I'll cut straight to the point - Greece is golden. Out of all of the cities I've visited in Europe, Greece won my heart over and officially left me yearning for more. Greece is like the perfect relationship - it warms your heart, opens your eyes a little wider and gives you a little glimpse of what heaven is like.
Arriving in Athens was a huge cultural shock, only because for the first time in my life I had to rely on my very poor ability to communicate in Greek - which the world knows is the hardest and ugliest language to learn - and more importantly I had to learn to breathe in the ridiculous HEAT. It hurt. My lungs are still recovering. Despite me painting such a hot picture of Greece (pun intended), here are 5 reasons why you should visit Greece only in the SUMMER!
The Greek locals are buzzing with the euphoria of summer
I don't know what stereotypes you've heard about the Greeks, but I can guarentee they are all true. My favourite proven stereotype is the fact that they take afternoon naps incredibly seriously. Between 2pm - 5pm all shops are shut (except for the yiros joints). I loved this, only because I was able to follow suit and take a quick snooze between taking photos and eating. The summer lifestyle is suitable for everyone, no matter what holiday you are on.
The islands are full, but not crowded.
It's hard to believe that in peak season, you can still find corners of the islands that are untouched. I found this to be most true in Santorini because most first-time visitors stay and remain in Oia, which is great because that means you can hire a quad bike and explore the south of Santorini on your lonesome and see the most spectacular views, beaches and meet the locals who WILL invite you in for lunch, dinner, frappes or even tavli.
You can visit the Greek islands on a budget
The accommodation will be the most expensive thing you will outlay in costs. Everything else you can pretty much pay with the peanuts in your pocket. In Mykonos, the drinks are cheap. Bottle service is the golden ticket to a good time on Paradise Beach, and by the time you split the costs between a group of you - it'll be cheaper than your weekend bender at home. Eating is even cheaper. You can devour a yiros with a side of lemon fanta for around 2-3 euros. Become friends with the locals near your hotel and you'll eat all meals for free - it's a win-win.
The weather in the Summer
What is rain? Where does it come from? You actually find yourself trying to remember the last time you have seen a cloud, especially when you spend a month island hopping. They simply don't exist. The weather also takes any white skinned visitor and turns them into a tanned adonis by the end of the trip - without ANY sunburn might I add. This is music to any Aussies ears - as anytime we are exposed to the sun, the thought of skin cancer creeps in and overtakes any outdoor activity plans. Whereas in Greece, sun safety revolves around making sure you've packed your skimpiest bikini for the beach.
Last but not least - that Santorini SUNSET!
Seriously. for the 9 days I was exploring Santorini, I found myself scheduling in the sunset and picking the best location to watch it every single day. When watching the sunset, it really feels as if nothing else matters in the world - that feeling of serendipity was addictive and just simply good for the soul. Once you've experienced the sunset, you must take a morning or two, wake up early and witness the sunrise. It is indescribable. Once you've spent 24 hours in the Greek Islands, you will be forever chasing the sunset from that moment on.
If you're yet to visit the Greek Islands, put it on your bucket list for june/july 2015! You'll thank me later.