Best travels to Santorini
In this blog post I am going to talk about the best travels to Santorini, this dreamy island in Greece. I’ll go through where to stay, the most romantic spots and hotels and where you’ll have the best sunsets on the island.
- Introduction to the island
- The history of the island
- Best way to travel to Santorini
- Best time to visit
- Best places to stay
- Is it expensive to stay in Santorini?
- How to get around
- Where to stay in Santorini
- Best romantic spots in the island
- Hotels and more
- Fun things to do
- Romantic things to do for couples in Santorini
- Food & Drinks
- Best places to take great photos for your social media
- Don’t miss this!
Introduction to the island
Santorini is a stunning island located in the Aegean Sea, belonging to the Cyclades archipelago of Greece. It is renowned for its breathtaking views, unique black and red sand beaches, and rich cultural heritage. The island’s distinctive charm stems from the fact that it was formed by a massive volcanic eruption that took place over 3,500 years ago, resulting in a crescent-shaped caldera that has become a top tourist destination in the Mediterranean.
Santorini is a popular spot for couples, families, and solo travellers alike, offering a range of activities and attractions to suit all tastes. From soaking up the sun on one of its many beaches to exploring ancient ruins and charming villages, visitors to Santorini will find no shortage of things to see and do. With its picturesque white-washed buildings, blue-domed churches, and stunning sunsets, it’s no wonder that Santorini has become one of the most sought-after holiday destinations in the world.
The history of the island
The history of Santorini stretches back thousands of years, with evidence of human settlement on the island dating as far back as the Neolithic era. The island has been inhabited by various civilizations throughout its history, including the Minoans, the Greeks, the Romans, and the Byzantines.
One of the most significant events in the island’s history occurred around 1500 BC when a massive volcanic eruption destroyed much of the island, leaving behind a caldera that would become a defining feature of the landscape. This eruption is thought to have led to the collapse of the Minoan civilization on the nearby island of Crete and may have been the inspiration for the legend of Atlantis.
Over the centuries, Santorini was ruled by various empires and states, including the Venetians, the Ottomans, and the British. In the 19th century, the island became part of Greece following the country’s War of Independence. In the decades that followed, Santorini underwent significant development and modernization, with a focus on tourism, agriculture, and fishing.
Today, the island remains a popular tourist destination, attracting visitors from around the world who come to marvel at its unique landscapes, historic sites, and rich culture. The history of Santorini is a testament to the resilience and adaptability of its people, who have overcome natural disasters, invasions, and political upheavals to create a vibrant and thriving community.
Best way to travel to Santorini
There are several ways to travel to Santorini, depending on your budget, time constraints, and personal preferences.
One of the most popular ways to get to Santorini is by plane. The island has its own airport, which is served by several domestic and international airlines, making it easy to reach from major cities in Europe and beyond. Flying to Santorini is a convenient option for those who want to get to the island quickly and avoid long ferry rides.
Once you’re on the island, there are several ways to get around, including buses, taxis, and rental cars or scooters. Buses are a cheap and efficient way to travel between towns and villages, while taxis are more expensive but offer more flexibility and comfort. Renting a car or scooter can be a great way to explore the island at your own pace and discover hidden gems that you might not otherwise see.
Another option is to take a ferry from the port of Piraeus in Athens or other nearby islands. Ferry services to Santorini are frequent, with several sailings per day during the high season. This is a more affordable option than flying, and it also allows you to take in the stunning views of the Aegean Sea. However, ferry journeys can be long and sometimes subject to delays, so it’s important to plan accordingly.
Best time to visit
The best time to visit Santorini is during the spring (April to early June) or autumn (September to October) when the weather is mild and the crowds are thinner. The temperatures during these months are usually pleasant, ranging from 15-25°C (59-77°F), and the island is less crowded than during the peak summer season. This means that you can enjoy the stunning landscapes, charming towns, and beautiful beaches without having to compete with throngs of other tourists.
However, if you’re looking for a lively atmosphere and warm weather, the summer months (late June to August) are the most popular time to visit Santorini. During this time, temperatures can reach well above 30°C (86°F), and the island is bustling with activity, with lots of events and festivals taking place. However, it’s worth noting that prices tend to be higher, and the island can get very crowded, especially in August.
Overall, the best time to visit Santorini depends on your personal preferences and priorities. If you’re looking for a quieter and more affordable holiday, then the shoulder seasons are ideal. But if you’re willing to brave the crowds and higher prices, then the summer months offer a vibrant and exciting atmosphere that is hard to beat.
