I just spent the past several days exploring Greece, both Athens and Santorini. Luckily, my program gives us an additional mini-break in April for the Easter holiday, so I was able to squeeze one more trip into my abroad time without feeling like I missed too much of Copenhagen’s spring weather. And like Tufts’ spring break, this vacation came at a perfect time; I was in need of a quick getaway from school assignments.
For my last trip abroad, I met up with a friend who is currently studying abroad in Athens. I was a little stressed about making the trek down to Athens by myself, especially because all my trips have been with friends or with my class. I even had a friend on my flight to Copenhagen at the beginning of the semester. Even though I didn’t actually do a ‘solo trip’ in Greece, it did force me to navigate different airports, public transportation and hotels by myself. By the time I left my hotel in Athens to catch my return flight to Copenhagen, I felt comfortable enough to stay a few more days by myself.
Not only was this trip worth it because I got to see my best friend, it also made me feel a little more confident in my own travel skills. If you had asked me at the beginning of the semester if I could travel on my own for a weekend, I would have said no immediately. Now, I feel like I could potentially go somewhere alone and really enjoy myself without stressing too much. I’ll add that to my bucket list.
Anyways, I would say that Santorini has jumped to first place in my rankings of abroad trips. While Finland and Amsterdam are at a close second and third, Santorini really cannot be beat. The weather was perfect — sunny, a little windy, but much warmer than Copenhagen and less rainy than Athens. Additionally, I still can’t get over how beautiful the island is. Greece has always seemed like a made-up place to me — probably because I was obsessed with the Percy Jackson books in middle school. Oh, and the “Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants” (2005, 2008) movies, of course. I finally got my chance to sketch the beautiful white and blue buildings, just like in the movie, and the rest of Santorini really lived up to the hype.
I’d say the most memorable parts, besides getting to experience this new place with great people, were the sunsets. On both nights of our stay, we took a bus out to where many people go to watch the sun go down. We were not disappointed. Even though we had to wear three layers of jackets and sweaters, both nights were really special. The sunsets were so beautiful, they looked fake. I still can’t believe I was actually there.
I had an amazing time in Greece, but I am excited to have the next three weeks to enjoy my time in Copenhagen before I head back to the States.