Maple Alps

Travel

Mama Mia! & A Private Beach

TravelAmanda Walter | Maple Alps9 Comments

The first year I studied abroad, I was able to spend some time in Denmark with family friends of ours. It was a fantastic experience, except for when I wanted to watch television, I couldn't understand a thing. One day, after exploring the city, I was flipping through the channels trying to find something to watch. Suddenly, I heard familiar words - Mama Mia! was on in German. Despite not loving the movie, I was bored and I watched the whole thing, just happy to have something on with words I understood. This last summer, some friends of ours took us to where some scenes from the movie were shot, and it was really spectacular to see- not just because it was filmed there, but because it was so beautiful!

mama Mia! | www.maplealps.com
mama mia and a private beach | www.maplealps.com
mama mia and a private beach | www.maplealps.com
mama mia and a private beach | www.maplealps.com
mama mia | www.maplealps.com
mama mia | www.maplealps.com

Seeing it almost made me want to watch the movie again, but I haven't seen it since 2010, and I think I'll keep it that way. There were definitely fewer people there than I had expected.

After we were finished at the chapel, we drove and hiked a bit and found a private beach to lay at for the day. Not one soul showed up the entire afternoon and the [long] nap I had and the warm water was glorious. 

mama mia | www.maplealps.com
mama mia and a private beach | www.maplealps.com

Somehow, picnic lunches taste better and naps are sweeter with views like these.

 

Skopelos

TravelAmanda Walter | Maple Alps7 Comments

Whenever I thought of Greece, I thought of Santorini because I wanted to see all the pretty white houses and everything that was in The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. It's been on my bucket list forever, and when we started planning our Greece trip, I thought I'd be able to cross it off. Well, it's still on my list because we went to Skopelos instead. But I still loved it. As long as I have water, beaches, and my honey, I'll be content. The world has many places to explore. Here are some photos from our trip!

Skopelos | www.maplealps.com
Skopelos | www.maplealps.com

I inherited my grandmother's motion sickness, so I'm never a fan of ferry rides. Sitting inside got me so sick that as I stumbled out into the fresh air, I thought I might tip over the railings. Alas, the fresh air did me good. See? Not everything about travel is glamourous. 

Skopelos | www.maplealps.com

Very cool though: we saw dolphins swimming alongside the ferry. I didn't even bother taking a picture because I was enjoying it far too much. I had never seen them in the wild before.

Skopelos | www.maplealps.com
Skopelos | www.maplealps.com
Skopelos | www.maplealps.com
Skopelos | www.maplealps.com

I was still happy to see white buildings once we reached our destination and could have explored for hours more!

Skopelos | www.maplealps.com
Skopelos | www.maplealps.com
Skopelos | www.maplealps.com
Skopelos | www.maplealps.com
Skopelos | www.maplealps.com
Skopelos | www.maplealps.com

I mean, how cute are these window sills?!? I could have spent more hours walking through these streets!

Skopelos | www.maplealps.com

I'm pretty certain that I photographed every cat I saw in Greece, but I'm sparing you from most of those pictures - be glad. 

Skopelos | www.maplealps.com

I think I was most impressed by how clean Greece was in general! I definitely was not expecting that. We had a fantastic time!

 

A Spring Evening on Lake Michigan

TravelAmanda Walter | Maple Alps6 Comments

We absolutely love living right by Lake Michigan and we walk down to the water as often as we possibly can. Now that things are thawing out a bit, we are more willing and able to brave the cold (though when it is cold, it still is really cool to go see the water).

Watching the sun do it's setting across the lake is a magical thing, and we feel so blessed to be able to have that pretty much at our door. I thought I might give you readers a little tiny taste of what we get on a Spring (okay, more like Winter) evening.

Lake Michigan | www.maplealps.com
Lake Michigan | www.maplealps.com
Lake Michigan | www.maplealps.com
Lake Michigan | www.maplealps.com
Lake Michigan | www.maplealps.com
Lake Michigan | www.maplealps.com
Lake Michigan | www.maplealps.com
Lake Michigan | www.maplealps.com
Lake Michigan | www.maplealps.com
Lake Michigan | www.maplealps.com
Lake Michigan | www.maplealps.com
 

What do you love about where you live?


