In this blog, I’ll share a couple lessons and things that
surprised me about Greece and Croatia.
1. Traveling right now requires extraordinary flexibility and
patience. Guidelines are changing daily. I recommend keeping a loose eye on the
changing requirements. About 10 days before your trip is a good time to really
start paying attention to the testing and entry requirements for the country
you are visiting and the cruise line you are sailing on if you are cruising. I
do not recommend booking travel at this time if you are not vaccinated. The
requirements are changing too quickly.
2. Be prepared to test and test and test again even if you
are vaccinated. For our Greece trip, we took a test before we left for peace of
mind. We took a test before we boarded cruise ship. We took a test at the end
of the first week. We took a second test at the end of the second week both to re-enter
Greece and so that we could fly back to the USA.
Now, the good surprises.
Dubrovnik, Croatia – What struck me most about Dubrovnik was
how recent the war was. The old city of Dubrovnik was occupied in the late
1990s. War wasn’t just something our guides had read about in a book. They
lived it. We toured the vineyard in southern Croatia. One vineyard owner’s daughter
shared with us the extraordinary lengths her father went to find any remaining grape
plants after the fields had all been burned. It’s a beautiful area- definitely
a must see.
Rhodes, Greece – Rhodes surprised me since I didn’t know
what to expect. We had a gorgeous beach day there in the shadow of some hills.
We also explored the walled Medieval city that sits right at the port. Of all
the ports, Rhodes reminded me most of Athens on a smaller scale. In both
cities, history sits right next to modern life.
Mykonos, Greece – We skipped the infamous beach clubs at
this stop. We took a ferry over to Delos. Delos is one of the best sets of
ruins I’ve seen. This ancient city was burned to the ground and then left
mostly alone. You can walk the streets where vendors, homes and temples were
constructed and get a great sense of life when Delos was one of the largest
trading ports in the world in 166 BC.