Exploring Santorini: Red Beach, Vlychada, Perivolos, Perissa (Updated)

Santorini is by far one of the most magical islands in Europe, with thousands of tourists visiting every summer. What makes this Greek island so special, are the majestic views, the insanely delicious food and the perfect combination of blue and white.

Santorini can be easily explored within 3 days and most of its villages are worth visiting. If you are limited in days, you can skip the Akrotiri, Emporeio and Kamari.

Akrotiri

On the southwestern peninsula of the island, you will find Akrotiri and in the very last point of it, the Lighthouse. The Akrotiri Lighthouse is among the oldest lighthouses in Greece and was constructed way back in 1892. It is nothing special, but the view there is amazing. The best time to visit the Akrotiri Lighthouse is during sunset. Actually, everything is better visiting during sunset in Santorini.

Red Beach

When you leave the Lighthouse, your next stop MUST be the Red Beach, one of the most famous and beautiful beaches of Santorini. It is called red, due to the red stones in the mountain and the beach, which are basically rocks from the volcano.

The red and steep hills, give a captivating and wild scenery. Along with the crystal clear blue waters, this beach will for sure take your breath away.

To be fair, the access is not the easiest, yet not the most difficult. You just need to hike for a while by stepping into big stones. But once you get there, it is so worth it. From the Red Beach, you can visit the White Beach, which is also gorgeous, but only accessible by boat.

Emporeio

15 minutes away is Emporeio, a place where there is nothing for you to do, but this small village across the hill is truly beautiful and is definitely recommended for photography lovers. We didn’t make all the way to the top because the heat was insane that day.

Vlychada

Vlychada is also a very nice area. Most people visit the Vlychada Beach, but we decided to visit one of the most known beach bars, called Theros Wave Bar. Be really careful with the streets, because if you end up taking the wrong turn your car may get stuck in the sand unless help comes.


Perivolos, Perissa and Kamari have the best beaches on the island. They are the only ones, that you do not have to go hiking in order to access them and you can actually have a good time there. Relax, enjoy your cocktail and sunbathe.

All three places are great during the day for lunch and swimming. But only Kamari is nice visiting during the night. There is nothing to do in the other two, other than go for a small walk.

Perivolos

Although it may not be something special, it is one of the beaches you can actually enjoy on the island. You go chill for a few hours and after that, you can go shopping for souvenirs or eat in one of the local taverns.

All the beach bars are organized with sunbeds and umbrellas. In some you have to pay, but not in all of them. The prices vary from 3-10 euros for 2 sunbeds.

Perissa

Perissa is one more of the best beaches in Santorini. For me it is by far the best one, considering water temperature, view, and location. The view is breathtaking and relaxing. The location is great since it is easily accessible from any point on the island. As for the water temperature is was the warmest one.

Kamari

Kamari is somewhat located in the middle of the island and it is very close to the airport. The beach is beautiful with black sand from the volcano. This area is full of hotels, restaurants, taverns, bars and souvenir shops. It is extremely enjoyable for a quiet evening.

When in Kamari, make sure to visit Pinakio.

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5 Things You Need To Know Before Visiting Santorini

Santorini is one of the most beautiful islands in Greece and among the most popular ones around the world. Visiting the island for 7 days, I came up with some essential things you need to know before visiting.

 

1.Rent a car or an ATV

We were staying in the middle of the island (Kamari). The furthest we had to drive was 40 minutes with traffic.You definitely need a mean of transportation, since it is truly worth it to go around the whole island. There are also local buses that depart every half an hour.

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2. 3 days are enough

We were so eager to see everything and afraid that we will not make it in 7 days. Within 5 days we had visited each area more than 2 times and we spend the last 2 lying on the beach.

 

3. Enjoy the fresh fish

They have the freshest and tasty fish in Greece. Do not miss the traditional foods, such as fava, santorinia salad, kapari and tomatoes.

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4. A bit overpriced

Compared to Europe, the prices in Santorini re pretty much the same. But comparing them to Greece, they are a bit much. However, you get what you pay for. The food quality is outstanding and so is the view no matter where you go.

 

5.Hike to go swimming

Some of the most beautiful beaches on the island require some hiking on mountains. So, be prepared with hats and water.

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7 things to know before you visit Krakow

Krakow is a good choice for an incredibly affordable destination with a medieval vibe and great architecture and the second largest city in Poland.