 

An Evening in Athens

TravelAmanda Walter | Maple Alps3 Comments

We were fortunate enough to spend an evening in Athens before leaving Greece! It was a short but sweet time, even if we were melting. 

An Evening in Athens | www.maplealps.com
An Evening in Athens | www.maplealps.com
An Evening in Athens | www.maplealps.com

Even though a silly shot, I just had to share. We try to get a picture of our feet wherever we go and have been doing it for years! We even use a hashtag, hehe #WhereOurFeetHaveTrodJA

An Evening in Athens | www.maplealps.com
An Evening in Athens | www.maplealps.com
An Evening in Athens | www.maplealps.com
An Evening in Athens | www.maplealps.com
An Evening in Athens | www.maplealps.com
An Evening in Athens | www.maplealps.com

Climbing up to Mars Hill was so cool. Just knowing the amazing things that have happened in history there was so humbling. J, of course, had to pose while "preaching."

An Evening in Athens | www.maplealps.com
An Evening in Athens | www.maplealps.com
An Evening in Athens | www.maplealps.com
An Evening in Athens | www.maplealps.com

Even though we were not there long, we enjoyed every minute! 

An Evening in Athens | www.maplealps.com

Visiting Zeus on Olympus

TravelAmanda Walter | Maple Alps7 Comments

We had the incredible experience of climbing Mount Olympus this last summer. We mostly agreed so that we could have the bragging rights, but it was so worth every sore muscle and every stone we tripped up and down. 

We started out finding some pools. It was really hot out and they looked so inviting, but as I neared the water, I saw.....A SNAKE!! If you know me, you know that I am TERRIFIED of snakes and right then and there I decided to not go into the water. By this time, it had swum away (probably because I was screaming so loud), but I was extremely paranoid. 

Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com

Eventually, the water called to me - that, and the sun was beating down quite warm on my back. I shed my garments and jumped in. I, of course, got right back out - just in case. We enjoyed a few hours jumping off edges into the pools. We did see another snake later, so I ended my swimming time. My husband did say he was really proud of me for overcoming that fear - but I had a few more fears to conquer before this adventure was over!

Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com
Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com
Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com
Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com

We continued on our way up but on our way, our car....well, we ran out of gas :) That set us back quite a bit, but help eventually came and we were off!

Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com
Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com

When we finally got started, it was getting pretty late already, but we still had some energy left. We climbed and climbed and climbed - our step count was pretty impressive.

Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com
Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com

We climbed until we got to the place we slept that night. It was really strange sleeping covered in sweat and grime from the mountain, but trying to shower in ice-cold water in the dark was not an alternative we decided to opt for. 

The sunrise the next morning was amazing though - my eyes were barely open during the whole thing, but I did manage to snap a quick photo.

Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com

And then we were off to conquer the rest of the mountain! We had no idea what was waiting for us.

Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com
Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com

It was steep and scary, and I'm (or was after this!) afraid of heights! It was about to get even steeper and scarier! By the way, I should mention that my husband is a total gentleman champ! He carried all of my stuff so I could be free of all burdens! He's the sweetest :)

Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com
Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com

See those helmets? Yeah, we needed those. 

Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com

Both arms and legs were definitely needed for this stretch. I don't think I've ever been more scared - though getting down was way worse than the ascent. J made it to the top first and was able to snap this. It was so steep...incredible! It didn't help that there were markers along the way where people were remembering those who died doing this....God is good and protected us! We had no idea what we were getting ourselves into! Adventure indeed!

Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com

The views at the top were worth it, and we even found a treasure box filled with goodies people had left.

Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com
Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com

After hanging out a bit, signing the guest book and having a snack, it was time to descend the mountain. It. Was. Hard. And I wanted to give up so many times. But the thought of jumping into the ocean at the end (and a hot shower!) kept me going. 

Oh hey, I discovered my FIRST EVER sunburn on the way down! 

Visiting Zeus on Olympus | www.maplealps.com
mountolymp-193.jpg

Would I climb Mount Olympus again? Maybe. But next time, I'll be sure to wear more sunscreen and maybe train my legs - walking, and any movement really, was painful for a few days afterward!