car from the top of the island (Fira) down to the port...

We had to get on smaller boats to take us back to the ship, and I could not sum up our time in Santorini any better than this...

It was a great last day - I would go back to Mykonos or Santorini in a heart beat.  We finished our last evening on the ship by having dinner with a Turkish family - a husband and wife who were both engineers and their two kids, a 14 year old a the cutest 6 year old ever.  They were so friendly and we talked and laughed and it was a great "last night".

We packed and got our suitcases out before midnight so they could take them, and we had an early breakfast and then went to the airport.  We were REALLY early for our flight so we had a good amount of time in Athens to kill... I would not recommend spending too much there - it's pretty boring.

We had a really nice flight back - pretty good food, and more great movies!  On the way back to the states, you're supposed to stay awake to get on US time... it was much easier when I was watching movies.  We got delayed at JFK, but finally made it back to Chicago about 24-hours after we had gotten up to leave from Greece.  It was a really long day, but I took a shower and slept great in our hotel and felt back to normal the next day!  It was a trip of a lifetime!!

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