Nenad and Danijela Pavic, and their children Dane (12), Mila (then 9), and Maksim (7).
The Pavic family left Beijing for a three-week European tour encompassing three countries and seven cities. Danijela organized the entire trip with some help from Tripadvisor.com.
They began by flying Air China to London. The family stayed in a two-bedroom serviced apartment called Dolphin House, located in
Pimblico just three metro stops from city center. The Pavics recommend a ride on the Original Tour bus as the best way to take in all the tourist sights. The kids loved visiting the London Dungeon, walking across Abbey Road (made famous by The Beatles), seeing The Lion King in the West End, as well as the Jack the Ripper walking tour.
From London, the family flew Easy Jet to Santorini, Greece, where they stayed at Hotel Kamari. It was Danijela’s dream to see the island – famous for its immaculate white architecture against stunning blue seaside.
After a lovely stay in Santorini, the clan flew Aegean Air to Athens, where they stayed at Hotel Achilleas – it was one of the few that could accommodate the family of five. To fit in all the tourist spots, the Pavics made use of a hop-on-hop-off sightseeing bus. When they weren’t walking among ancient ruins, the family was falling in love with the food: feta cheese, olive oil, bread and of course, souvlakia.
The family flew to from Athens to Nice, France, on Baboo Air, which they recommend for their great service. Upon arriving in Nice, the clan caught the Tour de France and took day trips to Monaco and Cannes. After their short stop in Nice, the Pavics flew Air France to Paris where they went to Disneyland and caught up with Danijela’s brother and his family, who live in the capital.
The Best Part
The standout city of their trip was Athens – the family felt like they’d traveled back in time. Danijela felt surreal sitting in an outdoor cafe,
sipping an espresso while watching an excavation going on next door.
The Most Unexpected Part
During their stay on Santorini, the family experienced an earth tremor, which is normal for the area. The Pavics also caught a leg of the Tour de France during their one-day stopover in Nice.
The Worst Part
They found London very expensive for a family of five. The service and attitude of people in Nice was also a low point.
When in London, save money on food and stay in a serviced apartment with a fridge and microwave. The Pavics shopped at Marks & Spencer for reasonably priced food that could be reheated at their hotel, as well as some breakfast staples.
In Santorini, there weren’t many choices for eating other than overpriced tourist restaurants, so the Pavics followed the locals and found some very tasty takeaway gyros places. They were very fresh and by far the best value for money.
In Athens, Danijela recommends ladies pick up a pair of Roman-style handmade sandals. Everyone in Athens has a pair!
Finally, consider location as well as price and price was all-important when booking accommodation. The family chose lower-end hotels close to the action because it saved on travel costs.