A Magic Island called Santorini

During our summer holidays we have chosen to visit the Greek islands and Kamari, a little place in the east side of Santorini ended up as being the best choice. The reason we have chosen Kamari was because when comparing to price/quality with all the other places in Santorini this was the one who they thought the best.


After two airplane scales and a whole days stuck in traffic we finally made it to Santorini where we had a driver waiting for us to take us to the hotel. In that moment we were introduced to the driving style in Santorini which is let’s say quite more relaxed than what we are used to in Portugal. In this moment we knew right way these were going to be very fun holidays!


  1. AIRPLANE to Athens Airport (airlines such as Aegean Airline or British Airways flight there)
  2. METROFROM £0.80/1€/$1.1 –  E. Venizelos Athens TO Piraeus Port (duration: 1h30)
  3. BOATFROM £14.10/18€/$20 – Piraeus Port TO Thira (Santorini) (duration: 7h30)


Once we arrived at the Makarios hotel the owner told us a place where we could go eat something. The next day would be exploring day. Kamari is the number one choice for tourism in Santorini. It has a lot of black sand beaches and the water temperature is around 25ºC. It has a big amount of restaurants by the sea, some locals’ houses and many hotels and hostels. This area lives out of tourism during the summer and the prices in general are slighter higher than what we are used to in Portugal. The people is very welcoming and nice always ready to help.


Prices from: £70/88€/$99 per night per room with all inclusive rate plans: breakfast, lunch and dinner, snacks, drinks from 10.00-22.00


On our second day we decided to explore the strongest touristic points of Santorini: the capital Fira and its mystic sunset and the Oia (pronounced Ía) maze of white houses. It is easy to travel in the island and we have chosen to do it by bus that quickly took us to Fira which was very crowded of people.


  1. RENT A CARFROM £26/33€/$37 per day (prices may vary as there are many local car rental companies such as Coolcars, easy rentals, Santorini Holiday Cars and visitors can also rent from international companies such as Budget Rent a Car or  Hertz)
  2. TAXIFROM £32/40€/$45  (one way taxi to any village from the port or airport)
  3. BUSFROM £1.30/1.60€/$1.80 (Note: in the winter buses stop running at midnight every night of the week and start running again at 5am.  In the summer months buses run until 4am from Fira to the main resorts.)


We started by exploring the inside of the capital. We found a stunning landscape to a caldera within an endless and strong blue sea.

Just a bit underneath it we saw a “Donkey Station”, yes that is right, a station with donkeys to take tourists down and up the hills. To be honest they did not have a very happy face but it definitely gives more to the scenery of the island. They won’t move out of the way unless we hit them which made us being literally stuck between a donkey and a wall.




You can ride a donkey up (or down) the caldera from the main port.

PICK UP POINTS: Fira and the old port

Price: £3.50/4.50€/$5 one way per person

Duration: 25-35 minutes

Note: There are many controversy as many tourists have been poorly treated by the donkey owners along with some issues on whether the donkeys and well taken care of or not. Other ways to go up and down from Fira to the old port is by cable (£3.50/4.50€/$5 one way) or foot!


We kept on exploring the capital and along with astonishing landscapes we also found beautiful churches and old buildings. It is a good place to quickly fill up your camera memory card. We had lunch at a local hospital where we had to pay for service charge which we never do in Portugal! So we thought they were a bit too business oriented per say.


After lunch we caught the bus and after 20 minutes of travelling we got to Oia. We started exploring the area which is just like as seen on photos: mazes with a million corners of white and blue houses over a hill that ends in a deep blue ocean. Oia seems like taken from a movie. There is really something magic in the air of that place and the art crafts stores are in each corner. We even almost made part of a wedding photo shooting!



After 3 hours of exploring we went to eat at a local burger place and we went to book the place where we were going to watch the sunset. The sunset is a very busy moment in Oia and 3 hours before the sun sets there are already many people saving the best spot to watch the moment. Coming from a place with a beautiful sunset (Ericeira, Portugal) we didn’t find this sunset prettier than what we are used to yet the amount of people gathered to contemplate it made us think who we should value more what we have at home.



We spent the next days in Kamari resting and enjoying the beach, the pool and the local restaurants.


Discovering the natural beauty of Ålesund, Norway

This week post is about  a young couple’s trip to the natural beauty of Norway. For four days Vanessa and Alex, went on a Easter break to discover Ålesund in Norway, place that both agreed as being the most beautiful they have ever seen. They have chosen Alesund, knowing that it is a quiet fishermen town, as they were hoping to see some northern lights (even though April is too late) and the Fjords!So here are their suggestions!

