03 May European Va-Ca Recap
I can’t believe we’ve been back from our trip for two weeks already! It is so amazing to me how quickly we get back into our day to day routines after two weeks of sleeping in and drinking wine in the middle of the afternoon!
In my opinion, this was our best trip yet. I’m so glad I found someone who loves to travel as much as I do! I think what made this trip so perfect was our balance between relaxation and exploration. With previous trips, I’ve insisted on packing in as much as possible in fear of missing something! This time, we had enough planned while enjoying the downtime in between.
I also could not have been happier with Viking! Although we were both hesitant, the ease of travel between destinations was perfect! We were able to see so much in the two weeks we were gone, without the stress of travel. We will definitely book with Viking again!
We flew into Athens and had two full days of exploring Greek history! I loved learning about a country I’ve known so little about! To see the stature of the Parthenon and the entire Acropolis took our breath away! We also loved seeing the first Olympic Stadium, Panathenaikon! Today it marks the finish line of the Athens Marathon, The Authentic.
During our second day in Athens we stumbled across an adorable restaurant with the best Greek Salad I’ve ever had! Everything we ordered was delicious! We also saw a beautiful painting of a Trojan Horse in the window of a small studio. We met the artist, who was kind enough to sell us the display we loved so much instead of the duplicates she had available.
Out of the islands in Greece we visited, Santorini was truly stunning. We tasted (and purchased) white wine made from three varieties of grapes, which grow low to the ground in almost a wreath like nest. The blue rooftops of all the churches against the white stucco creates the most picturesque backdrop, we will most definitely be back to the island someday!
After a day trip to Montenegro, which was stunning, we arrived in Croatia. Dubrovnik was one of our favorite cities, full of history, culture, and beauty!
One of our favorite afternoons came together totally by chance! After riding the cable car, Jon and I grabbed a coffee and took in the view. Behind the cafe there were two men standing next to two four wheelers. They offered private tours through the countryside, with an “obstacle course” trail as well! We decided to go for it! Our guide was so informative, telling us about the barracks, the rebuilding after the war, and his own experiences offering tours! We had so much fun that afternoon!
Croatia borders the small country of Slovenia where we took another day trip to the Castle of Lake Bled. I promise to share more photos of these beautiful excursions on Instagram later this month, we still have a ton to go through!
When we arrived in Venice, we were ready to explore on our own! Some of the best advice we received from others who’ve loved Venice was to “just get lost!” It is the perfect city to wander, we drank wine and shared charcuterie plates all day! A Gondola ride and an unbeatable deal on a beautiful Leather duffle bag made this stop complete!
We flew down to Catania, Sicily for the final stretch of our travel. We LOVED Sicily for a million reasons, one of them being Jon’s family history. He has copies of his Great Grandparents Ellis Island certificates! We were absolutely thrilled with the relaxed atmosphere and the beautiful scenery. Everyone we met, including the Chef who took us through a market and taught us the traditional method of making fresh pasta along with four other stunning dishes, treated us with warm hospitality.
We also hiked Mt. Etna, which is currently erupting! The views alone were worth the private driver and 40 minute journey. It was so steep at certain points and our feet were filthy from all of the ash and dirt that seeped through our shoes! Everyone we had talked to previously assured us that the lava and magma was slow moving and the volcano was very carefully watched. Regardless, it was definitely once in a lifetime! I’m probably good on being in such an unpredictable situation again, but it was exciting and worthwhile!
We loved this trip so much, and I think this last shot totally captures the way we felt coming home! Follow me on Instagram for more photos later this month!