Europe and Back Again: Episode Greece

This past summer Virginia and I flew over to Europe for a three week trip in Greece and Italy, two countries I had been wanting to visit for a long time. We first arrived in Athens during the major austerity issues, protests, and riots. Luckily we missed the violence each time we arrived in that city but it was interesting to see all the police and protesters around while tourists walked in and around the popular attractions. While in Athens we stayed near the Plaka, or the open market area, and the Parthenon. We spent some time visiting those famous areas and eating our fill of gyros. My surprise was that in Greece, lamb was too expensive for gyros and they served the beef with mustard sauce and fries in the pita. Less like a gyro I was used to and more like a fat sandwich from the grease trucks at Rutgers.

After Athens we drove around the center and the south of Greece. Driving was an adventure, streets were fast and narrow, not something I would want to do again. Our first stop was in Napfoli where I swam in the Aegean sea and climbed 800 steps to the top of an old fortress. In Napfoli we ate some of the best gelato in Greece though it was funny that it was made by Italians. After Napfoli we drove across the country to Olympia. While the drive took three terrifying hours up and through narrow mountain passes, we made it safe and sound. We visited the location of the original Olympic games and the museum to accompany it. Our next stop was Delphi which was across a bridge that cost almost $20 (Damn Euro). Delphi provided some beautiful views off the mountain and a nice dinner of roasted goat. While in town we visited the temple and museum of Apollo which was a temple built up the side of a mountain. At the top was a huge stadium where the Apollo games were held. Finally, we made it back to Athens, found the best Baklava I have ever eaten, and then jumped on our flight Italy the day before a huge riot broke out.

Take a look at the highlights from that week:

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