Mediterranean Cruise 2004:
Day 8 - Santorini, Greece [Main] [Contact Us] [Events] [Family] [Fun] [Garden] [Misc.] [Photos] [Search] [Site Index] [Travel]

Mediterranean Cruise 2004: [Day 1 - Barcelona] [Day 2 - Monaco/Nice] [Day 3 - Pisa] [Day 4 - Rome] [Day 5 - Naples] [Day 6 - At Sea] [Day 7 - Mykonos] [Day 8 - Santorini] [Day 9 - Athens] [Day 10 - At Sea] [Day 11 - Dubrovnik] [Day 12 - Venice]

Saturday, July 3, 2004: We arrived in the caldera of Santorini island before the sun started to peek over the cliffs. We could see the long walkway to the top of the cliffs (far left in this photo).

Our day started with a tour to one of the two volcanic islands in the middle of the caldera. This island had several craters.
We walked up quite a way, but opted not to go all the way to the top. The views were lovely in all directions. Our ship was visible in the distance.
Flocks of birds flew around the island, although they're not visible in the small version of this photo.
Our tour boats awaited us in the small harbor as we finished our hike.
The second part of our morning tour took us to the other small island, where we anchored near a tiny bay containing a hot springs. We jumped into the water and swam into the bay which was warm with reddish brown water.
On the cliffs overhead, wild goats watched us swim. Look carefully and you'll see 4 or 5 goats in this shot.
We were dropped off at the base of the cliff after our tour, and took the funicular (cable car) up to Fira. We could see the long walkway next to the cable car route. This is important later in our story.
As we climbed, the view was gorgeous. Our cruise ship is visible in the distance, in front of the volcanic islands we toured earlier.
We selected a restaurant named Dionysos and settled down for another tasty Greek meal.
Since we got turned around while walking through the streets of Fira, we didn't realize that the view our restaurant offered was not of the caldera, but of the sloping side of the island, which includes the rest of the town and the airport. As we ate our tzaziki and gyros, we watched the jumbo jets take off and land.
Yeah, we're suckers for adorable Greek cats.
After shopping and sightseeing, we found a cafe that overlooked the caldera, and had a few beers and a chocolate banana crepe.
As we sat and relaxed, Tom suggested that we walk down the cliff, rather than taking the cable car back down. We thought it would be fun. An adventure. An experience to remember.
We were less than halfway down when we realized what a hideous mistake we had made. The stone path was slippery, worn smooth by thousands of visitors. There was donkey waste everywhere -- some of it fresh and smelly, and some of it dry and blowing in the wind. The heat was rising and our legs were killing us. Even worse, we were sharing the walkway with large donkeys who liked to charge at us as they came around the corner.
Somewhere near the bottom, Debbie's calf muscles started to twitch uncontrollably. Just a few more switchbacks, just a few more... we can make it ... we are not going to die.

Fast forward to the happy ending. Back on board, freshly showered, with a belly full of delicious food, we watched the lights of Santorini from our balcony.

Day 9 >

Mediterranean Cruise 2004: [Day 1 - Barcelona] [Day 2 - Monaco/Nice] [Day 3 - Pisa] [Day 4 - Rome] [Day 5 - Naples] [Day 6 - At Sea] [Day 7 - Mykonos] [Day 8 - Santorini] [Day 9 - Athens] [Day 10 - At Sea] [Day 11 - Dubrovnik] [Day 12 - Venice] [Main] [Contact Us] [Events] [Family] [Fun] [Garden] [Misc.] [Photos] [Search] [Site Index] [Travel]

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