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Add some spice to your Santorini travel – join a Greek cooking class!

Add some spice to your Santorini travel – join a Greek cooking class!

 

Travel is the best way to have new experiences. And that does not end with seeing some cool places or enjoying the warm breeze of Aegean Sea winds and the touch of the Santorini sun. For many of us, food is a very special part of the travel experience. So today I will share some of the essential info on taking Greek cooking classes right here on the Santorini island!

 

Good things come in pairs

This is true for cooking classes as well. More often than not they’re combined with a wine tour in some of the local Greek wineries. Prepare to blast your tastebuds with some of the greatest wine before heading to the kitchen.

 

Where to look for classes

Well, online of course :) But I  can say that the best ones are usually hosted by restaurants. Try to stay clear of some tour operators. As an example, the restaurant Selene is a solid choice, they have been in the business for more than 30 years and they know what they’re doing.

 

What kind of foods to expect

This of course depends on the people organising the class as well as the ones attending. I would suggest really trying to find out beforehand. More often than not they try to stick to classic Greek cuisine like fava, soutzoukakia, tzatziki etc. but do ask beforehand to avoid surprises. Occasionally there are modern Greek fusion classes which might not be what you’re interested in.

 

If you follow this you will have a great time, no doubt. Of course it’s not rocket science, but you just have to make sure to check some things. Bon apetit!

Santorini photographer Anna Sulte

 

 

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Double photo shoot in Santorini

Double photo date in Santorini

 

I feel like every time I meet these couples I learn something new. :) This time it was a double date of two best friends – Jennifer and Nina – and their husbands – Michael and Khalil. This whole Santorini photo shoot trip was in great part because Jennifer wanted some photos with her best friend and husband :) And it’s really an honor that they chose me as their photographer.

I hope the images convey at least a part of the huge amounts of love and joy in the air that day. I can honestly say I had a blast.

All the best and hope to see you for some other birthday shoot in future! :)

Best friends photo session in Santorini by photographer Anna Sulte

The dreaded dilemma – Santorini vs Mykonos.

The dreaded dilemma – Santorini vs Mykonos.

Let me just start off with pointing out that you will have a great time on both of these Greek islands, no doubt! And now let’s get ready to rumble!

In the right corner of the ring – Mykonos:

  • This is considered the best party island in Greece. If you want to dance till sunrise with your buddies, this is definitely the place for you!
  • They have clubs with such awesome names as Paradise and Super Paradise which are filled with super high quality thumping club music. These attract famous DJs whose sets usually run into the next day.
  • Sandy aches with clear water to rejuvenate you after the parties.
  • Not too family friendly, it will be harder to find things to do for the little ones.

And in the left corner of the ring – Santorini:

  • Mostly known as the best destination for loving couples, many even arrive to the island from abroad to get married in its scenic destinations.
  • More cafes and restaurants with a quiet and chilled vibe.
  • Swimming pools with STUNNING views, like infinity pools that end on the edge of cliffs overlooking the Volcanic Lagoon.
  • All types of interesting and different beaches, like black beaches formed from volcanic sand.
  • More family friendly, you can for example go on horse rides and go to a waterpark. If you take kids, double check that with your hotel – some hotels are on a Cliffside and they do not allow children for safety reasons.

 

The winner: Well, nothing in life is easy. You decide it’s subjective and depends on your needs. But this should help clear up your mind, at least. Whatever you do, make sure to come to Santorini someday.  See you there.

Santorini photographer Anna Sulte

Best birthday gift – magical moments in Santorini.

Best birthday gift – magical moments in Santorini.

Recently I had the pleasure to meet a couple with a special Santorini arrival story. Raouia and Mouez arrived not only to enjoy the magical Santorini views but also to have a very special birthday photoshoot. They came all the way from France and boy, are they gorgeous or what!?

It seemed like everything just clicked in place as soon as I saw them. Oia village had been long waiting for them. Already in a few minutes I felt like having a leisurely walk with friends. And I think the photos turned out great.

It was also nice to receive this email one late evening while I was doing the edits:

 The photos are just GORGEOUS!!! Having the photo session with you was a pure pleasure. Thanks for being very friendly, cool and professional as well.

