My Big Fat Greek Vacation: Highlights of Athens, Mykonos, & Santorini

It had been a year since I traveled internationally and I was definitely craving a change in pace and to submerge myself in another culture. After getting COVID-19 this past spring (and yes I know this is a bad reason) and with travel restrictions being lifted in both Europe and the US, I knew I was ready to embrace the chaos of traveling internationally again. Greece has been one of the top countries on my bucket list and my soul knew that I needed to make 2022 the year I visit. And while the trip started off with a few lows (more on that in a future post!), it was worth every mishap to explore this country!

Statues of Socrates and Confucius in Athens

I started off my trip in Athens, exploring the major historical sites. Having chosen to visit Greece during peak season, it was needless to say very hot and crowded at the tourist destinations. But to see these historical sites in person was an experience of a lifetime! The most well-known destination I explored was the Acropolis, an ancient citadel located on a rocky outcrop above the city of Athens.

In front of the Parthenon!

The site contains the remains of several ancient buildings of great architectural and historical significance, the most famous being the Parthenon. The Parthenon was built and dedicated to the goddess Athena during the fifth century BCE. Its decorative sculptures are considered some of the high points of Greek art, symbolizing Ancient Greece, democracy and Western civilization.

Theatre of Dionysus below the Acropolis

After a short stay in Athens, I spent the rest of my trip island hoping to Mykonos and Santorini! From their marble white buildings to their tropical beaches, these islands did not disappoint.

The famous windmills of Mykonos

Mykonos is known as the party island that never sleeps. I’m not the biggest partier since I’ve entered my 30’s but I do enjoy occasional partying, especially during the day! Paradise Beach Club was the perfect place to relax on the beach, swim in the Aegean Sea, and get a taste of Mykonos’ party lifestyle. The beach plays EDM music through loud speakers, as well as includes a club with well-renowned DJs and cheap drinks to dance the day and night away.

Paradise Beach, Mykonos
Every day is a party day on Mykonos island!

Santorini also had some nightlife vibes, as well as being known as the romantic island out of all of the Greek islands. And with its stunning sunsets, wineries, and turquoise waters, I could see why!

Sunsets in Santorini are worth the crowds!

While known as “Santorini” to tourists, the island’s official name is Thira, which is made up of two principal towns, Fira and Oia (pronounced “ia”, the “o” being silent). The island was devastated by a volcanic eruption back in the 16th century BC, which forever changed its rugged landscape. Even the beaches are covered in black sand, due to its volcanic landscape.

On top of the volcano!
The famous blue domes of Santorini
Santorini at night

Spending a week in Greece was a well-needed escape from reality! The entire country is absolutely gorgeous. I had to remind myself to put my phone down from taking dozens of pictures to just enjoy the present moment.

The beautiful backstreets of Athens

Have you ever been to Greece? And if not, is it on your bucket list?

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