Saturday, September 14, 2019

My Big Fat Greek Honeymoon: Santorini


As I mentioned in my last blog post, I took a few weeks off last month to go on a honeymoon with my new husband. I had always wanted to visit Greece. My mom's side of the family is Greek, and I've always felt a sense of pride in my heritage. As expected, we had the most incredible time. We traveled throughout the entire country during the course of 2 1/2 weeks, and we fully immersed ourselves in the culture. I feel so lucky to have had this experience. I knew the country would be beautiful and the food would be incredible, but what I didn’t realize was how much my relationship with my husband would grow while traveling together.

I’m going to spend the next few blog posts going into detail about our journey, including the places we stayed, what we did, and obviously the FOOD!

My husband William planned the entire trip, and he did the most incredible job choosing lodging and authentic Greek restaurants.

Many of the places we stayed were not typical tourist areas, so I hope these posts help others who are considering traveling to Greece.




First stop: Santorini

Getting there: We took the direct flight from the Indianapolis airport to Paris, and I’m telling you, it was the best traveling experience ever. The Indy airport is consistently voted the best in North America because of its accessibility and ease at check-in and security.

We parked, checked our bags, got our boarding passes, went through security, and arrived at our gate in a matter of 30 minutes. That is not an exaggeration—I timed it!

We boarded the plane around 6:30 p.m. Indy time, and we arrived in Paris around 8 a.m. their time. I slept the entire way, which made the experience even easier.

We actually stayed in Paris for a few days because I had never been, but I’m going to write about that last because we stayed in Paris at the end of our trip as well.

From Paris, we got a direct flight to Santorini. It’s about a 3-hour long flight.




Where we stayed: Ikies Traditional Houses

Before arriving to Santorini, I didn’t realize how big it was, and there are actually a lot of towns on the island. We stayed in Ikies Traditional Houses which is located in Oia (pronounced eee-uh). 

Oia is said to be the most picturesque village on Santorini, and it was the perfect first impression of Greece (think white buildings, blue dome roofs, and windy walkways). Oia is where everyone visits to take pictures of the famous Santorini sunsets.

Ikies Traditional Houses is on the south end of Oia, so we had incredible 180-degree views of both the caldera and the whitewashed buildings. Also, I liked that it was on the quiet end of the hotel zone. That made it very peaceful and relaxing in the evenings and morning. But we were still just a short walk away from the rest of the town’s shops and restaurants.

All the Ikies houses have a private balcony and most have a private pool. There are only 11 houses, so the staff was very attentive and helpful. They even gifted us with a free bottle of champagne and rescheduled our dinner reservation when our flight was delayed.

One of our best parts about our stay was the breakfast. Every evening they give you a sheet with a wide variety of breakfast meal options, meats and cheeses, coffee drinks, fresh-squeezed juices, and pastries. You can pick anything and everything you want. You give the sheet back to them with your preferred time to eat, and the following morning they set everything up on your private patio. Everything was incredibly delicious. It was an absolute dream. I can’t recommend Ikies enough!





What we did: Catamaran cruise of the caldera

This was one of my favorite things we did the entire vacation—a 5-hour cruise around the island. There are a couple of different options and tour companies. They all seem to be about the same price and same experience. We chose the company Sunset Oia. 

Someone from the company picked us up from Ikies around 10 a.m. and we returned around 4 p.m. There were 10 people on our boat, so there was plenty of space to spread out. We made 5 different stops where we could swim and snorkel. They also made us authentic Greek BBQ on the boat for lunch. We had grilled chicken, pork, shrimp saganaki, Greek salad, and dolmades.

Where we ate: Pitogyros and Ammoudi Fish Tavern

The first night we arrived in Santorini, we just wanted gyros. We googled “best gyros in Santorini” and landed on Pitogyros. It ended up being one of William’s favorite meals the entire trip. 

We had lamb gyros and Greek salad. The Greek salad was very large with a big block of feta. The gyros were large as well with fresh pita and plenty of tzatziki. You could watch them cut the meat from the spit, so it was clearly very fresh.

Ammoudi Fish Tavern is the most beautiful restaurant I’ve ever been to. It is right on the water, and we had an incredible view of the sunset.

We ordered Greek salad, anchovies marinated in vinegar, grilled sun-dried octopus, and grilled sea bass. Everything was very fresh and prepared perfectly. The fish was served with lemon and olive oil dressing on the side. 


Make sure you make a reservation in advance though! It gets very busy. Also, forewarning if you decide to walk there: You have to walk down about 300 steps and they’re very slippery. You also have to dodge donkey poop. So no heels!









1 comment:

  1. Gorgeous! We went on our honeymoon to Greece too and I will tell you that Gyro was my FAVORITE meal! :) Have so much fun!

    Jennifer Parnell

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