LEGIT THE BEST TRIP OF MY LIFE!!!
College spring break goals have been met and I couldn’t be happier. 🙂 🙂 🙂
My friends and I spent a FANTABULOUS week in Greece from April 2-9 where we visited Mykonos, Santorini, and Athens in that exact order. It was gorgeous, breathtaking, and packed full of adventure. Not to mention very relaxing! A healthy dose of down time was balanced with plenty of sightseeing and exploring, making this the ideal spring break getaway.
WARNING: This is a legnthy post. But ya gurl organized each day, activity, and restaurant in bold so you can skim through, skip, or do whatever your little heart desires. **IMPORTANT TO NOTE: My most adventurous day was Friday April 7 😉 ***
SUNDAY APRIL 2: Flew ALL freaking day. Landed in Mykonos at a ripe 9:15 p.m. where a driver picked us up to take us to our Air bnb. We stayed at “Aphrodite” Mykonean Suite in Ornos beach and it was just perfect for 5 girls to stay for a few days comfortably. I even got my own bed and balcony in the master bedroom! 🙂 #holla
MONDAY APRIL 3: We hit up Barcode (which was within walking distance of our Air bnb) for breakfast. That morning I was starving so I ordered an egg white omelette AND a chocolate waffle loaded with nutella and bananas (hehe splurge). And when I say loaded, I mean loaded. That thing was DRENCHED. ❤ #ugh
After, we went into town and shopped till we dropped on all the touristy things i.e. postcards, anklets, trinkets, you name it. We saw Little Venice (a cute strip of restaurants and shops along the water front) and the giant windmills (look ’em up, they’re pretty cool), took lots of pics, then headed on over to the first place we thought had falafel (I was seriously craving it) only to realize they didn’t have any :(. So I settled for a surprisingly delicious Greek salad served on top of warm, gold corn pita bread instead.
After lunch, we chilled at our place then grabbed dinner at a spot near our Airbnb where I got some fresh cod and garlic stuffed mushrooms. 🙂 Then it was a night out on the town to explore the night life Mykonos is so famous for. And yes, it was very fun. 😉
IMPORTANT TO NOTE: Mykonos’ night life primarily revolves around the summer season when it is most populated so not many bars or clubs were open. Even though it was the off season, however, we still managed to make due and have a GREAT time. 🙂
TUESDAY APRIL 4: We rose bright and early for a boat day trip to Delos! For those who don’t know, Delos is a small Greek island/archaeological site near Mykonos. It was a major religious center and supposed birthplace of Apollo during the 1st millenium B.C. The site is full of ruins of houses (one of which was Cleopatra’s!), temples, and one of the oldest theatres in Greece– The Oeatpon Theatre. IT WAS SO. FREAKING COOL. 10/10 would recommend.
For lunch, we hit up Nice n Easy Organic Bistro where yet again, I couldn’t find falafel so I ordered a massive entrée vegan salad and a second entrée of their vegetarian Greek penne pasta (yes, I ate breakfast too. I’ve just been trying to eat until I’m absolutely, no doubt about it full lately. The pescatarian lifestyle is naturally very low in calories PLUS I run a lot. Eating until you’re full is a healthy practice! Something I used to not be so good about).
Since we were all surviving on practically 3 or less hours of sleep from the night before, the rest of the day was very chill. This included taking a nap, cooking dinner for the first time in a while (this made me SO happy! 🙂 ALSO I highly recommend buying groceries and doing this every so often when traveling, it saves so much money), and watching the Hangover whilst munching on popcorn, Greek yogurt, and olives.
WEDNESDAY APRIL 5: Goodbye Mykonos, hello Santorini! We boarded a ferry to Santorini which was a smart choice because it was cheap and fast. It took us approx. an hour and a half to get there, had snacks, and a bathroom so wasn’t bad at all! Once there, a driver picked us up and took us to our Air bnb called Rossi’s house in Perissa beach. I highly HIGHLY recommend this place. When we left for the day, they came in and did our dishes, gave us fresh towels, and made our beds. We weren’t even expecting a maid service! Bless their hearts, it was such a nice treat.
