Saturday, September 16, 2017

Santorini, Greece - Oia and a Wine Tasting

The other day, I shared with you the first couple of days of my weeklong trip to Santorini, Greece with my friend, Stes.

Day four, we finally got to enjoy transportation freedom!

We took a breathtaking coastal drive to Oia. Oia is totally the 'Hollywood' picture postcard Greece everyone expects (at least in terms of Santorini). We blasted our music with our windows down while our tiny smart car took every cliff side twist and turn with ease.

Unfortunately, once we got within a mile or so, it was a complete cluster of traffic. The roads are so narrow and there was someone poorly conducting traffic, as large buses tried to make it down.

Over the course of 30 minutes we pulled forward and backed up so many times I think we ended further than our original stop.

Finally we asked someone and they said it would easily be a few hours before we were getting through.

Many people were turning around, most of which were having a lot of trouble and causing more traffic.

Go Go Gadget Smart Car! We whipped around and found a pull off, gathered our day packs, and walked the mile or so into Oia.

Shortly into town, we stopped for drinks and a snack at a cafe with an amazing view.

I imagine I'll say that as I talk about anywhere here... there just ISNT a bad view!

I tried a uniquely Grecian cocktail – Santorinian Sparkling White Sangria, which was Assyrtiko Wine, Vodka, Orange Couracao, Lime, Cucumber, Flower Water, and Sage Leaves.

It was so refreshing!

In Oia, we saw beautiful temples, super unique shops, breathtaking views, couples taking to die for wedding photos, and an over abundance of places to stop and eat and drink.

I'm becoming predictable as my favorite spot, just like in Paris, was a famous bookstore - Atlantis Books.

You almost wouldn't notice it if you weren't paying attention as It's small, and tucked below ground. Steep concrete steps lead you into this magical land of literature with books in at least 5 different languages.

Once inside, small alcoves wind in and out of different sections, all with humorous commentary written on the shelves or post it notes by the staff.

One of my favorite parts was the wall of first additions!

Later that night we dolled up and headed to Santo Wines for a tour of their winery and a 4 flight tasting.

The grounds were just beautiful and we learned a lot about their very unique practices. For example, due to the high winds, the grape vines are manipulated by wrapping them around themselves forming a basket or nest like structure, helping it withstand the elements.

We got to see their full facility and where everything was made, all the machinery and even the cellar where the barrels are kept for many years.

After the tour, we were taken to their gorgeous dining area and were brought our wines to taste.

I appreciated the nice heavy pours. They had the option of tasting up to 18 glasses! We opted for a more conservative flight of 4.

I know there were two whites - Assyrtiko and Nykteri, I believe. There was also a red called Kameni, that was a bit too grown up for me.

The last one was also technically a white, however it was brown! It was called Vinsanto (not to be confused with Tuscan Vin Santo), and it is a prized ancient tradition on the island.

It gets its color from sun drying the grapes after harvest. There is very strict rules on the type and ratio of grapes, as well as a minimum of 2 years in an aging barrel to be allowed to use the name Vinsanto on the bottle.

It is a dessert wine and was way too sweet for my taste, but I really loved the story behind it. In the end I bought 3 bottles of wine from their shop to bring home to my husband.

With nothing planned or scheduled for our fifth day on Santorini, we headed back to the Perissa Beach area!

We went straight to the Magic Bus to see our lovely new friend Christos and hoped he could hook us up with one of his awesome cabanas. Once again, he recognized us right away.

We were in luck- he still had a handful of cabanas left. One was a front row view of the ocean and currently had a perfect ratio of sun and shade.

We ordered a few beachy drinks and sliced fruit and basked in the glory of our vacation.

We napped, we ordered lunch, we dozed some more, and after 5 hours of pure relaxation and phenomenal shore-side service from The Magic Bus, we decided to move on.

As soon as we started packing up I realized something was not right. Ow! What is this? What's happening? AM I DYING?!

And that was the day I experienced my first sunburn.

And it was a bad one! Mostly just upper thigh but very swollen and felt like 100 bee stings.

I had been very lax with my sun protection and was looking forward to a glorious tan.

Bad decisions were made and I have very much learned my lesson. Ow.

Nonetheless, we persisted. From Perissa we went to Kamari beach. It wasn't nearly as nice and instead of beautiful sand, it was small pebbles. We didn't stay too long. We wanted to check out a restaurant called Mama Mia's but it was closed. We settled for some really tasty pasta across the street before heading back to the hotel, exhausted and full.

In a few days, I'll tell you what we did and saw on our last couple days in glorious Santorini - stay tuned for a tour of some ancient ruins!


  1. Santorini looks so gorgeous. The white buildings are so brilliant against the blue sea and sky. I was an Ancient History major in college and I have always wanted to visit Greece. Your pictures have renewed my commitment to get there some day. Thanks for sharing your wonderful trip. Sorry about the sunburn!

  2. Beside the sunburn, it sounds like an amazing trip. Santorini is definitely on my bucket list!

  3. That grecian cocktail sounds so amazing! Looks like you had a wonderful time and the scenes are beautiful!

  4. This looks absolutely gorgeous. Congrats on what looks to be a wonderful trip!

  5. Your pictures are beautiful. Sounds like it was amazing trip. Thanks for sharing on my Sunday's Best linkup.

  6. what a beautiful post thanks for sharing

  7. Love following you along on your journey. And yes that is a killer sun. I always try to go before 11 in the morning.

  8. Sounds like a fun trip, Santorini has been on my bucket list for way too long! Thank you for sharing at FF! Do link back to the FF page when you can!

  9. What a beautiful place to vacation, I've always wondered why all the buildings are one color.
    Sorry about the sunburn, that had to be so uncomfortable. Done that a few times in my life too.
    Thank you for stopping by #OMHGFF this week!
    Have a great weekend!

  10. Ouchie that sunburn looks really sore Jackie. I hope it healed okay and that it only leaves a small freckle or two as a reminder. Your trip really sounds awesome. Greece is such a beautiful, culturally rich country

  11. This is awesome! And I am sooooo jealous! Thanks for linking up at the Friday Frenzy Link Party! Pinned!

  12. So gorgeous! Thanks so much for sharing at the #happynowlinkup!

  13. What a glorious place! Postcard perfect indeed. Ouch! Sunburns are no fun, especially while on vacation. This happened to our youngest daughter, around age 17 once in Hawaii. We thought we were being so good slathering the sunscreen on her, but apparently not enough. Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  14. What beautiful pictures! Looks like you were having a great time! Thanks for sharing at The Blogger's Pit Stop! Roseann from

  15. What a beautiful place! Looks like you two pack in a lot of fun sight seeing and good eats :-) Too bad for the sunburn and hopefully it didn't hamper your trip too much.

  16. Thanks so much for sharing with us at Full Plate Thursday. Hope you have a great week and come back to see us real soon!
    Miz Helen

  17. Sunburns are awful it doesn't look like to hampered your vacation too much though. What an amazing place to vacation.

  18. That bookstore looks incredible! The entire trip seems incredible actually. I've heard Santorini is one of the most beautiful places on Earth. It looks lovely. Thanks for joining #fridayfrivolity! Xx

  19. Beautiful photos! What a wonderful vacation you and your friend had. Thank you so much for sharing it at Snickerdoodle.