The perils of British package holidays..... Santorini

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May 10th 2007
Published: May 10th 2007
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We packed ourselves off to Manchester on the eve of Mick’s birthday for our flight to Santorini on the 3rd and commiserated with the locals at their loss to AC Milan. We’d booked a last minute deal to the Greek island of Santorini on a very British package tour and piled on with all the retirees and young couples looking to burn themselves into an early summer tan.

The view from the plane as we flew in was picture perfect and our villa at the seaside resort of Kamari was a white cubist cliché complete with blue trims. We were only a short stroll from the black pebble beach lined with restaurants where we grabbed some dinner.

After making the inevitable mistake of turning up to the package company get-together with "Damien" and waiting for ages to overpay for car hire, we chilled out near the beach and the groovy pool at our villa and had a delish meze platter for lunch with heaps of feta, olives, prawns, vine leaves, fish, octopus and more… including of course a “Greek” salad although in Greece they just call it salad!

When we got our car we spent a couple of days cruising around to all the little villages on the island and checked out some of the other beaches such as the red beach (red rocks rather than black!) I managed to stack it and took off a bit of skin but no permanent scars. We had dinner one night at the main town of Fira and watched the sun drop below the volcano and spent another sunset at the most photographed town, Oia, along with all the other tourists which the whole island seems to revolve around. These places look just like the postcards!

After a busy couple of days with the car we had a nice sleep-in and cruisy day when we finally braved the icy ocean water. It looks gorgeous but is bloody cold! Luckily we had a quiet day as the next day was huge, catching a bus in the morning down to the port where we got on a sailboat with our talented guide Tanya who was fluent in both English and Dutch. We hiked up the active volcano, swam from the boat into the thermal pools with mud that stained our clothes, trekked up steps and steps and finally caved and got a donkey ride up the 290-odd steps to reach Oia for another sunset.

We were completely exhausted after our big day and had another lazy day chilling out at the beach and pool. We weren’t the only ones, some of the Brits hadn’t really left the poolside and were now sporting some nice sunburns. Not surprising really considering most were using sunscreen with useless SPF4 or something similar. We were exceptionally relaxed by the time we got on the plane on Thursday afternoon to head back to reality… I have to start work on Monday!

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Maria PrekaMaria Preka
Maria Preka

This is where we stayed in Santorini

24th July 2007

Hey Guys. Trip looks great. Will have to book it in sometime. Currently I am in Vancouver in Canada! Am here for work. Somehow Canada has become part of Asia! Glad you are getting around anyway!! Chat soon.

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