Greece! EF Ultimate Break
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Greece is one of those places that probably everyone at some point in their life wants to see. Beautiful beaches the white buildings with the iconic blue roofs, I was one of the lucky ones that was able to make this dream a reality thanks to EF Ultimate Break! While Greece does offer all those things it also offers so much more! Yes it is breathtakingly beautiful, but the culture and history is just as magnificent. In September 2017 I took my second tour with EF College Break, which is now called EF Ultimate Break, and got to experience this incredible place.
I started my adventure in Pittsburgh and had a layover at JFK airport in New York then headed off to Athens. It is there that I got to meet our amazing tour guide Georgios, meet up with my old friends from Belize, and meet a bunch of awesome new people. We were then taken to our hotel. On our way Georgios pointed out some interesting sites and taught us some common Greek words. After arriving we were assigned to our rooms in the President Hotel, unpacked, and decided to hang out and grab something to eat at the rooftop pool which had an AMAZING view of the city. Later that evening we headed to downtown Athens where our welcome dinner was held and we got to taste some authentic Greek food. After dinner we were given some time to explore the city on our own. This is always my favorite part because you get to interact a little more with the locals!!
Day three we took a walking tour of Athens and went to see the Acropolis. We got to see the switching of the guards, the Parthenon, and temples of the Gods. To see these structures and to be standing next to them is such an amazing experience. Especially listening to how they were made and the history about them. After the tour we spent a little more time exploring and then headed back downtown in the evening.
Early the next morning we hopped on a plane to go to Santorini where we stayed at the Odysseas Hotel . Here is where we went on a cliff side wine tasting then to Oia where we saw the most beautiful sunset. After the sunset, we headed to the beach to have a few drinks at a local lounge.
On Day five we went to swim in the natural Sulfur Springs, and to do a 30 minute hike up a volcano. I don’t think anyone was really prepared for that hike, but once we made it to the top it was definitely worth it. The views were absolutely incredible. That evening we went on a sunset cruise where we had dinner and got to see another breathtaking sunset. Afterwards, we walked to a local convenient store grabbed some goodies and then went to play games on the black beach.
Next, we went to the island Paros. Our very first stop was Santa Maria Beach where we relaxed, had food, drinks, and went tubing! After we were finished we went to town to Hotel Aegeon where we got ready and then headed dinner then went to a local club, then to a bar called the Dubliner. This is where we completed the Three Hammer Slammer Challenge!!
The following day we hopped on a boat and sailed around anti paros. We stopped at a few different islands to swim and have lunch. Then stopped by a cliff to go cliff diving. This was one of my favorite days. It was so nice to relax, have some good food, and see all the amazing sights. Later that night we explored the town, and found a hidden path that led to a jetty where my friend Joey, The Wanderluster Journal, and I got to see the amazing sight of the town of Paros all lit up at night. We all finished the night back at the Dubliner.
Day 8 is when we finally made it to Mykonos where we stayed at the Alkistis Hotel! After getting settled in our first stop was Paradise Beach! We drank, we danced, and the atmosphere was so much fun. After we were able to explore more of this amazing island. We found some gyros to eat and wandered about the town. Our last day of Mykonos was probably my favorite day. We had absolutely no plans, we hopped on the local bus to town and just went to explore. We walked around, took pictures, shopped, and ate more gyros. My favorite place was where we stopped for breakfast. We sat down and the staff brought blankets to wrap around us. It was so nice to be wrapped up in a warm blanket sipping hot chocolate, talking with friends with the view of the ocean in the background. I could definitely get used to that! On our last full day a group of us had breakfast near the beach then went to the port to catch the ferry back to Athens to the President Hotel. Sadly I ended up extremely sick the last evening and stayed at the hotel, but the rest of the group went to the farewell dinner. There they had more delicious Greek food and danced. We were given a bracelet with Hermes wing from Georgios.
Luckily on our last day of travel, although I didn’t have much of an appetite I was feeling much better. I can’t forget the last bit of excitement sprinting across JFK and making it just as they were closing the gate for our last flight home to Pittsburgh. I really enjoyed my time in Greece, and I hope that one day I get the chance to visit again!