Do you also swell in day dreams when you see the amazing pictures of the coastline in Santorini? One is more picturesque than the other. Not every place is in reality as captivating as on the famously known pictures, but let me show you that this place definitely is.
Santorini has a very interesting history. The half moon shape of today’s island is actually the result of one of the biggest volcanic eruptions in time. The craters got covered by the ocean, filled up with seawater and what was left above sea level is today’s well known Santorini. 1956 was the last big eruption and since then the vulcano didn’t show any activity anymore. Nowhere in the world have humans ever lived so close on the edge of a vulcano crater.
During July and August you will have the warmest weather but it’s also high season and the island gets very crowded.
If you want to escape the tourist stream and still have nice weather, the best season to go is either in June or September. It might be that he sea is still a little freeze for a swim but therefore you have a beach where you still find a free deckchair. Furthermore, if you go at the beginning of June many hotels and restaurants won’t even charge you for their deckchairs and just ask you to order a drink.
What to see
To see Santorini and the islands overall beauty you require at least about 3-4 days. Cause it is such a small island, it’s perfect for a combination with another island for example Mykonos, which is more of a party island. Or my personal favorite Paros, which is still not that famous – if you look for a more untouched, authentic place.
Trail Fira to Oia
Doing this trail is an absolute must. It takes about 4 hours at least. If you want to do a lot of picture stops then it can easily take you 5 hours. But it’s absolutely worth it. Start the hike early in the morning or in the late afternoon before the heat of the sun comes up. It’s quite a walk and has many stairs to take and also a longer distance where no restaurants and hotels show up. So take a bottle of water and some snacks with you and some good shoes. The views are more than rewarding. You start in Fira at the cable car station.
Oia or pronounced as Ia, is the place to be and probably the most famous city on Santorini. This is where all the famous sunset pictures come from. If you want to get a good spot it’s best to be there at least one hour earlier. Sunset in June is around 8:35, so you will have enough time to enjoy lunch before. Make sure to take a windproof jacket with you as it can get quite cold in the evening. In Oia you will find a big choice of restaurants and small Boutique shops.
Fira in comparison to Oia has a lot more bars and clubs. The view from Fira’s cliffs are as amazing as well and can easily compete with those of Oia.
For going out you don’t have to make a lot of plans in advance. At every corner is a pub that invites you with loud music to come inside and shake your legs. Most of them are not very spacious but also don’t ask for entrance fee.
Where to eat
- For icreme with an amazing view, make a stop at Vitrin Oia. And if you have not so much of a sweet tooth, make a stop anyway for a coffee with a view.
Senor Zorba – Mexican Restaurant
- One of the absolut highlights. Don’t miss out this place. This restaurant not only makes amazing fajitas and enchiladas, they also have the location to see one of the most amazing sunsets you will ever experience. The staff is really attentive and takes good care of their guests.
Mera Beach Bar
- Nice beach bar who owns deckchairs directly across the street at the beautiful black sand beach of Perivolos.
Restaurant Sunset Amoudi Bay
- Another favorite – the restaurant is located at the famous amoudy bay. Sit next to the sea and enjoy your dinner while the sun sets down over the sea. For the last minutes before sunset though I‘d recommend you to walk along the path on the left side of the restaurant, to have an even nicer view. From here you can also admire the town of Oia above you and how the sun is painting the houses in golden shades.
Perissa Beach – lively black sand beach with the most density of bars and restaurant.
Perivolos Beach – crystel clear, blue water, deckchairs and black sand beach with taverns in the background. This beach is one of the calmest in Santorini.
Red Beach – little famous Bay with a red sand beach, as the name already implies.
Kamari Beach – black sand and pebble beach on the side of a cliff with some bars, shops and restaurants. If you’re a fan of watersports you will find jetski driving, banana boat or water ski activities.
Where to stay
If you don’t necessarily want to stay in the center of Fira or Oia and are traveling on a budget, than this hotel is a true gem, which I can totally recommend to you.
Me and my friend were staying here for 4 nights. It’s a family owned place and the owner and staff are so lovely and sweet people. They will provide you with every information and insider tip you need to know during your stay.
Best sunset shots
Good sunset spots are easy to find on the whole island. From almost every angle you can take a good shot. My favorite places though were the seafront at the Amoudy Bay and the street back up the hill to Oia when the sun sets down. Another favorite was the spectacular view with the sunset over the ocean at the Restaurant Senor Zorba.
This is it. Your comprehensive travel guide for Santorini. If you have any questions or more insider knowledge leave a comment below.
Curious to hop on to another Greek island?
Then stay tuned to explore Paros and it’s beautiful beaches ⇒ following soon 🌴