What’s a better way to start with the day than having a yummy breakfast with awesome views like this? Breakfast started at 8 AM and we were there at 8 so we can go to the postcard-perfect spots for photos right after breakfast.
The first spot we went was the famous blue-domed church but sadly there was a rope to block the road (it wasn’t like this 7 years ago)! This was to restrict access for hotel guests only, I guess due to rude tourists who trespass on their properties and disturbing the guests. Understand, if I was paying hundreds of dollars per night to stay there, I would be upset too if tourists hanging out at my doorway and blocking the views the whole day! Therefore, if you want to get the postcard-perfect photos with the blue-domed church and with good lighting, I recommend staying at one of those hotels: Oia Spirit Boutique Residences, Sophia Oia View, Bluedome Cavehouses Santorini, or Theodora Suites (the volcano view suites).
Next, we went to the spot that we visited yesterday where there was an unlocked door that tourists lined up to take photos of the blue-domed church (backside). This was better lighting in the morning than the late afternoon without harsh shadows. The line was shorter early in the morning as well. In the morning, there were lots of local photographers bringing their clients for photoshoots. 7 years ago, it was mostly Chinese tourists and their photographers but now mostly local photographers which I am not surprised when you have views like this, it’s hard to take a bad photo, it’s a good business!
Jason wondered if the church is privately own, how come they don’t fix the chipping paint?
After the blue-domed church, we walked in the opposite direction and headed down the flight of stairs to this spot. We waited for the photographer and his clients to be done and then our turn.
Oia is still so picturesque that we stopped at every turn and corner to take photos, even though it was our 3rd time visiting!
Next, we headed to the windmill direction, and of course, the photo spots that we were able to get to 7 years ago were no longer accessible as they became hotels.
Looking back at Oia Castle:
We walked to the far corner of the windchill and took some pictures before turning back.
We found this cute pink house right behind the grocery store.
We decided to walk back to Oia Castle where this time, the backside of it was repaired and opened to the public! That’s something new and positive!
Not many people there in the morning so no rush on taking the photos 🙂 Now only if they paint the church to be white and blue-dome, it would be a new postcard-perfect location!
Looking down at Ammoudi Port, it looked quite busy already with cars filled up the parking lot.
The castle ruins:
The standout orange Kastro Oia House, you can only get pictures like this without people during the morning!
On our walk back toward the center where the souvenir shops have opened by that time.
We found this “hidden” spot behind the art galleries away from the main road.
We headed down to this light pink house, the original “pink house” is no longer there!
It was much more quiet on the side streets underneath the main road.
For lunch, we went to Lotza where we had a great bowl of fish soup 7 years ago and we were looking forwarded on having that again. Disappointly, they don’t have that in the menu anymore 🙁 We got there at 11:30 AM but their kitchen opens for lunch at noon to take orders. We got a table with a view of the village and the ocean and ordered drinks to just relax while waiting for lunch. Pictures taken from the restaurant:
That corner became a photo spot where there are always a line of people waiting to have pictures taken, we don’t get why as the wall and umbrella blocking the view. The smaller street on the bottom left side has much better views; that was the “hidden spot” I mentioned earlier.
Finally, lunch time, I ordered the seafood spaghetti while Jason ordered the grilled shrimps on rice. The seafood spaghetti was decent with tomatoe sauce although not much seafood taste on the sauce. The shrimps were the small type of shrimps, not my favorite Mediterranean shrimps 🙁
The grilled shrimps were as good as 7 years ago, I totally miss those Mediterranean shrimps bursted with shrimp flavors! The bill for lunch – €48 + €2 tips.
After lunch, we headed back to the hotel to check out the hotel property. On the way, I was surprised to see the square was totally empty for a few minutes!
More photos along our walk back to the hotel, never get tired of the views in Oia!
When we got back to the hotel, we went to the reception to check if our room is ready; we had to move since I booked the two nights on two different reservations and they upgraded us to a River Pool Suite on the 2nd night. More details and photos of the rooms on a separate review. We had to wait for a few minutes for our room to be ready and then the receptionist walked us to the new room. On the way, we saw a couple was getting married!
Our Pool River Suite as the name indicated designed the pool to look like a river. The receptionist said it’s a popular room and I thanked for the triple upgrade; it was a nice gift for Jason’s birthday (yes, it was Jason’s birthday)! We decided to chill out in our room to take photos and to dip in the pool; it will be a waste not to utilize that 😉
Since we were wet anyways, we went to the hotel’s main pool to get some photos. We had to wait for a while for a lady to finish talking on her phone and she was occupying the corner spot with the best views! Really, on vacation, talking on the phone in the pool? Can’t you go back to your room? No one needs to hear your conversation! Meanwhile, the restaurant staff came and offered us cold water compliment from the hotel….talking about 5* service! Finally, she moved so we can get some quick snaps!
Once we are done with photos, we had to shower, dry our hair, and had some time for Jason to take a quick nap before heading out for dinner. I booked Pelekanos for his birthday dinner due to good reviews and a place we never been to before. The restaurant has a rooftop terrace with view of the sunset. The restaurant was busy already when we arrived.
For starters, we ordered the shrimp avocado salad, it was refreshing but it would be better if they toned down on the lemon juice so it’s not as sour. We were debating to order the steamed mussels but after seeing in the menu that they are frozen, we didn’t order it.
We also ordered the fried calamari, it was really tasty and fresh even though the menu also indicated it is frozen.
One thing I don’t like about the restaurant is it has those glass blocking the wind and view so it’s not completely “open air”. The couples behind us were constantly smoking, oh gosh, I need more fresh air!
For my main course, I ordered seafood spaghetti again. It was the best seafood spaghetti of the three I had in Santorini…although not impressive.
Jason ordered the roasted lamb, it was big! He said it tasted lamby so something I wouldn’t dare to try.
We finished our food but stayed there to wait for the sun to set….it wasn’t a colorful sunset but a nice different view. Overall, the food was okay but not impressive. The views, I would say, I prefer 1800-Floga. The dinner total was €84 + €4 tips. We found that food was significantly more expensive in Santorini and not great for the price we paid compared to Naxos and Paros.
We took some night photos when we got back to the hotel; the houses on the cliff lit up, it was magical!
The “love” letters were lit up from the wedding.
When we got back to the room, surprise, surprise, the hotel left a piece of “cake” (not sure what type of chocolate dessert was that). We were wondering if it was ice cream on the bottom that was melted or was it the sauce??? It was too sweet but it was a nice gesture from the hotel as I only mentioned it this afternoon.
Happy Birthday Jason!