All I can do is to be grateful for having such amazing people choose me and hope they come back sometime soon. :)

Fun photo shoot
with Santorini photographer Anna Sulte

Go on a Santorini island expedition – visit Thirasia

Go on a Santorini island expedition – visit Thirasia

Thirasia is one of the islands that lies close to Santorini. For travellers this means that you can pack much more in your Greece trip! Although the Greek island of all lovers and cute architecture is still Santorini, this smaller island definitely has its own unique things to offer. Today I’ll share some insider tips on how to organize your mini island expedition there.

Thirasia is relatively close to Santorini, the only way to reach it is by boat. Depending on the spot you would like to get off it should take you around 10-20 minutes to reach it. Sounds not so tough, right?  It’s a pretty bumpy ride.

To get there, you can either use the offers from tourism companies or pay 1 EUR if you go with the boat from Amoudi Bay (right next to Oia village).

Now, the point you get off in Thirasia will define your experience on the island. Here’s some options:

Riva: Has a beach from which you can see Oia and a small restaurant. Good spot for swimming and sunbathing.

Korfos: View of Santorini Island, volcano and the unique rocks of Thirasia. You will be able to take a quick swim, but keep in mind that the beach is quite rocky. Still, this place has several restaurants and cafes. Also keep in mind that you will have to do a small climb up a hill to reach the town – you can also rent a donkey.

And there you have it, the secret formula for a day on the neighbouring island, let me know how your trip turned out!

Photo of Amoudi bay, from my phone :)

Anna Sulte Santorini based photohrapher

 

Exploring characters with SY and Cherie

Exploring characters with SY and Cherie

They came to me through a recommendation from a previous client, which always warms my heart.

SY and Cherie are young and deeply in love, I don’t know if they chose Santorini or Santorini chose them. In this photo session we decided to stay in one village and play around with the visual characters – their clothes, placement and framing – and try to create visually interesting shots that would highlight this wonderful couple and that fuzzy love feeling that is around them.

Thank you for making me a small part of your love journey in Santorini, it was a real pleasure.

Santorini photo shoot by Anna Sulte, photographer based on the island Thira/ Santorini.

THREE THINGS TO MAKE YOUR SANTORINI PROPOSAL EXTRA SPECIAL

THREE THINGS TO MAKE YOUR SANTORINI PROPOSAL EXTRA SPECIAL

 

The proposal is probably among the most intimate and moving moments in any couples life. This time I won’t delve into advice on how to do the actual proposal, because it’s just too individual and special – my only advice is to listen to your heart and trust your gut. What I can help with, however, is pointing out some of the practicalities on what to do AFTER the proposal to make your day even more awesome :). Here are three things that really make a difference.

 

Restaurant WIFI is important (seriously)

When in Santorini, you definitely need to enjoy the amazing restaurants with great views over the Caldera. These are among the best places to have a nice dinner (or breakfast, or supper) after the magical “yes”. This might sound silly at first, but check their WIFI before going, so that you could have a Skype call with all your family and tell them the good news! It’s a good chance to arrange a surprise and have that extra bit of family support in your big decision.

 

Invest in some hotel room prep

The proposal day is definitely one of romance. Santorini is among one of the most romantic spots on planet Earth, so we got you covered. To add extra romance, you can prepare your hotel room with roses, champagne and candles. Pro tip – you can either rent out a different room and prep it before or arrange it to be done by the hotel staff while you’re on a trip.

 

Get some fancy wheels

A special day requires a special way to get around. How about swapping your rental for something a bit flashier? Maybe a retro car? Or even hire a driver? Or go for full on solitude on a Vespa scooter riding the streets of Santorini in moonlight (and champagne on one of the exotic beaches)?

Santorini photographer Anna Sulte
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Exploring the villages of Santorini – Jessa and David.

Exploring the villages of Santorini – Jessa and David.

            Jessa and David came all the way from Arizona, but there’s more than that – their roots are in Europe and actually from the area not far from Santorini. Jessa has some Greek blood and David’s ancestors come from Italy. As soon as I saw them I understood – they have a connection. A connection to this place and even stronger one to each other.

