Once Tessa had gotten her flight out of Athens, I had no plans. I simply had to be in Rome on the 8th January. Originally, I never had a great interest in visiting the Greek Island, this was mainly because I hadn’t bothered to do any research on them beforehand. However, it was only the 16th of November, I had plenty of time to kill, yet not a lot of money to kill it with. So I jumped on the 7am ferry from Athens to Santorini Island; where I spent the next 7 days.
Being a relatively small Island (large in comparison to the rest, except Crete), it only takes about 30mins to drive tip to tip and is best seen on an ATV. However, I was saving money, so I spent most of my days relaxing around Fira, the main town on the island, and demolishing many kebabs (so many that I had a local store that knew my order!).
Although what actually made my time there, and coincidentally what make places the best, were the people, in particular a bunch of North Americans (US & Can). Together, we viewed several beautiful Santorini sunsets for the Fira cliffs, took a tour on this pirate like ship out to the Volcano (Santorini is basically the outcome of its eruption about 3600 years ago) and then to some ‘hot’ springs, which were more lukewarm water for the first foot down, then just cold, and spent a few together with cheap wine and beer!
The boat tour was worth it because of the company, the Pirates of the Caribbean theme song they played, and the dodging of donkeys you have to do to walk to and from the small old port.
Eventually, I did hire out an ATV for the day and whizzed around the island on the most windy day (almost blown off the bike), however that wasn’t a strong enough deterrent to stop me going up to the highset point on the Island, to the lighthouse at the south tip and back up to Oia on the north tip (although gloves were necessity).
Between each end there is plenty to see. There is the Red beach, which consists of a marvellous jagged red volcanic rock cliff that towers over the thin strip of beach, the White beach has a cliff face that seems to be moulded by the hands of an artist and the Black beach is the resort style, long promenade and restaurant wealthy beach; all beaches are filed by different volcanic rock types. There is also archaeological dig of the ancient settlement Thira, the lovely small town of Emporio and the resort town of Kamari are all worth a visit. But the main draw card for Santorini is Oia, where all the gorgeous little white homes are built into the cliff. The postcard scene of whitewashed buildings, and blue roof churches is the picturesque of Greece that we imagine it to be, and when the stunning warm ray of the sunsets hits, the entire cliff glows.
The only downside to my time in Santorini was the fact that it was low season, so the crowds were tiny, yet 90% of the island is closed.
I now know why people fell in love with the Greek Islands.
So after about a week on the island, and after I losing my Ipod, I headed back to Athens, bought a new jacket, and figured out my next move.