Santorini is one of the most famous Greek islands worldwide and it has any right to be! The volcanic island of Santorini or Thira as it is called officially deserves all the superlatives. Some of the best hotels are located in Santorini facing the unique caldera, whereas the restaurants serve dishes of the delicious local cuisine and exceptional wine. It is the island with the most surreal and dramatic landscapes in Cyclades and has, along with Mykonos Island, a leading role in tourism, providing high quality of services and facilities. Santorini causes so many different feelings but only one could sum up all of them: awe.Santorini is the relics of a massive volcanic explosion in the 16th century AD. The ‘Thera Eruption’ as scientists refer to, is the reason of the extinction of the Minoan Civilization that has spread in the Aegean. The astonishingly well-preserved findings of the archaeological site of Akrotiri indicate the advanced civilization of ancient times. Santorini remained uninhabited for several years after the eruption. In Hellenistic era, Santorini is a naval base for Egypt. In the 13th century AD Santorini goes under the Franks and takes its present name of the Catholic church of Saint Irene. In the 16th century goes under the Ottoman Rule and in 1830 becomes part of the independent Greek State. In 1956 Santorini sees a devastating earthquake with many losses and in the early 70’s starts attracting tourism.Santorini is actually a group of volcanic islands that span in total an area of 90,62 sq. km. with a total population of 13.670 residents. The islets that can be seen in the centre of the caldera are not inhabited and in fact the black islets of Palia Kammeni and Nea Kammeni are undersea volcanoes that breached the sea surface. The island of Therassia is inhabited and the islands closer to Santorini are Anafi on the east, Ios on the north, Sikinos and Folegandros on the northwest.The island of Santorini is a sight itself. The unique landscape formed of the volcanic eruption is stunning and famous for the colours during the sunset. Walking around the traditional village of Ia and watching the famous sunset is a must for every visitor. You can also visit the islet of Palia Kammeni and walk on the volcano’s heart or swim in the extraordinary beaches of black or red sand. The very interesting archaeological site of Akrotiri is closed to public because of the collapse of the canopy covering the site and a new one is currently being built. You can visit instead the small but really interesting Archaeological Museum in Fira with important recent findings of the pre-eruption era.
During your trip to magnificent Santorini, you should definitely include some boat trips, choosing between one-day shipping group tours with traditional boats or private luxury cruises with elegant yachts. A visit to the volcano and the hot springs is a "not to miss" thing and among the most characteristic activities one can enjoy on the volcanic island.
- The prehistoric settlement in Akrotiri
- The black and the red beach
- Thirassia island
- The Naval Museum in Ia
- The volcanic islets Nea and Palia Kammeni with the warm springs
For those who love diving, Santorini is considered as a unique paradise, due to the fact that the powerful volcanic eruptions that shook the island in the past have created a beautiful underwater scenery.Because of the unique desert climate of the island and the rich volcanic soil, the arid land of Santorini has many vineyards still cultivated in the traditional local way. The wine produced in Santorini is of exceptional quality and intriguing taste. The famous Vinsanto is made of sun-dried grapes. Also, there is production of cherry tomatoes, the local white eggplant, the local round cucumber and capers.By air from Athens International Airport or by ferry or catamaran boats departing from Pireaus Port in Athens.
Eleftherios Venizelos Athens International Airport: +30 210 3530000
Piraeus Port Authority: +30 210 4226000-4, 210 4511310-17
Police: +30 22860 22659
Tourist Info Office: +30 22860 27199
Port Authorities of Santorini: +30 22860 22239
Airport: +30 22860 28405
Local Buses Services: +30 22860 25404
Health Care Centre: +30 22860 22237From April till October. Even if the weather is not warm enough for swimming, there are so many things to see and do in Santorini.
Map for Santorini1
AkrotiriAkrotiri is mainly visited for the archaeological site of great significance that has been excavated in 1967 by the archaeologist Spiros Marinatos. The prehistoric findings are very well preserved being buried under volcanic ashes. The surprisingly charming Red Beach is in walking distance of the settlement...3
Exo GoniaExo Gonia is one of the few villages of Santorini, tourism has left untouched and has maintained the traditional lifestyle. The taverns are famous for their exceptional cuisine. Narrow streets, beautiful houses, big yards where the locals cheerfully greet passers-by, Exo Gonia village though has no accommodations...4
FiraFira is the capital town where the heart of Santorini beats. It is built according the local architecture of Cyclades and it has been developed in tourist facilities with a great variety of hotels. In the busy narrow alleys there are several reasons for shopping while at the edge of the cliff facing...5
FirostefaniFirostefani is a traditional settlement next to Fira, the capital Town of Santorini Island that spreads on the edge of the cliffs facing the caldera and the island of Therassia. The view is stunning and there are many hotels offering accommodation facilities of high quality ideal for romantic holidays....6
IaIa is not just another traditional village in Cyclades, Ia is the absolute expression of Santorini’s beauty. The charm of Ia hangs on the hotels built on the very edge of the caldera cliffs, in the maze of alleys revealing a different point of caldera view in every turn. Don’t miss a sunset experience...7
ImerovigliImerovigli is a traditional village located on the highest point of the part of Santorini facing the caldera, 300m. above the sea level. It is built according the traditional architecture and has some of the most characteristic churches of Santorini. Imerovigli offers hotels with great view to the natural...8
KamariKamari lies on the east part of Santorini with a lovely, long beach with black sand. It is one of the most popular and developed coastal villages in Santorini and the beachfront road is dense with hotels, restaurants and bars. The site of Ancient Thera is located on the high cliff that dominates Kamari...10
KoloumbosKoloumbos is a peaceful beach at the north part of Santorini Island, almost 4 km far from the traditional village of Ia. Although today is a beach ideal for calmness and relaxation, in the bay of Koloumbos is an underwater volcanic crater which was formed in 1650 AD, after a strong volcanic eruption,...11
MegalohoriMegalohori is located in the centre of Santorini offering easy access to Fira and the beaches nearby. It is built according to the traditional architecture of Cyclades and has maintained the local character. The area around Megalohori is full of vineyards and during the harvest the roofs of the houses...12
Mesa GoniaMesa Gonia is one of the most important centers of wine production of Santorini. The church of Panagia Episkopi in Mesa Gonia is one of the oldest churches built in 1100 AD during the Venetian Occupancy of Santorini. Another famous sight of the village is the winery Cannava Roussos. Mesa Gonia does not...13
MessariaMessaria is a village located in the centre of the island, surrounded by vineyards. The location offers easy access to all the sights of Santorini and many choices of lodgings concerning your accommodation. The architecture of the village is an interesting mixture of typical white Cycladic house and...15
PerissaPerissa is one of the most popular beaches and the beautiful black sand attracts thousands of tourists every summer. Perissa is not actually a settlement but more a place of many hotels and studios that gets crowded during high season months. The beachfront road is full of restaurants and beach bars...16
PerivolosPerivolos is the cosmopolitan beach of Santorini full of deckchairs and umbrellas on the long black sand. The beach bars and the restaurants on the beachfront serve all day long and during summer there are happenings and parties going on every day. Perivolos has many hotels and pensions for your stay...17
PyrgosPyrgos is a village built on the highest point of Santorini and has an extraordinary view to the island and the sea in the background. The houses of the village are surrounded by the ruins of a Venetian castle, and the settlement is built in such a way ensuring the protection of the residents. The network...19
VothonasVothonas is a small village built into a ravine following an interesting architecture. The buildings are literally a complex of excavations in the volcanic subsoil offering great advantages of insulate. A must see is the Wine Museum which is an underground construction of tunnels 300 m. long, telling...
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