After dropping off our bags, claiming our beds, and poppin’ some champagne for a toast to our second island of the trip, we head into downtown determined to finally get some falafel. By the time we got there, we were so famished we decided to eat at the first restaurant we saw, Mama’s. Sadly, they didn’t have falafel, but it did have the most amazing eggplant salad (first time trying it/its now my new fave thing) and grilled salmon fillet with fresh veggies and rice. 🙂
Post meal, we explored downtown for a bit then did the smart thing and rented a car for the remainder of our stay. That night, we had a junk food/girls night in and watched The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants whilst drooling over Costas b/c why not?
THURSDAY APRIL 6: A chill day, indeed. We had a slow morning then drove around Perissa aimlessly until we found the closest beach. OF WHICH happened to be a BLACK SAND BEACH! Omg, it was gorgeous. Across the way was Tranquilo, which I can confirm was probably one of, if not the, best restaurants I’ve ever eaten at in my entire life.
SPOILER ALERT: They had falafel!!!
Luckily, it wasn’t just me who was starving this time, but most of my friends were too! We split an entrée Mexican salad, I got my own hummus dip and homemade bread, and we each got massive falafel stuffed pitas. PLUS, the whole thing cost 13 euros each. Food in Greece is so damn cheap. And good! Probs one of the key things that made me fall in love with this country so much.
…I was also the only one to eat all my food. 😉 hehe #foodieforlife
Post beach, we chilled at the Air bnb then did some more aimeless driving in search of the best spot to watch the sunset on the island. Along the way, we discovered FalafeLAND where I tried their tabbouleh, hummus, pita chips (which are incredible) and a free falafel! EVERYTHING WAS SOOOO GOOD! We then found our sunset destination, the houses where scenes from The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants was filmed, then headed back to the Air bnb for a part 2 girls night screening of Mama Mia.
FRIDAY APRIL 7: The most adventurous day of my life. We payed only 20 euros to take a boat to Nea Kameni which is an active volcano off the coast of Santorini. We hiked up the volcano, enjoyed the views, and smelled the sulfate-infused air. I even got to stick my hand under a rock the tour guide showed us and felt a crazy rise in temperature from the molten lava brewing below.
After the hike, we sailed about 20 minutes to the volcanic hot springs for a swim! The water near the hot springs was too shallow so the boat docked maybe 20 feet away. We had to jump into the icy Mediterranean Sea (I swear it felt like knives stabbing me all over) to swim over to the hot springs which ended up being more lukewarm instead of hot but still nice!
On the ground floor of the springs were massive pockets of clay I enjoyed squishing between my toes and even running up my arms and on my hands. It was truly a breathtaking, once in a life time experience. I also swam like Michael Phelps in b/w the boat and the hot springs (there and back) because the water was too cold to handle and I def wanted that part to be over as soon as possible.
Once the tour was over and we docked back at the port, we noticed a little old man was advertising 5 euro trips via donkey back up to the main city. There was no hesitation as I swung my leg around my donkey’s (I named him Chestnut) back and rode the 10 minute slope up to the top where I was gifted with a picture of myself having a grand ‘ol time on the back of dat ass.
…and it was at this moment that I realized Europe has changed me. I have legitimately become so much more adventurous and laid back since being out here. The Rebi back in the States would NEVER in a million years hike up a volcano, swim through freezing waters, bathe in clay, or ride a donkey. ESPECIALLY not all on the same day!
Post inner awakening, it was back to FalafeLAND where I ordered a Greek Box. This masterpiece consisted of 6 falafels, olive tapenade, Greek salad, and their homemade Pita chips. After the feast, we rested at our Air bnb then got dressed up and drove back into town where we treated ourselves to fish pedicures at Dr. Fish Spa— which was another AMAZING deal, mind you!
