A few things before getting started here…
1) Check out my guest post on Kendra‘s blog Like a Bird on living inspired. Leave comments over there, I’d love to know what you think about it!
2) This summer at Warped Tour I interviewed a whole ton of bands, and now that I’m home my interviews are starting to go up on the CONFRONT website. Currently you can check out my talk with the lead singer of Ill Scarlett!
Okay, here we go! I’ve got one more post about the details of my Greece trip to share along with some notes from my journal that I kept while I was there. I feel like I’m re-living the end of my trip all over again, so I may get a little nostalgic. Scratch that, I AM nostalgic, right now.
A few years ago, while I was still in high school, my brother practically BEGGED me to just get up and go to Europe already. I was always like ‘yeah, okay, I’m going!’ but it was only this year that I actually did. Why I didn’t do it early I have no idea. Maybe it wasn’t time yet, maybe I wouldn’t have appreciated it the same way. What I can say though is that if you’ve never traveled abroad- truly abroad- to Europe or Asia or the Middle East- then you HAVE to. Whether you do it alone or with some best friends, it will change you. There is something inside that will ultimately be different.
Greece: Day 16 [August 23rd 2011… Written the following day.]
On my second full day in Santorini we finally headed to the beach. We spent the day at Perissa, one of the famous black beaches. I mean, the sand all over Santorini is black, but for some reason at this beach you just DON’T WALK BAREFOOT. Don’t do it.
We also had some legit drinks made by a bartender that I totally fell in love with (he wasn’t even Greek!) and it made me fall right asleep. We ended up staying until way too late at this beach. The result?
“By 5:45 I wasn’t feeling well, so we packed up to catch the bus home. We didn’t even think about rush hour & got stuck waiting for an hour before fitting on a bus. The whole ride home we were hysterical & squished.”
I ended it rather importantly in my mind with: “I’m still getting used to the city here that’s nothing like I imagined. I’m loving this place more each day though and having fun meeting new people that live here.”
We were lucky enough to find a seat on the bus, but you can see how squished everyone is around us!
Greece: Day 17 [August 24th… Written the following day.]
The day we trekked a volcano. For real, this was THE COOLEST EXPERIENCE EVER. I nearly got trampled alive by donkeys, I got on the cutest little boat and sailed through the Caldera, I climbed up an ACTIVE VOLCANO, took a billion pictures, and then went to some hot springs where I got photos of my friends swimming in (I didn’t swim in because I forgot my contacts that day. Damn.)
“The entire thing was huge mountains of volcanic ash and rocks. We trekked the entire mountain right up to the top. It was pretty exhausting, but a great work-out. We stopped at 2 craters on our way up that are still active. The 2nd one was still smoking! After half an hour or so we had to climb back down onto the boat. I got some amazing pictures. I couldn’t stop staring out at Santorini. You can literally see every part of the island from the top of the volcano.”
That night? I visited my DREAM place. Oia, Santorini.
“It was just as I imagined Santorini to be; beautiful, peaceful & the sunset was gorgeous. We ended up taking a lot of photos and doing more shopping… It was just really lovely. Overall it was one of my favorite days on our trip.”
One of the friendlier donkeys… You can see we’re a little weary anyways. Also? We were climbing down 600 stairs.
Sailing through the Caldera..
Walking some flat volcanic land… Before it got ridiculously uphill.
Looking out (on the left) at Oia, Santorini and (to the right, not pictured) the main city, Fira.
The last stretch right to the top!
Everyone swimming into the Hot Springs (that brown water closer to the volcano)
The four of us having dinner in Oia
Greece: Day 19 [August 26th 2011… Written the following evening]
My last full day in Santorini was definitely another favorite day of mine on this trip (along with that last day on the volcano). Although my friend Kate was sick and had to sit this one out, the three of us headed out to explore some of the more remote beaches of the island.
“When we got off the bus we were basically in the middle of nowhere with no beach in sight. We wandered and followed a few other people around until we realized we had to get aboard a little speedboat that would bring us to Red Beach. We got on & had a fantastic view of Santorini’s cliffs & little surrounding islands. We noticed that the beach wasn’t very special (or red of that matter) so we stayed on the boat & went instead to the next stop which was White Beach. The sand there is black, but it’s surrounded on all sides by huge white cliffs. It was literally like a deserted island.”
Later that night the four of us got out for dinner, but Kate still wasn’t feeling good so she called it a night after we ate. The three of us decided at the last minute that we wanted to enjoy our last night so around 11 we went back out and found a little club… And ended up having the BEST time.
” We danced to the best music until 2am in the jam packed bar and only left because we knew we had to be up extra early. Santorini definitely felt like a real party place to me. We couldn’t have ended our night in a better way.”
My last words about Santorini?
“All in all, Santorini was NOT what I expected… But by the end I fell in love with the place it actually is. I saw the most beautiful sunsets over the Caldera, I trekked a volcano & saw the island from the top, and I took pictures of some of the most beautiful landscapes in the world. I definitely see myself coming back one day, if only for the breathtaking view.”
On the boat headed to White Beach!
The last sunset…
The three of us at the Tropical Bar on our last night… Holy tanned!
Greece: Day 20 [August 27th 2011… Written at 9:45pm]
A lot happened on my last day in Santorini. There was a lot of drama, a lot of “maybe we won’t get out of here” because our ferry got cancelled… But finally, we ended up heading back to Athens. The ferry was the most ridiculous thing of my life to say the least, but the one thing that really stood out worth sharing from this post? Maybe the line that I needed to re-read this whole time.
“I said goodbye to Santorini this afternoon, my dream vacation spot, after spending the last week there. I do get attached to people & things very easily, but I think there’s a reason I felt that way throughout this trip. You spend enough time in any place with the right people and it can begin to feel like home.”
The four of us in Athens the following day (our LAST day) having a huge lunch! Om noms.
I still miss Greece, I miss it as I write about it and every time I look back on my pictures. It was a thrilling adventure for me, it really was. Each day brought something new for all of us, and I think I’m closer to these girls than ever before. The way we planned our trip fell so perfectly in line with what we NEEDED from it. We did everything we wanted to do, we took chances and we just had an amazing time. So yeah, it makes sense to miss it.
And now? I can’t wait to get back on a plane.