We started our day at a very small island with a swim stop at Maganari Beach on the island of Ios. Everything thus far has been small enough and we have felt safe enough with our crew we actually sent the kids in on the tender first with a few Euros to get our chaises. We spent the morning snorkeling, swimming, and sand castle building. Snorkeling continued to improve with some fish with colors. Dean made friends with the only vendor on the beach where we had buy 3 get 1 free Alpha Beers.Oia the famed sunset area. We had the most incredible driver, Zeus. Yes you read that right. Zeus from Santorini Skyline Car Service. He was incredibly friendly and told us lots of interactive jokes and about his life. He came to Santorini and fell in love, had long hair twice in his life, and loved to spear fish and generally got enough during the winter to last his family all summer. He left us to return at 7PM to return us to Fira for dinner.
Oia is at the north end of the island and the famous spot for the sunset. Lots of shops and meandering cliffside paths. We stopped in shops and made our way out to the castle/fort. Andy and I found the point had the view of the jigsaw puzzle I had gotten him for Christmas in preparation for the trip. As we made our way back for our pick-up we were met with a crush of crowd making their way out for the sunset. Lots of sticker-tagged people from the cruise ships. We opted to head back to Fira where I had a reservation at a cliffside restaurant for our 9 to watch the sunset.
More jokes and riddles and we were back headed for dinner. Riddles includes SHIT means Store High In Transit...for transporting feces which would release methane. FUCK means Fornication Under Consent of the King from the era of the black plague. Needless to say the teenagers really enjoyed these riddles. Even recording them in their phones to share with friends.
Franco's, the first bar that opened on Santorini, to find out we were literally right below it, only one level away. Franco's had good reviews, but had to admit I never found a menu with pricing. And it was worth it...the view, the food, and even the suprise of enjoying the live singer at the next door restaurant. The dinner presentation was the fanciest yet. Ally's vegetables with her entree were artfully put together in what resembled a landscape scene. We enjoyed sunset and after using the washroom carved into the hillside we were off in search of galato, Yes Cafe, before getting into line for the cable car down. They had told us it would only be about 20-25 minutes. Since there was still a cruise ship sitting out in the harbor we got in line with an hour to spare to the last cable car down and literally got our tickets purchased with 2 minutes to spare. And we knew we were OK as the group of 12 and 3 crew were in line behind us. And would not have to walk the donkey path back down. We all agreed Santorini was nice to do once, but we are OK to not return or if we ever considered it to only do so on the offseason. The crowds were just too much and on this day there was only one cruise ship on land when we were there. Normally there are 4 or more.
Once back on the boat we would enjoy the full moon over Santorini as we pulled away and the crew was ready for some music and a party to accompany it on the back deck as we were off to our next destination...Naxos.