DAY 10 – 19

DAY 10: Driving to Venice!
It was another long day of driving to Venice today, stopping in Verona- the home of Romeo and Juliet. We got some photos of the famous balcony although the area was absolutely crowded with people.
We also bought our first authentic Italian Gelatos, yum! We arrived at the campsite and our cabins were nice and spacious with air-conditioning. Winning. We had a lovely pasta dinner and I saw my friend Mel there too as she was on a different Contiki tour. I was so excited to see her and we drank together later on to catch up on all the goss. Mel wasn’t going to stay out late but since I was there we ended up having a few too many drinks together while running around dancing and chatting to everyone. Turned out there were a few good looking guys in her group! What an awesome night.

DAY 11: Hungover in Venice
I woke up super hungover today, forcing myself to awaken so I could get the boat into Venice with the rest of the group. I thought I was going to vomit, as I felt so incredibly sick. Everyone went on the guided walking tour but a few of us went to explore on our own instead. I absolutely loved the little laneways and canals of Venice, it was such a unique place.

Izzy and I ended up losing the group we were with so we looked in some cute little stores before finding a restaurant to eat lunch at. We shared a plate of pasta and a couple of cokes and it ended up costing 55 euro! Safe to say we were quite pissed off. We walked through the canals and St Marks square before meeting up with the group to go to an awesome glass blowing demonstration where a man made animals out of glass in only a few minutes. It was quite mesmerizing! We then went on the beautiful gondola ride and got to see many parts of the Venice canals. It was very relaxing and I took lots of photos.

Back at the campsite, we had ribs and chicken for dinner and then a masquerade party. I wore the black lace style mask that I had bought earlier that day, which turned out to be quite a fun night!

DAY 12: Driving to Florence
Today was a driving day to Florence, although not a super long one, which was nice! We stopped in Pisa for a while to get some classic cheesy photos and a gelato. It was a really cool tower and I wish we had the time to go up it.
We arrived at the campsite and found our cabin, rooming with Loretta. We went down to dinner and had yummy lasagna before getting ready to go out for the night to Red Garter, a karaoke bar. We drank a few too many massive cocktail jugs and got up on stage and sang once or twice which was fun. I have no idea what time we left but I remember getting kebabs before we (finally) managed to grab a taxi.

DAY 13: Alone in Florence
As there was no air-con in the cabin I woke up this morning feeling suffocated and hungover and we were meant to be leaving to go into Florence at 8.30am. I thought I’d end up sleeping all day but I woke up a couple hours later around 10am and felt fine. I didn’t know what to do, I tried to get a taxi but in the end I had to walk a couple of kms and get the local bus, which worked out okay. I had my first lunch alone in a restaurant where I ate delicious seafood spaghetti, and used the Wi-Fi to call my Mum and sister. I walked the streets of Florence alone where I went shopping and explored before meeting up with the group. We went to a viewpoint and got some photos before we had a lovely Tuscan dinner and I got to see my friend Mel again. After this we went to Space electronic discotheque, a nightclub where we had a few drinks and danced. It was fun but we didn’t stay out too late, I think we got there a bit early.

DAY 14: Driving to Rome
This morning we woke up, had breakfast and got on the bus to Rome! We had lunch at a service station and didn’t arrive in Rome too late. We did a walking tour where we got to see the Pantheon and Trevi fountain, which was a little disappointing due to all the fences and glass walls around it (not like in the movies!). We got lost from the group before finding them at the Coliseum, which we did a tour of. It was pretty amazing to finally see it in real life, and it’s hard to believe what took place there.

We had a nice two-course dinner at a nearby restaurant, before heading back to the campsite. The cabins were made of wood and had a mini air-con, which didn’t do much. Tonight I just took a shower; hand washed some clothes and repacked my suitcase. It was quite nice to relax a bit and attempt to catch up on some sleep.

