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Published: April 16th 2015
Flying out of Mykonos to Santorini with others who were stranded by the ferry schedules, only they were paying 4x the price of our tickets. We were grateful to land in much nicer weather, still windy but manageable. It was afternoon when we landed, staying in Firostefani our first stop was a walk to Fira. The views on the walk there were incredible- I took so many duplicate photos as none could do it justice.
On Saturday morning, the ladies that ran our hotel knocked on our door with a little Easter basket containing 2 red dyed eggs, 2 candles, and 2 baked treats that they had baked themselves. We hadn't planned our trip to Santorini around the Easter weekend at all, it was just a happy coincidence. The girls explained to us that tonight we had to go to the church just down the road with our candles before midnight, after midnight we were to each take one of the eggs and smash them together. Whose ever egg did not crack would have good luck for a year. They were excited as they talked and we were getting pumped to celebrate too. We now know that many locals pack
up their families and head to the islands to celebrate the Easter weekend.
We went about our Saturday as planned with a bus trip out to Oia. We spent the day relaxing with the gorgeous views, enjoying the hot weather (finally), and wandering around taking photos. Oia is the place to be if you want to take in the sunset so around 7pm we walked over to the edge of the island to scope out a spot. We were very surprised to see when we got there that everyone else on the island was already there and already had all the best spots. After finding an acceptable place we settled in for a good 45 minutes before the action started. It was a pretty good view, I mean.... I feel like I've seen better sunsets but it was fun how the sun appeared to sink into the sea and disappear.
The bus stop for Firostefani was right outside the church that we were told to head to with our candles so we stopped by check it out on our way back to town. The whole thing was on lock down. We thought maybe we had been misinformed, she
said to come before midnight..... it was about 8:30pm. Luckily the receptionist at our little place hadn't left for her Easter celebration yet when we got back to our hotel so we could confirm. She clarified that it is literally before midnight, "Go around 11pm-it's going to be great!"
Around 11pm we could hear the church bells start to ring. There were loud pops and noise makers and we headed out with our candles to see what was happening. We didn't have any expectations so when we got into the church we were a little caught off guard that there was going to be somewhat of a service. People dressed up with fancy candles and packing the entire church full, mostly standing- people kept coming in until the very end. We apparently were early and took 2 seats at the back side of the church, the singing began and didn't end until midnight arrived. Most people were standing and we felt a little uncomfortable in our seats between 2 elderly people but we had already been there for so long that it seemed awkward to get up and move randomly. We were also the only tourists there which surprisingly
made it more uncomfortable, at least we were invited! Still, I felt relief when the singing stopped and it was time to pass around the flame between the candles.
After the candles were lit, there was a mass exit from the church to the foyer where everyone was kissing and hugging, fireworks and noise makers were going off- it was more exciting then New Years Eve! In between fireworks, a row of cans set on a ledge dispersed coloured smoke that wafted down the edge of the island. We walked home as the fireworks continued, they were taking turns going off from all over the island. It was a truly unique and fun experience. When we got home we took out our eggs and smashed them together. Binnson's broke and I was declared the winner of one years good luck- I'll take it.
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D MJ Binkley
Dave and Merry Jo Binkley
Fantastic! One of my favorite places.
Binns and Cheryl
Binnson and Cheryl
Agreed. We had such a great time there!