Savvy Traveler Q&A: Greece with Fashionismyforte Blogger, Gergana
July 19 2015
While a debt crisis may be the reason Greece is being featured in the news so often these days, I think it is safe to say that when most of us think of this Balkan country visions of a grand ancient Acropolis come to mind as well as pristine aqua waters, whitewashed villages and delectable cuisine. Greece is one of the ultimate European getaways, and with a friend of mine incessantly counting down the days to his Mykonos vacay (T-minus 10 days to be clear) I thought it would be fun to supplement our Summer Travel Campaign with the experiences and musings of one of Seattle's top fashion and lifestyle bloggers, Gergana Ivanova of FashionismyForte.
Gergana has a wonderful philosophy on travel, and her stories of the Grecian beaches will likely have you checking if you have enough airlines miles to take a jaunt over very soon. Enjoy!
Name: Gergana Ivanova
Occupation: Pre-law student
Hometown: Seattle, Washington
Featured Destination: Greece
When did you first fall in love with travel?
I’ve loved traveling since I was a little girl. Very few things bring me as much pure joy and happiness as traveling does. Anytime someone would mention anything about going somewhere, I’d be the first one to drop everything and join the adventure. There’s something so irreplaceable about being able travel. It puts your whole life into perspective. It changes you. Getting to experience other cultures and meet people who live completely different lives than you is such a blessing. Life’s not meant to be lived in one place. There’s not a time I have gone somewhere and have returned the same person as before I left. In that short span of time, you learn and grow so much. There’s not a day in my life that I don’t think about where I want to travel to next…not a single day.
What’s your favorite way to get through a long flight?
Music and fashion magazines. Prior to flying, I sit down and seriously prepare the most intense playlists depending on my mood. It gets pretty real. Oh, and I stock up on so many magazines that I can never finish them all… mainly because I always fall asleep right away.
When was the first time you traveled to Greece?
I had the amazing opportunity to visit Greece last summer during my trip to Bulgaria. I have family in Bulgaria so I go and visit as often as I can. I’ve always wanted to go to Greece and I have made traveling a big priority of mine as I have gotten older, so when I purchased my tickets to Bulgaria last summer, I decided to plan a trip down to Greece as well because Bulgaria borders Greece, so it’s not that long of a car ride. Greece is honestly beautiful. Everywhere I look I’m mesmerized. There’s so much history and beauty that every morning I wake up I can’t wait to continue exploring. We mostly toured around Halkidiki as it was closest to the border. Some of the best beaches to visit there would definitely be Sani, Pela, Athos Palace and Kalogria. Going to Santorini is next on my list.
The view from Gergana's hotel room.
What is your favorite memory of your trip to Greece?
Just laying on the beach! Seriously. I have an endless love for the beach and can spend the whole day there. It’s just so relaxing and peaceful, I become the happiest girl ever when I get to just tan all day, sip on tropical drinks and eat endless amounts of fruit. I think growing up in Seattle has made me appreciate going to “real” beaches because the water here is freezing cold and the sand is usually dirty.
What is the one beauty product you always pack?
Argan Oil. I have several posts on my blog sharing my love for Argan Oil and I think it’s even more beneficial to use when being exposed to the sun for long periods of time.
What does your perfect day in Greece include?
Waking up and immediately putting on a bathing suit and throwing on a cute sundress on top of it. Then I would go and grab a very light and healthy breakfast, definitely something with fruit in it, and have coconut water to sip on as well… always. After breakfast I would head to the beach and pretty much spend the whole day there. Right before sunset, I would go back to my hotel room, shower and get ready for a fancy dinner at a new spot we haven’t been to before.
What food do you always eat at least once on your trip?
What’s your #1 travel tip when it comes to packing?
Quality over quantity. I’m such a heavy packer, I usually bring 3x more outfits than I need but I would rather have more than not enough! However, throughout the years I have learned how to pack lighter and only bring versatile pieces that I can wear several times and pair them with other items so I have multiple outfit choices.
Where is your favorite place to relax in Greece?
The beach. Any beach. All of the beaches there are amazing.
Gergana added, "We would also eat on the water at that little restaurant in the left corner. They had the best seafood! Should’ve written the name of it down." :)
What is your favorite way to stay active while traveling?
Walk to as many places as you can, if reasonable. Avoid using transportation when you can because it allows you to stumble upon places that you wouldn’t have stumbled upon otherwise.
What book do you plan to read on your summer adventures this year?
Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar. Do those count as books? As a current student I have a strong dislike for books because whenever I hear the word I think of all the textbooks that I have to read.
What does your “uniform” while in Greece include?
Sandals, a statement summer dress and a pair of unique and eye-catching sunglasses.
Gergana enjoying the beauty that Greece has to offer. She noted, "This was the beach at our hotel. I would be laying under those umbrellas down there for hours doing absolutely nothing, that’s the beauty of going on vacation."
**All Photos (expect map and Mykonos pic) provided by Gergana