Mykonos, Greece

It’s been over 6 months since our honeymoon to Greece! (!!!!) I’ve been meaning to write about our time there for a while now but first it was the holidays, then getting back into the MBA program grind, and now Covid-19 chaos made time fly by so I’m just now getting to it… 

When we were planning our honeymoon, we knew we wanted a mix of doing-nothing-and-sitting-by-a-body-of-water time and let’s-actually-see-the-world-and-experience-culture time. I wanted the Seychelles or the Maldives and Josh wanted Italy so naturally we settled on the Greek Islands and Athens. I’m so happy that we decided on Greece. We know a lot of couples who took their honeymoon trips to Greece, so we were able to ask them for advice on which islands to visit, where to stay, and how long to visit each location. We landed on the perfect combination of down time and culture time: Mykonos for 3 nights, Santorini for 6 nights, and Athens for 2 nights. Today’s post is all about our time on the island of Mykonos, part of the Cyclades in the Aegean Sea. Sit back because this is a long one…

How we got there

We flew AirCanada from Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport to Montreal and then from Montreal to Athens. Once in Athens, we took Olympic Airlines to Mykonos. Our travels started at 10:40am CST on September 16th and stretched until we finally landed in Mykonos at 2:14pm local time on September 17th. Needless to say, by the time we landed and found a taxi (there aren’t any ride share apps and taxis are few and far between so learn from us and book your ride ahead of time) to take us to our AirBnb (more on that in a second), we were exhausted. 

*Note: You don’t have to fly from Athens to Mykonos. There are tons of ferries that can allow you to island hop, but we wanted to get to our destination as quickly as possible and flying seemed like the best way to make that happen. 

*Another note: Have an open mind when traveling within Greece – the airports are chaotic and the ferry boarding process is a free-for-all. Also, 100% worth it to upgrade to VIP on the ferries – shout out to Mallory for this recommendation. 

Where we stayed

We decided to be fancy in Santorini since it was our longest leg of the honeymoon, so we landed on booking an AirBnb for our Mykonos portion of the trip. We found a cute little (emphasis on little) apartment in downtown Mykonos Town that wound up being in the best location. Once we got past the fact that we had to navigate the tiny alleys and haul our luggage from the main street to our apartment [that was down several flights of stone steps] (Mykonos Town is vehicle-free for the most part), we were really able to enjoy our time.

What we did

It’s so easy to wander and get lost in the tiny streets of Mykonos Town, which is what we did the majority of the time we were there. A few must dos in Mykonos are:

  • Check out the Kato Milli, or the 5 windmills. I recommend going over around sunset and soaking in the views. It’s stray cat central over there, so if you’re not a kitty fan, proceed with caution.
  • On the way to Kato Milli, walk along the water to take in Little Venice. This part of town is super charming, with houses and restaurants that touch the water, resembling certain areas of Venice, Italy. This is also a perfect spot to grab a drink and take in the sunset.
  • Take a ferry shuttle to Delos, a World Heritage Site with so many historical artifacts and ruins. A short ferry ride from Mykonos Town’s port gets you to there and back. On your way there, don’t forget to look back and take in the view of Mykonos Town from the water. Once there, 12 euros per person lets you wander around the island as you like and take in the ruins of what was once the religious center of Greece and was the birthplace of Apollo and Artemis. My favorite part was checking out the stone lions, even though I thought they looked more like sea lions than land lions.

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Where we ate

  • Kadena – Located right in Mykonos Town Port, this restaurant lets you people watch all you want. We went here our first night in town and it was the perfect introduction to Greek culture. We ordered baked feta (obviously) with peppers, kesseri cheese, and tomatoes that were drizzled in a tomato sauce. For our entrees, I ordered a veggie risotto and Josh got a Mediterranean pasta.

 

  • Sakis Grill House – We stopped here for a quick lunch while we were wandering around the tiny streets. I ordered souvlaki chicken (chicken kabobs served with tzatziki sauce), while Josh got a mixed meat (chicken & lamb) gyro.
  • Kastro’s Bar-Restaurant – The perfect place to have a drink and take in the sunset. Located just outside of Little Venice, you can’t beat the sunset and sailboat views from Kastro’s. We sat in a teenie little alleyway and enjoyed a glass of wine before heading off to dinner.

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  • Taverna Niko’s – Highly recommended by the locals and expands across the whole square. Vibrant red and white checkered cloths grace the tables. Yummy food and great wine.
  • D’Angelo Restaurant-Bar – Very cute, but it sits on one of the very few streets that allow cars, so it’s noisy and distracting. Great food, but not the best location.

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Questions regarding our trip to Mykonos? Not sure where to stay or how long you should go? Ask away! Happy to share more of our experience and would love to help you plan your trip. As mentioned before, I’m a big fan of trip planning and have quite a few spreadsheets to help you with your plans. 

