Portugal Day 2 (Lagos)

Hey guys!

Sorry I’m so behind with all this. It was a lot easier on our last trip because we basically vegged out on a beach the entire time. There were a lot more sights to see this time around, so it’s a bit harder to stay on track! Bare with me 🙂

Our first stop was in Sagres at a lighthouse called Vila do Bispo, which translates into “the Bishop’s Village.” I can’t add anything to that other than tell you that’s what google translate told me.

Second stop was Fortaleza de Sagres, the Fortress of Sagres. I would highly recommended paying the few euros it cost to get in because the sights within the fortress were a large testament to the “Age of Discoveries” that the Portuguese participated in. It was the headquarters of Prince Henry the Navigator. This marked the expansion of European culture between the 16th and 18th centuries.

Last, but certainly not least, we headed into the city of Lagos for some lunch in the town center. I won’t lie, the food in Portugal is not my favorite, but everyone is different. I’ll go into that in a later post. Afterwards, we got on a small skipper boat and toured through the Ponta De Piedade, which is a MUST SEE if you are going to head to the Algarves. You need to get a smaller boat because they can actually navigate within the caves! It’s unbelievable. I felt like I was in a mermaids grotto.

Anyways, until the next winded blog post, that is hopefully a lot less historical because let’s be honest, we all hated world history!

Tay

Portugal Day 1

 

Finally we made it to Albufeira, Portugal!! We have arrived here in the Algarve, the southern coast of Portugal. If you look at a map, we are nearly touching Morocco. I guess Portugal has always been swallowed up by the grandeur of Spain, even in the world map of my head.

This morning we had a lovely buffet breakfast. The orange groves in the Algarve are magnificent, which leads to incredible orange juice.

As a family of die hard bachelor nation fans, we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to scope out the infamous fence Colton Underwood jumped during his spoiled fantasy suite date with Cassie. Well… after many reddit searches… we found it. So, thanks internet for your sleuthing skills.

In the early afternoon we made our way, via car to spend a beach day in Cacela-A-Velha, which has a pretty magnificent history, as well as picturesque lagoons. I have attached photos below the paragraph. 

Cacela-A-Velha was once a Medieval necropolis of the Christian settlers of the Algarve, after the conquest of King Afonso III. Prior to that, it functioned as a Medieval Islamic quarter of the ancient Quastalla Darrag (12th century to beginning of 13th century). 

Here are the photos!

 

In the late afternoon we headed to Olhão, a small little port city with cute little shops and cafes. I will say, the Portuguese strictly observe a siesta from 3 pm-6pm. The entire city shut down, but it was almost as if we had the entire place to explore on our own! Here are some photos! I’m not sure what the function of the umbrellas are, but they made for some beautiful photographs.

All in all, we are extremely sunburned, but our first day was amazing!

Talk to you guys tomorrow,

Tay 💕

 

Easy Sundays

Hi guys,

As you know I live in the amazing city of San Francisco, CA. From the diverse people and food, to the history engulfing every inch of the city, it’s easy to say I LOVE WHERE I LIVE.

Sunday’s in our house are used for meal prepping as well as errand running and taking it easy. Our day ALWAYS starts off at Equinox- our gym. From there we get any errands out of the way and this week we made a couple must see stops around North Beach (aka Little Italy)

We enjoy the way Europeans live, with a slower pace in their life. We stopped at Cafe Trieste, in the heart of Little Italy for an afternoon coffee. We just sat and talked… no technology. And we didn’t drink the coffee to just drink it. We enjoyed each other’s company, and that is something that I think many relationships lack. Everyone gets so caught up in the moment that they forget why we all fell in love in the first place.

We also took a detour to Candlelight Books. One of my favorite books is Inferno by Dante and at the entrance to the store they have a quote that says, “Abandon all despair, Ye who enter here” which I thought to be quite charming especially if you are familiar with the actual quote from Inferno.

If you make your Sunday’s fun instead of dreading Monday, life gets a lot more interesting. Stay tuned for my post tomorrow about meal preppy- I know super adulty.

Wishing you all happiness,

Tay

Santorini Day 3

The Hike from Fira to Oiá….

iIf you go to Santorini, and you stay in Fira, you have to hike over to Oiá. It’s 8 miles, in the blazing hot sun, but it is so worth it, and in my opinion the best way to see the island.

Plus, all those beautiful blue church domes… are in Oiá! You can bus back to Fira in 20 minutes. The hike can also be made from Oiá to Fira.

I recommend leaving pretty early to try and beat the heat, plus then you Arrive in the city center around lunch time.

We were exhausted by the end of the hike… 8 miles and it is NOT flat. So I wouldn’t recommend it unless you feel as if you’re in fairly good shape. It’s super hilly and there is a lot of loose rubble so it is easy to lose your footing if you aren’t careful.

There are also donkeys that you can ride who will make the journey for you! My mom, unfortunately, decided she wanted to complete the entire hike on foot.

I would venture to say my family is pretty in shape, and the hike took us 3 hours and 45 minutes. We stopped to take a bunch of photos though so that could have factored in to how long it took us to finish.

We are back home now! Greece was amazing. I am going to do a final thoughts and recap post later if you want to check that out!

