Santorini Best of

Best of Santorini

Best of Santorini

I have been planning to write this for ages….but something always came up. I took a break from writing and focused on photography instead. And when I say photography, I actually mean showcasing my best photos on my IG account. Head over there and have a look  😀 .

So… Santorini! Let me try to put it a bit into context. The legend goes that Santorini island is the remnant of the lost continent of Atlantis! I leave it for you to decide whether true or not. I can only say that Plato believed it to be true! ?

Santorini, as we see it today, is the result of the second biggest volcanic eruption in  history which took place around 1600BC. That eruption is responsible for the disappearance of the Minoan civilisation but also for the formation of the Caldera. 

Today’s Santorini is everything you see and here about this gorgeous island and then some! Santorini has some of the best sunsets I have ever seen (and you know I am addicted to sunsets), excellent food and winestunning views and gorgeous hotels. No matter how hard you try to take that perfect photo that “says a thousand words” the reality is still better. So, if you like my photos, imagine how it looks in real life!

So what is there to do and see in Santorini? Glad you asked 😉 Here is my Santorini Best of guide

Best of Santorini

Oia

This little town is THE biggest attraction in Santorini! Oia is a small town situated high on a cliff that offers spectacular views to the visitors. Everybody goes there for the sunset. And I mean EVERYBODY!  Even with zillions of people around you, trying to get that magical shot, it is still worthwhile to go there once for that famous sunset . But Oia has also great hotels, excellent restaurants and some of the most beautiful little alleys meandering through the cliffs.

Amoudi Bay (just below Oia)

It is a small bay where you find plenty of taverns with delicious  fresh seafood and where you can also swim (one of the very few swimming spots on this side of the island!)  Plus, going down the long flight of stairs from Oia,  allows you to really take in  the beautiful view of the bay below! I suggest going there in the evening.

Fira

Fira, also called Thira, is the capital city of this gorgeous island and it is also my favourite place to watch the sunset! Yes, it is busy, but there is a reason for that and the options to watch the sunset, eat , drink or  even dance the night away feel countless too. Fira is a gorgeous town with stunning views of the Caldera. Think thousands of white and blue houses (with the yellow and red spots every now and then), small winding alleys dotted with terraces, taverns, bars and restaurants, some of them with the most amazing view.

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My favourite time of the day is always around the sunset time. That golden hour, just before the sunset, offers the most amazing warm light that transforms a gorgeous place into an even more stunning one. Don’t you think?

As far as the actual sunset, this is what you can see looking from one of these beautiful terraces or restaurants….sipping a glass of Santorini wine

Once the sunset magic is gone for the day, the magic of the night starts and you can choose a nice restaurant with delicious fresh food and enjoy the cool breeze of the night. Do not worry, Fira has got you covered also for the post dinner drinks 😉 .

Imerovigli

Aaaahhh Imerovigli!!! It was love at first sight. Our hotels played a big part as well of course! 😉

Imerovigli is the quietest from the “big 3” of the island which makes it the perfect place to actually stay in. It has the most beautiful (and I also think the most luxurious) hotels, with pools carved in the cliffs, from where you can watch the whole splendor of the caldera. Imerovigli is 2km north of Fira and the stroll  between the 2 and Firostefani along the Caldera, is just simply unique with incredible views. We did this quite a few times and never got bored.

The beaches

But you are going there on holiday right? And what is a holiday without some time at the beach? Do not worry! Santorini has got you covered there too. What colour would you prefer:  White Beach, Red beach or black sand beaches? 😀 . Santorini island is not very big but you need to rent a car if you want to reach from the west coast where all the scenic views are ( Oia, Fira, Imerovigli) to the east coast where the beaches are.

