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Backpacking? Not Now We Have Two Young Kids In Tow!

How things have changed! This time five years ago Matt and I would have been slinging on our rucksacks and taking a twenty hour bus journey (to save a few quid) so that we could stay in very basic lodgings whilst hunting for treasures to bring to our Vida Vida stalls and site. One such trip involved a two month journey around Mexico and Guatemala in search of the perfect sandal.

 

Now however, we have our two little boys and so, our priorities have drastically changed, which is how we found ourselves last month at The Sani Resort in Hakidiki, Greece.  We had friends who had been and told us it was the perfect place for a relaxing holiday with little ones. Having hung up our rucksacks almost four years ago (when Herbie was born), we have become rather partial to an all-inclusive luxury holiday so we thought this place sounded right up our street.

 

sani-village

 

The easyJet flight time of 5.50am did not quite fit with making it easy for the kids, but everything that came after that did. We were met by a private car and whisked off to the resort (whilst Herbie watched Despicable Me on a DVD player in the car!) and we were greeted with welcome drinks whilst our bags were taken straight to our room. The restaurant had been fully booked for the first night, so our only option was to relax. Although this isn't usually easy with two under 4s, Sani do everything they can to make it possible.

 Pirate-games-melissa-mini-club-sani-resort

 

I don’t know where to start on how they make such relaxation possible: they have literally thought of everything! From hiring scooters to make it easy for toddlers to journey around the massive resort, to their range of amazing playgrounds, pools and beaches. There are fantastic kids’ clubs, crèches, discos and babysitting facilities and even splash times in the amazing adults’ spa pools. Now I know a lot of these things are available in other resorts, but this one really does go even further; they have babe watch on the beach where you can leave your child with a nanny for 30 minutes each day whilst you take a dip or read a book (for free!) and there are supervised play tables in some of the restaurants – utterly genius – with books, colouring in and lovely staff there to entertain the kids while you get to enjoy a seriously gourmet breakfast or an amazing dinner.

 

sani resort greece fun

 

I could seriously go on about this resort forever, so as you can imagine I cannot recommend it enough. I would say however, that we went out of season so it was not at full capacity, and during their peak times you might need to re-mortgage your house to go. But if you can manage to get the kids out of school (oops, I really should not encourage that after the recent change in the law) or they haven't started yet I would jump at the chance to visit this amazing place!

The Sani Resort - Greece

Handmade Leather Sandals (Since 1934)

I just returned from a lovely trip to Horto in the Pelion region of Greece which was one of the most relaxing weeks of my life – the packing, on the other hand, not so much.

After finally deciding what dresses to bring (we were going for a friend’s birthday so parties were the priority!) and the even harder decision of which of my many Vida Vida handbags would be needed, I realised I had no shoes which were suitable for both a Greek taverna on the beach and an all-night dance (perhaps with some plate smashing too). I managed to spot a pair of sandals on-line the morning before our departure and so, at 8 30 the night before my 6am flight I managed to pop out to buy some shoes as the shop was closing, without trying them on.  And of course, with my luck, they didn’t fit. It was too late to exchange them so I gave up, threw in some far too wintery heels and went to bed hoping that everyone would decide to go barefoot for the week.

 Moros Leather Sandals, Agria, Greece.

After a pleasant flight to Thessaloniki and a few hours driving down to the coast, we decided to stop for a lunch in a small coastal village called Agria just outside the port of Volos and the shoe fiasco was at the back of my mind until some lovely leather bags caught my eye. They were hanging outside a tiny shop called Moros which was filled with beautiful handmade leather goods – including more sandals than I had ever seen in a single place!

 

We chatted with the very helpful shopkeeper while admiring the gorgeous and handmade leather shoes, bags, belts, purses and more. Apparently, Moros has been making sandals since 1934 - so they are the real thing!  I couldn’t help but try on a few pairs and I ended up buying a pair of wedges and some flats, which I spent the rest of the trip wearing, and for €35 and €30 they weren't that expensive either!

 

Once I was home I found the shop’s Facebook page where you can see some of his lovely shoes and bags too. If you are ever visiting Agria then do pop in and have a look and say hello – you definitely won’t leave empty handed!  Oh, and there are a few lovely leather bags there too  including some interesting satchels and handbags, but you will already have plenty of those from Vida Vida!