We spent the most magical two hours around the various villages in Santorini. It seemed that we needed to soak in as much of the Greek ambience as possible, so we did the best we could to get a good range of images and feelings. We ended up taking some shots around Imerovigli, Oia and also sneeked in their hotel called Kirini Suites and their spa.

This is one special couple, no doubt and I hope that these images do them justice and convey the unique vibe of love around them.

Santorini photo shoot by Anna Sulte

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ISLAND HOPPING AROUND SANTORINI – IS IT WORTH IT?

ISLAND HOPPING AROUND SANTORINI – IS IT WORTH IT?

Island hopping is a way of seeing the surrounding small islands on a boat tour and spending some time on each of them. As you’re reading this article, you are probably have some doubts, and there are some grounds for it. Island hopping around Santorini, is it worth it? Let’s look at some pros and cons.

Time management

Yes, island hopping will allow you to “see” many places in a relatively short amount of time. Whether you will think this is enough probably depends on what type of traveler you are. If you’re after the amazing views and taking photographs, this might be for you. If you like to soak in the vibe of the place and devote more time for it, then probably not so much. All the tours have a set amount of time reserved for seeing the island and that’s it – if you’re too late the tour might head on without you.

Activity planning

One thing is for sure – island hopping is not for the chilled out folk. If you want to make most of it, you have to plan your activities on the islands in advance, otherwise you just risk wasting too much time on making decisions on the fly. It is best to make e.g. restaurant or diving reservations well in advance to get the best time that fits your island hopping tour.

Choose your base wisely

There is plenty of information on various island hopping tours online, and all of them offer you to start from a certain point. Before signing up for one, you should consider the costs. A good advice is to think whether you think that the island tour should be the highlight of your tours and spend the rest of your vacation on leisure e.g. chilling on the beach or do you want to do some more advanced tours and experiences on your base island as well. If you just want to chill, you can definitely consider the smaller, more remote islands where the stay will generally be cheaper and the beaches won’t be so crowded!

Pick 2-3 favorites from the tours and discuss with your travel mates, this should be a good start for a conversation.

Santorini vacation/portrait photographer Anna Sulte

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GET THE LOOK – TIPS FOR PHOTO SESSION OUTFITS

GET THE LOOK – TIPS FOR PHOTO SESSION OUTFITS

 

There is a high interest on what to wear to a photo shoot in Santorini to look amazing. Over the years I have found out some things that work and some things that don’t, especially in couples’ photo shoots. Let this serve as a guide, not a definite road map for your choices.

The basics

Dressing up for a photo shoot is something we tend to overdo, the main point to remember is to stay true to your own style – you will simply look better in clothes that you feel comfortable in. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with dressing up and rocking a cool skirt or dress, but do not overdo it and try too hard. Same goes for colours – wear tones that make you feel in sync with yourself. One thing to keep in mind is that the clothes should fit you perfectly – we’re aiming for the tailored look to underline you personality!

The same is especially true for guys. No button-ups if your significant other usually wears cool brand sweaters. Think about it – if you’re on a couples’ photoshoot already, his wardrobe choices are not so bad, right?

Go easy on the prints

It’s safer not to go overboard with various prints, especially if they are words – if your t-shirt says something on it, it very often becomes the central point of interest in the image. Same should be said for patterns, try not to dress all in patterns, rather use it to accentuate. If you have to match patterns, make sure that they are of different scales.

Crash course in making your arms look awesome

Each of us has that spot on the body you wish could look better. For most of us, it’s just in our head and no one else even notices, but my experience shows that the key of looking beautiful is FEELING beautiful, so this has to be solved. Your photo session can even be a therapy to make you understand your true beauty.

Quite a few of us struggle with the way our arms look in photographs. As this advice shows, most often it is more connected to what you actually wear on the photo shoot – you must understand that some types of clothing just makes your hands look a bit awkward on camera, it’s that simple.

One of the most basic advice is just to choose a dress or top with quarter sleeves – it can be an elegant and stylish way to draw more attention to your face (which makes photographs more personal, in fact). Sleeves also optically make us look taller and slimmer, beware of the effect and use it to your advantage to look your best on camera.

