Sheree Standing in fron of Saint Nicolas Church Rafina

Did you know that there are over 6000 islands that make up the Greek Islands? I had no idea! One thing for sure is that the Greek Islands have been on my bucket list for years. Today, I am excited to take you on an Adventure trip WALKING THE GREEK ISLANDS with Exodus Adventure Travels to Greece to visit Rafina, Santorini (Thera), Fira, Oia, Naxos, Paros, and Athens.


I flew Lufthansa over the pond to Athens with a connection in Frankfurt. I had a driver waiting for me at the airport to transport me to Hotel Avra in nearby Rafina which is a small seaside port. Yes, you know my travel partner Shauna (@Chicover50) arrived late so we did not see each other until the next day.

Day 2 Rafina, Greece

So excited to see each other, Shauna and I headed out to explore a little. It was Easter Sunday so we wanted to go to a church and we found the most quaint, beautiful church in all of Greece. ( see top photo) Saint Nicholas Church sits on top of a high hill overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. So picturesque.

After a lot of videos and photos, we had our very own Easter Service. Did you know that the Orthodox Greeks don’t celebrate Easter with the rest of the world? They wait until after Passover to celebrate between April 4th and May 8th each year. It is late this year falling on May 5th.

Group Meeting Exodus Adventure Travel- Walking the Greek Islands

We made it back to the hotel by 2 PM to meet our group of 11 and our guide for the week. All are English- speaking, with most from the UK and one couple from Toronto, Canada. He filled us in on what to expect and the time that we departed for our first stop, the beautiful Greek island of Santorini.

For dinner we dined at Agnanti Restaurant just steps from our hotel with a gorgeous view and delicious meal.



Known as Thera to the locals is one of the most famous islands in the world receiving 5 1/2 million visitors a year but only 15k local residents. Its volcanic history (1650 BC) gave it its crescent shape and many believe that it was the location of the legendary lost Atlantis. We walked over much of this island so it is an easy place to get out and see all of its raw beauty that visitors have been enjoying for centuries.

Blue Star Ferry view in the water


We all departed to a port in Athens and boarded the BLUE STAR FERRY for an 8-hour ride to Santorini. This is not just any kind of ferry it is a cruise ship. Blue Star Ferries owns contemporary and comfortable ferries that are equipped with all the vital amenities to make your adventure enjoyable. Their ferries have air-conditioning, comfortable seating, onboard cafes and restaurants, and even shops where you can buy souvenirs. Additionally, some of their ferries have cabins for passengers who need to rest and arrive fresh at their destination. The experience was comfortable and enjoyable.

As we came into the port the landscape looked like snow-capped mountains until I focused and to my surprise the white caps were the houses of Santorini built into the steep hillside.


From my view on the ferry I thought that the photo below was snowcapped mountains until we got closer. WOW, is all I could say…….

Fira Santorini as seen from the Sea


All of our transfers were included in the trip cost. We had a coach drive us all to the town of Fira on Santorini where we checked into the lovely boutique Hotel Golden Star Hotel. “GOLDEN STAR” consists of 24 fully equipped rooms with air-conditioning, satellite TV, refrigerator, music, telephone, hairdryer, safe and private balcony with a view to the east. They offer you everyday service and cleanliness in a friendly and cozy atmosphere. Shauna and I had balcony rooms overlooking the gorgeous pool and the Mediterranean Sea.


After settling in we met in the lobby for our first guided tour through the quaint Santorini town of Fira. The first stop in the square where there is a statue of a donkey. Significance? Donkeys have been a reliable partner for transporting goods, as well as, the main means of personal transportation around the island for centuries. Live this experience and opt for a donkey ride departing from Old Port up to Fira town or the opposite.

Donkey in the main square in Fira Santorini

CHURCHES IN FIRA | Greek Islands

The Greek people are very religious, mostly Orthodox Catholic and Christian. On our walk in Fira, we saw the main Catholic church on Santorini Cathedral of Saint John the Baptist located near the main square and overlooks the ocean where many cruise ships and ferries come and go. We also stopped by The Orthodox Metropolitan Church of Santorini which sits prominently towards the bottom of the town of Fira and can be seen from a great distance and many parts of the island.
The church was built in 1827 and offers an impressive view of the caldera and the volcano.
In the mid-1950’s, the building was damaged during the catastrophic earthquake but renovated soon after.

Dinner In Fira | Greek Islands

After a long day Thano, our guide, took us to an authentic Greek Tavern Nicholas or Tavern Eleni’s 1955. It was so charming and offering local dishes. I had the lamb Kleftico Lamb and their ever-so-famous Greek salad. Greek salads are probably the best in the world. They fill their salads with seasonal fruits and vegetables making the freshest and most delicious flavors.

