It’s the blog you’ve all been waiting for: Oia! Oia is the picturesque town you see on every postcard, travel website, and Facebook post; Oia has whitewashed everything, blue tile everything, and quant, quiet (until the cruise ships come in) streets. Although we were only there for an afternoon, Oia was magical (it even made that ferry ride seem worth it).
This trip was not actually included in our original itinerary, but our tour director, Kostas, said that a trip to Santorini without Oia is a waste of a trip, so he planned an entire afternoon for us to get there. The main goal was to watch the sunset in Oia, since that is the best place to see it, but we got there early in order to walk through the town and see the sights.
We walked the length of the tourist area, and then through some of the small streets, in between people’s homes and resort hotels, and got some amazing photos.
Kostas told us that Oia has been kept as a more traditional area, while Fira is more commercialized. Since there are more homes in Oia than Fira, it is much more expensive to get a hotel there, and since it is such a sought after tourist destination, everything else is very expensive as well.
Since we are probably never going back, mom and I decided to go all out and sit at the restaurant with the best view to watch the sunset. It cost a pretty penny, but considering I had the best meal I had the entire time I was in Greece (pasta with tomatoes and asparagus), and we got front row seats to a grade A sunset, I’d say it was worth the money (that may be, of course, because I didn’t pay ;)).
Sunset in Oia, Santorini
Unfortunately for us, as soon as we sat down, the wind began to really pick up. The restaurant we were at, Kastos, faces the water and has absolutely no protection against the wind, so it was hitting us at full force. We literally had to hold down our silverware, lest it fly away. Three separate couples sat at the table next to us only to get up and leave because of the insane wind speeds hitting our faces. As the sun sank into the ocean, it only got worse. I ate my pasta in record time equal parts because I was hungry, because it was delicious, and because the winds were blowing like a hurricane was imminent.
But, besides the wind, it was a great meal and was fun to watch the sun set in Santorini’s most picturesque town. Also, we got to see donkeys!
After the sunset, almost everyone leaves the town (except those who are lucky enough to have gotten a place to stay there, of course) so we got caught in a huge human traffic jam while the wind was attacking us all the while. After what seemed like hours of being squished between cruise-people, I saw an opening and ran for it. We high tailed it back to the bus, but were still the last ones there….oops.
Even though it seemed impossible, the wind got WORSE on the way back to the hotel, and as we approached Fira, we felt like the bus was going to get knocked over while it swayed back and forth in the wind. Luckily, due to some extremely running skill I didn’t know we had, we made it back to our rooms without any injuries.
If you don’t believe how bad the wind was, check out these fun photos:
Also, enjoy this fun bonus video of what it was like while we were eating:
And that’s a wrap on Oia! The next day we spent walking the trail from Fira to Oia and back again, and that will be my last blog on Santorini. Stay tuned for tomorrow’s post!