Posts Tagged With: thira

Beaches

I am currently sitting at Kamari beach, Santorini, watching the kids pop up out of the water occasionally and yell excitedly to each other about the new kind of fish, the size of the fish, the number of fish, or the really cool seaweed directly below them. They have been enthralled by these beaches, from Monterrosso in Italy where the snorkeling craze began, to each of the beaches we have visited in Santorini.
Now, I have always said we are completely spoiled on PEI, and we are. We have the most amazing sandy beaches. But this is different. We have been avoiding the sandy replicas of PEI beaches, and heading to those that are more unfamiliar and interesting for the kids. The black sand of Perissa where the ocean floor is just a big volcanic slab, the charcoal gray pebbles of Kamari, and the creamy pumice cliffs of Vlyxada have all been favourites, each one surprisingly as good as the last (even though they only ever want to go to the last one they went to!). There is a very famous red beach here as well, and we did go check it out, all the while thinking “what’s the big deal, we have tons of red beaches”. And although we didn’t venture down the cliff to get to the actual beach, it was interesting to see. Not like ours at all really except in colour – massive red volcanic cliffs, and red porous rock almost like pumice, but the wrong colour. Not sandstone.
It has been such a pleasure to see the kids exploring these new ocean playgrounds and listening to their tales of exotic creatures!
We even do “beach math” with pebbles!

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Greek Redemption: Santorini

Everyone needs to go to Santorini. All the hassle of getting here, and the disappointment of Athens has disappeared into the Agean sunset. This island is incredible. We have four nights here, but we are wishing we stayed for a month. I have some actual travel advice to impart now:

1. Don’t take the seajet to save time as we did. Yes, it is about three hours quicker than the regular ferries, but you can’t go outside, you can’t see any of the scenery as you approach, and you can’t even really walk around because it’s rough. It’s like a plane, assigned seats and everything. Take the ferry and enjoy the freedom to move around and the spectacular views.

2. Do rent a car or some other mode of transport. I was skeptical at first, but the island is small, and has an incredible variety of things to see, so by the time you pay for buses or taxis, it’s well worth the cost of the car. Surprisingly, the roads are not too hairy either. We got a car for four days from some guy at the port for about 70 euros. Hotels will quote you 35 a day.

3. Do stay in Fira. Oia is probably even more stunning, but Fira is so central you are never more than twenty minutes from anything really!

4. Do eat lots of gyros. It’s very yummy, and cheap too.

5. Do not try to find ancient Akrotiri on your own. We did and it was a massive fail. We will be trying again tomorrow, so I’ll keep you posted.

6. Do explore lots of different beaches. There are black volcanic sand ones, pebble ones, red ones, white ones, ones with pumice cliffs, ones with no cliffs…look how many days you need just to go to the beach!
In the meantime, go ahead and plan your trip. But stay a while.

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