Nicholas Tavern in Fira Santorini


Today was our longest walking day 6 miles (10km) and boy am I glad we did this walk early in our week because it was the most difficult for me but sooo worth it. We climbed to 1,310′ high above the volcanic caldera along the CLIFF TRAIL. Thano was so good to let everyone walk at their own pace. Everywhere we turned was a story, a history lesson, and the best photo ops in the world. We wound gently up and down past beautiful properties including the upscale beautiful San Antonio Hotel that Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt rented for a month every July until well, you know. ….

Hotel San Antonio in Oia Santorini

Do you know what the Caldera is?

It is the sunken place (body of water) that you see from Santorini. Its shadows of colors with the sun is like no other. A caldera is a large depression formed when a volcano erupts and collapses. During a volcanic eruption, magma present in the magma chamber underneath the volcano is expelled, often forcefully. When the magma chamber empties, the support that the magma had provided inside the chamber disappears.

Santorini’s caldera is the only inhabited caldera in the world. The caldera is 7 1/2 miles long, 4 1/2 mil wide, and more than 1,000 feet above sea level. It is considered dormant but is still an active volcano.

My Greek Island Adventure | Santorini | The Shakros Rock

The Skaros Rock photo (above) is what is left of a castle that was mostly destroyed and fell into the sea by the 1955 earthquake. It is also a great photo of the Caldera. The other photos were of other sites and nature paths we saw on our walk from Fira to Oia.

A little over halfway to Oia we stopped at a little food truck along the road for some fresh squeezed orange juice and a little rest. Talking about fresh….. good to the last drop! Our last leg of our walk took us into the pretty village of Oia, home to artists, galleries, boutiques and cafes. At leisure, we walked through the quaint town enjoying people watching, window shopping and enjoying the fabulous scenery and weather.

Another stop on the way to Oia was a couple of churches that were worthy of photos. Just beautiful. The Greeks always built them prominently usually on a hill where they can be seen from afar.

Views and walks from Fira Santorini to Oia

The photos above and below is the Church of Prohetes Elias located high above Oia.

No, we didn’t have to walk back to Fira. We enjoyed a nice ride in our coach. Dinner was on our own so I just went out nearby and grabbed a couple of Greek Salads for Shauna and I. It was nice to just chill for the evening.


This day was free to roam about on our own so Shauna I and I headed back to Oia in a taxi to do a little shopping and to take some more photos of course! It is about a 20-minute ride. The next photo backdrop is what you usually see in photos of Oia (pronounced ee-a). The blue domes are churches and are world famous. In many Greek towns you will find almost as many churches as you will find homes.

Sheree in Oia with the hillside backdrop

Wearing Chico’s dress and Vivaia Mary Jane flats. Shop it here

Wearing Chico’s and Easy Spirit sneakers. Shop it here

The photo above is in Oia. Notice the marble floor. The entire town flooring is made of this marble making it one of the most expensive promenades in the world.

The dress in the above shop has eyes all over it. This isn’t evil like I thought but it means protection.  symbol of divine watchfulness and care of the universe. Sooo, we had to find an eye to take home with us. We both bought beautiful scarves and dainty necklaces. There is just something so sacred about the eye! It is a good thing! The right photo above is a local playing traditional Greek music on the Lyra.

Blue and white is definitely the colors of Greece especially in Santorini. I fell in love with all of the beautiful pottery. (photo above)

Sheree Frede eating a Gyros sandwich in Fira

After cramming in everything we could, we couldn’t leave without having the best Gyros sandwich EVER!!! I wish I had one right now!! We then headed back to our hotel for our departure to the ferry for our 4 hour ride. It was a nice time to just chill before we started more walking adventures on the Greek island of Naxos.



Exodus Adventure Travels e Hotel Avra Saint Nicholas Church BLUE STAR FERRY Hotel Golden Star Hotel. Cathedral of Saint John the Baptist Tavern Nicholas San Antonio Hotel



This is easy….. if you have never been then it must be on your bucket list and try to see the islands by walking with a great guide provided by Exodus Travel Adventures. Our guide Thano took us on a journey through historical stories and facts. I stepped back in time for a couple of days!


This has been an active travel year so far and Shauna and I have 3 more trips coming up starting today. That being said I will still be trickling in more content on Greece but look out cruise life here we come. After my Walking Trip through Greece, some R & R is sounding really good. Isn’t that what we do on a cruise?

As always, we would love to hear your feedback!!



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Being SheShe brings a huge responsibility to the midlife woman and I am definitely up to it!! I want to share with you what I have been exploring and trying to master for many years. I will say that there is no finish line, but it’s the journey……and I hope you will stick around for the adventure!!! -XO SheShe

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