Monday, 20 May 2013
|My Favorite Picture of all!|
|Santorini from the water|
“Thirty euros, that’s ten more than the bus costs.”
Coming out of the subway, we had the most jaw dropping experience as everywhere we looked, there were grand old cathedrals, lovely water fountains and beautiful old buildings.
We had fun wandering around, talking to people and just enjoying the day. This is a very green city, and it was a beautiful sunny day that reminded us so much of home. The people were so friendly, and comfortable, we both agreed that this is a city that we would very much like to return to.
The view from the subway was beautiful, as this is a very green town, with lush trees, grass and flowers. The vegetation and climate reminded us very much of home.
We stepped into a coffee shop for lunch, and decided instead to feast on the delicious German pastries. I had tiramasou and Jordan had a giant puffed pastry. I’m not sure what it was about her, but two different German men old enough to be her grandfather decided that she needed taking care of. The first gentleman went and found her a fork, and the second went and got her some napkins. Although neither of them spoke English, we had lots of fun laughing with them as Jordan enjoyed her very messy dessert.
Saturday, 18 May 2013
|Ancient Theatre; facing the stage, with the seating built into the hill|
After leaving Thira, we toured the entire island, stopping at lovely beaches, and gazing over amazing rock cliffs.
|On the road from Faros|
We headed off to see yet another ancient village, Akrotiri. This is very different from Thira, as the modern village has been built right around it. Akrotiri was completely covered by the volcanic eruption in the 1600s, and wasn't discovered until the 1860s. It is thought that Akrotiri was originally settled as early as 3000 BC. Wow! Imagine that! We are looking at some verrrrry old buildings! Yes, Jordan, even older than grandma!!
After taking a break to lie around the pool for the afternoon, we decided to head out to the opposite tip of the island to watch the sunset. The village of Oia is supposed to be the best place on the entire island to do this. However, we had no idea that it was quite a long way, since we had mistakenly believed that this was the village that we had walked to yesterday from Fira. After driving for what seemed forever, we finally found the town. After parking, we found a good place to watch the sunset, but sadly, the clouds moved in, and it was a rather disappointing show!
Even more surprising was discovering that the town that we thought we had walked to yesterday was not this town at all! And here I always thought that it was Bryce's fault when we got lost on holidays!!
Thursday, 16 May 2013
|houses built on the caldera|
|Zigzag road to Thira|
Wednesday, 15 May 2013
We were up bright and early in order to pack and return the rental car by 11:00 so that we wouldn’t have to pay an extra day. We had a few hours to kill before the ferry came, so we did some last minute souvenir shopping. Yes, our lucky families are in for some lovely Greek treasures! They have a great service here, for one and a half euros they take care of your suitcases so that you don’t have to drag them all over town while you are waiting for the ferry.
Arriving in Santorini was very exciting, as we sailed along the entire length of the island before finally pulling into port. It is a long crescent shaped island, with incredible red cliffs, and the houses way up high overlooking the sea. Santorini is a volcanic island, and every time that the volcano erupts, it completely changes the shape of the island. The last time it erupted, part of the island sunk, creating three separate islands. This is where the lost city of Atlantis is supposed to be! Fortunately, it hasn’t erupted here for hundreds of years, so we should be okay.
We are staying at the Boathouse, a lovely little hotel in the seaside village of Kamari. Our room opens right onto the pool, with a black volcanic sand beach and the ocean beyond. What a view! We feel like we have landed in a magic place!
|The view from our room, with the ocean behind the trees.|
|Our Hotel: The Boathouse|
However, we did find another beautiful beach, and this time, there was a sign to tell us where we were! The road to this beach zig zagged through the mountains, on a narrow road with no shoulders and hair pin turns. Every time a big truck or bus came toward us, we pulled over to the edge as close as we could get and stopped so that the truck could get by. It’s a good thing, because they all tend to drive well into the oncoming lane, and given their size, they would definitely win in a game of chicken! Over the cliff would be no way to end our holiday!
We stopped to ask another old lady if we could take her picture, and she shook her head “no”, but asked if we would give her a ride. I NEVER pick up strangers, but what the heck, this is an island, and it really does feel like everyone is family here. I took her down the road a few miles, and let her out. Thinking that she would let me take her picture now, I asked again, and she still shook her head “no.” Oh well, it was still nice to do a good turn, but I really did want her picture! (sigh)
At the end of our drive, we went to the end of the road near our hotel to see a resort that was halfway built before all the locals here put an end to it. This is a huge piece of property, overlooking a beautiful beach, with many sprawling buildings, and every room opening out onto the ocean. The problem is, that someone forged a document telling the developer that they had the deed to the property. At the time, the government here was a dictatorship, so the locals couldn't do anything to stop the illegal building on what was supposed to be protected land. Once the government changed, the locals were successful in putting a stop to the project, and now it sits abandoned. Very sad all the way around, it is now a blight on the landscape, and I can't help but feel sorry for the poor people who much have wasted millions building something that is now just waiting to be torn down.
Tuesday, 14 May 2013
Monday, 13 May 2013
We got to witness a real Greek wedding at the church in the middle of town. It was so cool to see the bride being escorted to the church complete with violins and her entire family following her.