Our Royal Caribbean cruise took us to several places throughout the Adriatic Sea, including these gorgeous islands of Greece. It was the perfect way to get a little taste of all of these places and see where we would like to go back and spend more time. Greece, especially the Santorini and Mykonos islands, were among my favorite places in the world. We will definitely be going back.
Santorini: This island home to Oia, the most photographed town in all of Greece with all of the white buildings and blue rooftops/doors–you’d probably recognize it. Because the towns on this island are atop massive cliffs, there are several options to get to the top: bus, tram or donkey. The donkeys were fun to see and pet, but we opted out of riding them because we’d heard how poorly they are treated. But Oia was breathtaking and I felt like I was dreaming the whole time. We spent the day wandering the paths and gawking at the insane views around every corner. We saw cute shops and churches along the way, before stopping at a Greek restaurant that overlooked the town and ocean. This is where I tried some life-changing Greek food: fried cheese and baklava. Next time I’m excited to see red and black beaches which Santorini is also famous for.
Athens: I’m glad we saw Athens and the Acropolis, but I doubt we will go back. It’s one of those one-and-done type places. As true history nerds, we loved touring the Pantheon and Temple of Nike, and then seeing all of the ancient statues and pediments at the Acropolis Museum. Our free walking tour guide, Vasilis, showed us all of the ins and outs of local Greek culture. He even took us to the best local spot in town for Souvlaki, a Greek specialty that I am now a huge fan of.
Mykonos: Right as I stepped off of the ship and into Mykonos I knew I was going to love it. It had the same charm as Santorini, but with more of a beach culture. The “Little Venice” area of Mykonos may not have any actual canals, but it’s an adorable whitewashed neighborhood with lots of flower trees and colorful doors. The Mykonos windmills are iconic and tower over the edge of the ocean. After exploring town, we headed to Paradise Beach. It was different than the tropical-type beaches I’m used to–it’s much more dry and desert-looking–but the sand was perfect and the water was so clear I could see my sandal tan lines. This beach becomes a major party joint starting in the late afternoon, but luckily we left just before it started up. Next time I can’t wait to rent four wheelers and see Super Paradise Beach, which I’ve heard is even better than this one, just a little harder to get to.
Corfu: The day was super rainy when we got to Corfu so we didn’t go to Paliokastrista Beach as planned. We walked around the old town in Corfu and walked up the Old Fortress for a view. This island is so much different than Santorini and Mykonos because it’s all GREEN and has so much life to it. We even got lucky with it being a national holiday, basically the Greek Independence Day, and took part in the parades and celebrations surrounding the city. We will check out the beaches here next time!