Meet Santorini, the breathtaking result of a volcanic eruption in the Southern Aegean Sea. The island is consistently ranked among the top islands in the world. In 2011, Travel and Leisure ranked Santorini the world's top island destination. This up-to-date itinerary will help you to explore Santorini's best, while avoiding crowds.
Preview Santorini's natural and ancient sites:
See this video for examples of nightlife, beaches, and restaurants included in the itinerary:
What you'll see and do in Santorini:
- Affordable volcano and hot springs boat tour (hike the volcano and swim in hot springs!)
- Shopping in Fira Town
- Ride a cable car, donkey, and boat
- Visit the famous village of Oia during sunset
- Swim in Oia's Ammoudi Bay
- Explore Ancient Akrotiri (archeological site)
- Visit Red Beach, Santorini's best volcanic beach
- Visit White Beach for the perfect contrast
- Walk from Fira to Imerovigli along the Caldera rim during sunset
- More from the ruins at the Museum of Prehistoric Thera
- Perissa Beach's relaxed daytime vibe (optional trip to Perivolos)
- Visit the tiny village of Exo Gonia
- Wine taste and peruse art at hidden treasure ArtSpace Winery and Gallery
- Dine at the best tavernas and Mediterranean restaurants in every village
Villages you will visit:
- Fira - the capital of Santorini, transport hub, and shopping paradise
- Oia - famed for the world's most beautiful sunsets and whitewashed streets
- Exo Gonia - hidden village with some of Santorini's best traditional food and wine
- Perissa - relaxed, unhurried resort area with daytime snorkeling, live music, and cocktails
- Akrotiri - Ancient Village of Santorini in the process of excavation
- Imerovigli - Small, architectually gorgeous village perched on cliffs overlooking the caldera
Flexibility: This itinerary takes nearly every traveler into account: seniors, families, honeymooners, and the adventurous. While much of it is written for individuals on a budget, more expensive eating, drinking, and transportation options are included for every activity, meal, and village you will visit. For every adventure, there is a mellower option and every adventure will not disappoint.
What does the itinerary include?
- 28-page PDF document
- Numerous pictures pointing to key landmarks to help you get where you need to go, as well as maps for nearly every main area of the city.
- My contact information if you need anything else or have any other questions while in Santorini.
Table of Contents
- About the Author
- Before you go
- The 3-Day Itinerary (Day 1, 2, 3)
- Getting to Santorini
- Transportation tips
- Top foods to try in Santorini
- Money - ATMs, credit cards, currency
- Getting into Fira Town
- Additional Websites for Information
- Random Tips
Each section is stuffed to the brim with valuable information about the intricacies of life and travel in Santorini. Tips come directly from the mouths' of locals, and maps of every village will keep you going in the right direction.
Here is a sample from the itinerary:
Walk from Oia Bus Station to Ammoudi Beach and Port – 3:30pm – 4:00pm; Duration 30 minutes
Above, you will see a map of Oia (pronounced ee-UH and sometimes spelled Ia). The bus station is depicted by a green auto in a red circle. At the station is a restroom which you may use for €0.50. From the station, walk straight towards town, keeping small eateries on your left and a banking kiosk on your right. Take the main pedestrian walkway Nikolaou Nomikou for about 10 minutes towards the ocean, and you will come to a set of 214 wide steps.
Ammoudi Bay and Port– 4:00pm – 6:00pm
Upon reaching Ammoudi “beach” (more pebbles than sand), you will be rewarded with some of the best swimming in Santorini. Because it is later in the afternoon, you’ll have mostly avoided the crowd. Work up an appetite by swimming from the port to the end of the seawall in Ammoudi Bay (to reach the entrance for swimmers, walk left alongside the cliff at the bottom of the stairs). Rest on the manmade rocks behind the lighthouse before returning to the bay for a short stroll around the charming tavernas which grace Ammoudi’s wharf.
Duration: 2 hours
When you are ready, return to Oia proper the same way you came, either by donkey or walking up the foot path. From there, turn onto Nikolaou Nomikou until you reach the restaurant 1800. – 6:30pm – 7:05pm
Duration: 35 minutes
Dinner at 1800 – 6:00pm – 8:00pm
1800 is a famous Santorini restaurant housed in an old fishing captain’s mansion, along with part of his library collection. This highly acclaimed “slow food” eatery blends traditional and modern cuisine, all the while maintaining a romantic atmosphere. Classy 1800 also offers a wide variety of local Santorini wines.
Price: Up to €100 for the full treatment, including multiple entrees, wine, and tip
Duration: 2 hours
Address: Main pedestrian walkway Nikolaou Nomikou through Oia; you can’t miss it
Local’s Tip:Though 1800 is a worthwhile culinary experience if you have the dough, you can have an equally authentic dining experience at Dimitri’s taverna in Ammoudi Bay. Look out for the mustard yellow colored building, where you can devour delicious €10 entrees without breaking the bank.
Experience Santorini's best wineries, tavernas, sunset views, architectural wonders, beaches, and more!