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Best places to stay
Santorini offers a wide variety of accommodation options to suit all budgets and preferences. One of the most popular places to stay on the island is in the towns of Oia and Fira, both of which offer stunning views of the caldera and are home to some of the island’s most luxurious and exclusive hotels. From chic boutique hotels to lavish villas with private pools, there is no shortage of high-end accommodation options in these towns.
For those on a more modest budget, there are plenty of affordable options available as well. The towns of Kamari and Perissa offer a range of budget-friendly hotels and guest houses, as well as easy access to some of the island’s best beaches. These areas are also popular with backpackers and solo travellers, as they offer a more laid-back and relaxed atmosphere than some of the more upscale towns.
No matter where you choose to stay on the island, it’s worth considering booking well in advance, especially during the peak season. With so many tourists flocking to Santorini each year, the best places to stay tend to fill up quickly, so it’s important to plan ahead to secure your ideal accommodation.
Is it expensive to stay in Santorini?
Santorini can be quite expensive to stay in, especially during the peak season. The island is known for its luxurious hotels and villas, many of which offer stunning views of the caldera and the Aegean Sea. These high-end accommodations can be quite pricey, with some villas costing thousands of dollars per night.
However, there are also more affordable options available, especially if you’re willing to stay outside of the popular tourist towns of Oia and Fira. The towns of Kamari and Perissa, for example, offer a range of budget-friendly hotels and guesthouses, as well as easy access to some of the island’s best beaches. These areas are also popular with backpackers and solo travelers, as they offer a more laid-back and relaxed atmosphere than some of the more upscale towns.
Overall, the cost of staying in Santorini depends largely on your budget and preferences. If you’re looking for luxury and exclusivity, then be prepared to pay a premium. But if you’re willing to compromise on certain amenities and stay outside of the most popular areas, you can still enjoy all that Santorini has to offer without breaking the bank.
Like accommodation, dining in Santorini can range from budget-friendly to high-end. The island has a range of dining options, from traditional tavernas and street food vendors to gourmet restaurants and fine dining establishments.
If you’re looking to save money on dining, you can find affordable options throughout the island. Traditional Greek tavernas and street food vendors offer delicious and authentic meals at reasonable prices, and there are plenty of casual restaurants that won’t break the bank.
However, if you’re looking for a more upscale dining experience, you can expect to pay a premium. Many of the island’s high-end restaurants offer stunning views as well as innovative cuisine and fine wines. These restaurants can be quite expensive, with some meals costing several hundred dollars.
Overall, the cost of dining in Santorini depends largely on your preferences and budget. If you’re looking to save money, there are plenty of affordable options available. But if you’re willing to splurge, you can indulge in some of the island’s most luxurious dining experiences.
How to get around
One of the most popular ways to explore the island is by renting a car, quad bike, or scooter. This gives you the freedom to explore at your own pace and access more remote areas that may be difficult to reach by public transportation. Rental agencies can be found throughout the island, and rates vary depending on the type of vehicle and the season.
Another option is to use public transportation, which consists of buses that run between the major towns and villages. This can be a convenient and affordable way to get around, with fares typically ranging from 1-2 euros per trip. However, buses can be crowded during peak season, and schedules may be limited outside of the main tourist areas.
Taxis are also available on the island, but they can be quite expensive, especially for longer distances. It’s a good idea to confirm the fare with the driver before starting your journey to avoid any surprises.
Finally, walking and cycling are great ways to explore the island, especially in the more compact towns like Fira and Oia. Many of the island’s scenic trails are accessible by foot or bike, and there are several rental shops that offer bikes and e-bikes for rent.
Overall, the best way to get around Santorini depends on your preferences and budget. Renting a vehicle can be a great option for those looking for flexibility and independence, while public transportation is a convenient and affordable alternative for those on a tighter budget.
Where to stay in Santorini
The most popular places to stay in Santorini are the towns of Fira and Oia. Both offer stunning views of the caldera and Aegean Sea, as well as a range of high-end hotels, villas, and boutique accommodations.
Other popular places to stay in Santorini include the towns of Imerovigli, which offers breathtaking views of the caldera, and the beach towns of Perissa and Kamari, which offer easy access to some of the island’s best beaches.
Fira is the bustling capital of Santorini, located on the western edge of the island overlooking the caldera. The town is a hub for transportation and is home to many shops, restaurants, and cultural attractions. Fira offers some of the best views of the caldera, and visitors can take a cable car or donkey ride down to the old port. There are also several luxury hotels and villas in Fira, making it a popular place to stay for those seeking a central location on the island.
