What an incredible place! Over the years when people ask me about Santorini I've always assured them that it's magical – a geological anomaly that will take your breath away and actually the first Greek island I chose to take my (then-boyfriend now) husband. The response is always an unsure "it's not too touristy?" which flabbergasts me. Is the Grand Canyon "too touristy" to go to? Santorini is nothing at all like the Grand Canyon. And it certainly is very crowded in places. But the point is that it is popular for good reason. It will knock the wind out of you at every turn. It's a place that marries a stunning and natural geologic aberration with stunning and unique architectural ingenuity and charm. There's really no place like it and after returning this time I'll continue to emphatically tell anyone who asks that "no, it's not too touristy. It's magic." 




...But maybe leave the littles at home. Not too many rational people have the stomach to let their kiddos run wild when the protective wall (when there even is one) is only about 6" high in many places.  



Good thing we were able to perfect that "death grip hand hold" technique in Folegandros. 


Little jewel-box churches everywhere you look.




And every random cafe has a million dollar view. It wasn't too hard to find a place to get out of the sun and cool off with an ice coffee and ice cream. Everett maintained "I just want water. No ice cream" as he casually played with the bracelet we got him... up until the moment the ice cream was actually placed on the table in front of Alice. It was hilarious to see how quickly he jumped up and said "um, ok, yeah, maybe I do want ice cream!" We have no idea what made him think he didn't want any.




Taking a moment to review the rules of the hotel before going back in/down. "Now remember: we have be very quiet and very respectful..." I love how intently Scott has them listening! 



 Every last detail of our hotel and our room was gorgeous.


And of course, that view!


...And this view. 




Everett kept grabbing my book and saying it was his. He'd place it on his lap, look down, frown seriously, and every so often  turn a page. It was so cute, even if it did mean I spent more time trying to find what page I was on than I spent actually reading it. 


It was easy to get a little bit turned around in the hotel – Santorini is pretty Escher-esque in architecture anyway, but between the stairs and the bridges and the narrow passageways, we frequently found ourselves on some random balcony.


"This way!" Everett sings, as we whisper-yell "Careful! Wait for me! Hold my hand!" 


The pool area is probably the easiest way to see why kids aren't allowed. As dizzying as that view is, walk up to the balcony and there's nothing beneath it. 



The pool itself was an infinity pool. There was no way we could deprive the kids of a dip, but one entire length of it just had a couple inches separating the water (and people!) from falling off a cliff onto the rocks below. We insisted the kids go in without floaties and in our arms only so we could make sure they didn't get anywhere – especially anywhere near the edge – without being held securely. Despite the sheer danger it was so beautiful and so much fun.

One time I took Everett in the pool, bless his heart, he was whispering the whole time (!) and we were just laughing and giggling and having a ball. When I told him "1 more minute" he counted down from 60 excitedly in his whisper and when he got to "zero" he forgot himself and shouted at the top of his lungs, his classic "... mission complete!" Immediately realizing what he did, he recoiled, looked at me in wide-eyed horror, and we both burst out laughing, climbing out of the pool and scampering off in stitches.


"My turn to to go in pool now?"


"Don't be sad we're leaving, Everett."



 It was too bright to open our eyes but we had to take a picture before we left!







Write if you can on your last shell
the day the place the name
and fling it into the sea so that it sinks

from "Santorini – The Naked Child"
George Seferis