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Seizing Santorini: Preparing For A Romantic Getaway Or Family Vacation In The Island Of The Classic

Young couple Arthur and Martha King are obviously of the athletic ilk, always on the go to seek new adventures. This is why, one would guess, they opted to visit Santorini, the crown jewel of Greece, at the suggestion of their equally fun-loving friends.

“Our friends, who we met through a motorcycle club, encouraged us. They were really planning to go there, so we joined them. It was with a group of couples. They’ve been there already and loved the place. My wife, Martha, had always wanted to go, so the timing was opportune.”

The Kings usually travel at least four times a year, Arthur adds. “Santorini and Athens were really beautiful. It reminded me of the lifestyle in Boracay, but you have multiple views. You have the sea, the mountains, the volcano. There were lots to see.” The many shades of Santorini inspire both calmness and a thirst for exploration.

One thing that struck Martha about the place was its culture, which she points out has key similarities to how we live in the Philippines. “Family values are very strong throughout the islands and the family is the nucleus of the social structure. Elders are respected and children are expected to take care of their parents and grandparents as they become older. I think it’s lovely. They also have what they call ‘mikro ipno,’ Greece's answer to the Spanish siesta. It is widely observed, so excessive noise during the hours of three and five p.m. is generally frowned upon. They’re a pretty laidback culture.”

 

 

Whether it’s for a family vacation or a romantic getaway, Martha pins down how Santorini is really the perfect spot. “The trip made us more appreciative of one another. We are now more delighted to plan new places to visit and explore together as a couple. We definitely became more aware of the superb things around the world... more places to meet new people, taste new food, embrace different cultures, and explore the beauty of God’s creation. The trip made me realize these things.”

Martha adds, “It’s also a family-friendly place. When we go back, we’ll definitely take the kids with us! I’d want them to experience the donkey ride. It will be fun and memorable for them, I am sure.” From Santorini’s many-hued beaches to the captivating dusky shades of the Aegean sunset, the Greek isles’ beauty is all due to the combination of its geography and quaint, classic structures. This prompts one to just take it all in appreciation while enticing travelers to seize the day.

 

 

Fast facts

 

 

  1. Santorini was a single island, but after the enormous volcanic eruption in 1,628 BC, it became a circular archipelago, where the islands Thira, Therasia, and Aspronisi formed the edge of the Caldera (a cauldron-like structure of volcanic origin), which is flooded by the sea.
  2. The name Santorini was given in 1153 by the Venetians. It is a combination of both words Santa and Irene (St.Irene).
  3. Fira is the capital of the island.
  4. Santorini is the crown jewel of Greece and is one of its most popular destinations.

 

Travel Essentials

 

  1. If it’s summer, make sure to bring the right clothing. Most of the clothes there are of light linen. But you can buy everything there, if you don’t want to bring too much luggage.
  2. A pair of sunglasses is also a must-have in Greece. It’s sunny and most of the fun activities are outdoorsy.
  3. Santorini is beautiful, so make sure to bring a good SLR camera. Almost every spot is photo-worthy.
  4. Bring speakers too. This would come in handy when sailing or doing other laidback outdoor activities like hanging out in cabanas.
  5. Wear comfortable shoes such as rubber shoes.

 

Pulling off a classic look

  1. Wear comfortable shoes. You’ll be walking around a lot, so forget about heels.
  2. It’s sunny in Santorini, so better wear a hat to shield you from the sun.
  3. A hat won’t be of help if you don’t wear sunscreen. Bring sunscreen.
  4. Bring a light jacket for evenings—it gets really windy in the Greek isle.
  5. A scarf is a versatile accessory. It never goes wrong with plain clothes. A scarf can also be used as a bandana and even double as a blanket when it gets cold.

 

A longer version of this article was published in Metro Society’s May 2016 issue

Photographs by JC Inocian