May 22, 2009
May 1, 2009
April 29, 2009
April 26, 2009
March 18, 2009
March 17, 2009
March 16, 2009
March 12, 2009
Traveling by cruise ship is one of the most luxurious ways to travel, but one of the down sides is that you can only experience a port for a handful of hours, or if you are lucky, an overnight. Myself being a night person, I like getting my feel for a new culture by experiencing evenings of music, dinner, being social – and that makes it a little hard when traveling by ship. So after my cruise contract (a whole 6 months!) I decided to do some traveling on my own.
I went to Greece to visit my boyfriend, Takis, who lives in Athens. I was able to dive right into the culture by spending quality time with people who actually live there!
For my 13 day stay, Takis planned a small tour of the country by car. We started in a town outside of Athens, called Bouliagmeni. We stayed in a gorgeous hotel, The Margi. Out of all the places we stayed, this was at the top of my favorites. We had a balcony view of the ocean from our spacious and calmly colored light orange-yellow room. The hotel had a modern bed and breakfast feel, but with a lovely first floor with open areas of wooden floors, comfy leather sofas, a big fireplace, and numerous candles at night. It felt like a romantic home away from home. During our stay there, we drove about 45 minutes along the coast to the temple of Posidon. It looks like a mini acropolis, except it’s overlooking the water and mountains. The Greeks strategically placed this temple at the center of mountains so they could see the enemy from all angles, if they were about to be attacked. We witnessed a gorgeous sunset right over the mountains and water.
My first experience of Athens was one I will never forget. Takis and I met up with his best friends, including his brother and giflriend at Ieraodos (Ee-ra-o-dos, meaning holy street). They all spoke English, and 2 of the girls are English teachers in Greece. I actually tended to feel a little like a jerk because I was the only one who spoke just one language. We went to see one of the most famous shows in Greece! There were lots of long tables (kind of like a dinner theatre) and all 12 of us sat there. The show opened with young pop singers and dancers, singing some English songs and some Greek. Next was Elena Paparizou, a famous and beautiful girl who won Eurovision (like american idol but huge for Europe). Lastly, the vetern Greek singer Terazis a very respected singer of the country. He sang until 5 AM!!!! What an exceptional passion. There was lots of traditional Greek dancing! In the middle of the night, everyone got on stage for a little while (yes, of course I went) and danced!