Going around is easy, since the city is quite small and can be seen within a day. However, Krakow is full of surprises… both good and bad…

 

1. Money makes the world go round

The exchange rates in Krakow are quite high, especially at the airport. If you want to exchange currencies after you arrive, think again.

By far, the best choice is to roughly calculate how much money you are going to need and exchange this sum of money from your hometown.

The tickets from the airport to the city cost 9 PLN per person for a one-way ticket. The food is quite cheap. Try to research a few of the places you want to eat at and see their menus for prices.

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2. Google Maps is worthless

When arriving in Krakow, your first instinct will be to open Google Maps and find the best way to go to the city.  But for some reason, Google Maps will simply not cooperate with you. The only way it shows is to use the LEO EXPRESS, which is nowhere to be found.

Instead, follow the sign ´Train to the city´. This train is scheduled to depart every 30 mins.

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3. Ticket Madness

At the train station outside the airport, there are only 2 ticket machines with MANY people waiting. You may find yourself waiting for more than 40 minutes, and you will definitely lose at least one train.

What you must know is that if you have Polish money, you can enter the train and pay inside. 

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4. Shop your heart out

Any Polish city is great for shopping since everything is quite affordable with sales up to 80%.

Besides well-known clothing stores, such as Bershka, C&A, Pull&Bear and more you will find many Polish ones with better prices and more unique clothes.

The drugstore Hebe, has two stores in Krakow and has a variety of brands at very low prices.

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5. Gotta love the bakeries

Who does not love baked goods that smell great and taste even better? In every corner in Krakow, you will come across bakeries with a variety of pastries and local goodies. Just get inside and try as much as you can.

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6. Smell your lungs out

Polish people love cleanliness. ANYWHERE and I mean anywhere you go, you will realise that everything smells amazing. People, malls, streets, sights, restaurants, hotels, even public bathrooms smell amazing.

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7. Souvenir without existence

Every city will always promote some specific sights. Every city makes a big profit from tourists that buy souvenirs of those famous sights.

What if, Krakow had a souvenir of a sight that was nowhere to be found???

The fire-breathing dragon is located in the Wavel Castle, but only from April to October.

While in Krakow, you will see the dragon in every kind of souvenir; fridge magnets, teddy bears, chocolates, postcards and more have the dragon in them, possibly making it the ´maskot´of the town.

However, no one will buy a souvenir to remind them something they never saw…

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Szechenyi Spa & Thermal Baths in Budapest

What is better than visiting the most famous natural waters in Europe and relaxing with massages and thermal baths?

When you visit Budapest, especially for the first time, you know you MUST visit at least one of its thermal baths. The Pearl of the Danube has so many natural warm spring waters, that visiting a thermal bath is the reason most travellers visit the city.

The Szechenyi Bath is the biggest and of course the most famous one in Budapest. Besides that, it is one of the biggest natural hot spring spa baths in Europe.

The 18 pools are open all year long, even in the winter. The outdoor pool can reach a temperature of up to 40 degrees Celsius, which makes it a perfect choice for your winter vacation. The chess-boards on the sides of this pool, are something special and interesting to watch when everything around you is covered in snow.

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What you will need with you

  • Towel or bathrobe (bathrobe is a way better choice for the winter)
  • Flip-flops (optional)
  • Bathing suit
  • A change of clothes
  • Hairdryer (optional)

Tips: 

***You have the option to buy towels, flip flops, shampoo & bath gel from there.

Flip-flops: The floors in the spa are quite dirty, even though they are being cleaned every few minutes.

Bathrobe: If you visit during the winter and choose to go in the outdoor pool, you will freeze when you get out.

 

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by szechenyispabaths.com

 

Prices

The prices are different for weekdays and weekends. You can find the whole price list here.

Bath Ticket with Locker: 19 euros

Bath Ticket with Private Cabin: 21 euros (20 euros on weekdays)

Bath Kit (towel, flip-flops, swimming cap, shampoo & bath gel, bottle of mineral water): 26 euros

Bath Towel: 13 euros

 

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by Budapest Cards

 

Special Events

There are many parties happening in the Szechenyi Baths on Saturday nights, known as Sparties. The party combines relaxing in the hot pools while drinking and listening to the DJ´s music under an incredible light show.

More special events take place during holidays, such as New Years and Christmas.  You can find more information on those events in the Spa´s official page.

 

Night of Baths in Budapest
by National Geographic

 

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by Tripdvisor

 

Where to eat in Krakow

Admittedly, Poland is known for the good food and Krakow is not an exception. From traditional cuisine to classic burgers, one thing is for sure… You will want more.

