It’s officially that time of year, yet again; there are leaves on the floor, nights are cold and I’m needing extra blankets on my bed, candles have been lit and pumpkin spice lattes are once again available to buy. Yes, you guessed it, I’m happy, too… Autumn is here! And, in Patjama tradition, that means it’s time for another holiday post. I love, love, love, love, love doing these sort of posts. I love looking through holiday pictures and editing them, all the while missing the endless amount of sun, (don’t get me wrong, I love autumn as much as I do chocolate, but… you know) and food, and iced coffees. I don’t feel like I can move onto autumn and the colder months until I have posted my holiday post. So, without further ado, shall we?
This year, for my summer holiday, I did something completely different. Just as I did last year. Last year was my first ever group holiday, which I adored, and this year I pushed the boat out even more… excuse the pun. When it came to looking at holidays, and where and what we wanted to fill our summer with, I had no intention on booking a cruise. Me and Dan walked into the travel agents, talked for a while with the lovely lady and before I knew it we were talking about extra leg room and all inclusive buffets – then, before it even had time to process, me and Dan had booked a cruise. A cruise. A holiday on a boat. Didn’t I go on a ferry when I was like eleven and swear to never go on a boat again once walking back on land? Yes, yes I differently did. Wasn’t I beyond worried about the rough seas and potential Poseidon Adventure 2.0? Yes, yes I bloody was. But, once the worry had faded and the idea settled in, I figured it was a new year, which means new experiences. I started getting excited for it as quick I did booking the whole thing.
Day One & Day Two | Flying, Boarding & A Whole Day at Sea
After having to wait for a delayed flight, we boarded on our little plane and flew to Corfu. We watched films, read our books, played Animal Crossing and really started to relax. It was great. It’s safe to say that it was once we landed that my mind was truly and utterly blown. After a transfer on a bus, we made our way to the boat – which, at this point was literally glowing because it was now night-time and it was covered in lights and flags; it just looked absolutely incredible. I was oh-so-ready to get on board. By this point, my nerves had now gone and all I felt was optimism, excitement, and a strong urge to explore the ship. We were greeted on board by the lovely staff and were shown to our room – at this, we took a selfie. It’s the first picture you see! That night went by in a blur (literally. I had a few cocktails) and it was as we went to bed that we looked out the window and saw nothing but ocean around us. I slept bloody well that night. The next day was a perfect holiday sort of day. It was just a day at sea; we sunbathed, drank and ate ice-cream, read our books, all the while seeing nothing but blue skies, the bluest of ocean and a gentle breeze. It really was perfect and the holiday had only just started.
Day Three | Crete
When we woke up the day after a truly relaxing one, I was feeling even more so ready to explore. I looked out of our window as soon as I woke up and saw that we’d already docked; it was in a town, called Aghios Nikolaos, which from my window looked to be a bustling place and filled with lovely little shops. After having a bite to eat, we packed up the camera and a bottle of water and made off to explore. And because we hadn’t booked any excursions, we literally had all day to explore this place! The first thing we did was visit the most adorable harbour. It was lined with little restaurants, beautiful trees, and cats, who spent most of their time watching the little fish in the water. After this, we walked further into the town and found a small beach – there we paddled and did some swimming. I was particularly proud of Dan for this… he’s never been much a fan of swimming in the sea. Eventually, after much exploring and seeing the sights, we found our way back to the boat and settled down for dinner, soon to leave Crete and sail away to the next place.
Day Four | Mykonos
Now, Mykonos has been a place that I’ve wanted to see for a long, long, long time. So when we booked the cruise, this was the day I was most excited about. We decided for this one to properly explore a bit, so what we ended up doing was booking a beach transfer. We were picked up upon docking by a coach and were driven to a quiet part of the island where situated, was the most wonderful beach. We were given a free drink each and some deck chairs, and relaxed away, of course taking a moment to walk along the beach and have a look around. We read, listened to music, swam in the sea (again, well done Dan) and really took this time to chill out. Once our time at the beach was over, we headed back into Mykonos town, which again, completely blew my mind. I don’t even know how it happened, but we wandered down a thin little path and with each corner that we turned, getting slightly lost in the process, we discovered something even more stunning and astonishing. It was now I understood the love for Mykonos – because not only is it beautiful, but you really feel a sense of calm and belonging whilst there. And this day proved to me one thing, getting lost can actually be an amazing thing. We found endless streets and shops, restaurants, and cute knickknacks around every corner. I honestly cannot wait to go back.
