Honeymoon Photos: Greece

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Hi! Earlier this week I shared our France honeymoon photos! Now I'd love to share some from Greece, if you'd like to see ;-) We went to Santorini, the Greek island famous for its sunsets. The island was breathtaking, with dramatic cliffs, whitewashed houses and a sparkling sea as far as the eye could see.

For the first few days we stayed in an apartment in the town of Oia, which is the most popular town. Even though it was the start of off-season, the island was still packed, but having our little home in the center of it all to hide away in was a big perk. The apartment owners have a restaurant next door, and every morning they'd bring us fresh bread for breakfast. An even bigger perk!

The afternoon we landed we were starving, and Brian ordered the most delicious stuffed squid. It was such a beautiful, unique pink color, I insisted he take a picture. But he was so hungry, it was already half gone! 

I mentioned it before, we don't want to stay anywhere without a little, private balcony anymore. It's such a game changer. 

Everywhere you turned you'd see cute couples taking photos of each other ... so we decided to do the same :-)

Before our trip a friend had recommended Atlantis Books, and it turned out to be one of the coolest places we've ever seen. We found ourselves back there again and again. The book store is located in the basement of one of Santorini's white houses, and it was started by young American and European bibliophiles who wanted to create a haven for readers and writers in one of the most beautiful, remote, places in the Mediterranean. The staff (which rotates ever few months) makes all the shelves and even sleeps in the store. It's such a cool place!

The cutest stray pups were everywhere. It took everything in us not to bring one home. 

There are lots and lots of wineries in Santorini, ranging from mom and pop stops to big, commercial establishments that sell their wines internationally. One of the most well-known is Santo Winery, which has panoramic views of the island and the best tasting boards. We spent almost an entire day there, the grounds are gorgeous, and came home with our favorites because wine is the best souvenir (but unfortunately never lasts long :-) 

The sunsets views are amazing, but getting to see it is intense! People camp out nearly two hours before, every night!, to get the best spot (you can see how crowded it gets here). 

The start of our terrible sunburns and tan lines... that Santorini sun is no joke! 

Our beloved kebab sandwiches, we miss you! 

One day we rented an ATV for 24 hours (for 30 euros!) and drove it around the entire island (from the very, very top to the very, very bottom!). I was terrified almost the entire time (the roads are narrow, the cliffs are steep, the water is right there), but it was one of the coolest experiences of my life. We took it to the red beach, to a lighthouse, to the highest point of the island. It was a dream. 

We met some of the sweetest people in Santorini. A new friend, Demetrius, told us to stop at his favorite spot, The Good Heart, at some point during the day and tell the owner, Mrs. Anna, he says hi. He said that while the restaurant is far from his home, he goes weekly, and that it's some of the best local food around. It was so, so delicious (Mrs. Anna was the cutest), and Mrs. Anna's husband makes his own wine, which was also delicious, so we bought some home...

Since the roads and are so windy and there are no lights, I wanted to make sure we got back to Oia before it got dark. Brian drove at the speed of light to get us home, and I was able to snap some pretty sunset shots while fearing for my life. 

When we got back to our apartment there were a bunch of teenagers jumping from building to building. We went to the roof to cheer them on. 

There were donkeys everywhere! They're used for transportation and to take supplies to restaurants and shops. 

So many gyros...

We took a bus to Santorini Brewing Company (known for its "donkey beers"), and because you can't buy beer to drink inside the brewery (only free tastings), bought bottles and drank them outside with other American tourists, while Brian played music on his phone. As we were leaving and discussing which beers we liked most, I said "So you like Crazy, and I like White," which Brian thought was hilarious and we kept repeating after. We've been trying to find a way to get our hands on the donkey beers in Chicago since.

Frozen Greek yogurt, yum! 

For the end of the trip, we stayed in the town of Fira and splurged and stayed at a resort. We've rarely stay at a hotel while on vacation together (we never have abroad!), so this was a big treat. We ordered room service and watched a show on our iPad since the TV channels were all in Greek ;-)

We took the breakfast buffet very seriously. Forget all that stuff I've ever said about how much we love staying in rentals or Airbnbs when we travel. How, that way, we get to really immerse ourselves in our new environment and are more apt to explore markets and neighborhoods and discover real local flavor. Hotels are amazing.

To take full advantage of the resort, we decided to stay in one day and just lay by the pool from breakfast until dinner. And that we did. We only got up to order drinks and lunch, which we ate in bed, poolside. 

Weeks before we went we made a reservation for dinner on our last night at The Athenian House in the town of Imerovigli. It was truly the best dining experience of our lives. The view was out of this world, and every one of our dishes was better than the next. We met the owner, who found out we were on our honeymoon, and treated us to dessert and three rounds of after dinner drinks. He gave us sweet compliments and marriage advice, we left hugging each other, promising we'd be back one day.

On the last day we hiked from Fira to Oia. It was very hot and took more than three hours (it made us miss our hotel pool!), mostly because I kept stopping to take photos of the stunning views.

That night we watched our final Arsenal game at a bar...

... and ate fried cheese and fries for dinner before catching our midnight flight home. 

Overall, our honeymoon was a truly magical trip, and we felt so lucky. A huge thank you to all our wedding guests and friends, who made it possible. And Brian, you are simply the loveliest travel partner. I didn't think I could love you any more, but somehow, impossibly, I do.

As for you, Greece, we miss you so already! xoxo


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