As soon as the final exam of my degree had passed I knew I had to get away. I was stressed to the max and was more ready than ever for a holiday. After realising that both my boyfriend and friends had commitments that couldn’t be changed last minute, I managed to persuade my mum to come on a weeks holiday with me. The rules were that it had to be cheap (after a year of uni I was skint) and it had to be relaxing.
After a lot of searching, we decided on Corfu. I don’t normally like to return to a place I have already visited; however as my first experience of this Greek Island was clubbing in Kavos, I thought I should experience the true character of the place. Thomson had some great deals on (as being the end of May it was before the start of the season) and we booked into the family run Hotel Athina on a bed and breakfast basis; which had some great reviews on Trip Adviser.
Hotel Athina is situated in San Stefanos; a former fishing village on the North West Coast of Corfu. Nestled into a cove and surrounded by hills, it is the perfect getaway for some quiet time. The hotel itself was popular with the retired community, and I was therefore the youngest adult there – however as this holiday was all about relaxation this did not bother me. Our week was spent sunbathing, swimming in the huge but shivering cold pool, playing Uno with an elderly couple that we got talking to and watching the sun set in the evenings. It was a perfect way to unwind after a gruelling third year at University.
One afternoon, my mum and I decided to go on a walk that was recommended to us by the family that ran the hotel. We climbed up to the top of one of the surrounding hillsides and found a hut serving soft drinks which a gorgeous view point, followed by a tiny Greek church, no bigger than a garden shed. It really was beautiful and a perfect example that even on a package holiday, you can find little treasures hidden away if you just look hard enough!
While I love exploring and making the most of every single second when I backpack, it is great to every so often just let go and have time to really reflect and take in your surroundings!