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A week in Greece

Published (updated: ) in places.

Gosh it’s lovely isn’t it?

Earlier this year we took a little family holiday in Greece – the first time B and I had been there, the second time for K. It was lovely. Greece is lovely.

We spent the first few days on the island of Poros. Quiet, out of the way, gorgeous. The weather was cooler and wetter than expected for the first couple of days, which caused me to moan on Twitter about not having packed a jumper. But when it brightened up, it brightened up properly and we soon felt the heat. B and I wilted a bit; K loved it. She’s a sunflower.

One of the waitresses at one of the island restaurants was a woman from Manchester. “Why’s it so quiet on the island?” I asked. We expected it to be heaving, but the beaches were almost empty.

“It’s just not peak season yet,” she replied. “Next week, the week after, it will suddenly go mad. But you’ve arrived the week before the madness. Good choice.”

We took a boat to Hydra for a day. What a stunning place. K knows someone who lives there, so we got the inside story on what that’s like. Not as glamorous as the island appears, but still pretty damn special. 

B and I took a dip while K and her friend chatted. The sea was colder than either of us expected, but I loved having a chance to properly cool off. I wished I’d taken snorkelling kit, the sea bed was enticingly close and looked enticingly packed with plants and wildlife. Next time, I promised myself. 

Hydra has no cars (well, not very many cars – there are a few), so the town is just alleyways and courtyards climbing up the hillsides away from the harbour. We explored a bit in the heat. K cooled off with a strawberry daiquiri.

For the final couple of days we caught a boat back to Athens and stayed in a hotel there. Obviously we went to the Acropolis.

Even at 8am it was crazy hot and crazy busy. We expected that. I hadn’t appreciated the scale of the ancient ruins, and how far they extend beyond the Acropolis itself. We didn’t have time to explore much further, but at least from up there we could take in the view and see the size of the city.

We did some museums. The Acropolis museum, an impressive place in terms of its scale and detail. Lots to take in there if you want to, and I particularly liked the way the upper floor recreates the upper levels of the Acropolis itself, allowing you to walk around them as if you’re walking in thin air. A nice idea, very nicely presented.

I was also really pleased to see the actual Antikythera Mechanism in the National Archaeological Museum. Again, it was well presented with replicas (both virtual and physical) to help you understand what it once looked like and how it worked.

Our Athens hotel was a stone’s throw from the Acropolis, and had a rooftop hot tub. We took a dip as the afternoon became the evening, before heading out for pizza. 

We liked Greece. I think we’ll be going back one day, if we can.