Taking My Mom On a Dream Trip: GREECE
In partnership with Delta Air Lines, I was finally able to take my mother to her dream destination of: GREECE!
My mom is an avid cook and she has wanted to visit Greece for many years. So this Mother’s Day, I surprised her with a trip to Athens. She was so ecstatic, but at the same token, nervous for an 11 hour flight. Although a long haul, I knew that flying Delta One on an international trip would be a much different experience (it would be my first time flying Delta One too). I always dreamed of what it’d be like to fly first class internationally and I’m so grateful I was able to experience sky-high luxury with my mom!
The comfort and luxury of Delta One is real – we were greeted with mimosas, which was a great start to our experience. The lay-flat seats have a 180-degree capability to turn into beds, so you can take a well-deserved snooze with a Tumi eye mask. I’m a bit obsessed with the Tumi Amenity kit, which also includes lip balm and lotion from Le Labo (awesome new partnership, by the way) and Bombas socks. My absolute favorite part of my experience was having an exceptional flight crew – Tony and Brian were so attentive and genuine that I ended up chatting with them for a while and taking selfies. It was awesome to hear about their experience as flight attendants and their passion for what they do. I hope we cross (flight) paths again!
The chef-curated 3-course meal was absolutely delicious – from the shrimp appetizer to the build-your-own sundae, my mom and I didn’t skip any of the entrees. After indulging in the delicious meals, I reclined the seat back and took a nap and before I knew it, we landed in Athens.
We absolutely fell in love with the quaint streets of Athens – everything was charming and we couldn’t wait to start experiencing authentic Greek salads. Our favorite part of Athens was exploring the Acropolis and understanding the deep-rooted history surrounding us (The Parthenon dates way back to 438 BC). We spent about a day and a half in Athens, which in my opinion, is plenty.
After Athens, we boarded our 40 minute flight to Santorini! Now, you can either take a ferry or a quick flight – and in my opinion a flight is much better than taking a 5-7 hour ferry.
From the airport to our hotel, we had about a 20-minute taxi ride to our hotel.
The initial sight of Santorini was breathtaking – our jaws dropped as we approached our hotel and saw the endless sea and white calderas glowing. My sister, mom and I were in awe of the beauty and we all agreed, “This is what heaven must look like”.
We stayed in the village of Imerovigli – and it was perfect. The locals were very hospitable and welcoming. My favorite part of our stay was Grecian breakfast. Most of the hotels and villas include breakfast in your stay and we were beyond pleased with the breakfast served each morning. From freshly poached eggs, to tomato parfaits, I wish I could start my mornings like this everyday.
Although I’m not an avid cook like my mom, we had an amazing opportunity to experience cooking classes together! We were so excited to learn how to prepare & cook authentic Grecian dishes at Petra Kouzina.
Chef George taught us how to make a traditional Greek salad, tomato fritters, tzatziki, shrimp scampi and moussaka. Did you know that traditional Greek salads, do not include lettuce and that you’re not supposed to mix the dressing, instead, you pour it on top and let it be absorbed. These were things I had no idea about but it was insightful to hear it from someone whose family was from Greece (these were mostly his family recipes, too)!
My mom loved every minute of this experience because she was doing something she absolutely loves, while learning new techniques (plus she’s with her girls). At the end of our cooking class, we all enjoyed feasting together with strangers who quickly became friends and created beautiful memories together!
A few must-do things in Imerovigli include:
- Watching the sunset at Skaros Rock
Pro-tip: I accidentally stumbled upon Chapel of Panagia Theoskepasti at the bottom of Skaros Rock – it was the BEST accident because I ended up taking some extraordinary photos during sunset.
- Walk along the path to Fira
Pro-tip: Fira is the capital of Santorini and it’s where ALL the bars/clubs are located in Santorini. You will not find bars in Oia or Imerovigli LOL
- Cooking classes at Petra Kouzina
Pro-tip: They can even arrange your transportation needs!
The next village we stayed in was Oía – which is predominantly known for its sunsets. But, be advised that Oia is A LOT more crowded with tourists/honeymooners so to watch the sunset at Oia Castle, you will have to get there EARLY. And holy moly, to leave the area after watching the sunset, is insanely crowded so this is your forewarning!
Oia is undeniably beautiful – my favorite part about it was exploring the path to swim in the Aegean Sea at Amoudi Bay. But I wish I would have known that there are MANY steps to get to Amoudi Bay so make sure you have comfy shoes (I wore sandals). Also, there are many donkeys that are walking the path so you will come across a lot of poop so WATCH WHERE YOU STEP! But overall, it takes about 20-25 minutes to get down to the bay.
There are also restaurants with fresh sun-dried octopus (so yummy) – so you can enjoy lunch/dinner after your experience at Amoudi Bay.
Here are a few pointers:
- There is no sand or anything so you will need to bring towels so you can relax on the rocks.
- It can be a bit crowded so get there earlier, but it’s definitely not an all day thing – it’s best to stay for an hour or so, jump in the sea (or cliff jump if you’re daring).
Most of our days were spent sunbathing in the hotel pool and exploring the local shops in Oia. There are MANY stores and restaurants in the area, but if you know me, I like to explore the more non-touristy areas. Which is why I was excited to venture out into the more local villages like Finikia; there you will find my favorite restaurant in Santorini – it’s called Lefkes. It was SO delicious and the ambiance was wonderful.
Few other good eats:
- Melitini – octopus was delicious
- Skiza Café – they had good pizza but get their TIRAMISU, unbelievable
- Pitogyros – best pitas in Santorini
This trip was extremely special to me because I had the opportunity to bring my mom on one of my Delta trips as a Delta Ambassador. It truly made me happy that I was able to give back to her in my own way (even though I can never repay my mom for all the sacrifices she made in her life). From exploring the quaint streets of Athens, to catching sunsets in Oia (and laughing until our bellies hurt), it was a trip that I’ll never forget! My mom said she will remember this experience as the “honeymoon she never had, but only better, because it was with her two daughters”.
Thank you @delta for making this possible xx