Below you can find the best places for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack and coffee based on taste, ingredient quality and prices.

 

1. Milkbar Tomasza

A true hidden gem in the city of Krakow. There are many breakfast choices for you and everything is simply delicious.

Address: ul. Sw. Tomasza 24 | 31-027 Krakow, Krakow 31-027, Poland

Opening Hours: 08:00 – 20:00 (Tue – Sat)

09:00 – 20:00 (Sun)

What to eat:

  • Poached eggs with spinach, grilled peppers & Cottage cheese
  • Spanish omelette with potatoes, olives, gouda & bacon
  • Irish breakfast

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2. GOGO Burger

For the burger lovers, this is a must. The burgers are all super tasty, the service excellent and the prices very very low.

Address: Starowislna 16, Krakow 31-032, Poland

Opening Hours: 12:00 – 22:30 (Mon – Fr)

What to eat:

  • French burger
  • Bacon Cheeseburger
  • Guacamole burger

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3. Vegab

A truly unique place with unique and healthy food and the perfect option for any vegetarian. Everything is delicious and prepared with fresh ingredients.

Address: Starowislna 6, Krakow 31-032, Poland

Opening Hours: 11:00 – 21:00 (Mon – Thur)

11:00 – 23:00 (Fri – Sat)

11:00 – 20:00 (Sun)

What to eat:

  • Beirut (hummus, sesame tahini, pickled cucumbers)
  • Olymp (tzatziki, black olives, sundried tomatoes)
  • Aloha (mango sweet & sour sauce, marinated pineapple)
  • Superfood smoothie (goji berries, chia, date paste, young barley, orange, apple)
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by Vegab

4. Smakolyki

If you want to taste traditional Polish food for breakfast, lunch or dinner, this is the place for you. The decoration of the restaurant is very cosy, the food is delicious and the prices excellent.

Address: Straszewskiego 28, Krakow, Poland

Opening Hours: 09:00 – 22:00 daily

What to eat:

  • Dumplings
  • Mushroom soup with noodles
  • Roasted ribs
  • Homemade cheesecake
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by Smakolyki

 

5. Lajkonik – Piekarnia i Kawiarnia

The local and traditional bakery with many locations around the city. Everything is fresh and delicious. Perfect for a quick snack during the day or a rich breakfast.

Address: Karmelicka 22 | Opposite Carmelite Church

Opening Hours: 06:30 – 20:00 (Mon – Fri)

07:00 – 20:00 (Sat)

07:00 – 21:00 (Sun)

**Opening hours vary in the other locations

What to eat: 

  • Cinnamon roll
  • French dough with vanilla cream filling
  • Bagels
  • Tortillas
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by Tripadvisor

 

10 Things to do in Budapest for FREE

1. Gellert Hill View

On your way to Citadella, stop at Gellert Hill for the most picturesque view in all of Budapest. Take a moment and embrace the view. This monument will be specifically appreciated by photography lovers.

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2. Margaret Island

A great place to unwind and become one with nature. The perfect time to visit would be during spring, fall or summer when the weather is very good and you can fully enjoy the park.

Inside you can find the Music Fountain, canteens, cafes, bike renters, the city´s zoo, a Japanese and Rose garden and many more sights.

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Japanese Garden

 

3. Cross the Bridges

There are 4 gorgeous and big bridges in the centre of the city that unite Buda with Pest. Going towards all the famous sightseeing, you will see all of them and cross them by foot or public transportation. The chain bridge must be walked through during the day and at night.

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Chain Bridge

 

4. Free Walking Tour

Who doesn´t love a free tour in a beautiful city? Someone that knows the ropes and history and will be able to give you more insight on the place you have visited.

Visit the official free walking tour website  for all tour options and choose the one that best fits you.

 

5. Museum Lovers

Budapest has numerous interesting museums that are mostly come with a fee. However, during Hungarian national holidays (March 15; August 20; October 23) some of the city´s top museums open their doors for free.

So you might want to consider planning a trip during these dates if you want to take advantage of free admission to the Museum of Fine Arts, the Hungarian National Gallery, the Hungarian National Museum and the Museum of Hungarian Agriculture.

 

6. Budapest by Evening

Budapest is beautiful at all times of the day. But when the evening comes and the sun is about to set, it is truly an amazing time. The view is breathtaking and you get that cosy feeling of warmth.

There are so many people walking along the Danube with the sunset. Everything looks far prettier and it comes to be one of the best moments of being in Budapest.

