Monday, September 28, 2009

What I love about Greece

For those who've requested pictures, you'll have to bear with me. I haven't got the digital pics from my husband yet and I still use a film camera, which means I need to get the negative processed, developed & scanned before I can share them with the world. I know it's old-fashioned but I just love the quality of real film!

Now here are the 5 main reasons I love Greece (and most particularly the Greek Islands). I know that one tends to experience a place differently when you're there on holiday, but I still think that if I had the means I'd move there tomorrow!

1. FRIENDLY. The Greeks are the friendliest nation. Everywhere we went people smiled and made conversation. And the Greeks love children. So many people chatted to my girls, patted their heads, offered them cakes and sweets ... not exactly what I want to encourage in this dangerous world, but in Greece you truly feel that it's well-intentioned.

2. EASY-GOING. Despite the legendary Mediterranean temperament, the Greeks are so laid-back. The atmosphere feels so unpressurised and relaxed (and I don't think it's just because I was on holiday and relaxed!). I never encountered any aggression while in Greece. Far from it. Considering the narrowness of the streets, drivers are incredibly patient with one another. I watched a bus waiting as a taxi dropped its passengers and luggage and the bus driver did not hoot once. Here in Johannesburg drivers are very quick to hoot - for example, if they think you haven't taken off quickly enough at a traffic light. I know that the metals in the earth here in Jo'burg add to the aggression levels, but the Greek Islands really are at the opposite extreme.

3. SAFETY & SECURITY. Coming from South Africa, it is a real novelty for me to be able to walk around the town streets alone at night and still feel safe. And theft seems to be almost unheard of. With the assurance of a local we once left all our towels and bags unattended on the beach while we went off to a taverna for lunch. It was all there when we got back. I would love to become trusting once again and lose that urban suspiciousness.

4. SUNSHINE. The sun in Greece has a wonderful golden quality to it, so different from the bright whiteness of our African sun. Rather than an intolerable heat that burns, the Greek sun turns the skin brown. And apart from a little rain and wind, we had amazing weather throughout. Let's face it: this is the Mediterranean. Even the winters are bearable in comparison with many other places on earth.

5. NO MALLS. What a great place to raise kids. There are no shopping malls and virtually no strip malls, at least on the islands I've visited so far. I actually watched as a group of kids gathered in the town square in Oia (Santorini) on a Friday night to play with a skipping rope and ride bikes. No getting dressed up in brand name gear to hang out at the mall, where drugs and predatory grown-ups abound.

Next post ... Corfu.


  1. I especially love number five! And I'm so completely jealous! :D

  2. Sounds idyllic, I'm ashamed to say that even though I live in Europe that's one country I haven't yet visited. It better go to the top of my list.

  3. I love the Greek Islands, some of my favourite places, I worked on
    cruise ships cruise ships for many years and visited a lot of them. Mykonos, Santorini and Rhodos are my favourites.

  4. Man I want to go to the Greek islands now! It sounds divine! And the thought of getting this pasty white skin out into the sun sounds even better! So come on ... get those pics up! :-)