Santorini is the most photogenic place I’ve ever been, we’ve just got back for the dreamiest week there to celebrate my little sister’s wedding. As always I took a million photos and just want to share what I thought about the island. Santorini is only 7 by 4 miles in size so it’s easy to get about and see as much as possible. I grouped this blog by the town’s we visited.
Vothanos was the cute little town where our Air BnB was located right in the center of the island. It’s not ever so built up and touristy, but if you’re after somewhere a bit quiet and easily accessible to everywhere via car/quad I do recommend the area. Oia was about 30 minutes drive, but otherwise we managed to get everywhere else within about 10-20 minutes.
Our Air BnB was one of four available at Santorini Traditional Suites, the pool was shared between the four villas, and had a view overlooking the airport and Aegean Sea.
Oh and waking up to this sunrise at 7am every day was not terrible either. I took this stood by the communal pool. Anyway, back to Vothanos itself…
The first thing that intrigued us on our Vothanos exploration was the amount of little abandoned caves in the hill side, our taxi driver confirmed that once upon a time people lived in them.
Before travelling to Santorini I had read that there’s more churches on the island than houses, I’m not sure if that fact is true, but I wouldn’t be surprised as there’s a cute little blue domed church almost every way you look. Some are so small its hard to believe more than a handful of people fit inside at once, I personally like the ones you see dug into caves on the hillsides. Photos above is a few all within a 5 minute walk of our Air BnB.
Our neighbourhood was pretty cute.
The capital of Santorini… this bustling town is nestled on the hillside right in the centre of the coast of the Caldera. Cruise ships dock here, so the streets are pretty busy with tourists throughout the day exploring the shops and cafe’s.
The Orthodox Cathedral in Fira is the largest church on the island.
To score a table with a view like this for sunset you’ll need to book in advance, but for lunch like we did you can get a prime spot without a reservation.
My sister’s wedding took place in Fira at sunset, if you want to see more photos from the ceremony (and her insane hotel room) please click here.
Akrotiri is a prehistoric village which was destroyed in a volcanic eruption over 3 THOUSAND years ago. The village was preserved amazingly and for €12 you can have a stroll around the ruins. Whilst you’re at this end of the island you also can visit the famous red beach…
If I’m honest I’d probably call this more of a red/brown beach… It’s free to park up and have a nosey though. It’s very busy with tourists, so if you fancy sunning yourself there, head down early to secure a lounger. Wear sensible shoes too as it’s a little dirt path you walk along.
This car though!!
If you ever see photos from Santorini, they’re usually of the picturesque town of Oia at the most northern end of the Caldera coastline. We headed over early afternoon to explore the town before watching the sunset.
Like Fira, the town is built into the cliffside and it’s as touristy as it is beautiful – cute souvenir shops, restaurants and hotels line the narrow streets.
This underground bookshop was adorable, and above ground it has a little balcony for you to read and admire the sea view.
What a beautiful wedding photo shoot location!
The Oia Castle ruins in the above photo is the place to go for your Instagram shot of the town (see below).
It is also very windy out there, and prepare to queue behind some very dressed up ladies, spending 10 minutes posing in front of the backdrop for their Instagram boyfriends to snap away. We did notice a lot of people seemed to be dressed up for their Oia adventure, ensuring their best holiday snaps.
Try and head back to the Castle about half an hour before sunset, as this is the place to watch it on the whole island, with good reason. It does get quite crowded though, so you do need to secure a spot beforehand.
The crowd actually cheers when the sun is fully below sea level too.
… and the reality of the perfect sunset location.
Kamari is the main beach town of the island. We only ventured here one evening to go for a dinner with my mum and thought it was lovely and lively. The main strip along the beach was lined with bars and restaurants, if I return to Santorini I’d definitely consider staying here. Mum was in the Hermes Hotel which was beautiful.
Perissa is a quieter beach town, where most of our friends were staying on the holiday so we would come here most days to chill with them. We had a couple of days lazing on the beach on the Locura Beach Bar beds, where you also got waited on and the umbrellas had solar powered mobile chargers. We spent most evenings drinking cocktails at Bob’s Bar, and when we dined by the beach I found Perissa to be slightly cheaper than the other Santorini towns.
How good are these Primark inflatables?!
The beaches at Perissa and Kamari are black, so it gets very hot in the 30 degree sun! Also the sea bed is actually made up of large slippy rocks as opposed to sand so it is very difficult to get in and out without slipping.
CALDERA SUNSET CRUISE
For the last night of our holiday my sister booked us a sunset cruise on a private catamaran in the Caldera. There’s plenty of places where you can book the boats online and on the island, and as you’ll see from the photos below I heavily recommend the sunset option. We left land at 3pm and returned at 8pm.
“I’m not a regular mom, I’m a cool mom”
The boat took us right up to the volcano for a snorkel which was fun, I’d never snorkelled or swam in such deep waters before. It then stopped in the sulphur hot springs, which as they met the sea felt like you were swimming through patches of warm pee… and it smelt a bit eggy. Cool but I preferred the first stop with the clearer water.
Our final sunset did not disappoint.
I hope you enjoyed my post about Santorini and find it useful if you ever visit, it’s a truly beautiful island. One last recommendation, the view from the Santo Winery carpark above ^^.
SHOUT OUT TO THE DOGGOS & KITTY’S OF SANTORINI, YOU WERE GREAT