Discover the Beauty and Beaches Of the Greek Isles
by Roy Witman ©2009
From the enchanting writings of Homer to the
celebrities of Greek mythology, the country of Greece
has touched the lives of us all whether we realize it or
not. The Trojan War, Helen of Troy, the first Olympics,
Alexander the Great, Plato, Aristotle, the Biblical city of
Ephesus, the list goes on. And of course, virtually
everyone is familiar with the Greek gods and
goddesses Zeus, Athena, Apollo and Hades. Whether
you long for a closer look at the real or mythical side of
Greece, a tour of the Greek Isles will satisfy your
curiosity. Let's take a look at two of the most popular
destinations that can be reached via Holland America
and other cruise lines.
The unofficial colors of Santorini are blue and
thanks to the abundance of whitewashed buildings
and the azure-blue sea that surrounds the island. The
contrast makes for a very dramatic presentation as you
approach from the sea.
The fun of your visit to Santorini begins the
you depart the cruise ship. Reaching the city requires
a walk of about 600 steps, which, if you so desire, you
can take on foot. However, most opt for either riding a
cable car - which offers great views - or riding a
donkey, a fun experience for all ages.
As your sightseeing of the island begins, you
elect to take a bus ride to the highest mountain peak
where the views are absolutely outstanding! A local
winery welcomes tourists as do all the residents of the
quaint village you'll pass through during your
You may also choose to visit the ancient
site of Akrotiri. This historic wonder has been
preserved under volcanic ash for nearly 3,600 years
and helps depict what life in the Minoan period would
have been like.
Don't forget to make at least a short visit to the
beaches. Because Santorini is a volcanic island,
you'll find white sand beaches plus a few unusual
varieties including grey sand, black sand and red
With plenty of craftsmen, boutiques and jewelry to
choose from, shopping is also a fun pursuit. In
addition, there are excellent open-air restaurants and
cafes that let you enjoy authentic Greek cuisine. But
one of the most popular activities is watching the
When the sun hangs low in the sky, the cascade of
oranges and golds sends a fiery blaze across the sky
that reflects off the water below. Amazing!
Rhodes is a delightful island where you can
participate in the three S's: shopping, sunning and
sightseeing. This walled city offers spectacular
beaches that range from crowded, tourist hotspots
near luxury resorts to virtually untouched, secluded
hideaways. There are dozens of beaches and bays to
choose from around the island.
You can also partake in virtually every type of
sport. Thanks to the shape and position of the island's
curves, you often find perfect conditions for
windsurfing. When the sun goes down, the nightlife
heats up with plenty of clubs available.
An aquarium, the Valley of the Butterflies and the
ancient village of Lindos are popular attractions for
families. As you ascend to the Lindos ruins, the
streets are lined with vendors selling their wares.
Good buys can be had on practically everything
imaginable including jewelry, leather goods, furs,
carpets and more.
If you're looking for a vacation that's out of the
ordinary, touring the Greek Isles is an excellent
choice. With plenty to do for all ages, you'll expand
your mind and your cultural knowledge while enjoying
friendly people, exceptional food and intriguing sites.
Read more about Greek Island Cruises.
Read more about European Cruises.
Read more about Mediterranean Cruises.