Exploring Delphi + Athens
Delphi is considered to be the place where Heaven and Earth meet. According to Greek Mythology, Delphi is the closest you can be to the Gods. We visited the Apollo Sanctuary, and the Athena Sanctuary. They were both amazing, but the Apollo Sanctuary was crazy. It was such a high climb, and it's incredible to see how they built this temple on the mountainside thousands of years ago. Delphi is the absolute cutest little village with delicious restaurants and many artisan shops. The hotel we stayed in was very sweet and had a delicious breakfast in the morning. All in all it was such a great piece of the trip, and I highly recommend visiting. However, be prepared to walk. Just the Apollo Sanctuary alone was 6 miles of walking for us!
HOSIAS LOUKAS MONASTERY
This monastery was about an hour from Delphi and was a last minute stop. We ended up spending a lot of time there, and it was also amazing. I can't explain how surreal it felt to walk through the grounds, and especially the church. This church is the oldest standing example of Byzantine architecture. We walked through and touched walls that were built in 400 BC. How crazy is that?! It was so beautiful and so worth the detour. This is a must-see if you are in the area!
We finished our trip in Athens. We stayed at the Divani Hotel, and it was really nice. There was a gorgeous rooftop pool with a bar, and the restaurant in the hotel was delicious. We spent the first day hitting all of the places that weren't main attractions. We did our own mini food tour, and had dinner in Plaka. Then we followed it up with dessert tastings. We went to two different places for Loukamades, small Greek doughnuts. The first place we went to shapes them in balls and has many different stuffings and toppings, and is brand new. The second was the traditional and original bakery that has been around forever. They were honestly both so delicious, but to be honest the second stop was much better. My personal favorite were the loukamades covered in fresh honey and cinnamon.
Then we went to Stani, the most famous yogurt shop in Athens. We got some Greek yogurt with honey and walnuts (the cultures they use for their yogurt are almost 100 years old!), and we also got rice pudding and custard. Best. Yogurt. Ever. I can't explain to you how delicious it all was. It exceeded our expectations and was definitely worth all the hype.
The next day we decided to do the Acropolis. We got up early, and although we ran into some obstacles (think, sick children), we made it to the top! It was incredible, and honestly the walk up was not as intimidating as it looked. Ideally we should have gotten there earlier, when it was cooler and less crowded. It becomes a zoo up there, so you have to be really careful especially since parts of the stone on the ground are marble and can be quite slippery! All in all, it was such a cool experience.
Of course to finish up the trip we had to stop at Starbucks to see what it was like in Greece! I ordered an iced tea and a "Juice Frappucino" (yes, they really call it that). The Frappucino was actually a smoothie but was delicious nevertheless!
Let me know if you are planning a trip to Athens and I can give you the names of all the places you have to go to!
Have you been to Athens? What are your favorite spots?