Ian in Santorini
We suspect that the tech team takes their fair share of exotic holidays, but since we all shout louder than them this fact has escaped us until now. But that’s all changing as Ian went to Greece with his wife and then spilt the beans to me. No tech team members were harmed in the making of this blog post.
Santorini is a horse-shoe shaped island in the Aegean Sea, easily accessible by plane from the UK. If you like dramatic views, quaint little coastal towns, numerous beaches and an active volcano then this is the place for you.
This Greek experience started with a stopover in Athens where Ian found himself right at the heart of ancient civilisation and a little underwhelmed. Sure, the Acropolis was interesting, but it seems Athens wasn’t quite ready, with building works all over the place.
An escape to the coast was on the cards and they rode the tram along the coastline, hopping off to enjoy the various beaches – a popular weekend spot for Athens residents.
Then it was on to Santorini for a lesson is perhaps not listening to everything your hotel owner tells you. They touched down around midday, and went to Fira (also known as Thira) to settle in to the hotel – the Reverie Apartments, which Ian says was a friendly, helpful place. Being new to the area, they asked for a nice afternoon activity and were told that there was an easy walk to Oia, which is known for being a stunning spot for watching the sun set. 11km later, and racing the setting sun, they made it – although the relaxed mood that usually accompanies watching the gently setting sun was somehow missing. I wonder why!
Don’t worry, there was a bus back – curiously full of Chinese tourists all fighting for elbow room!
April is the very beginning of the tourist season here, which means it’s easy to get a great deal, but don’t expect everything to be open! Numerous recommendations for cafes and tavernas ended with confused looks as yet another place was decorating or still closed for the winter! Ian’s top tip for Fira dining is Mamas House where traditional Greek food meets Italian.
Remember the active volcano? Well, not content to gaze from afar, they took the boat to the volcano for a little wander around. As you do. The boat then takes you near some hot springs that you can swim to after jumping in the beautiful waters.
They hired a car for the last day to tour all the beaches, some of which boast red sand and black sand. This is where visiting so early in the season really came into its own with hardly a soul in sight at some of these sandy expanses – but in a few months’ time they will be packed. Then they took a terrifying single track road full of twists and turns to a high up lookout point called Mesa Vouno (where there were also ruins of Ancient Thera to see but they were closed!).
If you fancy your own Greek adventure search and book here!