After a month of traveling through Europe, my husband and I were so excited to end our European Summer in Greece. I’ve always had a love for this Mediterranean country, I heard a lot about it through my Greek friends and there was no way I could settle for just hearing all about it and not visit this country to see myself.
Another reason why we planned to keep Greece on our list to see that summer because our very good friends’ wedding was in Santorini. Andrew and I couldn’t miss their wedding especially we were part of it. This got us even more pumped to see Greece with our friends! Our plan for this trip was to pass by Athens for couple days, and then head to Santorini for the wedding.
As soon as we landed in Athens Airport, we took a taxi straight to where our Airbnb was located at 5 Klisthenous 10552, Athens, Greece right in the centre. We have booked this standard private ensuite a while back and it was €54.80 per night. We got situated, freshened up and then we went out exploring the city.
We couldn’t function before we have our first meal in, so we stopped at the Monastiraki Square, which is also know for the most visited Flea Market. You’ll find whatever your heart desires, from food of all types, little shops from handmade jewellery, paintings, carpets, antiques, vintage vinyl, Athenian inspired clothing and the list goes on. The Monastiraki flea market is the place to be on Sunday when it seems every Athenian is there either buying or selling. You have to get there early because after about 11am the crowd becomes impossible and if you want to take a break, there are few tables available at the many cafes and restaurants in the area.
And that led us to our first meal ever in Athens and Greece in general. We stopped at one of the restaurants in the centre where we had Greek Salad which I loved, traditional Greek Souvlaki and grilled vegetables topped with yogurt sauce (not a fan of it). After our meal, we continued exploring a little bit of the city wandering around the shops and cafes and bought some souvenirs. Athena vibes are very chill I would say besides the crowds in the city, but there is really nothing much to it other than becoming the leading city of Ancient Greece. It was an honour to see where the ancient history takes place and learn all about it.
Athens Guide for 2 days
- Monastiraki Square / Flea Market
- Little Kook (A Fairy-Tale Inspired Cafe in Psyrri, Athens)
- Acropolos of Athens tour $C46 per person, includes; Theatre of Dionysus and Dionysus Sanctuary, Parthenon, Propylaea gateway and the Temple of Athena Nike, surrounding sights such as Mars Hill, the Odeon of Herodes Atticus and the ancient agora, and also you’ll have the chance to Soak up city views from the acropolis’ summit and hear fascinating facts about the citadel’s ruins.
- 360 Cocktail Bar; a rooftop for drinks and dinner in the city facing the Acropolis of Athens (reservations required).
- Bolivar Beach Bar (spent the whole day there swimming, watching the sunset, eating lots of fruits, drinks, and eating lunch at one of their resturants)
- Lukumades ( you have to put this on your list, the BEST lukumades we’ve ever had! for those who do not know what this is, fried donut holes topped and filled with any sauce your heart desires! Andrew Got pistachio filled and topped lukumades, and I got Nutella filled). Located at 21, Eolou & Aghias Irinis st.
- Savvas Restaurant ( if you’re looking for the best of the best gyros in Athens, this is the place! recommendations by locals!)
The Dreamiest Island, Santorini
What can I say about this peace of heaven on earth, the dreamiest most magical island I have yet to see. The moment you arrive, Santorini will blow your mind and will continue to do so until you pack your bags and head back home.
I will forever cherish the memories and the moments spent on this all White Island. Santorini is incredibly unique and known for its U shaped island and the stunning views over caldera and the neighbouring volcano. This island is known to be the most visited island in Greece and it requires some proper planning and research to make sure you see the best of what this island has to offer and also to make sure that your flights and ferries to Santorini are properly booked. If you are coming from Europe or The States, you have to fly to Athens first, and then you have to take a 5-8 hour ferry ride to Santorini.
