Tips for your trip to Santorini

Santorini – the ancient Thira (Thera in Greek) – is the queen island of tourism in Greece. Formed by an old volcano that caused one of the most terrible eruption in Europe’s history, the island is famous for its beaches, its villages, its romantic sunsets. Santorini’s name comes from “Sant’Irene” since it once hosted an Italian mission dedicated to St.Irene. History, here, is like a long and interesting novel written on stone. You shall love exploring and learning about Santorini island. An experience you will never forget.

When to go to Santorini

Santorini has no season! You can visit it any time during the year and it will always be the best holiday! Of course, during the warm seasons you shall enjoy the territory much better. So we can say the best advice is to book your trip to Santorini in spring and summer. But you should also try a vacation over there in autumn. October, especially, is a lovely month to spend on this island.

Travel Documents

Santorini belongs to the Greek archipelago, and Greece is part of the Schengen Agreement nations. Most tourists need to show their passport and/or their ID paper, but if they also come from a nation of the Schengen area, they will only need to have an ID paper to enter.

What to pack for your trip to Santorini

If you want to experience a beautiful holiday in Santorini, bring with you a swimsuit, comfortable shoes and devices for taking photos. These are the elements that should never be missing from your suitcase, but to these you will naturally add other necessary things: light clothes, open sandals, all the equipment necessary for swimming or diving, elegant clothes for the “nightlife” parties. Don’t forget mosquito repellents, since mosquitoes are a summer plague on the island! It’s also good to bring some long-sleeved t-shirts for the cool Ionian nights.

How to get to Santorini

You land directly in Santorini thanks to the local airport (Santorini Airport) which welcomes flights of all types from Europe and nearby Asia. You can of course also land at Athens Airport (ATH) and take a more immediate domestic connection. Or you can reach Santorini by boarding one of the many ferries that travel between the mainland and the Greek islands.

How to move through Santorini

The island’s public bus service is a nice way to move through Santorini. They are quite crowded but if you love to feel a part of the place you are visiting, this is the best way to travel.   Do not be upset if … you won’t get to your destination on time!

As an alternative, if you prefer to be independent, rent a car or a scooter. You can also rent a bike. Being independent could also mean to book a private transfer with a chauffeur! This service not only adds a touch of luxury to your travels but also assures you’ll have a personal guide who knows Santorini’s ins and outs. Finally … you could use a taxi or a boat, in order to reach all the main interesting points of the island.

What to see

Santorini is not just “one” island… it seems a whole group of little interesting worlds. Towns like Oia, with its narrow paths, or Fira – the capital of the island – and Akrotiri, with its archaeologic sites, are examples of the many treasures the island hosts.

Santorini’s beaches boast many coloured sands! You can find white sand beaches, dark sand beaches and also “red beaches”.  Perissa and Kamari can be two lovely examples among so many. Something you really cannot miss is a trekking up to the hills that overlook the Caldera. As you admire the great round gulf which used to be the old volcano you can imagine the powerful explosion that destroyed the island ages ago!

Enjoy also a visit to typical villages such as Firostefani, Imerovigli, Perivolos, Athinios with its ferry port. Visit the ruins of old Thera, the lovely marina of Ammoudi, the incredible “Museum of Tomato” at Vlychada.

What to do and NOT to do in Santorini

In Santorini you must come with the idea of ​​walking and looking. You walk a lot on this island because the most beautiful things must be admired slowly. Another thing to do is certainly enjoy the excellent local cuisine: even if Santorini boasts international restaurants, always choose traditional trattorias. Obviously Santorini is beach and sea… so swimming and diving are certainly “must do” things. Admiring at least one sunset over the Caldera is another must.

Things you must NEVER DO:

  • Never trust the first restaurant you see.
  • Never trust the first company that offers you a boat ride (be well informed  beforehand, in both cases),
  • Never complain about the donkey excrement that – inevitably – you will find around.
  • Do not seek discussion or controversy with the locals.
  • Never ever step on the walls or the delightful little domes that form the roofs of the houses, even if they are easy to climb. This (of course) makes the inhabitants very very upset!