When our good friends invited us to their wedding in Paros, we were convinced they said “Paris”. I mean, it made sense. She’s French, they’d met in Boston (where the civic ceremony was held), and he’s from a beautiful part of Romania called Timisoara (I love you Romania, but Paris… is Paris). So when talk started circulating of warm climates and beach vacations, we were a bit confused. It was only when we received the official invite that we realized they hadn’t been talking about Paris, at all.
Paros: Greek Island. Not French Capital.
Paros? The first thing we did was Google it. Long behold, nestled somewhere close to Naxos, floating in the middle of the Aegean Sea, was Paros. After 2 wonderful days spent lounging in Santorini, we took a 3 hour(ish) ferry ride to Paros. The ferry, by the way, operated by Blue Star Ferries, was BY FAR, the best ferry ride I have ever, ever taken.
First of all, it was enormous. There was no cramming in between fellow passengers, running to get the first seat, or panic that you might be left standing for hours on end. Second of all, it was luxurious! Of course, this is coming from the backpacker who camped on the floor under a table on the ferry from Helsinki to Stockholm – so maybe take my opinion with a grain of (sea) salt. Tons of space for everyone to sit on couches, with tables on every level and a restaurant/cafe smack in the middle of things. Not to mention, the bathrooms which had walls facing out to sea and undoubtedly the best view on the boat.
Approximately 44 million people will travel across the U.S. this 2013 holiday season. Many will head for the big cities, estimates AAA. This year, take your loved one for a romantic getaway in one of these small towns. Enjoy the intimate atmosphere and beauty of these little treasures.
Smarter Travel recommends Carmel as a top small town getaway. Located 122 miles south of San Francisco, this town has a resident population of 3,700. Carmel is a beach town surrounded by the blue waters of the Pacific Ocean and the well-manicured greens of popular golf courses. Beginning as an artist colony, Carmel continues to offer small galleries and artists’ shops full of unique crafts. After a day of driving around the celebrity homes or golfing, take in a play or concert. Once boasting Clint Eastwood as the mayor, you may well see celebrities sitting along side you.
After years of missing out on one of Ontario’s famed summer highlights, I decided it was finally time to discover The Stratford Festival. With roots that date back to 1952, The Stratford Festival is known for hosting some of the best theatre in the country (and some of the greatest actors, including Christopher Plummer, better known to Sound of Music enthusiasts as Captain Von Trapp).
Stratford itself is home to a vigorously artistic community that, between the late spring and the onslaught of fall, gets together to produce award-winning theatre; from Shakespearean classics like Othello and Romeo and Juliet, to modern productions like Tommy and My Fair Lady.