Day Five | Turkey
Upon booking this trip, me and Dan made a pact: to get off the boat at every stop. When it came to Turkey, we weren’t too sure what to do. We had a few options, for example, we could’ve gone wine tasting or gone to the Turkish baths; we could’ve even gotten another beach transfer. There was one thing, however, that was playing on our minds during this holiday… when the hell were we going to visit a waterpark? Because going to a waterpark is a must. It’s a must. Period. So that is what we did, we booked to get a transfer to a waterpark. The whole day was exactly how you can imagine it, going down endless slides, eating ice-cream, sunbathing, you know… the usual. But it was great. It was ever so needed. And I loved it oh-so-much. Didn’t take any photos though, I’m afraid. I locked my camera away in a locker and explored this waterpark with nothing but my flip-flops, swim shorts and Mr. Dany. If you wanted to have a little look, or if you’re going to Turkey and are in need of a waterpark, you can check it out here.
Day Six | Athens
After Mykonos, Athens was the second day I was most excited for. I remember a while ago my parents going on a cruise around Greece and when they got back they were telling me about how much they loved Athens. Apart from all the walking and long steps, it was a must-see. In fact, when we booked the cruise, I remember telling the lovely lady that I need to see the Parthenon – I can’t not. So that, before flying out, was actually the only excursion we booked before going on the boat. And oh-my, am I glad we did. The day was incredible. It may have been beyond warm and sweaty, and the stairs did indeed knacker me out, but it really was great and if you’re ever going to Athens on holiday, I can’t recommend enough that you go and see the Parthenon for yourself. I took quite a few photos of it, but they really don’t do it justice. So after we saw the Parthenon, we took off with our tour to a museum. There, we were told some interesting facts about Athens and its history. I love days out like this one on holiday. I always say that if you’re going somewhere different, you might as well learn some stuff about it whilst you’re there. So this is exactly what we did and I freaking loved it. Every single thing. I just loved it.
Day Seven | Olympia
At this point, the holiday was coming to an end. We hadn’t booked any more tours or excursions so our days and nights now consisted of sitting around, sunbathing and eating, so when it came to stopping off at Olympia, of course, we still had to get off the boat to have a little look around. I remember the first thing that I saw as we docked in Olympia was all the jellyfish. They were floating in the water like plastic bags and for some reason it made me feel nervous! But nevertheless, we got off the boat and walked around the little town. It was quite small, but there were some really cute shops, nice restaurants and a harbour to die for (apart from the jellyfish… there were loads!). We decided as we walked around the small town that we’d rather spend our last full day on the boat and to relax. So that is what we did. We walked our way back to the boat, we were beyond hot, and it was as we were nearing the ramp to get back on that I got stung by a wasp. Yes, I screamed, ran around in circles, and was, of course, a bit annoyed. Don’t worry, I sorted myself out with some afternoon tea and scones, though.
Day Eight | A Quick Look Around Corfu & Coming Home
On the day of our departure, we docked early and headed off of the boat just after having some breakfast. There were flights going out all day from the boat (some were lucky enough to stay on for another week, apparently going to see Italy), but ours was early so we clambered back onto land and hopped on a bus. From there we went to the airport. I’m a huge fan of early flights, but I would have loved to have been able to explore Corfu a tad, see what’s going on, you know? Instead, we had about an hour and a half bus journey to the airport – along the way taking in what we could of Corfu. And honestly, like everywhere else we’d seen on this holiday, it looked absolutely perfect.
Tell me one thing you’ve learnt from this holiday, says a random voice in my head. Ok, something I’ve learnt. I’ve learnt that new things have to be tried. They have, have, have, have to. I’ve learnt that when something scares you, you’re so much better off doing it anyway. The feeling you get afterwards is beyond worth it. And when you get the chance to explore a little part of this world, you totally should. In fact, I know a lot of people who go on cruises every year; it gives them a chance to travel – something they longed for when they were young, but never got around to doing. So yes, I’ve learnt that cruises are great. They’re exciting, at times scary – what with the rough seas… we were fine though – and for the most part, they really are freaking lovely holidays.
I guess that’s it for this post! I feel like now I’m able to move on into autumn and that it’s truly time for me to be able to light my cinnamon candles and whack out the leaves jumper in Animal Crossing. No for real, I store that and a bobble hat away in my little green wardrobe just for this time of year… I’m being deadly serious. Ok! Thank you so much for reading this post, I do hope you’ve enjoyed it. Sending my autumnal love and happiness to you all, Pat xx