Travel with Sakroots

I am lucky to work for a company with such amazing travel products.  Sakroots, the fun and fabulous print brand under The Sak Brand Group umbrella (I design for The Sak), has been in the luggage and travel game for a few years now.  Our trip to Greece was the first time I took along a collection products, and I have to say, they work beautifully together.  

This was our first trip as a family of three, so it changed our packing game.  I'm going to do a whole post very soon on the all the tips we learned, but having all the accessories made staying organized really easy.  

I am a big fan of the Flower Power print, so I definitely gravitated toward it, in several colors.  But going forward, I think I would assign each member of the family a different print, that way we can all stay organized super easily. 

This train case is a perfect little bag to take on the plane.  It fits a ton and has fold out mirror that babies love, and mom can use to take out her contacts on the long flight.   How amazing was our little balcony!?  The absolute perfect place to get ready and have a cup of coffee.

Traveling with the luggage is great, because there is tons of room and function and you can always spot your bright happy bag coming around the baggage belt.  I brought along the Spinner Carryon.

And by far, my favorite product is the travel case.  Every toiletry we brought fit in this convenient foldable case!  Then hangs on the wall, so you don't have bottles laying all over the bathroom. 

Traveling with a baby is challenging enough, a product that works and make your life a little easier is key, and it doesn't hurt that it looks pretty too! 

Travel Diary // Athens

At the end of our trip we spent a day in Athens.  We heard a lot of mixed reviews about Athens.  Some said, "it's dirty."  Others claimed they enjoyed it, but the consensus was that we only needed a day.  That said, I wish we had two.  

Since our flight was at an ungodly hour the following morning, we stayed near the airport, directly across from the airport, actually, at Sofitel, which was a really nice hotel, pretty and clean, with good food and a pool for Oliver.  

We took a train to the city center, Syntagma Square, and walked the essential sights from there. 

We only had a limited time so we headed straight for the must-sees.  A view of the Acropolis from below. 

We started with the Temple of Zeus.  

We were amazed that these ancient carvings are still legible today!

This is the Dionysos Theater, considered the world's oldest theater, and can seat 17,000 people!

Some of us were bored by the history.

some of us were more enthusiastic.

One thing is for sure, it was HOT!  Poor baby didn't have much escape on top of that hill, and we quickly headed back down to shade, water and rest, but then we lost each other!  I stopped to take a photo, Kyle just walked a few feet a head and stopped to wait for me, and  I walked right past him.  It was probably the scariest moment in my travels.  He didn't have text message or cell capabilities.  We were wandering around looking for each other for nearly an hour!  I stated asking strangers if they saw a man with a baby, some nice people pointed me in the right direction and eventually we were reunited, but not after some time spent panicking. 

This photo pretty much sums up the entire trip, Greek women (and men too) fawning over Oliver, and him eating it up.  

After seeing the Parthenon, we explored the shops and streets of Monastiraki.  Lots of little souvenir shops and cute little restaurants line the streets.  The neighborhoods just beyond the tourist haven were adorable and quaint and reminded us a lot of Rome, one of our favorite places.  Unfortunately we did not have much time to walk around and enjoy the city outside of the major attractions.  

We ended with a quiet dinner way off the beaten path.  Despite the long, hot day, there were lots of smiles. 

This trip already seems so long ago, and he has changed so much since it.  I am already scheming and plotting our next adventure! 

Travel Diary // Santorini

Heaven, as close as I can imagine.  In September we set out on our first trip as a family, me, my husband and our 7 month old to explore Greece!  We flew from New York to Athens, with a layover in Toronto and then, from Athens on to Santorini.  We actually booked the Santorini flight separate, because it was cheaper, and at first I was thinking we would spend a night in Athens on the way in, which we did not end up doing.  

There are two main towns on Santorini island, Oia and Thera.  Both are amazingly built into the side of cliffs, both are filled with shops and restaurants for tourists, both have incredible views and beautiful resorts.  Both are a cab ride away from the airport.  We choose Oia, mostly because I've heard about the sunsets and it was more like I pictured the post cards from Greece to look like.   

We stayed at a place called Villa Agnadi, it was near Oia.  It is an adorable little place with charming villas, ever room has a view, it may not be the picture you have in your mind of Greece, but it was still a pretty place to wake up.  Villa Agnadi is about a 15 or 20 minute walk to the main area in Oia, but there are restaurants that are much closer.  It has a pool and a complimentary breakfast and was a lovely place to stay.

This was our view. 

We arrived in the afternoon, so we decided not to venture into town.  Instead we took a swim and walked to a local restaurant.  

The second day we set out to explore Oia. 

One of the main attractions of Oia is the unbeatable sunset.  You can't drive on the main walk, but you see spectators pulling up as close as they can on their 4-wheelers and convertibles.  Then the people fill the walks and pull out their cameras.  We stayed for a little while, until Oliver started to fuss, and we didn't want to ruin anyone else's time, so we started to head back.  

maybe we didn't have the best sunset view, but we did see this dog chillin' right smack in the middle of the walk way.  

The next day we took the 25 minute bus ride to Thera.  There was a bus stop right across from our hotel and it took us directly to the center of Fira.  Busses come often, but we had to wait for several to pass because they were already full.

Fira was beautiful, it seemed a little dirtier to me.  It was defintely darker as all the shops were in small, but adorable alley ways.  The views were breathtaking, and it was very charming, but I am glad we choose to stay in Oia.  

One thing friends recommended we do was to take a boat ride around the island.  We decided that was one big adventure we wanted to take.  We set this up with the front desk of the hotel, they made it real easy.  The one thing they didn't tell us was to be ready, really be ready at least a half hour before they tell you that the bus will pick you up, for both the boat ride and our transport back to the airport we were surprised with early drivers.  

We spent a lot of time in the back of the boat, out of the sun, and Ollie even napped on the bench.

Our last day was far and away my favorite.  Across the street from the hotel was a hiking path.  After breakfast we decided to explore.  I, unfortunately didn't know what I was getting myself into, because I wore sandals, a dress, and barely applied the sunscreen.  It turns out it is the path that connects Oia with Thera.  We hiked about 30 minutes, I started to worry about the baby up on the hot mountain, with little shade, so we ended up heading back, which was disappointing, because the view was incredible!  

After a little rest we walked into Oia to tackle the steps down Amoundi Bay.  There were a lot of steps, but this time I was mentally and physically prepared with water, sunscreen and the proper footwear.  

I thought the bay was exactly how I pictured Greece, like out of a movie set Greece. 

I had said that if there was a cliff to jump off, I was going to do it.  And we found a cliff!  You can see my jump here.   Then I made Kyle take the plunge too, this is him mid-air.  Unfortunately, as you can see below, it was exactly a baby-friendly beach, rocks, cliffs, lack of shade and all, so we couldn't stick around.  

Then in the morning we headed to the airport.  

I am planning a post for later in the week with TONS of tips and info we learned on traveling with a baby, but here are some tips for exploring Oia and Santorini:

1. Don't be afraid to explore off the beaten path.  There are tons of adorable restaurants not on the main strip that are lovely and delicious.  

2. August/September was the absolute perfect time to go.  The weather we had was just incredible!  

3. The boat ride was worth it and gave you a completely different perspective of the island.  

4. You MUST walk the steps down to the bay and if you are brave, cliff dive!!!