Santorini is probably one of the world’s most instagrammed locations. Known for its white villas and blue domed churches, this Greek Island lies just south of Athens and can be accessed by both ferry or plane.
For those who have never been here, you, like us, would probably assume that the entire island offers the incredible view of these white villas, but this is not the case. The postcard perfect scenes can really only be found in the town of Oia. Whilst Fira does also have some white villas, they are not the ones that are so often photographed.
We stayed in Fira as it was it was the much cheaper option of the two. In total it cost €163 for 3 nights and Hotel Thirasia and whilst it does need a coat of paint, it gave us an entire apartment which would cost close to triple in the town of Oia.
So what are a few things worth doing in Santorini?
1. Hire an ATV (Quad Bike)
All over the island you will see tourists driving these bad boys. For €25 per day, these machines will get you all around the island quite easily and are relatively easy to handle
Top Tip: Opt for a slightly more powerful one to get you up the hills easier – we had an 80cc (which was the weakest) and it really struggled. Also make sure it has a ‘reverse’ option so you don’t have to push it
2. Drive up to the Ancient Thera viewpoint
Here you will get an incredible view of Kamari town and beach. It is a bit of a windy and steep road up but there are plenty of people doing it. Also there is a cafe you can chill at at the top if you need a bit of a break.
3. Visit the Black Sand Beach (Kamari Beach)
Probably the most famous beach on the island, the black sand beach is not quite sand but tiny little black pebbles. The waters and calm and extremely clear and a great way to relax on a warm day.
4. Sunset at Oia
This is one of the main reasons people visit Santorini, it is to see the world-famous sunset. Undeniably, the best sunset you will see is in Oia with the best vantage point from the ruins. We arrived at 5pm and got our spot which was lucky because not long after that the entire area was packed
Hot Tip: Find yourself a good spot early and stay there. Also bring a jacket as it gets very windy up there.
5. Hike from Fira to Oia
This is easily the highlight of our trip in Santorini. With a well marked trail starting from the Cable Cars in Fira (just follow the path and keep an eye out for the red marker). The walk takes most people 3 hours. We started at 7am and arrived at 10.30am. The scenery of the coast and towns along the way were stunning. An absolute must-do in Santorini
Hot Tip: Start early to avoid the heat and make sure you wear proper trainers as there are many areas of loose stones. Also once you arrive in Oia, you can catch a public bus back to Fira for €1.80.
6. Explore Oia Town
Walking through this town is a feast for the eyes. Every corner reveals a unique beauty that you’ll feel the need to photograph. With white buildings everywhere decorated with blue borders and pink flowers, this place is just draw droppingly beautiful!
7. Red Beach
The beach itself is not actually red, but the cliffs surrounding them are. This beach is completely different to the black beach. There are lots of waves crashing and the ground is covered in what appears to be thin layers of dry tree bark. It is certainly worth a visit but whether or not you get in the cold water will depend on you!
Hot Tip: Wear trainers or walking sandals as the walk from the car park to the beach involves you walking over quite rocky and uneven surfaces
The main street in Fira is line with mouthwatering Gyros starting at €2.40! It has salad in it so it’s healthy, right?
So that’s a wrap for our relaxing time in Santorini. We’re off on a ferry to Mykonos now.
Til next time
Ann & Jason xo