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What to Do & See in Santorini, Greece - WANDERLIST

Let's travel to: Santorini, Greece

You can’t help but be in awe of the postcard perfect views everywhere and instantly fall in love with this island of blue and white and magnificent sunsets

INTERESTING FACTS

  • Santorini's official name is actually Thira
  • It is the remains of a large volcanic eruption that wiped out the earliest settlements on what was a single island
  • Water at the black beach is water due to the heat absorbing black lava rock 
  • One of the only two locations in Europe which has a hot desert climate
  • Due to its volcanic past, Santorini has white, black and red beaches 
  • Santorini has a flourishing wine industry

USEFUL INFORMATION

  • Language: Greek
  • Currency: Euro
  • Tipping: Greece has a rounding up policy. If the bill is larger, tip around 5-10%, 8% is very standard. 
  • Transportation: Buses are available; however, the easiest way to get around is renting an ATV or car
  • Best time to visit: May to October

WHAT TO DO & SEE

  • Take in the most beautiful sunsets
    • The most famous one is in Oia (be prepared to climb some roofs for the best view) 
    • Other spectacular sunsets are at: Fira, Firostefani, Imerovigli
    • Faros in Akrotiri allows you to see the sunset with a beautiful framed view of Santorini
    • Profitis Ilias is one of the highest spots of the island
  • Cliff jumping at Amoudi Bay
    • Walk down the stairs, past the restaurants and keep through the rocky path for the best spot
  • Rent an ATV and drive around the island
    • There is no better way to explore the beautiful island!
    • Discover areas that aren't accessible by bus and travel on your own schedule
    • Tip: Pack a jacket as it gets quite chilly at night. 
  • Walk through the narrow streets to explore Fira
    • Many beautiful little boutiques
  • Sunbake on the different coloured sand beaches
    • hoose from the black sand beaches of Perissa or Kamari beach or the Red Beach in Akrotiri
  • Go on a donkey ride in Fira
    • The rides are bumpy going up and down the steps
    • Alternative: arrange a donkey ride to the beach through your hotel to avoid the crowd of tourists
  • Stay in a cave house with a beautiful view of the water
  • Drink a couple of glasses of wine at a wine tasting
  • Try not to laugh during a fish pedicure
  • Hike the three hour trail from Fira to Oia
  • Jump off a boat into the hot springs and hike around the volcanic island of Neo Kamen
    • Take the boat tour from the Old Fira port
  • See a movie at the open air cinema in Kamari 
  • Go sailing around the Greek islands
  • Try your luck at the Atlantis bookstore in Oia

WHERE TO EAT & DRINK

  • Seafood at Sunset Taverna
    • Pricer but a great view - especially during sunset
  • God's Garden for the moussaka and lamb plate
  • Dimitris for the seafood 
  • Nikolas Taverna in Fira
  • Xanis for the lamb plate

LOCAL | FOOD SPECIALTIES

  • Eat lots (and lots) of natural Greek frozen yogurt
  • Try the donkey beer
  • Gyro
  • Fresh seafood
  • Moussaka - pasta free lasagne with sautéed eggplant, minced meat, tomato, onion, garlic, potato, bechamel sauce and grilled cheese, layered and usually covered with cheese
  • Stuffed eggplant and peppers
  • Baked feta cheese
  • Tzatziki sauce - yogurt and cucumber seasoned with garlic
  • Tiropites - triangle pastries made up of filo pastry and filled with a delicious mixture of Greek cheese
  • Dolmathakia - stuffed vine leaves with rice, pine nuts, and fresh herbs
  • Traditional dessert baklava

TIPS

  • The best views and photos are from rooftops (but as always, make sure to be careful and respectful of property)

LIST BY: CAROLYN CHEN

Carolyn Chen has done two backpacking trips around Europe and spent six months studying abroad in Italy. She loves finding the most beautiful scenery, hidden gems and indulging in great food. Find more posts by Carolyn here.

Follow her adventures on Instagram: @carolynjxchen

 

 

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