When my friends announced they were going to get married on an island, I was twice as happy. Certainly for them and their new beginning but also because this wonderful trend of combining weddings and holidays is consistent with my wandering soul. I would have the wedding fun and the travel all rolled into one weekend.
So, I visited the island of Sifnos in late June for THE wedding of the year!
I met both of them at my summer house in Evoia but during different summers. When they met ,it was more than obvious that this story would have much to say because Lila seeks for the adventure and Nikolas is the total crazy explorer. They don’t have any roots from Sifnos, they only have some good friends from there but that was more than enough to make them decide they wanted to get married there, far from the Athenian wedding cliché.
It is not by chance that Sifnos has become one of the top wedding destinations for couples from all over the world. The view of the Aegean Sea, the romantic island scenery, the easy-going ambience and its hospitable residents create the ideal conditions for a dreamy wedding. I would also definitely add the wedding traditions of the island to the list of why it is so special to wed here.
On the day of the wedding all the guests met at the hotel of the bride to see her getting ready. She chose a wonderful custom-made gown inspired from the ‘50s. The hotel was full of happy faces and suddenly the groom with his “troupe” and their instruments including the violin, lyre, clarinet, uud etc. stood outside the window of the bride singing traditional songs, similar to Cretan mantinades and they were calling her to come out.
It was a magical moment. But the singing didn’t stop there. We started walking all together to the church, with live music being played in the background. We took the path to Agia Katerina church, on the mountain.
The view from the church was intense. Unlimited blue overwhelmed me, along with a wash of serenity. After the service the guests were invited to try the traditional pastel of marriage in the courtyard of the church. A tradition of Sifnos. The priest also gave the key to the newlyweds, which according to the customs, is the key of the island. The bonbonnieres were handmade from small woods that they gathered together on isolated beaches.
I warned you that they are explorers.
After the wedding we went to a beach bar by the sea to have the celebrations and wedding party. The atmosphere of festivity was everywhere, ready for our most frantic dances.
The next day according to tradition is the so-called “post-wedding”. As soon as the newly married couple is awakened all those who attended the wedding go to their hotel and take them from there to continue the feast that ended with wishes for a life of a rich woman and a family with many children who will complete the happiness of the couple.
*Photographs Courtesy of Michael Rizos