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Thursday, 14 September 2017

TRAVEL GUIDE | SANTORINI


Hey! Or should I say, Χαίρετε! (Totally didn't Google that...)

So if you have ended up at The Ivory Tower via my Instagram page (thank you first of all for following my journey!) you will have seen the ever so tiny amount of Santorini spam over the past couple of weeks (by tiny I mean horrendously large amount). 
Not. Even. Sorry.

I have wanted to visit Santorini for YEARS now. I have a travel board on Pinterest and it is probably 65% made up of shots taken on the island, so it's safe to say I was preeeeeetty excited to go. We booked our trip for three nights and had four full days there to explore. We were told before we went that you would only need a long weekend - anything longer may be too much.


One of the main questions that I have been asked is "where did you stay?" so we actually booked Santorini quite last minute (despite having it on the list for so long!) so it seemed we were in a little rush to get something booked - lots of places were already fully booked up! The accommodation we ended up in was actually amazing. It was called The Arches and it had recently been refurbished! We had our own little roof terrace complete with Jacuzzi, and what we didn't know until we arrived is that we could actually watch the famous sunset right there from our own little private spot. 


I was pretty adamant that I wanted to stay in Oia. You don't do the ground work of research on Pinterest and not know what exact shots you want to get and where. Plus, Oia is where the majority of the restaurants and bars are, which is where I want to be in the time I am not sleeping. We really felt like we were in the heart of it all (despite being at one end of the island). We landed and I was instantly met with streets of the hustle and bustle - which didn't matter because the sun was shining and I was wearing a floaty dress of dreams.


What Pinterest didn't warn me about before I went was the fact that the island has been known to have complete blackouts. I know what you're thinking - its 2017 so chances must be low. First night: major blackout. We woke up for breakfast to have a choice of juice and cornflakes. All I wanted was greek yoghurt (and be able to charge my phone so that I could take photos). Luckily it only lasted for 24 hours and we managed to get the most amazing breakfast that was part of our deal at the Arches. Copious Greek yoghurt included.


If you want to get a restaurant booking to watch the sunset (most people do on the island), then you really need to book in advance. Not just by one day either...people were OBSESSED with making sure their booking was confirmed - even to the point of turning up on the day at 2pm whilst most of us were having lunch to find out what table they had been allocated. That didn't really work for us, as we sometimes like to just wander and see what we fancy and find places that are a little off the beaten track. Plus, we had the sunset right on our terrace so that worked out pretty well for sitting and supping on prosecco.


So I ended up taking two things; a lot of pictures, and equally as much Sabo Skirt. I have been obsessed with the brand for years - visually and the quality but the pieces just really seemed to fit with the vibe of greece. I mean, I even match the flag posts here *facepalm*.


I also managed to find myself a pair of shoes and a bag that I could literally wear with everything. I have wanted a rattan bag for SO LONG and this one really made those dreams come true. The fact that my sliders have pom poms and tassels on, well, I think they just speak for themselves don't they. I can't even stop wearing them and its quite stormy here in little ole England. Not ready to let go just yet!

So if you are heading to Santorini, or any of the Greek islands in holiday season - it is very warm. It's great though because it has a wind which meant you can sit in it all day (or snooze, like I did). Clothes wise I took lightweight cotton items as you could probably tell. 


Ok so main things to see! Obviously head to Oia and take in the amazing multitude of colour! It really is just amazing to look at, it's a world away from walking around a town in the UK, and thats why I loved it so much. It was like everyone there was geared up to look over into the ocean and watch the sun rise and set each day. How could you ever tire of that? 

We did get up to watch the sunrise - this is definitely my favourite part of the day. A whole fresh new day welcomed by pastels and a warm breeze. It literally made me feel so content and inspired. Could've still been drunk from the night before though - who knows.


There are SO many churches around the island so you are really not gonna miss them! Have you really been to Santorini without a snap of one of those? We also stumbled upon these amazing bells (I say stumbled because my trusty furry sliders didn't bode that well with the cobbled inclines of the steps). They just looked so rustic and this was an accidental photo and consequently one of my favourites. I don't think you could walk around a corner without being met with amazing scenery, It's a little like Venice in that respect.


We didn't just stay in Oia for the whole trip (I probably could've!) but the island is very small, meaning that you could explore the majority of it in one day, which is what we did. We hired a quad and went around the island. It is probably one of the best experiences that I have had. We went to the famous red beach and into Fira. We pretty much zoomed around the island and pulled up wherever we wanted to explore - aka have a beer. I would definitely recommend getting a quad as it was just so easy, and actually, the best views we had were from pulling over on a side road and looking back onto Oia. Plus if you get yourself a designated driver - you can pretty much sit back and tan whilst in transit. winner.


Part two of this post will be coming soon as I have SO many more pictures to share - but it will give you a little more info  into what I packed in my suitcase for the trip. Exciting, right?


Only two weeks until my next adventure, which I can't wait to share with you! Make sure you follow me over on Instagram here to keep up to date!

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