The White Beach is the least visited from the “coloured” beaches as it can only be reached by boat. The Red Beach is called so because of its red volcanic sand (see photos below).  Most of the beaches in Sanotorini have dark grey or black sand due to the volcanic nature of the island. Probably the most popular of them is Kamari beach, which is also more upscale, but at the same time more touristy. Other popular beaches are PerissaPerivolos, Vlichada

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Theros Wave bar

This was one of my favourite spots in Santorini and I personally call it “the champagne bar” :-). The bar sits on top of a volcanic rock and it is one of the best bars on the island to watch the sunset…sipping a glass of champagne (therefore the name 😉  ).  The bar is pretty isolated, making it even more unique and…. it has it’s own beach!!

Sailing

A day trip on a catamaran is a must do in Santorini. Or you can rent a private boat. Regardless of how you do it, it will be a wonderful experience. Not only, it will allow you to admire the island from inside the Caldera, but it will take you to the volcanoes (Nea Kameni & Palaia Kameni), let you swim in their thermal waters  and at the end of the day, you will enjoy the most amazing sunset from the boat itself!

Culture/history hunting

For those in need of some culture infusion, Santorini offers also a different type of sightseeing, other than the stunning views of the caldera. The most important is  Akrotiri, an archaeological site where one can marvel at the ruins form the Minoan age.  I suggest you make a day of it and either rent a car or take an organised (preferably private) tour and go and explore the  nearby villages with their beautiful churches and vineyards. The island so small that it is impossible to get lost and no matter where you go, you will always be by the sea.

Akrotiri, Santorini

Akrotiri

The wine

Yes, the island of  Santorini is producing its own wine and not recently either, but since ancient times! Seriously! Those volcanic soils have worked miracles for the vines of the island. The most famous of all is probably Vinsanto, a sweet, award-wining wine.

As for the grapes, Asyrtiko is  the most popular grape cultivated on the island (about 80% of the total). Other local varieties are Athiri and Aidani. When it comes to the wines, the most popular is Santorini wine , followed by Nykteri and Mezzo. Of course, all the above are white wines. Santorini is producing also some red wine but to a much lesser extent.

Santorini wine

Santorini wine

The food

Not much I can say about this, other than it is all fresh and delicious! Think pure mediterranean food: all kinds of seafood, cheese, local fruit and vegetables, olive oil. All going perfectly with that Santorini wine and view! Perfection! Among  products that are typical to Santorini are the white egg plant, fava (different than the usual fava beans) and cherry tomatoes.

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Where to stay

We stayed at a wonderful hotel in Imerovigli and which I am planning to review in a separate article. So stay tuned 😉 . The west coast of the island is the most luxurious and therefore most expensive part. But even there you can find a full range of hotels. The accommodation on the east coast is the least expensive because you do not get the Caldera views…but you are at the beach. So it  really depends on what you want.

I would strongly suggest you stay in one of the top 3 towns of the island: Oia, Thira (Fira) or Imerovigli. You will not be at the beach but you will have the best of Santorini and the most amazing views! And what views!!!

Other/tips:

  • for the best seafood head to Amoudi Bay . Or if you are staying on the east coast of the island, Vlichada is another sure bet.
  • trek/hike from Oia to Fira (through Imerovigli). If you prefer a shorter and easier route, you can simply walk from Imerovigli to Fira. But you need to do at least one of the two, in order to truly enjoy the place
  • you can take a cable car from Fira down to the old port
  • you can ride the donkeys (not really my fave but people do it)
  • dance the night away or simply chill at one of the many bars in Fira
  • indulge in one of those extremely sweet and delicious Greek deserts like baclava
  • And least but not last: GET MARRIED there…obviously if you already have a plan to do so 😀 . People from all over the world come to Santorini to get married on one of the most romantic island (see photos below)

If you have other tips/advice  I would be really happy to hear from you in a comment below!

And now, as usual, you can enjoy the rest of my photos selection in the gallery below. I highly recommnend you click on them and watch as a slide show for the best experience 🙂 .