Located on the northern tip of Santorini, Oía is a picturesque and exclusive town known for its white-washed buildings and blue-domed churches. It’s a quieter and more upscale alternative to Fira, with fewer restaurants and bars but more high-end accommodations. Oía is famous for its stunning sunsets, which draw large crowds of visitors each evening. The town’s narrow streets are lined with art galleries, boutique shops, and cafes, making it a popular destination for both honeymooners and discerning travellers.
Perissa is a charming beach town located on the southeastern coast of Santorini. It’s known for its black sand beach, which stretches for several kilometers and offers crystal-clear waters for swimming and water sports. The town is a popular destination for budget travelers, with a range of affordable hotels, hostels, and apartments available. Visitors can also enjoy a variety of restaurants and bars along the beachfront, as well as a lively nightlife scene. Perissa is also home to several cultural attractions, including the ancient ruins of Thera and the Byzantine church of Timios Stavros.
Kamari is another popular beach town located on the eastern coast of Santorini, just a few kilometers north of Perissa. The town is known for its long black sand beach, which is lined with sun loungers and umbrellas for rent. Kamari offers a range of accommodations, including hotels, apartments, and guesthouses, many of which are located just steps away from the beach. Visitors can also enjoy a variety of restaurants and bars in the town, as well as a selection of shops and boutiques. Kamari is a great base for exploring the rest of the island, with several transportation options available, including buses and rental cars.
Best romantic spots in the island
Oh boy, let me tell you about the most romantic places on the island of Santorini! If you’re looking to impress your significant other, you can’t go wrong with a sunset dinner in Oia. The views are absolutely breathtaking, and the ambiance is super romantic. You’ll feel like you’re in a fairytale!
Another great spot for couples is the town of Imerovigli. It’s a bit quieter than Oia, but the views are just as spectacular. There are a bunch of great hotels with private balconies and infinity pools that are perfect for a romantic getaway. Plus, the town has a bunch of cozy little restaurants where you can enjoy a candlelit dinner for two.
And of course, you can’t forget about the hot springs in the caldera. There’s nothing more romantic than soaking in the warm waters with your significant other while watching the sunset over the Aegean Sea. It’s a bit of a trek to get there, but trust me, it’s totally worth it!
If you’re looking for a unique and unforgettable experience with your partner, I highly recommend taking a sailing trip around the island. You’ll get to see the stunning coastline from a different perspective and enjoy some quiet time together away from the crowds. There are plenty of tours available that offer food, drinks, and even live music, so you can make a day of it.
For a more adventurous outing, you can take a hike to the top of Skaros Rock. The hike can be a bit challenging, but the views from the top are absolutely stunning. It’s a great spot to watch the sunset or enjoy a picnic with your loved one.
No matter where you go on the island, there’s something special and romantic about Santorini. The stunning scenery, delicious food, and laid-back vibe make it the perfect destination for a couples’ getaway.
Hotels and more
This island has a lot of nice and odd places to stay and here I am going to share wome of the more unique hotels with you.
Exclusive hotels in Santorini
Santorini is known for its luxurious and high-end hotels, and there’s no shortage of options for those looking for a truly indulgent experience. One of the most iconic and exclusive hotels on the island is the Canaves Oia Hotel, located in the heart of Oia. The hotel features stunning infinity pools, a private yacht for guests, and luxurious suites and villas with breathtaking views of the caldera.
Another popular luxury option is the Mystique Santorini, located in the town of Imerovigli. The hotel features spacious suites and villas with private plunge pools and outdoor Jacuzzis, as well as a gourmet restaurant and a spa with a range of relaxing treatments.
For those seeking a more secluded and intimate experience, the Grace Santorini is an excellent choice. The hotel is located on a hillside overlooking the Aegean Sea, and features beautifully designed suites and villas, a Michelin-starred restaurant, and a stunning infinity pool with panoramic views.
Other notable luxury hotels on the island include the Andronis Luxury Suites in Oia, the Astra Suites in Imerovigli, and the Vedema Resort in the village of Megalochori. All of these hotels offer top-notch amenities, impeccable service, and breathtaking views, making them perfect for a truly unforgettable and indulgent vacation.
- Canaves Oia Hotel – This iconic hotel features stunning infinity pools, a private yacht for guests, and luxurious suites and villas with breathtaking views of the caldera.
- Mystique Santorini – Located in the town of Imerovigli, this hotel features spacious suites and villas with private plunge pools and outdoor Jacuzzis, as well as a gourmet restaurant and a spa with a range of relaxing treatments.
- Grace Santorini – This hotel is located on a hillside overlooking the Aegean Sea, and features beautifully designed suites and villas, a Michelin-starred restaurant, and a stunning infinity pool with panoramic views.