Talk to you soon,

Tay

Santorini Day 2

This was a big day.. so I apologize in advance for the long post.

We went on a catamaran tour of the island, which stopped at the sulfur hot springs, and the famous red and white beaches of the Volcanic Thera island (the actual name of Santorini)

Below is a photo of the Sulfur hot springs on the old volcanic island. It is no longer an active island, but tourists travel here to bask in the mud baths. It was really fun, but if you go, make sure to wear a bathing suit you don’t care about because it will get stained and it’s impossible to get out!

Along the tour we passed the oldest lighthouse in Greece. It was hard to snap a really good picture because it was so far away, but I did my best 🙂

My parents celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary by having the captain of the ship renew their wedding vows. My mom also got a beautiful new wedding ring, selected by yours truly.

Finally we ended the day with the most delicious meal with a breathtaking view at one of Greece’s Michelin star restaurants called Idol. If you don’t do anything else in Fira while you are here, you HAVE to do this. The food was to die for and so was the view.

Wishing you the best,

Tay

Santorini Day 1

Hey guys!

So our first day in Santorini was pretty uneventful! The ferry ride took a REALLY REALLY long time. Then we checked into our hotel called El Greco (very beautiful) and took a nap.

My sister then proceeded to force me to go out in Santorini and we hit up a couple of the local bars and clubs- tbh it was like college all over again except people were chain smoking cigs instead of weed (not my scene just at all. Not my scene in the states and not my scene in Europe, but I love spending time with my sister… so I put up with it!

I’ll keep you all updated,

Tay

Mykonos Day 3

We just couldn’t get enough of the beautiful beaches here in Mykonos. I have a horrible sinus infection, so I don’t feel like writing too much! It didn’t, however, stop me from cliff jumping at the locals favorite spot- far away from the many many tourists on the island. The good news is that pharmacies in Greece hand out Z-packs like candy so I’m hopefully on the mend. Today our boat travels to Santorini!

Here are some photos from our adventure yesterday!

Talk to you soon,

Tay

Mykonos Day 2

Today was the most incredible beach day ever. I mean I must have been in paradise. We went to a beach club called Pinky Beach! The chairs were incredible, the service was excellent, and the water was perfect.

We bought an inflatable swan to swim in the ocean with from the local market! Everyone thought we looked ridiculous but it was the best part of the day.

I also finished my book, Into The Water, and I have to say… it wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t a book I could not put down. I found myself having to force myself to open it with the hopes of maybe becoming more intrenched in the plot. Great twist at the end though!

Here are some photos from the day!

Mykonos Day 1

First of all, Mykonos is everything it is cracked up to be. It’s an amazing time, the people are fun, and the water and buildings are so beautiful they look fake.

We took the ferry from Athens, which was quite luxurious. The ride was about 3.5 hours. Then we settled down on the beach and went on a tubing ride, which was extremely wild but I got some great pictures! We then walked around and explored the city center. It is made up of tiny little streets surrounded by shops.

We made it down to the beach and the part of the city known as little Venice. The famous Windmills of Mykonos are also located there! It was extremely windy but it looked like a scene from a movie.

We also stopped at this little bar and cafe along the coast line of little Venice. The view was spectacular. It was literally right on the water. The place was called Breeze if you ever want to check it out. They had some very fancy, and very expensive cocktails, but according to the rest of my family they were delicious. I’m not much of a drinker.

As we were walking back to the bus, we found this medieval bakery. It was a little hole in the wall, literally, filled with the most delicious pastries and desserts. They still had the medieval ovens on display. It is easy to miss, but it is a must visit gem, that tourist skip right over.

We haven’t hit the “clubbing” scene of the city, which is what the city is famous for, but maybe I can give you some insight tomorrow!!!

Sleep tight,

Tay

Athens Day 1- Getting Our Bearings and Eating Gelato

Athens is an incredible metropolis at the base of the acropolis (hahah) which houses the ruins of temples dedicated to some of the Greeks’ most worshipped Gods and Goddesses.

We freshened up at the hotel, and then explored the neighborhood of Plaka- the main square beneath the Acropolis. It is filled with markets, restaurants, and shops.

We stopped to grab a cappuccino and some gelato at this tiny little hole in the wall along a cobble stone street called “Davinci”. 10/10 would recommend. It was the best gelato I’ve ever had in my life (check out photos below)

As we were flying over Italy and Greece this morning, I couldn’t help but think of the reason people travel, better yet, the reason I travel. Yes, vacation rocks and it’s awesome to relax and see interesting and historical monuments. For me, however, traveling reminds me of how easy it is to become egocentric in our day to day lives. We forget that beyond our little microcosms there are people living in the villages of Greek islands no one knows the names of. They are surviving, making lives for themselves that are totally different from the one we view as being “successful.”

It is a humbling thought, and quite a liberating one as well. When we become so caught up in ourselves it’s easy to get overwhelmed and upset when things do not go according the our plan. But there is so much life outside of the little bubbles which we create for ourselves. So much more to life than the perfect job, the perfect medical school application, the perfect body, and the perfect family.

Just some food for thought,

Tay