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Santorini, Greece

September 11, 2018

What is there to do in Santorini?

  • Go sailing and diving.

  • Go snorkeling.

  • Visit Akrotiri Archaeological site 

  • Visit Some of the amazing Castles and Fortresses of Santorini. Here are a few... Kasteli of Akrotiri, Kasteli of Agios Nikolaos, Skaros Rock, & the Kasteli of Pyrgos.

  • Visit one of Santorini’s Amazing Wineries for the most unique wine tasting.

  • Walk from Fira to Oia. Its about a 7 mile hike!

  • Visit the amazing village of Pyrgos.

Beaches

Nudist Beach of Santorini- Columbus.

Red Beach- Has red rocks.

Best Party Beach of Santorini- Perissa & Perivolos

Most Romantic Beach of Santorini- Vlychada and Eros Beach

Best Family Friendly Beach- Monolithos Beach. This beach offers shallow water with lots of sand.

 

Where to stay in Santorini

 

Thira- is the main town on the island of Santorini. Thira is located on top of a cliff and has a stunning view of the famous Santorini volcano. Fira also has a large selection of shopping, nightclubs, and restaurants.

 

Oia- is home to the beautiful iconic views that are associated with Santorini. Many tourists like to stay here and enjoy the famous sunsets views from the comfort of their hotels. Theres not much shopping or nightlife here but Oia is just a place to unwind and relax with amazing views.

 

Kamari- Has long beaches. Its the perfect places for kids to spend the day by the sea close to restaurants and in a friendly and relaxing environment. Many family friendly hotels are also in this area with many amenities that accommodate families. Kamari's boardwalk is filled with many restaurants and shopping.

 

Firostefani- Firostefani is very seclusive and relaxing but still very close to Fira.

 

Imerovigli- Imerovigli isn't touristic but has amazing views to the caldera. The travel to Fira from here is also close in distance.

 

How to get to your destination from the airport?

 

Taxis are available but expensive. However, you might consider using one to get to your hotel from Santorini International Airport.

You shouldn't pay more then 20-30€. If your worried about getting over charged set up an airport transfer with the hotel your staying at. Hotel transfers can be free or set at a fixed price.

 

You can take the public bus which is the cheaper option. A one way ticket has a starting cost of 1.80€- 2.50€. Each bus line has a different fare and ranges up to €2.50 one-way. However, the journey time is a little longer up to 80 minutes. Depending where you are staying you may have to take multiple buses. The main transfer station is located in Thira (Fira). For example, if your staying in Oia you will have to transfer to another bus from Fira to get to Oia.

 

How to get around Santorini?

 

Bus- The buses in Santorini is the most efficient and cheapest way to get around the island. Buses run abut every 20-30 minutes depending where and when your taking the bus. The buses do run about till 1 am but don't run as frequent. The fare for the bus is has a starting cost of 1.80€- 2.50€. Each bus line has a different fare and ranges up to €2.50 one-way.

The only down side to taking public transportation is that you may have to take multiple buses to get to the destination of your choosing. All buses run through the main station at Thira (Fira). For example, if your staying in Oia you will have to transfer to another bus from Fira to get to Oia. Fira is the main hub for transfers to other parts of the island.

 

We took the bus frequently since it was the cheapest option, but one of the worst experience while staying in Santorini. We traveled to Santorini during peak season in August. If the bus was full we would have to wait another 20 minutes from Kamari to get to Fira. If we had to get to other parts of the island it would take even longer if we had to wait! The waits were horrible because we would have to wait for another bus with a 2 year old and myself being 6 month pregnant. Most people waiting for the bus had no regards if we were waiting first or not. Even the bus aid who collects the tickets who shoves their way to the front and back of the bus, didn't seem to care much. It was either get on the jammed packed bus or get off and wait for the next bus. If Greece didn't require having an international drivers license to rent a car, we would have rented one!

 

Rent a car- They're expensive to rent and parking is a pain but convenient for a larger group/family if you plan on traveling to other parts of the island and you don't want to take multiple bus transfers. Depending on the season renting a car cost from 45-65€ a day for a basic car manual or automatic.

 

Major Tip: Before arriving to Santorini and renting a car be aware that the Greek laws have changed! You now need a international license to rent a car in Greece! This law is very new(2018)! We weren't lucky enough in Santorini to find a car rental place that would allowed us to rent a car without one but if we were caught driving without one, we would be fined 1000€ and so will the company your renting from!

 

Obtaining a international license is very easy. You can go online a month before your trip and apply for one online. Send in the application fee with two passport photos and a copy of your license. It takes about 1 to 2 weeks to receive your license and last for a whole year. If we knew this piece of information we definitely would have applied for one before coming to Greece! Click on the link to apply.

 

Tip: Be sure to take a map from your hotel or find one before renting a car. There will be no GSP available in the car when renting one. The island is small enough to go around in one day. Take the joy in finding your destination and getting lost in the beautiful scenery.

 

Taxi- Taxis are one of the most costly transportations on the island of Santorini. I was actually very surprised! I never spend so much money on taxi rides while traveling. A taxi ride under 10 minutes can cost you 10-25€. At night the taxis are even more expensive! You could see why our family decide to ride the bus or walk to most destinations. 