Middle of Geiranger Fjord 2

We did not work on a plan in advance, and were not aware that during Easter time everything is closed in Norway… So, we arrived on Friday afternoon and we were surprised that even the tourism office was closed (the whole weekend). This made the beginning of our journey  a bit more difficult, as we did not have information about where to go and how to move around the area. We had to rely on the internet to plan our trip.

We checked at the hotel “Radisson Blue” and we were very happy with our choice. We had an amazing view from the window of our bedroom as you can see below.This was not very expensive and everything was nice and clean. Downstairs where the lounge was and the living space, everything was very charming and the big windows to the mountains and the sea view were stunning.

View from the hotel

Our aim was to go on a boat in the middle of the famous Norwegian Fjords! Yet, this was not possible during this weekend. We quickly realise that we had no way to move around as the bus were not working or very few, boats very conditioned and not going to all the usual locations available. We found ourselves stuck in the bedroom without options! However, we managed to rent the last car from AVIS, 5 min before the store closes and that was our lucky!

Ferry at Magerholm

We stayed there from 3rd of April and we left on the 6th of April, just a long weekend.

It is an amazing place if you want to be closer to nature, breath pure air and enjoy sceneries that you cannot see anywhere else.

The actual centre of the city is very beautiful and calm. When you walk close to the sea, you see the fisher’s man on their boats with all the catch of the day to sell. They are very friendly and approachable and talk about their lives a little bit.

First day

  • Checked in Radisson, sea view, really good location to walk in town centre;

Hotel Terrasse

  • Go for a walk in the town, Alesund beautiful and quiet, surrounded by water and majestic mountains.

Alesund town center

  • Shop a little bit, but they do not have too many products… and it is expensive

Alesund houses

Alesund street

  • First restaurant, “Egon Alesund”, large choice, Menu/speak any languages, best value, large portion, very good typical fish soup, nice quiet and wood decoration: Our favourite!

Egon restaurant

Fresh fish and chips

Second Day

  • Amazing breakfast at the hotel! They had everything!! Every day we had available some of the best fresh fish in town. Special attention for the amazing smoked salmon!
  • Quick walk through the town centre, Fishers’ boat arrival with fresh fish and sea food

Alesund port

  • 1pm we picked the car and started the road trip.
  • In the fjord area, the main transport is boat, so there are not too many bridges or tunnels. So when you are driving, you need to take Ferry boats to cross fjords. They are not too expensive and there is a lot to take during a day trip. This really adds something to the adventure! (Ferry boats operate from early in the morning until 11pm all year)

Ferry station at Linge

  • With the car during a one long afternoon we managed to go down the south, drive along the fjords, going up and down mountains and valleys, sometimes full of snow which was amazing. Landscapes varied from very white, bright, ice to a mix between blue, white, green when the road opens on the fjords.

Between Stranda and Hellesylt

End of Geiranger Fjord

  • Maybe the benefit of all tourist activities being close during Easter weekend is that we could enjoy any places alone, quiet. And be alone on the road.
  • Our aim was to do a loop around the Geiranger Fjord and pass by the bottom of it.
  • We drove on the tourist mountain road which was really challenging and once you passed the top of the mountain, the view opens on the end of Geiranger Fjord… Breathtaking….

Middle of Geiranger Fjord

  • Here is the map for the itinerary!


  • We finished our trip and were back at night in Alesund(around 10pm)

View From Alesund

  • Last restaurant serving food –» Egon !! Fish soup and chips!

Third day

  • Going to the island that we can see from our hotel room, on the west of Alesund: Godoya.

From Godoya hike-Alnes village

  • Driving through Hovland, Valderoya until the bottom of Godoya. Passing on long and amazingly designed bridges or under water tunnel, which makes the trip really amusing.
  • Park the car and walk along the north coast of the island and until the top of the mountain Godoya to find snow and a lake!
  • Then going down in direction to Alnes!
  • Do not cross someone’s garden even though it looks all open and seems alright… Norwegian do not like at all (believe me, we have tried!)
  • Be careful closing the gates behind you to make sur the sheep do not escape.

Close the Gate

  • Alnes is a really quiet and nice remote place, houses have different colours…

Alnes village

  • Back to Alesund and expensive restaurant, Norwegian dish… Fish basically.

Fourth day

  • The Hotel can book a shuttle for you to go to the airport (same price as the bus from town centre)
  • The last morning, we decided to go to the top of Alesud to have an amazing panoramic view.
  • We rushed it a little bit to make it to the top and be back on time at the hotel for the shuttle, but it was worth it! The hike was not too hard (Norwegians do it running…)

Alesund from the top



I hope you like it! J

Vanessa & Alex