So, to end a full-on week of activities and drinking with ESN, the Mykonos trip came around and we were promised another four days of drinking, sightseeing and bonding with our fellow Erasmus students. We set sail (on a five-hour-long ferry) to the island most famous for its windmills, on Thursday morning waking up at 4am for a departure from the ESN office at 5am. With around 200 Erasmus students we set off.
Alex and I became members of hotel 7 and hotel 6 became home to Dejan. When we finally docked in Mykonos, we were subjected to a lot of waiting around as the coaches meaning to take us were all on Greek time (meaning they’d be roughly an hour later than they had said). However, once on the coaches we soon made it to our small hotel where 19 of us were staying for the 4 days. We were quick to make friends and started asking around about what everyone was planning on doing for the day, and minds automatically turned to food. With the ferry only taking cash a lot of us hadn’t eaten since yesterday dinner time, and it was now around 2pm. Us and a group of 7 others headed off in the direction of any restaurant. To our surprise a couple of the people within the group were ones we had previously met on a clubbing night and at the Greek dinner. We found a place along the front and ordered immediately.
With food in our belly’s we looked for the nearest beach and found one that was already host to multiple other Erasmus students. We decided this would be where we would spend the rest of the day.
The evening called for pre-drinks with our new-found friends and a club night. A classic game of ‘Ring of Fire’ and a lot of laughing later and we decided it was time to head out. We ended up at ‘Scandinavian bar’ which was what was suggested by the ESN guides as we had free entry and a ‘discount’. We soon realised this would not be the best place to party. On arriving we got our free entry, however, for two drinks at the bar it was 18 euros – even with the discount. We learnt that this discount was in fact only 1 euro off. So being the smart students we are we decided best to go out to the kiosk around the corner and buy beer and mixed drinks from there for 2 euro and then go back in when we were ready to dance. (Little did we know this would become the schedule for each night out).
The next day was a group trip to ‘Super Paradise’ and being a bit hungover from the night before we didn’t pack accordingly. We forgot to pack drinks, food and therefore, became trapped in the beach club as it was in the middle of nowhere. Food cost 13 euros for a plate from a cafeteria-like setting and a soft drink (with our wristband). Alcoholic drinks were also expensive with it being 6 euros for a beer. This place we branded super paradise, but we soon relabelled it super * paradise (*expensive). However, we had a lovely time with the friends we had made, and the water was so clear as well as the beach being beautiful. This beach bar would have been a lot more fun had we not been students or even if we had been students with a lot more money. Little did we know that for 5 Euros we could have travelled back to the town centre at any point during the day. As soon as we found this out we soon travelled back to the town and got some cheap gyros to make up for the food we had in the beach club. This night was probably the most tired we were for the whole holiday; however, we refused to leave it on a bad note, and with a bit of group peer pressure we all managed to make it out to the club. The club we went to was ‘Argo’ this played better music than the other bars, but the drinks were still pretty expensive *que escape to the kiosk*. This was a good night, but we ended the night around 3am, with the other party-goers still going till 5am, as we needed our beds. Although, on our return home we sat on the rooftop by our apartments watching the stars and chatting which was an ideal end to the night. (Alea even managed to see a few shooting stars – to Alex’s annoyance he was always too late to see them).
The final full day was here, and we all felt refreshed as we hadn’t gone too hard on the previous night and got a relatively good night sleep, so we headed out to the windmills. The windmills weren’t that impressive, but the views of the little Venice and the white houses down the side towards the sea proved to be the main sight to see. The streets themselves of Mykonos were also incredibly beautiful as the alleys weave in and out. However, be careful as all the alleys look mostly the same, so it is good to gage some landmarks – like a shop or restaurant here and there, so you know you’re going along the right way. After this, another beach day was in need as we had a couple beers and watched the sunset over the sea. This evening, being the last evening on the island, we decided to party hard. This followed the same routine as the last couple of nights. However, we had all learnt not to buy drinks out apart from the kiosk, and this is what we did. This proved to be a good end to an eventful holiday.
These events – even if they don’t turn out the way you had set in your mind – are amazing ways to make friends and socialise with people who are in the same boat as you are. It definitely makes you feel more connected to the other people on Erasmus, and now we have a whole new group of friends from different backgrounds to socialise with and learn from.