DAY 15: Rome
We got on the metro this morning and went straight to the Vatican for a guided tour, which was interesting but not really my thing. Izzy and I then went to the Sistine chapel and St Peters basilica. They were kinda cool but I was a little bored and sweaty and had seen too many churches for one day. We went for lunch at a cute little restaurant and I had bruschetta and seafood spaghetti, which was amazing. We then looked at shops, the Spanish steps (which were so slippery!) and got gelato before getting the metro back to camp.

We had delicious parmas and red pesto pasta for dinner before getting ready for the I <3 ROMA party. I drank a lot more than I planned to but it was fun to dance and sign everyone’s tops. I think I even got on stage with a bunch of the girls.

DAY 16: Pompeii and the dreaded overnight ferry

We had to wake up at 6am to get the bus at 6.45. I felt pretty shit and hungover and vomited on the bus. I slept as much as I could until we arrived at Pompei. We did a walking tour, which was interesting, and it’s crazy to think that Mt Vesuvius erupted over an

entire city. We got pizza for lunch, which was yummy and I felt pretty good. We got back on the bus, had a service stop and then drove to the ferry. We boarded after 6, although didn’t start moving until 7.30pm. I had Bolognese for dinner, which was just okay. I slept on the floor for 5 hours, which was crap but then we got up to watch the beautiful sunset. I managed to get some more sleep on a row of chairs too.

DAY 17: Arriving in Athens
We finally got off the ‘super fast’ ferry at 12.30pm, after about 16 hours on board. I couldn’t believe we were in Greece! We started driving to Athens, stopping off at the Corinth canals, which were pretty cool to see.

After the stop we made it to the hotel about an hour later. Izzy and I were lucky enough to get our own room and the hotel even had a rooftop pool which was sweet. We got ready and got the metro to dinner, walking through cobblestone streets up a set of stairs to the restaurant we were dining at.
We sat outside at tables, and everything was decorated with grapevines and pretty lights. The starters were pretty good although the main meal was a souvlaki, which didn’t have a wrap like I expected and the chicken was a bit dry. Some performers did traditional Greek dancing between all the tables, which was fun to watch. Everyone seemed to go home after this to relax by the rooftop pool, but us girls went shopping at the shops/markets, which was a nice night! Greece also didn’t seem to be in the economic state of despair like the media had led us to believe.

DAY 18: Athens to Mykonos
I woke up this morning feeling super tired and burnt out. We got on the bus and stopped at some sights but I could barely keep my eyes open. We had a tour of the Acropolis but I strayed from the group and guide because the information was kinda boring and I couldn’t pay attention. The sight itself was pretty cool, but I also enjoyed the views over Athens because we were up on a hill.

After this we drove to the port to catch the ferry to Mykonos, which had a nice beach. We got cheap souvlakis for lunch and then hit the beach! The water was so lovely, it was nice to relax and swim a bit before getting on the ferry at 4pm. The boat ride was quite draining but we finally arrived in Mykonos and were staying at Paradise beach resort, which was awesome!
We had a large included dinner and I thought the entrée was the main course, but then they brought out more food! After dinner we got ready to go out and had pre’s in our room before hitting Paradise club, which was literally a 1 minute walk from our rooms. So convenient! We all got pretty drunk and had fun dancing with everyone, so I got home very late… or early should I say.

DAY 19: Mykonos
I woke up this morning at around 10.30am, meaning I’d missed breakfast. Surprisingly after such a large night I wasn’t too hungover so we got ready and headed to the beach. The beach was amazing; we had gyros, juices and fresh watermelon and gossiped about the night before. We went on this flying thing attached to the back of a boat with the boys, and you had to hold on really tight. I was so scared of falling off but I didn’t. Izzy fell off and it was hilarious, the whole ride was just a big laugh and by the end of it my arms hurt from holding on so tight. It was such a chill day. We got ready for dinner in town, stopping at the famous windmills on the way.
Dinner was a three-course meal at a nice Greek restaurant, but I’m not sure if it was worth what we paid. We went to a bar to start a bar crawl but some of us ended up going back early on the bus because we were so wrecked!