S: Greece May 2011
FC: Greece May 2011 | Terry's Retirement Celebration
1: Since visiting Greece was at the top of Terry's "Bucket List", we added a 10 day land tour, visiting Santorini, Mykonos, and Athens to the end of the 14 day Transatlantic Cruise, making this the best retirement celebration possible!
3: Santorini, Greece | May 17-20 Santorini is one of the world's most picturesque islands. It cradles the sunken caldera of a volcano and has multicolored seacliffs rising 1100 feet out of the sparkling blue waters, white clusters of houses and Greek Orthodox Churches with blue domes that are just spectacular.
4: At the top of a cliff in the town center of Fira, Santorini
5: Fira, Santorini the capital of Santorini | Mike & Terry
6: Fira, Santorini
7: Beautiful picturesque Greek Orthodox Churches in gorgeous shades of crisp white & vibrant blue
9: Fira had lots of shops & fun restaurants, beautiful cliffs and island scenery
10: Seaside Cliffs in Santorini
12: Sharing a Gelato Shake for 2!
15: Greece's most photographed village (sometimes called Ia) | Oia, Santorini
16: Shops and Houses in Oia, Santorini
17: Oia, Santorini Famous for their sunsets and beautiful windmills. We stopped at the famous Sunset Bar in Oia.
18: Winding, curvy roads up & down the cliffs. Lots of buses did the treck, but it was still very scary to us!
19: Gate 1 did a great job organizing our trip. They took care of all the transportation & lodging and any local tours we wanted to take. The other pictures show the ferry dock and the ferry we took from Santorini to Mykonos.
21: Mykonos, Greece | May 20-23 Mykonos has more than 20 beautiful beaches and is also known for their nonstop nightlife. It's called the St.Tropez of the Aegean . Paradise Beach is known as one of the top 10 Most Beautiful Beaches in the World.
23: The beach outside our hotel, "Hotel Artemis"
24: Hotel Artemis | We had breakfast on the ocean terrace every morning
25: "The Dublin" a restaurant next door with great Greek Salads | Our fav Greek Dishes: Greek Salad Fried Cheese Gelato Vanilla Slice Gyro (They make Gyros with chicken or pork, not lamb, & include french fries inside!) | Mykonos
27: Driving around Mykonos on an ATV!
28: hanging out at Paradise Beach (top 10 beach in the world)
29: Perfect beach setting with fun restaurants & bars, very comfortable seating, interesting people watching and great music!
31: Athens, Greece | May 23-25 Greece has 11M people and Athens is the home to 4.5M of them. We took a half day tour of Athens that included the Museum of the Acropolis, the Acropolis & Parthenon. We also visited Athen's Flea Market Bazaar.
32: The Glass Running Man honoring the "Marathon" | The stories surrounding the "Marathon" 1) A messenger ran 26 miles to warn Athens of impending war. 2) Athens was an underdog and a leader convinced them to fight, even though they would probably lose. The battle took place in Marathon, 26 miles away. The Athenians won.
33: Site of the First International Olympic Games in 1896
34: National Library | University of Athens | Athens
35: Parliament The location of the protest over Greece's financial situation which almost caused us to cancel our trip!
36: The Acropolis and Parthenon Restoration "Acropolis" means the peak of the hill. The Parthenon is its stunning centerpiece and was commissioned as a temple in the 5th century. The site is currently undergoing conservation measures. The original stone material is the darker cream color and the restored areas are white.. During a war with the Persians, the Persians destroyed most of Athens. However, the Greeks hid many of their statues in a well, to protect them-the only reason we have examples of these old statues. | The building of the Acropolis Museum The Acropolis Museum was built parallel to the actual Acropolis & Parthenon. The architects that won the bid to design it, won because they proposed building the museum elevated over an active excavation that is still going on. There is a glass floor at the entrance to view this work.. Several ancient time periods are represented in the excavation. Also the top floor is recreated to look just like the original Parthenon. Ancient Greeks used to bury special belongings in the foundation of homes for good luck. The museum did the same thing with glass above it so it could be viewed, for good luck | The first & second floors of the Museum The first floor represents the time period of around 600 B.C.. All statues were stylized the same. All had smiles. All had 1 foot forward and 1 foot back. All girls had curly hair. Lots and lots of statues were gifted to the gods outside the temple. Sometimes people would sacrifice animals to the gods and then have a statue made representing them with the sacrificial animal to remind the gods of what they did. People would also gift statues to the God of Medicine, showing the part of the body that needed healing, ie. eyes, ears or a leg. The second floor represented the time period of around 500 B.C & statues were more human like and animated.
37: Top Floor of Museum The top floor of the museum was built to be a replica of the original Parthenon. Around the walls are sculptures showing people bringing gifts to a center point. Everyone is going in the same direction, toward the east. Some carrying olives, some carrying sacrificial animals, etc. Between the columns, are sculptures showing fighting going on between various pairs of people.. vs | West side of Top Floor The sculptures on the west side of the top floor represents all the Gods that were present at mythological Athena's birth. legend is that Zeus was told if he had a son, the son would be more powerful them him. His wife was pregnant and he became so worried, he killed and ate her. Then 9 months later, his daughter, Athena sprung from Zeus's head fully grown-as powerful as Zeus, but with more wisdom. The God of Sun had horses with their eyes open representing Athena being born at dawn. Bacchus, the God of Wine, was shown drunk and the only God not looking at Athena. | East side of Top Floor The sculptures on the east side of the top floor represent the war between the Gods Athena and Poseidon as to who would rule Greece. Zeus said the people would decide. Poseidon stuck his trident in the ground and the salted sea sprung up. Athena struck the ground and an olive tree arose, the symbol of peace and wisdom. The people decided Athena would rule.
38: The outside of the Acropolis Museum | Excavation beneath the museum | The Acropolis Museum
39: Ancient structures beneath the museum.
40: The Parthenon | The darker stone portion is authentic, original material. The white portions are the restored sections.
42: Temple of Olympian Zeus | Temple of Hephaestus -the best preserved ancient Greek temple | Temple of Olympian Zeus
43: Theatre of Dionysos | Theatre of Dionysos the first outdoor theatre of stone | Erechtheion Temple The site of the marks made by Poseidon's trident and the olive tree (behind us), the gift of Athena to the city of Athens. The south templa roof was supported by 6 statues of maidens known as Caryatids, instead of typical columns.
44: Roman Agora & Restaurant next door | The Roman Agora was the commercial hub of ancient Athens. It was also a meeting place of Socrates and Plato.
45: Athens Flea Market | Monastiraki