- Andronis Luxury Suites – These suites in Oia offer incredible views of the caldera, as well as a range of amenities including private plunge pools, indoor and outdoor Jacuzzis, and personal butler service.
- Astra Suites – Located in Imerovigli, these suites offer stunning views of the caldera and feature private outdoor hot tubs, as well as a delicious breakfast served daily on your own balcony.
Good hotels in Santorini
- Katikies Hotel – This luxury hotel in Oia features elegant suites and villas with private verandas, as well as an infinity pool and a rooftop restaurant with panoramic views of the caldera.
- Santo Maris Oia Luxury Suites & Spa – Located in the picturesque town of Oia, this hotel offers spacious suites with private plunge pools and hot tubs, as well as a luxurious spa and a gourmet restaurant.
- Vedema Resort – This five-star resort in Megalochori offers luxurious suites and villas with private pools and outdoor Jacuzzis, as well as a beautiful infinity pool, a wine cellar, and a restaurant serving Mediterranean cuisine.
- Art Maisons Oia Castle – This stunning hotel in Oia features beautifully designed suites with private balconies overlooking the Aegean Sea, as well as an outdoor pool and a restaurant serving traditional Greek cuisine.
- Perivolas Hotel – Located in Oia, this iconic hotel offers stylish suites and villas built into the cliffs, with private verandas and outdoor hot tubs. The property also features a beautiful infinity pool and a gourmet restaurant serving Mediterranean cuisine.
Budget stay in Santorini
Don’t worry, if you’re not looking to break the bank on your trip to Santorini, there are plenty of options for more affordable accommodations on the island. One great option is to stay in a traditional cave house, which can be found in many of the towns on the island. These unique and cozy accommodations are built into the cliffs and offer a taste of the local architecture and culture.
Another option is to stay in a guesthouse or apartment, which can be found throughout the island. These types of accommodations are typically more affordable than hotels, but still offer a comfortable and convenient base for your Santorini adventure. Plus, many of them come with kitchens or kitchenettes, allowing you to save money by cooking some of your own meals.
If you’re really on a budget, there are also several hostels and campgrounds on the island. While they may not offer the same level of luxury as some of the high-end hotels, they can be a great way to save money and meet fellow travelers.
No matter what your budget, there are plenty of options for accommodations on Santorini that will allow you to enjoy all the beauty and charm of the island without breaking the bank. So don’t let a tight budget hold you back from experiencing all that Santorini has to offer!
Fun things to do
When you’re on the gorgeous island of Santorini, there’s no shortage of fun things to do to make the most of your time there. Whether you’re looking for adventure, relaxation, or a little bit of both, there are plenty of activities and attractions to suit every taste and budget.
One of the most popular things to do on the island is to explore the stunning beaches, like the black sand beaches of Perissa and Kamari, or the red sand beach of Akrotiri. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can also rent a quad bike or a scooter and explore the island on your own. Alternatively, you can take a boat tour of the island to see it from a different perspective, or even try your hand at scuba diving or snorkeling to explore the crystal-clear waters.
For those who prefer a more relaxed pace, there are plenty of charming villages and towns to explore, like the picturesque Oia with its stunning sunsets, or the charming town of Fira with its winding streets and cozy cafes. You can also indulge in some of the island’s delicious local cuisine, like fresh seafood and traditional Greek dishes, or simply relax in one of the island’s many spas and enjoy a luxurious massage or spa treatment.
- Take a sunset cruise to see the island from a different perspective
- Rent a quad bike or a scooter to explore the island at your own pace
- Try some of the delicious local cuisine, like fresh seafood and traditional Greek dishes.
Romantic things to do for couples in Santorini
If you and your loved one are travelling to this part of the world and are looking for some more you-time and maybe do something romantic together on your trip, this are some highlights to look in to.
atch the sunset in Oia – One of the most popular things to do on the island, watching the sunset in the picturesque town of Oia is a truly romantic experience. You can take a stroll along the cobblestone streets, enjoy a glass of local wine, and watch as the sky turns shades of orange and pink over the stunning caldera.
Enjoy a private dinner with a view – Many hotels and restaurants on the island offer private dining experiences with breathtaking views of the Aegean Sea. You can enjoy a candlelit dinner with your loved one while watching the sunset, or under the stars on a clear night.
Take a catamaran cruise – A catamaran cruise around the island is a great way to enjoy the stunning scenery of Santorini while spending quality time with your partner. You can explore secluded beaches, snorkel in crystal-clear waters, and enjoy a delicious lunch or dinner on board.
