Europe Greece

POSTCARD PERFECTION

By on January 28, 2015

As we sailed to our next island Santorini I was getting major flashbacks of the last time I had been on a ferry in my first trip. Our journey time was about four hours and thankfully for us the ride this time was smooth, the last time I sailed it was choppy and people were throwing up left right and centre, it’s not fun. The ride itself is pretty boring and the seats were pretty uncomfortable, the ferry we were currently prohibited us from going above deck to get air so it was a snooze session and a bit of Suits while we stopped off at a few smaller islands before our destination. We had finally made it and slowly everyone makes there way below deck where the cars are to collect their luggage in our case our backpacks. Everyone anxiously waits til the door opens and the bridge comes down kind of reminding me from a scene out Saving Private Ryan. Once out everyone parts ways hoping to beat the rush and get to there hotel. Now like I mentioned in my previously post Apost was in charge of everything Greece, this was his motherland therefor his responsibility to make all the bookings and arrangements no questions ask. We walked around looking for our transfer in the blistering sun. As time passed everyone had seemed to have found a way to get out whilst we were the very few remaining in the entire port. As much as I just wanted to get to our hotel and swim in some water I couldn’t get angry at Apost it wasn’t entirely his fault after all I love the kid to bits. We waited around like a bad smell hopefully for some help, this woman that was there definitely wasn’t helping our cause promising us the next taxi only to give it to someone else at a better price. Eventually another hotel’s transfer was picking up some people from the port and after some convincing and a few Euro’s we jumped in this really old minibus that sounded and looked like it was on it’s last run. We hopped in and gradually climbed up the mountain. The windows were down and I could feel a gentle breeze while I gazed at the amazing distant scenery. After about 20 minutes of driving we made it to our home for the next few days. The first thing I saw was a pool and were shortly greeted by our lovely host, we sorted out the fine details and were given our keys to our palace. The first thing we did was put the air con on which everyone knows is standard procedure in the Greek Islands. Rock, paper, scissors was the next on the agenda to see who got what bed. In last place was myself who got the coffin fold out chair, Dean second who got a normal single bed and Apost who was living large scoring the double bed.

Once we had settled in it was time to get some rides to get around. OK take note here whether its a scooter or a quadbike trust me you want to hire one especially in Santorini you won’t regret it. Depending if it’s peak season it may be difficult to find a place to hire but like I said it’s well worth it to get around. The boys opted and hired two quads too soon, the problem being they were on 100cc which are the slow ones (pussies). This was a decision they would later regret after they had signed up for the slowest ones possible. So after passing a few different shops I found my beast, it was 300cc and was close to double the price compared to the ones the boys got, but hell they were twice as quick, much more safe and worth every single cent. Now for some background information about Santorini, the island itself is relatively small with only 45 minutes to get from the top to the bottom and is one of the more popular Greek Islands. It is known for honeymooners or people looking to relax and not really known for a party scene. If you have seen a postcard or nice picture from the Greek Islands it was more then likely taken from Santorini stunning views and sunsets. With our quad bikes it was time to do some exploring up first was the ‘Black Beach’. Now correct me if I’m wrong here but the sand is black due to volcanic ash which destroyed the island quite some time ago, be careful it is dam hot if you decide to walk on it barefoot. I was looking forward to the islands so much knowing I was going to be swimming in a lot of different beaches , I LOVE DAT SHIT. As the day went on we decided to get a feed and it was most likely a Gyros, they are everywhere and they are all dam good. We went home showered up and it was time to find a nice place for my first Santorini Sunset. There are plenty of places to choose from pretty much one whole side of the island has a magnificent view of the sunset. We ended up parking somewhere with not too many people and watched the sun go down. We parked our quads in line one two three as we kicked back and posed for the camera. We stayed until the sun was properly down, I’ve seen a lot of sunsets in my time but this was one was definitely up there. We rode back to our hotel and chilled out there for a while and eventually went to sleep. I had zero problems with not doing anything and enjoying the company of two of my best friends.