Pin it and save it for later 🙂

 

Santorini1

23 Comments:

  1. You really have a great set of pictures taken from there! What I really love about Santorini are the colors blue and white, they really represent everything good, visually and in harmony in a place. I would like to take your tip for being married there, oh my! The thoughts of going there just makes me blush and excited.

    • Hey Karla! I’m really glad you enjoyed my pics but even more so I’m happy on you taking the idea of getting married there on board. I only have one request though: if you do, can you promise to let me know? 😀

  2. This place is just to pretty to be true…really time that I make it down there *.* (I call this my staryeyed smiley, but you also can consider it a hug for sharing these amazing pictures)

    Loved all the tips you are giving here too and so am going to pin this post^^

    Have a lovely day^^

    • Sabine, or better yet, Kung Fu Princess, thank you so much fro your visit to my world and for your appreciation! Comments like this really make my day!

  3. These are truly gorgeous photos! The colors are so rich and vibrant. What magnificent sunsets. Wow! Never made it to Santorini while we were in Greece. It is clear that we missed so much. Good to know about the wine. The views, food and wine is the perfect combination!! Great detailed post. Thank you for sharing.

    • Hola Rosemary! Wow! your comment made me blush! and I never blush! I am so happy when I receive feedback like this, showing me that my little project (as I call it) inspires people! THANK YOU! xxx

    • Hola Rosemary! Wow! your comment made me blush! and I never blush! I am so happy when I receive feedback like this, showing me that my little project (as I call it) inspires people! THANK YOU!

  4. Your photos of Greece are seriously amazing, I think you have convinced me to plan my next vacation which will be in … Greece! Did you actually stay at the Grace Hotel and get to swim in that stunning infinity pool?

    • Hello Susan. And your compliment is seriously hear warming! 🙂 Thank you so much for the vote of confidence! I didn’t stay at Grace but our hotel was stunning too…in a different way. At Grace the pool was the most stunning thing!!

  5. Oh wow, Santorini is such a beautiful part of the world! Bookmarking this. Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • Hi Carmen! I am glad you stopped by as this gave me the opportunity to discover your blog! love it! Definitely my type! 😀 Thank you for your lovely comment too!

  6. A great round up! I’ve heard great things about Santorini and this really makes me want to go. Imerovigli looks absolutely breathtaking. Also love your shot of the wine glass.

    • Hi Megan! good to see you here! Thank you so much for your lovely compliments! I guess Santorini itself is very inspiring for taking good pics ;-). PS: the wine is great!

  7. Wow, your pictures are just stunning!! I can’t wait to visit Greece one day. Thanks for the inspiration!

    • Hey Jen! THANK YOU so much for your kind and heart warming comment!!! Stay tunned for next posts about Greece 🙂

  8. LOVE Santorini – one of my favourite Greek islands alongside Crete and Mykonos. The sunset at Oia always makes me giggle – crowds of people gather and then everyone claps when the sun’s gone down – super cute 🙂

    • Hey Stefan! First of all I hope you guys know you two are amongst my favourite bloggers! Secondly, yes so funny with the clapping! btw, going to Mykonos in Aug! Woohoo! Can’t wait!

  9. Ohhhh it’s been more than 3 years since I set foot in Santorini. I miss Greece in general but I miss Santorini most for its amazing sunsets.

    • You feel like you keep wanting to go back don’t you Anna? That’s how I feel :-). Thanks for your visit on my site!

  10. Santorini is one of the best and memorable trips we ever had. Oia with its whitewashed town perched on the cliff can leave anyone in awe. Your captures are just amazing!

    • Thank you so much for stopping by guys and for your beautiful comment! Your trip to Leh, btw…AMAZING!

  11. Wow!!! I really need to recover from this! These pics are crazy beautiful Mihaela! Those views and those sunsets, so amazing and breathtaking!
    Can’t wait to go too, looks so chique and spectacular, great job sharing your tips with us.
    And very good photography, thanx for collecting and sharing these moments for and with me!
    Keep up the good work!
    XXX Naomi

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