If you still want to show some skin, go for it and uncover your shoulders, off-shoulders clothes are a bit more dramatic on photographs and add a pinch of originality. It’s also a good idea to accentuate the parts of your body you are proud of, like waist line in a tight dress or face with big earrings or an impressive necklace.

You can also dress in layers, which is actually what locals also do to level out the difference of temperature during the day and night. It’s usually done like this – find your favorite dress and combine it with a cute jacket, crop top or shrug. A big scarf that you wear on your shoulders can also do the trick. And of course don’t forget the classics – dark tones make you look slimmer.

 The most important secret

Have fun, really. Don’t overthink this, the main thing is to take as much as possible from this amazing experience of you and your lover being on the island.  Nothing makes you look better than being happy.

Santorini vacation photographer Anna Sulte, Thira Greece

 

 

Santorini photographers tips for travelling with a wedding gown

santorini post-wedding session

Santorini wedding photographers tips for travelling with
a wedding gown

Many of my clients come to Santorini to get married or celebrate their anniversary. What you don’t realize when making this decision is that you most likely will have to travel to Santorini with your wedding gowns. For guys travelling with a suit is not that challenging, but international air travel with a wedding dress can be a challenge.

First of all, let’s begin with a decision that could make your life easier. If you want to travel, you can also take this into account when choosing the dress. In general, a very classical wedding dress with a long lower part and corset. It will be far easier if you go for a Greek style or any other smaller dress. However, I know how it is – you just like the dress and you’re ready for anything to get it to Santorini. If so, then go for it!

OK when you have picked the dress, you can start figuring out how to get it to your wedding. There is no absolute advice for it but there are things you can do to increase your chances. One of the best and safest solutions for this is to get a separate suitcase for the dress only. There are actually companies that can pack your dress professionally into it to minimise creasing. When you arrive you can arrange a steam pressing to make sure everything is OK. Just make sure you are totally confident of the maximum carry on size of your flight operator, make calls to double check if necessary.

There is another, more risky solution. It is just packing your wedding dress as usual in a clear cover and carrying it on the plane. If you do this, it is a bit of a gamble, but it can turn out pretty good. Your wedding dress will of course exceed the allowed luggage dimensions, but most airport workers see the dress and light up. There’s actually a closet in most airplanes or a place to hang it up without creasing. If you’re on a long distance flight, you increase your chances dramatically if you fly first class.

If you have the time and are willing to go on an adventure, you can also arrive earlier and go wedding dress shopping closer to your destination. If you’re coming to Santorini, there are millions of possibilities in Greece before you board the ferry to the island, not to mention some spots in here as well. You can also use websites to plan and preview the dresses you want to try on. This is a good solution if you’re adventurous and willing to experiment a bit.

So there you have it, hope this helps and if you used a different technique, please let me and other couples know!

santorini post-wedding session

 

Santorini photo session by Anna Sulte, photographer based in Santorini

 

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HONEYMOON SESSION WITH WONDERFUL JILIAN AND BRIAN

Honeymoon session with wonderful Jilian and Brian

Sometimes I wonder why  these awesome people keep choosing me as their photographer! This was no exception – Jilian and Brian is one of the most radiant couples I have ever met and they were open for this photographic adventure.

At this particular day Oia was a bit crowded, but instead of getting sad about it, we took it as a creative challenge and experimented with some fresh locations! We just started at Andronis Luxury Suites and explored. This paid off big time. We had the most romantic evening filled with the smell of still blooming Bougainvillea.

It is always a pleasure to work with such a loving couple – they are surrounded by this positive energy and happiness and it automatically wears off to everyone around them.

My only hope is that I managed to capture at least a small part of their vibe in these photographs. They are truly meant for each other. It warmed my heart to receive this email the other day:
         I will be sure to tag you in any photos I share, and will most definitely be recommending you to any of our friends traveling to Santorini in the future.
         Take care and keep in touch!     

