Our European Adventure this summer had two parts…Rome and a Mediterranean Cruise. The first stop on our cruise was Santorini, Greece…AKA, HEAVEN! For those of you who do not know about this beautiful wonderland, Santorini is the largest of the Greek islands and was formed by a massive volcanic eruption in the 16th century.
I am not ashamed to admit that I first heard of this gorgeous island when watching the movie, The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, many years ago. It soon became #1 on my bucket list, but I honestly never thought I would get to check it off the list.
I was wrong…
This July my hubby and I celebrated 5 years of marriage and my 30th birthday. To celebrate we went on a European Adventure that included 3 days in Rome, Italy and a Mediterranean cruise. To hear more about our time in Rome and the booking details, go to the travel link in the menu above.
After saying our goodbyes to Rome, we took a train down to the cruise port at Civitavecchia. We then walked from the train station to the cruise loading dock. I would recommend taking a taxi instead, it was a longer walk than we expected in crazy July heat with luggage in tow.
Once aboard our ship, we had a day at sea. This was perfect timing because we were POOPED from all our travels in Italy. This day also happened to be my birthday. We took this day to rejuvenate, get a massage, relax, and get excited for our first stop…Santorini!!!
Santorini is made of extremely steep cliffs. The main port for cruise ships is at the bottom of the cliffs in the capital city of Fira. You have to take a tender boat from your cruise ship to the port. From there, you will need to climb the cliffs up to the main island. There are several ways to do this: walk the 600 steps, take a bus up the windy cliff side, take a cable car, or ride a donkey up the steps. I know people who chose the donkey route and said it was the scariest ride of their lives because the steps are steep and the donkeys are constantly slipping. We booked a tour through Costco ahead of time so we had a nice bus waiting for us. This is the way to go, if you can (although you might want to keep your eyes closed on some of the hairpin turns- the roads were made for donkeys, not cars!)
First stop on our tour, was a Greek monastery with a beautiful view. Just a quick photo-op.
Next, we went to Santo Winery. The views from this winery are INCREDIBLE and the wine is delicious too. Our tour came with a full tasting and food pairing…but really you are there for the view.
If you think that is pretty, you haven’t seen anything yet!
The tour saved the best for last…Oia, Santorini!
When you see pictures of Greece, this is the place you will see. The colors are a feast for the eyes, and pictures can not do it justice. I did my best, but this is one you truly have to see for yourself. Oia is proof that God is a painter. 🙂
I did not want to leave this beautiful place. Unfortunately, we only had about 8 hours in heaven, but it was enough to fulfill my dreams and then some. One day I would love to go back and spend a whole week in the Greek islands. The food is phenomenal, the people are full of life, and the views are breathtaking. I can’t even imagine what a sunset on this island would look like!
Oh, and how did we get back down to the port??
Yea, I’m not crazy! Just because I checked off my #1 bucket list item, did not mean I was ready to kick the bucket! Down the cable car we went. 🙂
Stay tuned for the next stop on our Mediterranean Cruise…