On Friday, Ylenia headed back to Amsterdam because she had to work in the weekend and Lara, Shawn, Ivo and I got on a Ferry to Santorini! I’ve wanted to go to Santorini since I was (INSERT AGE HERE) and The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants came out featuring Alexis Bledel’s character spending the summer with her Grandparents in Santorini. It’s always been at the top of my list, so to say I was excited was an understatement.
We arrived in the harbor at Santorini and it was a mad house. Several boats brought hundreds of tourists to the landing area and everyone was bustling around trying to get on busses that were so full they were turning people down to ride donkeys up the mountain to their destinations. Luckily, a van from our hotel was there to pick us up, but the traffic was jam packed on the narrow, windy, back-and-forth road up the cliffs.
Once we got to our hotel we ate lunch while waiting for our rooms to be prepared. We had some really good sunbaked tomato infused bread and olives, of course.
We then got settled into our rooms. Lara’s and my room had a great view of the Santorini bay and Santorini’s famous blue and white buildings stacked on top of one another up and down cliffs. The view was made even better with our beautiful terrace with an infinity pool and hot tub.
Lara and I enjoyed our pool along with the welcome wine and yogurt that they brought us for awhile before getting cleaned up and walking around.
In Oia, the village we stayed in, the main part of town is only walking streets lined with shops, some of which were extremely high end and pricey and some really cute and affordable. We got a bit of shopping done and ran into Shawn and Ivo who told us we would meet at 8 to go to dinner.
We had dinner at a restaurant named Catch which had a rooftop terrace in a prime location to watch the sunset! It was one of the most gorgeous sunsets I have ever seen and the food and wine were wonderful. I had a pasta with shrimp and wine in a tomato based sauce and a glass of a sparkling Moscato (probably my favorite wine of the whole trip).
We returned to the hotel and Lara and I enjoyed our hot tub and pool a bit more before heading to bed.
On Saturday we attempted a the 10 mile hike to Fira, the main city of Santorini. However, I had only brought sandals, so about 2 miles in, when the path turned to climbing unsteady rocks up the cliff, I said good luck to the crew and turned around meandering back to the hotel slowly and taking a million photos, of course.
Once Lara, Ivo and Shawn returned we had lunch at a Greek Tapas place that the concierge recommended. It was fabulous. All of the produce and other ingredients were local and the dishes were delicious.
After lunch, we did a bit more relaxing and met in the evening to take a walk all together. We went the opposite direction as Lara and I had gone the day before and saw some really nice handmade Greek jewelry and art galleries. We all had a drink at the hotel bar and us three ladies were gifted really beautiful little roses by the bartender.
Sunday was our last full day in Santorini so we made sure to make the most of it. After treating ourselves to cheesecake and chocolate cake for breakfast, we went our separate ways for walks. Lara and I grabbed our cameras and strolled down the coastline taking photos before everyone else on the island woke up and cluttered the view.
It then got very hot so we made our way back to our pool and relaxed awhile before going back out to shop. We had a great shopping trip this time! We turned down a few side roads which were much less crowded and found a really nice gelatoria as well as some much different shops and a really adorable book store.
The book store, Atlantis Books, is apparently known around the world (most likely by book worms–that doesn’t include myself), but the shop was so welcoming and had so much to offer, even a strict movie watcher and magazine-only reader like myself felt compelled to wander around and even purchase a few books. I bought Bad Feminist, a compilation of essays by Roxane Gay (that I actually had read about in Elle magazine), and a journal (more my style), and Lara bought two non-fiction books written about doctors in their residencies.
After our very successful shopping trip we met Shawn and Ivo at the hotel’s gourmet restaurant for dinner. This was a very different dining experience, and I’ve got to say, it was probably my least favorite since leaving the good ole US of A. The food was unpronounceable and featured things like “fish mousse”, “truffle foam” and some weird green (orange-leaf-frozen-yogurt-topping-esque) sac filled with melon juice and topped with tomato paste. Call me uncultured, but I was really missing Momma’s homemade mac’n’cheese and Taco Bell’s Cool Ranch Doritos Loco taco in that moment. I’m quite the picky eater, so the fact that I’ve had lamb and seafood several times in the passed week amazes me. Maybe I’ll get to mushroom-paste-level someday, but Sunday July 30th, 2017 was not that day.
Monday was the day we had to sadly say goodbye to my personal heaven, Santorini, and go back to the Netherlands. We had breakfast at the hotel and packed our bags. Then, we got in a van enroute to the tiny airport in Thira. We had just beat the Amsterdam-bound crowd and got checked in and our bags checked quite quickly. Then we had to exit the building to get in line for security. The security was extremely painless. We ended up with an hour to wait. We didn’t have to spend much time finding our gate, since there are only 6, so we relaxed on the terrace where you could watch the planes land and take off.
We boarded on time and quite smoothly, and enjoyed our painless 3 1/2 hour ride back to Amsterdam.
When we were finally back home to Delft, Ivo made me spaghetti one last time. Then I unpacked from Greece and repacked to go home. I cannot believe my journey is coming to an end. It has definitely been one I will never forget.
SANTORINI PHOTO GALLERY