I wish you the very best and I’m sure we will meet for your anniversary trips on this small, sunny Greek island :)

Santorini photographer Anna Sulte, photo shoot in Oia 2017

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GET YOUR VACATION VEGGIES IN THESE AMAZING SANTORINI VEGETARIAN FOOD PLACES

GET YOUR VACATION VEGGIES IN THESE AMAZING SANTORINI VEGETARIAN FOOD PLACES

            Whether you’re looking for a light vacation meal after a day at the beach, exploring the Greek vegetarian food world or looking for a place to relax after your Santorini photo session these restaurants will not disappoint. Here’s my top 3 of the best places to get your veggies at the heart of the Aegean Sea.

 

Falafel Land in Fira

Who does not like a good falafel, right? Their diverse menu will have something new even for the most enthusiastic falafel lovers. It is a small and simple place, but provides all you need to enjoy a cool evening or grab a snack in the middle of your excursion day. The staff are some of the most active and positive vegans on the island!

Where to find it: It’s close to Fira bus terminal, address: Fira, Fira 84700

 

Melitini in Oia (vegetarian friendly)

This is a nice choice if you’re non-vegetarian friends don’t want to give up meat for the meal. It’s a vegetarian friendly restaurant with a relaxed vibe, classic Greek cuisine with a twist and one of the greatest views around! It’s in a classic tavern with a terrace overlooking the Caldera. Careful if you’re planning a short meal, you might stay the whole evening just to stare at the horizon and the Aegean Sea!

Where to find: It’s on the main Caldera walk in Fira, address: Epar.Od. Firon-Ias, Oia 84702

 

Sea Side by Notos in Perivolos (vegetarian and vegan friendly)

Another treat that will spoil you with food and great views. As the title suggests, this place is right next to the waves of the sea which you can always watch for hours. Great place to visit after enjoying a day at the beach. Has vegetarian and vegan options, but your meat-loving friends won’t be disappointed. They have nice chilled out seating on the beach, you can always take a quick dip in the sea in the middle of the meal if you want to – it’s your vacation, you make the rules!

Where to find: just go to the beach and you won’t miss it, address: Agios Georgios Beach, Perivolos

Santorini vacation photographer Anna Sulte

EAT LIKE A SANTORINI LOCAL – SPOTS THE LOCALS ENJOY

where to eat in Santorini

EAT LIKE A SANTORINI LOCAL – SPOTS THE LOCALS ENJOY

Let me share some insider tips on where to find some of the eating places where locals enjoy hanging out from time to time.
If you want to be a part of the Santorini locals club, go ahead and check them out!

 

Corner in Fira – awesome brunches

This is a rather popular café to grab breakfast. Its food and staff are so good that in the midst of all the tourists even locals come to enjoy morning crepes and great coffee. Not only that, it’s pretty affordable as well!

Address: M. Danezi, Fira 84700, Santorini

 

Mario No 1 in Monolithos

This is a rather simple and down to earth restaurant at the beachside where locals enjoy amazing traditional grilled dishes. It’s also in a rather distant and quieter beach away from most of the tourist masses. Go there for simple and kind service, amazing food and good conversations in a calm atmosphere.

Address: Monolithos 84700, Santorini

 

Mythos Grill House in Pyrgos

Locals sure enjoy a good grilled meal and this is one of the best places around. In addition to their great menu, they also offer quite a view from their terrace. This in combination with a couple of sips of their amazing house white wine is a formula for a good night out in Santorini!

Address: Pyrgos Kallistis 847 00, Greece

where to eat in Santorini

The Unique face of Ammoudi village/bay in Santorini

The Unique face of Ammoudi village/ bay in Santorini

            I’m getting close to the end of my blog post series on the various different villages on the island of Santorini, if you’ve missed them, just take a look back – I give short info on the unique characteristics of each of these places you might visit during your stay. 15 Santorini villages.

Today it’s time to dive into one of the most unique small villages, which is actually almost a port – it’s the Ammoudi village/ bay. Go ahead and turn on Google Images and search for it. See what I mean? It’s just the perfect Greek port with tiny colorful houses washed by crystal clear aquamarine water.

Ammoudi is definitely known for its stunning ambience, and if you’re looking for a boat ride or a place to have great sea food, look no more! This place has some of the most highly acclaimed restaurants and taverns on the island – try their sea food and you’ll be hooked for life!

Santorini based photographer Anna Sulte