Nice, France

Ever heard the saying, ‘Nice is nice’? Welp, it’s true.

Last May, Josh and I went on a two-week trip to Iceland, Paris, and Nice. Ending our trip in Nice was the perfect decision because it has a great mix of sight-seeing, yummy food, and beach time. We had been on the go for 9 days and were ready to soak up being engaged [and not having a day-by-day itinerary like we did in Iceland]. We didn’t even go in with anything in mind – no known places to see, restaurants in which to dine, or things to do.

Since this was Josh’s first time to Europe, we decided to take the scenic route and booked 2 first class seats on the TGV, France’s high-speed train. The journey from Gare de Lyon to Nice Ville took us about 6 hours. We were able to check out France’s countryside – something we definitely wouldn’t have been able to do from 30,000 feet up.

For our 3 days in Nice, we stayed in an AirBnb on Rue Paradis, right off of a cute pedestrian-only route, Rue Massena. The apartment was right near le Jardin d’Albert and was a super quick walk to Place Massena, their version of a town square. Our place was so central that we didn’t need to grab a cab for the duration of our stay, which is always clutch.

Here are some of the things we did:

  • Visited the #ILoveNice sign – A must-do in Nice in the age of Instagram. If you don’t get a picture with the sign, were you even in Nice?! How would anyone know?!
  • Walked around Place Massena
  • Checked out the Monument Aux Morts de NiceMonument_Nice
  • Walked along La Promenade des Anglais/Quai des Etats-Unis
    • The best views of the water, lots of restaurants, tons of shops & beach clubs

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  • Spent a half day laying out by the water at Plage Beau Rivage . One thing to note: the beaches in Nice are very pebbly and are uncomfortable to lay on without a beach chair. Since we didn’t bring beach towels, we opted to pay to hang out at Beau Rivage, where we had reserved beach chairs, towels, and had wait service right at our chairs. They even had burlap down as walkways to help with the heat and ouchies from walkingon stones.
    Beach 2_Nice
  • Wandered through the pedestrian streets and popped into the tiny shops. It’s so fun to get lost in the tiny foot-traffic-only alleys in European cities (more on this to come in my Greece notes) and to stumble upon some really great restaurants.

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  • Most importantly, ate a lot of charcuterie and macarons.

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    Have you ever been to Southern France? Which cities did you go to? I’d love to hear about it! Leave a note below or on ATG’s Instagram to share and stay tuned for more itineraries/city guides in the weeks to come!

 

April 2018: Bri

Many view traveling for business as a glamorous adventure on the Company’s dime. One of my best friends, Bri (the cutie above), shares that maybe traveling all the time isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. See below for tips and tricks on how to maintain a healthy diet while on the road.

Eating Healthy While Traveling For Business

I travel a lot for work. I also feel sick a lot from food, so I’m not able to consistently cook for myself and eat food that won’t upset my stomach. I have gone to the gastroenterologist many times to try to figure out what causes my upset stomach. [Gastroenterology is the branch of medicine focused on the digestive system and its disorders.] After many tests, we still can’t determine the cause, but because of this, I have learned how to eat healthy while traveling for business.

  1. Stay hydrated and drink lots of water. One of the most important things I’ve learned from traveling a lot is to make sure I drink plenty of water (this is key on an airplane). Many people love to drink coffee, especially when they are tired from traveling, but coffee is dehydrating, so make sure to drink plenty of water as well. Also, try to avoid super sugary caffeinated drinks. If I need caffeine, I personally try to stick to tea for the other health benefits as well. Also, people like to drink wine or beer on an airplane, but this will make you feel much worse the next day.
  2. Stick to a schedule. If you normally eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner at a certain times at home, try to stick to the same times while you are traveling. A lot of my colleagues skip breakfast when they travel, but I can’t survive the morning without it, so I always build in enough time to grab breakfast, even if it is just a muffin and banana.
  3. Pack your own (healthy) snacks. I always travel with KIND bars or RX bars in my backpack when I travel for any instances where I can’t eat on time in accordance with my schedule. A lot of my client sites have vending machines or free snacks that are chips, candy bars, etc., so it’s nice to be able to have something healthy available.
  4. Don’t feel like you have to drink at happy hour. Some people live for happy hour and having free drinks on the Company. Just because drinks are free doesn’t mean that you need to have a bunch of drinks.
  5. Choose a light meal.  Another thing a lot of people do while traveling for business is eat a large meal since the Company is paying for it. I’ve learned that just because its free doesn’t mean I should always eat large meals. If everyone is ordering steaks and a bunch of sides, it is okay to order a soup and salad if that’s what you want to eat.

Thanks for sharing, Bri! I have a big trip coming up and will DEFINITELY be taking KIND and RxBars with me to 1) make sure I have something gluten-free with me and 2) save some cash. What tips will you be implementing into YOUR routine next time you travel? Let me know in the comments below!