How to make the most of your spa day

How to make the most of your spa day

  Whether it’s a gift or a present to yourself a spa day is a luxury treat and knowing how to make the most of your day is a must. Here are my tips:   Before you book: Do your research; if you love to […]

Spa: Armathwaite Hall, Cumbria

Spa: Armathwaite Hall, Cumbria

Armathwaite Hall Hotel & Spa A beautiful setting for a spa, the gorgeous Armathwaite Hall overlooks Bassenthwaite Lake, Cumbria and is set in 400 acres of deer park. The spa is spread over two floors in a modern wing including terraces which look out onto […]

Marrakech: Jardin Majorelle

Marrakech: Jardin Majorelle

Marrakech was already taking my breath away, but the Jardin Majorelle was the ultimate highlight of an already picturesque trip. The Jardin Majorelle is a twelve-acre botanical garden in north-east Marrakech. Famously restored by French fashion designer, Yves Saint Laurent, the gardens have been made a memorial […]

Alternative Vegas: The Neon Museum

Alternative Vegas: The Neon Museum

  You may think Las Vegas, Nevada is all pool parties, mega clubs and stag do’s but there is another side to it hidden in the dusty desert. Don’t get me wrong our main intention in Vegas was to hit the strip and come rolling back […]

Bitesize Barcelona

Bitesize Barcelona

Could Barcelona be the most popular European city? Well, it’s finally won its place in my heart this summer. Friends have always raved about it – I suppose it’s the half and half vibe of city meets beach (and the great food) – but somehow […]

Spa: The Elms, Worcestershire

Spa: The Elms, Worcestershire

The Elms is a locally owned luxury Queen Anne manor house hotel in the rolling Worcestershire countryside. Location: Abberley, Worcestershire. Package: The Elms Signature Spa Experience, including a welcome drink, use of the spa facilities from 10am-6pm, a two-course lunch and 60 minutes’ treatment time. £95 […]

Spa: The Malvern, Worcestershire

Spa: The Malvern, Worcestershire

A carefully chosen location in Great Malvern, on the site of a borehole, chosen to extract the Malvern spa water directly for the facilities! Location: Malvern, Worcestershire Package: Lazy Afternoon – A half day of relaxation including access to all of our luxurious spa facilities, plus […]

My top 10 travel moments of 2016

My top 10 travel moments of 2016

As the end of 2016 approaches, I’ve been looking back over an amazing year of travel moments. I’ve done so much this year that I’ve still got loads of trips to blog about! But I did manage to make my parents a photobook gift of our […]

One day in Santorini

One day in Santorini

Part 5: Discovering Santorini in just one day Picturesque, white and blue, the beauty of Santorini won’t pass you by that’s for sure. Find out how I spent less than 10 hours on the island: Waking up in Santorini Overnight we sailed south from Athens […]

Athens: Monastiraki Flea Market

Athens: Monastiraki Flea Market

Part 4: Monastiraki Flea Market & setting sail from Athens Monastiraki Market After a long day in the sun exploring the Acropolis, the next morning we took a more chilled approach with a casual breakfast on our apartment balcony and a wander around the local […]


My Diary

One day in Santorini

One day in Santorini

Part 5: Discovering Santorini in just one day

Picturesque, white and blue, the beauty of Santorini won’t pass you by that’s for sure. Find out how I spent less than 10 hours on the island:

santorini landscape

Waking up in Santorini

Overnight we sailed south from Athens to Santorini. I knew from the offset that this was going to be my busiest and longest day of the holiday as Santorini has been on my bucket list of destinations for a long time.

Needless to say, I am glad I had an early night as I took so many photos (over 400) and walked over 13 thousand steps that day (according to my iPhone)! All that, when I was only on the island for 9 1/2 hours!

Santorini Ship
The ship has to dock out in the caldera due to the depth for anchor

Due to the nature of the island and the ship’s size, we had to dock away from the shore so passengers are required to get a smaller boat called a tender to the shore itself.