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7. Parliament Scenery

When was the last time you saw a sight, museum, monument, city that left you in owe. The Hungarian Parliament has that effect on people.

When you visit it in the morning, you can see all the beauty from both its sides and admire the detail in this gorgeous architectural building.

However, at night it can leave you speechless. By many, it is considered to be one of the most stunning things to see in Europe.

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8. Explore Kosponti Vasarcsarnok (central market)

A market which the locals appreciate and visit daily. You can find anything from souvenirs to fresh produce.

As you enter, you will find all the local kiosks, where most Budapest citizen buy their vegetables, fruits and other products every day. However, on the second floor, you will find it filled with tourists, since it is the floor with all the souvenirs.

 

9. Fisherman´s Bastion

One of the top attractions in Budapest. You can access from Buda Castle or by bus. Its unique fortification and lookout towers, provide a stunning view of the city.

A truly unique and gorgeous sight. The architecture is so different from everything else you see in Budapest with hundreds of tourists visiting on a daily basis.

You visit both in the morning and at night. During the night the view of the Parliament across is breathtaking.

 

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10. Palace of Arts

St. Stephen´s Day, is a national Hungarian holiday that occurs on the 20th of August of each year.  This long anticipating festival takes place in Mupa, the city’s biggest concert hall. During the day, you will see jazz concerts and many other performances that end with a firework show.

 

 

 

 

How to tour Krakow in only 1 day

Krakow, as well as most cities in Poland, are a very affordable European destination. Being located in Berlin, visiting Krakow was a no-brainer for me.

With 1 day off from work, the second largest city of Poland is a perfect destination. The tickets only cost 12 euros, so it really was a perfect choice.

It turned out that 1 day was enough to see everything. Since our hotel was in the centre of the city, everything was within walking distance.

Whether you arrive by train or plane, you will arrive at Kraków Główny, the city´s train station. Even though the town´s biggest mall is right on the floors above, I would recommend you leave it at the end when it is darker and you cannot enjoy the sights anymore.

So, from that point on, you can follow the suggested itinerary above to fully explore the city within a few hours.

 

St. Florian´s Gate & The Barbican (30 min)

These two sights are the remaining parts of what used to be a fort. They do not take long to explore and they are worth visiting for a while.

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Slowacki Theatre (Pass by)

After the Barbican, turn back and keep on going towards the castle. There is absolutely no chance that you will miss this grand, beautiful and perfectly preserved theatre.

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Franciscan Church (30 mins)

If you are into unique churches, you should visit this one. Even if visiting a church is not in your to-do-list, just give it a go.

When you enter, it might look like a common church, but if you explore it further you will find some huge, breathtaking, handmade, wooden art pieces. From the doors on the left, you will enter a gallery of incredible paintings and find out more about the history of the church.

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Wavel Castel & Cathedral (1-2  hours)

On your way to the castle, make a stop outside the Church of St. Peter and St. Paul, to admire the beautiful architecture.

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This beautiful Gothic castle can either be the beginning or the end of your tour. Visiting the castle and the cathedral is free of charge. Only a few specific parts need a fee. The audio tour of the cathedral is perfect for those interested in the history of the castle and the city. Keep in mind that pictures are not allowed inside the cathedral.

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Even if you don´t wish to visit the museum, you can easily explore the surroundings of the castle. Do not miss the fire-breathing dragon statue, which is one of the most famous sights in town. However, the dragon is only on display between April and October.

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Main Square & Cloth Hall (2-3 hours)

After the Wavel castle, after a 14-minute walking distance, you arrive at the Main Market Square. This is obviously the centre of the city, filled with restaurants, bars and local merchandisers.

Anywhere you choose to go, it will definitely be tasty and cheap. However always check the prices before entering, because you may find yourself in one of the more expensive restaurants.

In the square, the two sights that will instantly catch your attention are the St. Mary’s Basilica, the Cloth Hall and the statue of Eros Bound.

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The Cloth Hall is listed as a UNESCO world heritage site and is one of the most famous sights, as it used to be a place of international trade with merchandisers.

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The architecture in the heart of Krakow is simply outstanding, leaving you amazed at every move your head makes. Make sure to visit the square both during the day and at night.

 

Galeria Krakowska (2-4 hours)

After you are done with sightseeing, it is time to relax, go around, buy souvenirs, have a hot chocolate or go big. And by big I mean go shopping. The Galeria  Krakowska is a rather large mall, in which you will find all the stores you are looking for and all types of food.