If you have been following my Instagram, you are well aware by now that I just returned from a 10-day trip to Greece. I feel so blessed that my family vacation took me to such an amazing location this year, and this will undoubtedly be one of the highlights of my year. We had a lovely time, with a few days in Athens and a week in Crete, which you will hear a lot more about soon enough!
Today, though, is all about packing, so here are the things I packed for Greece and the things I wish I would have left at home.
Let’s go head to toe…
Greece is closer to the equator than Minnesota, so the sun was much more intense than I am used to and it was HOT. I brought 2 hats, a baseball cap and a sun hat, and didn’t regret devoting suitcase space to either. I threw my baseball cap in my carry-on in order to cover up post-flight bed head hair leaving the airport (believe me, I did not wake up like this) and the other one I brought was a packable hat from Tuckernuck, which was perfect for the beach as well as walking around Athens. Don’t forget a hat and lots of sunscreen to combat the sun and the heat of Greece.
I knew I was going to want to do a lot of blue and white, because it is Greece, after all! In order to cut down on using precious suitcase space, I brought only things that went with navy (nothing black) and only brought 2 pairs of shorts (white and navy) and 4 tops, all of which went with both the navy shorts and the white shorts. If I were to do it over, I wouldn’t wear the white shorts in Athens, because they got dusty and dirty the first time I wore them and ended up having to be washed.
I also threw in an easy dress from Cupcakes and Cashmere that I wore too many times to count. I could throw it on to go to the beach or wear for whatever daytime activity and also could wear it out to dinner if I wanted a little more polish. The bonus of the easy shift shape was that, beyond being comfy, I could stuff myself with as much pita and lamb as I wanted and it had the wiggle room to accommodate it. 🙂 I know I’m not the only person who thinks about these things when picking travel clothes…
As much as it pained me to leave behind all of my favorite wedges and heels, this was 100% a flats kind of trip. Since I had to bring my hiking shoes for our one day hiking the Samaria Gorge (more on that in a future post), I limited myself to 2 pairs of sandals and my Tieks, which I mostly threw in because they fold up and I can justify them since they barely take up any space at all. The vibe of Crete was easy, so sandals went from the beach to dinner with no side-eye. Athens was all walking, so flat sandals were good, but I found myself wishing for sneakers or at least a less-slippery shoe when heading up to the Acropolis. Not only is the Acropolis a bit of a climb, but there are a lot of marble walkways, which, while beautiful, are super slippery. If your boyfriend isn’t cool with practically carrying you up a huge hill (thanks babe), you’ll want some solid walking shoes with you in Athens.
One thing I was happy to have brought was sunscreen (just be sure to put your full-size bottles in your checked bag), since I literally put it on multiple times every single day.
I was also grateful for my boyfriend’s allergy medications since I had serious allergies to something in the air in Greece, resulting in itchy eyes, even though I don’t have allergies at home–it was a good reminder to prepare for the unexpected when you’re traveling.
I would also recommend bringing a corkscrew, since you’ll want to try some wine and maybe bring a bottle back to your place, and there’s nothing worse than having a bottle of wine and no way to drink it.
The Things I Never Used
Okay, if you’re an over-packer like I am, you’re probably going to ignore this section anyway, but I feel like I need to confess my packing mistakes. Maybe I’ll save you from making the same mistakes I did, or serve as a reminder for my next trip to pack less (yeah, right).
The top things I never used were definitely all of my lipstick, makeup and the travel curling iron I threw in. I didn’t even blow dry my hair once the entire trip, and most days my tinted moisturizer was all the makeup I needed. Especially when you’re in and out of the pool and it’s 100 degrees outside, all of the beauty products just aren’t necessary. Like I said before, Crete has an easy vibe, so going out sans-makeup with my hair a mess of still-wet curls was no problem at all. I also could have done without quite so many bags and purses, but that’s always a problem for me and I’m working on it.
Do you overpack? Let me know in the comments what you wished you hadn’t brought on your last trip!
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