I was up early, had breakfast on my own and then headed to the 4th Deck to get aboard the tender, which took me over to the Old Port of Fira (Thira). 

Tips for arriving in the Old Port of Fira

Santorini Arriving
Arriving by boat, then up the cable car to Fira on the top of the island.

Fira (Thira) town is at the top of the cliff but the boats arrive right down at the bottom. There are a few methods of getting up there:

1) walking up hundreds of steps – only for the very fit and those with appropriate shoes for dodging the donkey poo 

2) getting a donkey ride for 8€ (poor donkeys) but the path is very steep and zig-zags a lot!

3) easy but not for the feint hearted for 5€ each way you can get the very quick cable car

(Note: you have to buy a ticket each time you can’t buy a return – and it can be busy if a whole boat load of people are queuing as it is only 6 carriages so be prepared to wait, and also factor this in if you have to get a boat at a specific time). 

Santorini Fira
Little houses on the cliff, the famous Santorini donkeys, view from the cable car of our ship, the Santorini sign is just like Hollywood and little cats all over the place

The capital of Santorini, Fira is a blissful old town of white washed walls and pretty streets. There’s plenty to do here including shopping and of course eating and drinking! ‘Gold street’ as it is known is famous for jewellery.

Getting to Oia

Santorini Cactus

From the cable car station I walked around 10-15 mins through the town to the bus station, luckily as it was only around 8:30am on a Sunday morning the streets were so quiet.

Catch the ‘Local Bus’ to Oia, there’s a timetable on the wall. All tickets are bought on the coach once you’re seated. It’s a 25-30 minute journey and it’s €1:80 each way. It gets busy, as there are a few stops for hotels etc, on the way back ensure you get on at the first stop as lots of people had to stand if they were picked up at the stop before.

You’ll be dropped off in a small square, there’s no particular bus stand or stop everyone was just waiting around until a coach pulled up. Once there, follow the signs for the ‘Sunset’ and you’ll wind your way naturally to the picturesque views you’ve been waiting for.

Santorini Blue Dome
That blue domed roof against the perfect blue sky

Beautiful Oia

Oia was wonderful to explore – I was so glad I’d gone there first thing in the morning as the crowds hadn’t quite descended yet and guests were still asleep. I had streets to myself for a few hours and a chance to sit in a beautiful spot admiring the view, completely alone. 

Santorini Cactus love

The views of the Caldera were incredible, this part of the island really took my breath away.

Santorini Caldera
View of the Caldera

santorini-blues

As you can imagine I took a million photos, popped in a few shops for local trinkets, saw the windmills and petted lots of little cats. Overall I was only here in Oia around 4 hours, but I am a wanderer and covered a lot of streets in this time. 

Santorini Arrows
Up and up past the cute shops

Wine tasting with a view

Readers of this blog will already know I love wine tasting now after my amazing experience in Cape Town. Check out my post on that here. So when multiple friends recommended it as one of the best things they had done in Santorini I was sold. After a bit of persuading of my parents (as they weren’t sure it would be their thing) and a short taxi ride from Fira we arrived at Santo.

As this was such a wonderful way to spend the afternoon I’ve dedicated a whole post to it. (Coming soon)

Tips: Get a taxi from the rank/carpark next to the bus station in Fira. It cost 10€ each way for around 15mins journey time.

Wishing I had more time

Santorini Whites
I loved all of the neutral colours too, especially this shell windchime

I could have spent a month here, just taking it all in and appreciating the views. Due to the timings of the last tenders and our sailing, I didn’t get the chance to see that famous sunset from Oia. However, that has just inspired me more than before to come back here on a whole holiday in Santorini or a greek island hopping trip.

Santorini Bye

Although this is a great stop on a cruise and I am so glad I have been to tick it off my bucket list. You 100% need longer than just a day here to soak up the atmosphere and be able to relax. My advice would be to sell up and move there now!

Have you read my other posts so far about the trip?

Athens: Monastiraki Flea Market

The Acropolis Museum

Athens: The Acropolis

Arriving in Athens


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