You’re trip will be what you make it. If you want to see famous, Instagram picture perfect Santorini views, Anywhere on the coastline of Oia, Fira Firostefani, and Imerovigli are the locations to stay in (keep in mind that it is super expensive, and it is far from the beaches). The views are unlike any other and especially in the evenings, you will see why they say the best sunsets in the whole world are seen from these locations. However, if you don’t want to stay in any of the places above and you just want to relax by the sea you can stay at Kamari, Perivolos and Persia towns. These beach side towns are much more reasonable in price and you have the best beaches in Santorini right there; what could you ask for more, right?!!
Where Did We Stay? Like I mentioned before that I incorporated Santorini in our list to see that summer because Andrew and I both were part of our friends wedding Jona and Priscilla. It was a great opportunity for us to finally travel and explore this island with our very close friends, Leah and David Sarnouk. They were invited to the wedding and we were so happy that they were able to make it! They are from Montreal, Canada, and we couldn’t be any happier to plan Santorini trip together! For that reason, we agreed to book our Airbnb in Fira. It is the capital of the island, and it is known for its nightlife, restaurants, shops and the buzz in general! We stayed in Pithos Apartments an entire home for four people, that was hosted by Giannis Roussos. Giannis and his entire family were very friendly and made us feel like we were at home. The place was great and clean, he always helped us with directions, and he owns motorcycles and cars that you can rent, which was a plus for us!
What we did during the day?
We picked up coffee and some baked delicacies from the bakery right beside us in Fira, and then we drove up to Oia (25 min away from our place). This spot is Absolutely magic, despite the handful of tourists, it’s surrounded with beautiful scenery that unfolds right before your eyes. We couldn’t believe what our eyes were seeing, streets full of typical white houses topped with blue rooftops, narrow streets, and balconies full of flowers. As we were walking through the city, we stopped at little shops on the way and bought souvenirs, took lots of pictures and admired the views with the sun over us.
Where to eat?
Strogili Restaurant-Trust me on this one, best food with an impeccable sunset views. You can reserve for dinner if you don’t stay, but book ahead!
Chill Greek frozen yogurt- the best and freshest yogurt and toppings you’ll ever have in Fira.
Mario’s restaurant- right be the black sand beach in monolithos. We went there for the pre-wedding dinner party. Great good and beach waves at night!
Gyros – from basically anywhere! It’s pretty cheap and good.
Erotolritos – insane Variety of baked delicacies! It’s incredibly good family run business.
Visit the red beach, trust me on this one too. it’s a pretty incredible site and unique beach you’ll ever Experience . You actually will have to walk through rocks, up hill and down hill just to get to the beach. (Don’t be frightened but there will be times where huge rocks will keep on falling so you have to be careful). You will also swim with different size of fish around you !
If you are into clubbing and bar hoping, Fira is the place. When they say this place is the buzz with overly crowded people @4 am, they really mean it! People just want to party and dance that’s for sure! Koo Club is the most visited, specious outdoors with different levels to it. If you’re that type of person who walks into a very small bar, overly crowded and so difficult to pass by or dance, and yet still enjoys it, 2 brothers bar it is!
Magical Wedding, Venestsanos Winery
A Wedding in Santorini? A friends wedding? Oh and you’re part of the wedding? Ahhhh that is such a magical and fun vibes that can’t be described! The natural beauty of the island makes Santorini the ultimate haven to celebrate a wedding, and its even more special when its your friends wedding! It is most definite the WOW factor to witness a breathtaking wedding, with the perfect backdrop overlooking caldera, the most stunning sky colours, and sunsets. Watching our friends get married, filled our hearts with so much joy and It was an honour to stand beside them. We tried to soak in all the beauty that we were surrounded with ,which left us in awe, thats for sure.
Besides the heat, the rush, the tiredness, sleepless eyes, and pictures all day, we managed to pull through the day. I won’t go into details, but you know what happens at weddings, we danced until we dropped, Literally! I could say it was one of the best weddings I’ve ever been to and part of just yet! It’s so true to say that Santorini is one of the most magical and romantic wedding destination you will ever have (consider this if you’re planning your wedding).