During the summer of 2017, our family had the vacation of a lifetime… a 4 week sabbatical in Europe.My husband’s company grants their employees a 4 week sabbatical every 5 years! 

Our itinerary:
Direct flight from Houston to Manchester on Singapore Airlines
3 nights in Manchester, England
4 nights in Mykonos, Greece
6 nights in Naxos, Greece
4 nights in Santorini, Greece
5 nights in Garda, Italy
4 nights in Amsterdam, Netherlands
1 last positioning night in Manchester, England



At the time, we lived in Austin, so we drove to Houston that morning with plenty of time to spare.
HOT Long Term Parking Tip: We had booked a hotel room at a hotel near the airport for the night we returned from our trip and so they allowed us to keep our car there for an entire month! Way better than paying airport parking!

Our flight on Singapore Airlines was amazing. They are consistently rated as having the best coach product and we agree! Their attendants have the most beautiful uniforms and fantastic service, they hand out hot towels before your meal and the food is above average. And who doesn’t love complimentary cocktails, beer and wine?  We had an overnight flight, so our son (5) wore his PJs on the plane, ready to sleep!
HOT TIP, Kid’s Meals: We pre-ordered the kids meal for him as well. This is so important for non adventurous eaters and because they served the Kid’s meals first.


Where we stayed: Holiday Inn Manchester – great location, free breakfast, nice gym, would recommend
What we did: John Rylands Library, day trip to Chester, city parks, Manchester Cathedral
Restaurant we loved: Alchemist
Thoughts: 2 nights would have been plenty here, but I added padding for jet lag. We took our son’s travel chess board on this trip and it was a life saver when boredom struck at restaurants, etc. 


How we got there: We hopped on a super cheap Easy Jet flight with a direct flight to Mykonos. 
Where we stayed: We based ourselves in Platys Gialos Beach, which was a perfect location for kids.  We choose Argos Hotel – 5 minute walk to beach, next to bus stop, huge pool, incredible Greek breakfast was included, fantastic customer service. HIGHLY recommend. 
What we did: Long days at Platys Gialos Beach enjoying people watching, swimming, kayaking. Venturing into Mykonos Chora to enjoy the amazing white cobblestone streets, windmills and waterfront, seeing the famous pink Mykonos pelican.
Restaurant we loved: Avli Tou Thodori – this restaurant is beach front and owned by Argos hotel. We ate here twice the food was so amazing. 
Thoughts: You can’t go wrong with beach days with kids. And we all became obsessed with Greek salads (no lettuce, not like the ones you get here). The Greek breakfast buffets included with your hotel stay are basically legendary! Two of the nights we took a bus to the town center (Chora) and enjoyed the white washed streets and buildings. It’s all quite stunning. 

We also booked a semi-private sailing with Set Sail and had an absolutely amazing day! The other family didn’t show, so we had the boat to ourselves. Our captain and skipper were incredible and fixed the most amazing Greek meal while we were out swimming at one of the many beautiful locations we anchored at. When our son fell asleep on deck from a day of fun, they made shade for him so he wouldn’t get burned. It was beautiful to see Greece from the water. One of the best days ever!

Next stop… Naxos. One of our favorite places on Earth!

Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.

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