Visit a winery – Santorini is known for its excellent wines, so why not visit one of the island’s many wineries and indulge in a wine-tasting experience? You can sample local wines while enjoying the beautiful views of the vineyards and the Aegean Sea.
Relax in a private hot tub – Many hotels and villas on the island feature private hot tubs with stunning views of the caldera. You can relax in the warm waters with your loved one and enjoy the breathtaking scenery of Santorini.
Food & Drinks
Santorini is a food lover’s paradise, with a cuisine that is influenced by the island’s volcanic soil, unique climate, and proximity to the sea. The island’s fertile soil produces an abundance of fresh vegetables and fruits, which are used in many traditional dishes. Some of the must-try dishes include fava, a creamy dip made from split peas, tomato fritters, grilled octopus, and moussaka. Santorini is also famous for its seafood, with fresh fish and seafood caught daily by local fishermen. Be sure to try some of the island’s signature dishes, such as lobster with spaghetti, or grilled fish with capers and cherry tomatoes.
When it comes to drinks, Santorini is known for its excellent wines. The island’s volcanic soil produces some of the best wines in Greece, with a unique taste that is unlike any other wine in the world. The most famous grape varieties on the island are Assyrtiko, Athiri, and Aidani. You can visit one of the island’s many wineries for a wine tasting tour, or simply enjoy a glass of local wine with your meal. Santorini is also known for its refreshing cocktails, made with local ingredients such as fresh herbs, fruits, and honey. Some of the most popular cocktails include the Santorini Sunrise, made with ouzo, orange juice, and grenadine, and the Watermelon Margarita, made with fresh watermelon juice and tequila.
Best places to take great photos for your social media
Santorini is undoubtedly one of the most photogenic places in the world, with its white-washed buildings, blue-domed churches, and stunning views of the Aegean Sea. Whether you’re an amateur photographer or a seasoned pro, there are plenty of great spots on the island where you can capture some amazing photos for your social media.
One of the best places to take photos in Santorini is Oia, with its stunning sunset views and narrow streets lined with white-washed buildings. Another great spot is the village of Pyrgos, with its winding streets, traditional houses, and panoramic views of the island. If you’re looking for something a little different, head to the beach at Perissa, with its black sand and crystal-clear waters. The colorful fishing village of Amoudi Bay is also a great spot for photos, with its picturesque harbor and traditional fishing boats.
Other great spots for Instagram-worthy photos include the blue-domed church of Anastasis in Imerovigli, the charming village of Megalochori, and the Venetian castle ruins in Akrotiri. No matter where you go on the island, you’re sure to find plenty of great spots for taking photos that will make your social media followers envious.
Don’t miss this!
First up, why not explore some of the island’s hidden beaches? Sure, everyone knows about the famous black sand beaches, but there are plenty of other secluded spots that are just waiting to be discovered. Check out the beach at Vlychada, with its towering rock formations and crystal-clear waters, or head to Mesa Pigadia, a tiny cove that’s only accessible by boat.
Next, why not take a trip back in time by visiting the ancient city of Akrotiri? This fascinating archaeological site dates back to the Bronze Age and was buried under volcanic ash for thousands of years before being discovered in the 1960s. You can explore the remains of ancient buildings, see original frescoes and artifacts, and learn about the history of this once-thriving city.
Finally, for a truly unique experience, why not try your hand at grape stomping? This traditional winemaking technique is still used in some of the island’s vineyards, and you can even join in the fun by stomping on grapes with your bare feet. Not only is it a fun and unusual activity, but you’ll also get to taste some of the island’s delicious wines afterwards.
So there you have it, a few odd things to do in Santorini that are sure to add some excitement to your vacation. Don’t be afraid to get off the beaten path and explore everything this amazing island has to offer!
Santorini is a truly unique and breathtakingly beautiful island in the Cyclades group of the Aegean Sea. With its stunning landscapes, gorgeous beaches, and fascinating history and culture, Santorini is a must-visit destination for anyone looking to experience the best of Greece.
From the picturesque villages of Fira and Oia to the ancient ruins of Akrotiri and the stunning Red Beach, there is so much to see and do on this island. And with some of the world’s most luxurious hotels and top-rated restaurants, Santorini is also a popular destination for those looking for a little bit of indulgence and pampering.
Whether you’re interested in exploring the island’s rich history and culture, soaking up the sun on its gorgeous beaches, or simply enjoying the stunning views and delicious food and drink, Santorini has something for everyone. So why not pack your bags and come experience the magic of this amazing island for yourself? You won’t be disappointed!