For 30 euros, we got 30 minutes of ticklish heaven and a glass of wine. And being the avid runner that I am, I def had the most fish sucking the dead skin off my feet because it was that built up. The poor fishies. They really went to town.They did a good job though because its already 4 days later and my feet are still hella soft! 🙂 #winning
After our pedicures, we treated ourselves to a nice dinner at restaurant with a beautiful view of the sunset where we ordered a shared appetizer platter that consisted of tzatziki sauce, Greek olives, fresh cucumber and tomato, fried tomato and zucchini, and warm pillows of spanakopita. BRB drooling remembering this heavenly creation.
For my main dish I ordered a Greek specialty, Giouvetsi, which consisted of fresh shrimp, orzo pasta, tomato, and onion. IT WAS THA BOMB!!! I even knew it was before tasting it because when I placed my order, our waiter’s eyes grew wide and he kissed his fingers swearing it was one of the best things on the menu.
SATURDAY APRIL 8: Woke up at 5:15 a.m. and flew an hour to Athens. We landed at 9:20 a.m. and got to our Air bnb by 10. We stayed at a place near the airport for our early flight the next day…but for those reading, I recommend staying in the city center instead. Although the trip to and from the airport was quick, allowing us to sleep in a bit Sunday when we left, the service was odd. The driver came late every time and the host demanded we give her our names, address, country of origin, and passport number before we left. It was very sketch…
THAT ASIDE, we started our day in Athens by getting onto the metro and riding into the city center. We looked around for a bit then decided to scope out a good place for lunch. Since there were so many places to choose from, I decided to narrow down my choices by choosing whichever place had hummus first.
None. Of. Them. Did.
I literally asked 5 different places and each responded with a solemn, “No, sorry.”
What the heck, Athens?!
The deciding factor was when I asked a Greek waiter at yet another Greek restaurant if they had hummus. He furrowed his brow.
“It’s like a chickpea purée you can dip things in.” I explained.
“Chickpeas? Chickpeas? We have a chickpea salad! With fresh quinoa and avocado.”
After a subdued eye roll I decided this was the place to eat because I was too hungry to keep asking around and the salad sounded bomb. And it was. But I was still appalled that this man had no idea what freakin hummus was.
Post lunch, we were going to head over to the Parthenon, but I stopped for vegan pumpkin soup and an apple, lemon, ginger, and spinach juice instead at a cute place I cannot recall the name of! 🙂 It was deeeelicious. ❤
SIDE NOTE : Athens is full of juice bars with açai bowls and plenty of vegeterian/vegan options. Mykonos and Santorini also had a good amount of vegeterian/vegan options but in Athens they are literally EVERYWHERE.
En route to the Parthenon we walked along the Apostolou Pavlou which is the most scenic route to the ruins. With an international student ID, the Parthenon and Acropolis were free! And after the ruins, with that same student ID, the Acropolis Museum was free! What a great, cheap day. I literally only spent on food. 😉
That morning I snagged a tourist map of Athens at the airport while waiting for my bag. Since my phone doesn’t work without wifi, I navigated us through all the touristy sites of Athens on that thing (I feel like my dad would be very proud of me for this lmao) and selected a recommended restaurant that was right near the Acropolis Museum they had recommended for dinner, Diogenis.
I also highly recommend this place. I ordered another FANTABULOUS eggplant salad ❤ and vegetable spaghetti. Their bread also comes out with an incredible herb infused cream cheese spread. So good. So worth it. Especially since my meal total was only 14 euros. Not bad at all!
SUNDAY APRIL 9: Flew home. Kissed Greece goodbye. And ate my last falafel in the sky overlooking the beautiful Mediterranean Sea.
It was a great trip. Probably the best trip of my life. And I would do it all over again in a heart beat. Santorini was by far my favorite island because there was so much to do, see, and taste. And all for a good price! My back and arms tanned (strangely enough) and I really felt myself thrive on a level I’m not used to.
I feel so fortunate to be given this opportunity to travel. This weekend I already have another trip planned and I cannot wait to go. Can you guess where it is? 😉
Until then, guess you’ll have to wait for next week’s post. See ya then!