Luke here again for another "celebrity blog". Once again we found ourselves at an airport very early in the morning for an international flight, this time from Venice, Italy to Athens, Greece. We were excited to explore the country and hopefully unwind for a couple days in Santorini. Our flight out of Venice left at 7am. We were at the Venice airport two hours in advance and grabbed some coffee and chocolate croissants before jumping on the plane. We walked down the jet way and hopped on another bus that took us out to the plane. On the bus we saw yet another person wearing a Colorado shirt. It's been amazing to us how many Colorado things we've seen throughout our trip. Cool little reminders of home. We boarded our nearly full flight and we were wheels up for Athens!
We arrived safely in Athens at 10am. We got off the plane and piled onto another bus that took us to the main terminal. We got our bearings in the terminal and made our way to the metro terminal that took us to central Athens. Much like the Denver airport, the Athens airport sits about an hour outside of the city. The metro seemed to take forever since we had about 12 stops between the airport and city center. Finally we arrived at our stop which sat at the base of the Acropolis.
We jumped on the wifi at a nearby cafe to load our maps app to find our airbnb. We were surprised by the cleanliness and the beauty of Athens on our walk to our apartment. All the houses and building were painted in different pastel colors and the streets were all cobblestone. About a ten minute walk from the station we found our apartment and rang the buzzer.
We were greeted by the apartment maid who made a phone call to Dimitris, the property owner, to tell him we had arrived. Little did we know, our adventure with this listing had just begun... The maid then showed is to our room and told us Dimitris would be down soon. After a few minutes, we were greeted by his friend instead who gave us some info and showed us how to lock and unlock the janky door, then took off for us to get settled. As we began unpacking, we began to notice more and more little flaws of our room - from a big gap between the door and the door frame, to a missing shower curtain, to a man made "drain" hole in the floor of the shower, we knew we were in for a treat. We unpacked and headed out to explore and grab some food.
We walked around the Placa neighborhood which was full of bars and restaurants. One of our priorities for the day was to find a place to print out our Ryanair boarding passes for the next morning. Luckily, after some help, we found a travel agency that let us print out our boarding passes to and from Santorini for free. We walked around Placa a bit more and came across a small restaurant street called Mnisikleous and found a small place for lunch. The street was a series of steep steps with restaurants and tables lining both sides. We had a delicious platter of different appetizers, including meats, cheeses, peppers, and zucchini balls.
After a while, neither of us felt very good. Alex started to get really dizzy too. We figured the lack of sleep, heat, and dehydration was starting to get to us. We went back to our airbnb and napped for a couple hours.
When we got up we headed up to the Acropolis to the Parthenon. It was 5 o'clock but still 95 degrees outside. After our slow hike up the hill, we had made it to the top of the Acropolis. The views and the Parthenon were unbelievable. We could also see the ruins of Zuess's temple in the distance.
After a while walking around, we made the trek back down to find a place for dinner before heading back home. But first, a pitstop at the slushy cart.
We were back at the Placa neighborhood and scanned multiple restaurants before finding one with gyros and a roof top patio, the essentials. The bottom floor and patio of the restaurant were packed but no one was up on the roof. We basically had our own private rooftop dinner! We got talked into ordering some baclava with ice cream too, which we definitely could have shared.
When we got back to the room, I decided to take a quick shower since we were up early on the morning yet again for our flight to Santorini. The shower was horrible. The man made hole in the shower didn't drain and the water began overflowing onto the bathroom/bedroom floor. Meanwhile, Alex was in the bedroom in the middle of a killing spree of mosquitoes and other bugs that were beginning to come in our room through the various window and door cracks. I walked out of the shower frustrated to find Alex grossed out and annoyed by the bugs we were going to be sleeping with. We both looked at each other and made the decision that there was no way we could sleep here. Alex said she had enough bug bites from Rome and didn't particularly want any more. So, we packed up all of our things and left the apartment. We both agreed that we would much rather sleep in the airport than be eaten alive by all the bugs in our room.
We flagged a cab outside of our apartment. Our cab driver got us to the airport quickly (going 150km/hr on the highway) and pointed out all the sites in Athens, even though we couldn't understand a lot he was saying. We've learned to smile and nod and say "wow" and "how cool" a lot.
We got to the airport at 11:30pm and began searching for a place to crash for a couple hours until we got up a little after 4am to go through security. We found a cafe with booths that were long enough for us to lay down on and fell asleep. Sleeping in an airport was a first for both of us. We woke up at 4:30am, went through security and were finally at our gate boarding for Santorini!