I woke up earlier then the boys again, I think it was due to the comfort of the coffin chair and a mosquito that lingered around my ear most the night but I made the most of it and made my way to the pool. The convenience of having some breakfast at the bar was bliss, it allowed me to fuel up without having to leave the compound. After eating I slapped on some sunscreen and lay on one of the sunbeds in the shade, I decided to delay the tanning until later as for then it was a podcast in my ear and some sleep. While I was in and out of my sleep I noticed the hotel’s cat was sitting by the pool licking on some water to keep hydrated, I thought to myself even the cats here are loving life, that relaxation in the Mediterranean even applies to the pets definitely a place I could see myself retiring but that might not be for a while. Once the boys were up and eaten we decided not to waste more of our day and made our way to the ‘Red Beach’. I can’t even tell you why this one was red but it was just red. To get there it was like a 10 minute drive from our place, it’s pretty hard to get lost with only one main road to each part of town. Now the joys of owning a quadbike unlike driving a car in the islands is that it’s quite easy to find parking and since there was three of us we could just park behind each other. Now the walk to the beach is quite rocky, be careful because it’s easy to to slip in thongs you’ll see what I mean when you get there. Now red beach was fairly busy, nothing out of the ordinary to any other beach we had been to. There are some nice rocks though above watera bit further out perfect to lay on and get some sunshine, it definitely beats laying on a towel. We stayed there for a few hours and on the way back stopped passed a an elderly Greek man who was selling necklaces that he had made from scratch. Since I needed a bracelet from this stop i carefully chose one which ended up having a tooth of some sort on it. Now if you know Apost he can be the most indecisive human being at times going through all the necklaces multiple times. Since we were there for a while we had a chat to the man who told us how he lived this very by no worries attitude selling this jewellery and moving to different places adapting that carefree lifestyle. He was a traveler and I could see somewhat of a resemblance to myself and how I want to live my life someday. Apost had eventually picked one out and we decided to head to town which we had yet to explore. We parked our quads and specifically made our way to a Gyro’s joint which Apost had previously eaten at. Whilst walking through the town I now saw where all these photos were taken. This was like the main sunset spot with houses, hotels and restaurants all in line on multiple levels all looking to where the sun sets. Though it was still daytime I knew I had to return to take a photo here just like every single person that goes to Santorini does. We eventually found Yogi Gyro’s and they didn’t disappoint I would say I would later have eaten about 5 more from this place I’m still frothing from the jaw just thinking about them. We later returned back to our hotel and decided to have dinner at one of the restaurants near ours. On the menu swordfish which I have had previous experience with but this time lucked out. It didn’t matter what we were actually doing or where we were in Greece but I was just happy to be there with my friends.

The third and final day was my favorite. I woke up early yet again but this time with an agenda this was the last day I would have my quad bike so I decided to take full advantage of it. I drove to the top of the hill on my own, the morning was already warm, I had no top on and no helmet on with my phone in one hand ready to snapchat and the other one on the accelerator. Down I went at full speed sharing this experience through my snapchat I know I keep coming back to it but I was really happy and I felt ‘Free’. I rode around and grabbed myself another Gyros and returned back home, the boys not having the same bike hence put me on a different level and why I was going solo. I was so happy that I was offering random people for a lift, I felt I just needed to share the love. Yet again the boys came up and Apost and I went to organize our tickets and accommodation for our next stop Ios. We found a place that sold tickets for the ferry and then it was up to us to find some accommodation which proved a difficult but he pulled through. All that was left to explore was the very bottom of the island. A couple of our friends were in town at the same time so we had planned to meet up at about 7pm for dinner. We rode our quads to our last destination. The trip was the most scenic yet, it was the perfect scenario to go fast on the bikes around the windy mountains with an amazing view. The faster I went the better it was and I eventually left the boys to meet them there. They eventually made it and we followed a path through a few restaurants with a nice relaxing setup. Further down was a spot with a cliff that people were diving from. The boys ended up jumping while I took some photos, this area was mainly young people who wanted some entertainment in Santorini by the looks of it. We chilled there for a bit til it was getting closer to catching up with our friends. I was excited for the journey back because I already knew what was to be expected. Yet again I left the boys so we wouldnt be late and enjoyed that free feeling again. I stopped and took a photo since I was making good time there was something about this Island that I really loved, I’m guessing it was a combination of the weather, the views and the fun of the quadbike. I arrived at Yogi’s the meeting point slightly late thinking they would be there but they had dosed off and followed shortly after. It was always good to see familiar faces whilst on holidays and John and Nat were in the islands for a wedding. Nat is one of my good friends wife’s sister if that makes sense. The boys followed not to long after and we were ready to find a nice restaurant to enjoy our last day in Santorini. Before we found somewhere we watched the sunset where I said I would, having the sun put that warm orange glow on the buildings gave it that tint perfect for that postcard photo. Everywhere was fairly busy but we managed to score a place with an amazing view only because we had to be out in and hour and a half for a reservation. We chatted away about all our stories showing them photos of our adventure so far. The food there was also amazing I ordered the grilled fish again, you shouldn’t be shocked. We talked all the way right through til we had to leave and they came past our area for some desert. After we went for a little cruise with the little quad bike gang we had and we parted ways.

In the morning packed our bags early ready to make our way to port yet again and Apost couldn’t find his necklace that he had bought off his friend. He was upset knowing that it was one he really liked so with a bit of desperation drove back to buy another whilst Dean and I chilled by the pool. He returned only with a disappointed look to tell us that he wasn’t there and that Sunday was the only day he had off. We locked up and returned our keys to the owner who kind of felt like family making sure that we taken care of during our stay. Before that Apost decided to do one last lap of the car park in some hope that he had dropped it. After some searching and thinking that was it he lifted up something off the ground, I thought to myself this couldn’t be it and it was. Proves to show how luck was and always had been on our side this entire trip and we jumped in the van for the port with three smiles in the back. I go that same feeling I did when we were in Norway of having so much fun and yet we didn’t party once, I was going to miss Santorini!

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February 1, 2015

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