Hoboh - 8 things to do in the greek islands
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8 things to do in the greek Islands

by Aamir Husain  from USA

Shoreline-Delos
Shoreline, Delos by Aamir Husain

1 Immersion

The most important aspect of travel is to immerse yourself in a new culture. Throw away any preconceptions and go head first outside your comfort zone. Learn some of the local language, it can go a long way and create some unforgettable (and possibly hilarious) memories. Try out AirBnb if you haven’t already – it is full of kind-hearted people who want to show off their home and homeland the way it is supposed to be seen. Trust them. Our host in Athens took us to a square where many neighborhood locals like to hang out. We would have never known about this from a traditional travel journal or website!

Exploring-the-city-mykonos
Exploring the City, Mykonos by Aamir Husain

2 Be Weird, Do Weird

You are in a new place, don’t stick to your normal routine! Make everything you do a new experience – especially when it comes to food. I made sure to try as much seafood as possible on the Greek islands and although some of it wasn’t my favorite (tarama was just way too fishy for me), most of it was delicious. Try the fried smelts with some lemon!

Sunsets-over-meteora
Sunsets over Meteora by Aamir Husain

3 Quad Bikes

By far the best way to get around Mykonos and Santorini is via quad bike. Cabs are stressful, buses are unreliable, and walking will just waste valuable time if you just want to commute. Quad bikes let you go wherever you want at your own pace and for a reasonable price.

Abandoned-construction-mykonos
Abandoned construction, Mykonos by Aamir Husain

4 Delos – Do It

The beaches at Mykonos are some of the best in the world, but if you like to do some exploring like me, check out the historic island of Delos nearby. One of the most iconic archaeological sites in Greece, Delos was once a holy sanctuary for the ancient Greeks which later became the birthplace of Apollo and Artemis. When you’re there, hire a guide; you will be doing yourself a disservice if you don’t, and you won’t be giving the island the appreciation it deserves. Delos is an active excavation site, and there is such a wealth of information that most of it simply cannot be written on a sign.

Houses-in-oia-santorini
Houses in Oia, Santorinis by Aamir Husain

5 Photo Op

Because of the 2008 crisis, there are a huge number of unfished and abandoned houses around the islands. If you are into photography or just want to see something a little out of the ordinary, keep your eyes peeled for these concrete skeletons on hilltops or cliff sides. They can make for some stunning compositions. Get creative!

One-of-the-many-Harbors-Santorini
One of the many harbors, Santorini by Aamir Husain

6 WiFi is Good (in Moderation)

Many travelers choose to go off the grid completely when they travel, but I prefer to have just a trickle of connectivity for one reason – Yelp (and other related social apps). If the area you are visiting has an active online social media community, you should take advantage of it since you can find out what the locals like to do and where they go.

sunset-at-pia-santorini
Sunset in Oia, Santorini by Aamir Husain

7 Go North: Meteora

A lesser known, but still a very popular destination in Greece, Meteora is something from a dream. Take a train from Athens to Kalambaka and you’ll arrive at the historic UNESCO heritage sight. The landscape is filled with towering monolithic pillars and large rolling hills along with the small residential towns nestled in between them. Hermit monks moved here in the 9th century and built a series of Eastern Orthodox monasteries on the tops of the natural pillars, and many of them can still be visited today. The sights are truly breathtaking.

Ancient-Statues-Delos
Ancient statues, Delos by Aamir Husain

8 See With Your Eyes, Create With Your Lens

We all love to capture everything from our vacation. As a passionate amateur photographer, the biggest lesson I learned using my camera was knowing when not to use it. Often times we get so shutter happy we reduce a moment to something that only exists to live in our memory cards. Live in the moment, and then use your lens to share its story. It’ll make your collection more meaningful, and it’ll keep your audience hooked.

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