Greece is the most romantic, beautiful, amazing place I have ever visited in all my travels.
Rented a private sail boat for this trip, 4 of us plus a crew of two. It’s really the only and very best way to see the Islands. When you travel by sail you actually have the opportunity to see not only the land surrounding Greece but you get to experience each Island in a more personal way. You get to meet the locals, have dinner with them, most times right on the beach, watching the sun set and drinking the local wine and hearing the stories of old.
Depending on the time of year you travel Greece can be very hot so as I always preach be prepared with plenty of sun block, hat, cover shirt and proper walking shoes. If you are hiking you will want to make sure you have all these things PLUS plenty of water. It is a dry heat like Arizona, so it’s not miserable but it can get very hot and you want to be prepared so that your trip is not ruined by dehydration. There is so much history in Greece, especially if you are familiar with the bible, you will be able to see and piece together many magical journeys and events.
The people in Greece are so very friendly and they love that you have come to stay on one of their lovely islands. They are happy to show you around, to dine with you to offer local wine suggestions.
The jewelers in Greece are so unique because each shopped is privately owned and the jewelry is all hand-made usually by the shop owner so it makes each piece unique to that shop. You can always find something you will like there.
The Greek symbol that you will see often is a symbol of love and friendship. 🙂
We will be going back in August/September of 2012 with the same Sail company, Seascapes: http://seascape-sail.com/home/ This time we will get to enjoy a bit more time in Santorini after the sail and we are going to spend time in Turkey too this is after our 5 week safari in East Africa.
Greece is one place you cannot miss in life and if you have the stomach for it you should def see the islands by sail. It’s so magical I can’t even tell you the wonderful time you will have. Some of the beaches are topless so don’t be surprised by it, it’s totally normal for that area of the world. IF you have your kids with you it’s just something you should be aware of.
If you stay on an island you can walk most of it, or rent a small car or a scooter.
Many restaurants have outdoor seating and its wonderful to sit and have dinner and watch the sun set over the water in the evenings and just take your time eating and enjoying your companion and or friends.
Greece is NOT as expensive as you might think and the sailing option is actually a very reasonable deal which includes your meals and the crew.
Greece is a magical place. It can give you all the feelings of love, luxury, relaxation and family. It can render you speechless the first time you see that sunset in Santori and hear and think about all the history that surrounds this amazing country.
Patmos is the Island, besides Santorini that I found the most memorable. It has so much biblical history to it and many very religious people worship there, and take the history of the bible very seriously. If you are a religious person you may truly find this breathtaking.
Athens is large, and crowded and polluted. It was not a place I would have stayed in and though the people there are nice it’s not really a place that we like to vacation. The outer Islands are much nicer, friendlier, less inhabited and you are able to appreciate more history by visiting with the people and seeing more of the terrain.
* NOTE: Be careful who your companions are when you travel, no matter where you travel as they can ruin a vacation and cause you much embarrassment. This trip proved to be the last straw for at least one of our travel companions. There is a lot of partying and drinking that goes on in Greece and if you have travel partners that cannot handle their booze it could put you in a situation that you still find yourself embarrassed about years later. Remember as with any vacation, trip, weekend away etc. that you are a guest to their country, city, town, and though you want to party and have fun it would not be proper to air your dirty laundry in public while drunk; making a scene and a fool of yourself and your travel companions because you cannot hold your temper, your tongue or your liquor. You don’t want to spend years making apologies for others because they are immature and rude. Have fun but not at the expense of others. Fortunalty the lady who runs the sailing operation is happy to have us back especially knowing we no longer travel with such people.
I could see Greece over and over again. Brad and I are going there again in 2012 as I have said and we are really looking forward to it. Santorini is our favorite place. It is romantic and fun, and filled with this great spirit of family and friendship. I know you will love every aspect of your time here.
ROME: Though we only spent one day here we did a small sense of it. It was crowded and filled with Merchants on every corner. You had to pay to get into the Colosseum and there were so many tourists there you could barely walk around. The history there is amazing and I was in awe to see the architecture of this place. I had wished we could have gone into Vatican City but it was not in the cards for us on this trip. Perhaps next time. I am not a huge fan of Italy, I have been there twice and on another post you will see my views on that. Though many people love Italy and could visit it over and over again, it is not my favorite place to travel.