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Day 11: Santorini Sailing

View Greece with William on empaustian's travel map.

Today was crazy busy. After our complete struggle bus (literally) getting to Red Beach, we decided the best way to see the whole island was to do a sailing trip. We boarded the King Thira boat at 10 am and started towards the caldera, Nea Kameni. The last eruption was in 1950 and the volcano is currently considered dormant.
The uphill hike of Nea Kameni was sweltering, but so worth it! The ground was covered in black igneous rocks and small vents in the midst of the crater release gas. At the top, we could see all of Santorini.
Our tour guide was a hilarious woman from Romania, who continuously called us her little "babies". She requested that everyone on the boat call her "Mama," even the guests that were older than her.
We reloaded onto the boat and continued sailing until we came to the hot springs, also known as Palia Kameni. Will and I jumped off the boat to swim in the hot water. The rocks were covered in a rusty orange and any bright colored bathing suits were stained if they were submerged in the water.
Next, we sailed to the island of Thirassia. It was a peaceful change to the beaches of the main island of Santorini that are plastered with tourists. We explored the little city, got lunch, and swam in the clear blue water with a school of fish.
Finally, we sailed to our final destination Oia, where everyone watches the famous sunset of Santorini. Will and I decided to take donkeys up the VERY steep staircase that winds up to the city. It was the most terrifying moment so far on this trip. Our donkeys did not seem to have any sort of direction and road as near to the edge as possible. There was a few moments where I thought I may not survive the trek up the cliffside, but at the end I was grateful for the experience and even more grateful that I never have to do that again in my life.
People arrive at least two hours in advance for the sunset, so Will and I grabbed a spot on the wall and sat down to wait. A half hour prior to sunset, every street was packed full of people pushing to get a good picture. It was a beautiful sunset and I envied a parasailer who had the very best view.
On our way back to the bus, I heard Will gasp and then he commented to a very tall man, "Congratulations on your wedding." It was Russell Westbrook, a player for the Oklahoma City Thunders. Of course, Will knew he was here on his honeymoon.
We got back to the room around 10 and were exhausted. We both decided the next day would be spent at the beach.

Posted by empaustian 01:49 Archived in Greece

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