I can't believe it was almost a year ago that we landed on the beautiful island and it is a holiday we reminisce on often. The views. The heat. The beauty.
A while back we did a post on where to stay in Santorini, you can check it out here.
This time around here are a few key points for visiting the island:
1) The buses are amazing. The island isn't big but it is hilly so walking isn't always your best option. The buses cost €1.80 per person per journey. The routes are clearly stated on the front of the bus and a bus conductor is available at every main station to make sure you get on the right one. You pay on the bus and receive a ticket. Buses either go east to west of north to south. Fira / Thera is the main terminal where you can get buses that go in all directions.
2) The streets are cobbled and there are a lot of stairs. The reason I mention this is tottering around in heels may be the way from some talented folks but unless you want to spend the whole time looking down or holding on to someone for support stick to flats.
3) Try the hike between Fira / Thera and Oia with a pit-stop in Imerovigli. The path isn't always flat or in tact but it is a fairly obvious route that follows the edge of the caldera and allows you to take in some spectacular views. We would recommend starting fairly early so you aren't doing most of the walk in the heat of the day.
4) If you hire a quad bike (as most people including us did) make sure you take a credit card as only a few places will let you hire without one. A day or two's worth of hire will give you plenty of time to explore the island.
5) Check out what Airbnb has to offer for accommodation. We did and got a great deal on a flat with an amazing view. Sadly no swimming pool but a few dips in the sea meant it wasn't a downside for us. Plus you can find hotels that let you use their pool if you are buying drinks there. Win win!
6) I have mentioned this in previous posts but check out Instagram, there are plenty of suggestions for things to see and amazing views if you look at the Santorini tag
7) Thinking of a sunset dinner at Oia?! We'd recommend it although here's a few things to consider
- Book ahead
- Say it is for an occasion - they may give you a better view
- Check when sunset will actually be, get there with enough time to enjoy but not too early you have spend a fortunate on drinks to sit a the table
- Check out TripAdvisor for others recommendations
- We dined at Pelekanos
8) One thing we would say you wouldn't need to book ahead is the tours. If you have a rough idea if what you want to do head to a booking/ tour office. We found the one in Fira/Thera square really reasonably priced and with plenty of times available for the boat tours and day trips. The trips we checked out online would have been more expensive.
9) One trip we recommend is the boat trip to the Volcano and hot springs where you can swim in warm water - just don't wear white as the volcanic mud will turn you a kind of orange. Oh and take comfortable shoes and water for the Volcano, while the hike doesn't look that steep the ground is hot and there is no shade. The boat trip is amazing as it gives you a great view of the island from a new perspective. Take flip flops for the boat and trainers for the walk. And wear sunscreen!
|View from the boat and in the hot springs|