 

On Foot- Traveling on foot in one of the most common ways too get around Santorini and cost you nothing. If your staying close or in Fira you won't have to worry about walking far for shopping and dining.

 

Scooter- Biking is faster than walking and much more cheaper than renting a car. A scooter is only suitable for two people but if your comfortable riding on the edge of the cliffs of Santorini, then enjoy the thrill! The cost of a scooter can start from 15€ a day.

 

Quad Bike(Four wheeler)- Just like a scooter, the Quads are faster than walking and much more cheaper than renting a car. Although the quad offers many benefits, inexperience drivers should take caution with the bumpy and winding roads/hills in Santorini. A quad is also only suitable for two people but available at the cost of 15€ a day.

 

If your curious on how to reach the island of Santorini, you can get to this island by a ferry boat or plane to island hop. The're both normally almost the same price so we took a short flight to Santorini, rather than taking over an hour ferry ride. 

 

If you want to go beyond Thirassia to other, farther away Greek Isles, stick to Athinios. Service frequency depends on the season, but you can expect at least one trip a day in either direction. One way trips cost as little as 5€ and you can buy tickets at the ferry port.

 

When to travel to Santorini

 

The best time to visit Santorini is September and October. While the weather is still warm & pleasant, you'll save a ton a money coming to SantoriniMykonos in these months. Plus you'll avoid the over crowded tourist. 

 

We traveled to Greece in August which is one of their prime months! High season is considered starting late May through August. The hotels are sky high priced and everything goes up. The summer for Greece is a great time to visit if your into the partying life/sunbathing/swimming but can break your pockets if you don't come prepared. Even the airbnbs in high season can start at 200 per night for a standard room.

Where to eat in Santorini?

 

 

Casa di Te Santorini- If your looking for traditional Greek and Mediterranean food try this spot!

The Good Heart – Great local food!

Da Vinci – Is where you can fine the best Italian food!

 

In Oia!

Roka- Traditonal Greek food.

Karma

Candouni

Ammoudi Fish Tavern -Great view that over looks the ocean.

 

In Fira!

Lucky’s Souvlaki – For cheap and delicious eats! 

Ouzeri

Argo- Great food with a view!

Naoussa- Great Views!

 

Best restaurants with a view!

Remvi – Firostefani great view reserve table with view

Mezzo

Athenian House

La Maison

Ambrosia

 

What language is spoken in Santorini?

 

Greek

 

Learn Basic Greek.

 

Hello: Γειά σου (YAH-soo) 

Nice to meet you: Χάρηκα πολύ (HA-ree-ka po-LEE)

How are you?: Tι κανείς (tee-KAH-nis)

Good morning: Καλημέρα (kah-lee-MER-ah) 

Good afternoon/evening: Καλησπέρα (kah-lee-SPER-ah)

Goodnight: Καληνύχτα (kah-lee-NEEKH-tah) 

Thank you: Ευχαριστώ (eff-kha-ri-STOE)

How much: πόσο (póso)

Toilets: τουαλέτα (toua-léta)

 

 Currency?

 

€ Euro

Check out Google Currency Converter for current rates.

 

Things you should know when traveling to Santorini?

 

  • Santorini is know for being a romantic island but still suitable for singles and families!

  • Santorini is a volcanic island so expect to only see black sand/pebble beaches here. 

  • Santorini only has deep blue waters so if your looking for clear waters, you won't find the clear waters here.

  • Beaches in Kamari offer free beach chairs/umbrellas when purchasing food or drinks. 

  • You can walk from Fira to Oia. Its about 7 miles but I heard the views are worth the hike!

  • Oia  is pronounced (ee-yuh).

 

Is Santorini kid friendly? Things to do with kids?

 

Santorini is a kid friendly island. Most touristic facilities provides all amenities for a family.

Most families that come to Santorini like to travel to Kamari and Perissa with their long beaches. Its the perfect places for kids to spend the day by the sea close to restaurants and in a friendly and relaxing environment.

You'll also find that many hotels in Kamari and Perissa have parks and family activities where you stay.

 

Our family was tore apart from choosing to stay in Fira or Kamari when considering to come to Santorini. We ended up staying in the area of Kamari and enjoyed the location! Our Hotel was a 7 minute walk from the beach and a boardwalk full of resturants and shopping. We literally didn't even want to leave the area since it was so comfortable for our family but you can't come to Santorini and not go to the main town of Fira!

 

Traveling to Fira we realized Kamari was the best fit for our family. Fira's cobble stone streets were not stroller friendly to walk through the town. There were many steps and we had to have our daughter walk, while carrying a stroller. It really wasn't the most relaxing stroll through the town for us. If your kids are older and can walk for a long distance then this may not be an issue for you.

 

The only thing to do with kids in Santorini is mostly going to the beach. Santorini beaches are mostly pebble beaches so its best to bring water shoes to protect your childs feet from the sharp rocks and the sun beating down on the hot black rocks. 

 

If your traveling to Santorini with kids its best to stay at a hotel that offers many family activities at the hotel. Our hotel offered many blow up pool toys, board games, a library, a playground, and life size chest board to play with. It made us feel as if we were home, expect on an exotic island!

 

Monolithos beach – One of the most kid friendly beach in Santorini, with lots of sand and shallow water.

 

"Good, better, best. Never let it rest. 'Til your good is better and your best is best."

-St. Jerome

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