15 Unmissable Things To Do In Santorini Complete Guide


Endless whitewashed buildings, blue domes, breathtaking sunsets and gorgeous views of volcanic islands, the island of Santorini is like a beautiful dream. It is one of the top visited destinations in the world and it is on every traveler’s bucket list. The following are the most unmissable things to do in Santorini.


1. Take a cruise to the volcanic islands and hot spring

  • Sounds fancy, doesn’t it? I highly recommend taking this cruise. This tour takes you the volcanic islands near Santorini where you can see an active volcano and swim in a hot spring. Then they show the very famous Red beach and the lighthouse located on the Santorini island itself.
  • This tour is available through various vendors with a variety of options like duration (4-8 hours), budget (ranging from 80-1400 Euros per person) and mood (romantic, party, adventure, etc). These rides happen in two shifts one is in the morning and one is for the sunset (personally the sunset slot is more romantic). Visit Volcanic island cruise in Santorini article to know more about the types of cruise available, which is the best for you, prices of each and more.

2. Wine Tasting with a view

  • Wine production in Santorini is an ancient tradition and it’s not a secret that the volcanic soil produces a unique taste of wine. This island is home to some of the most famous wineries producing delicious wine. Additionally many these wineries are located overlooking the sea and the volcanic islands offering breathtaking views. Imagine sipping your wine while looking at the endless sea, setting sun and the volcanic islands!
  • All these wineries offer wine tasting tours in which they first explain the whole wine making process along with their history, and then serve you with the mouth watering wine. You can do this as part of a guided tour or you can just book a table directly with the winery.
  • For wine tasting with view, Santo Wines and Venetsanos winery are the best in Santorini. They not only have great wine and winemaking tour but also breathtaking views. Visit Wine tasting tour in Santorini article to know more about the list of best wineries, best way to get there and more.


3. Santorini Helicopter Tour

  • This experience is unforgettable. This island is already so pretty when in front of the eyes, just imagine how pretty will it be from the air! This tour provides breathtaking views of  the volcano, the caldera, and all the villages perched along the cliff.
  • Well if you’re going the luxurious way, then better go all in and take a helicopter transfer between Santorini and Mykonos. This will be one of the best experiences of your life.


4. Jet Ski Tour To The Volcano

  • The luxurious way reach the caldera, volcanic islands and the hidden beaches is to cruise to them. The adventurous way is to jet ski to them, doesn’t that more fun?
  • There are tours duration available depending on how much you want to cover. For example, if you want to cover just the Red and the White beach, the tour is 90 mins. And if you want to see the active volcano of  Thirassia and swim in hot spirngs, the tour is 200 mins.
  • There’s a backup motorboat running with the Jetski the whole way. So in case you need a break or in case of a accident or something, you will be transferred to the motorboat and a staff can ride the Jet ski. Visit Wave Sports for Jet Ski tour itinerary options, pricing and booking,

5. Sea Kayaking at Sunset

  • This is another adventurous way to see explore the hidden beaches and caves of Santorini. This is one of the best ways to get and up and close to the nature. Though taking a kayak and exploring on your own is always an option, you can also sign up for a kayak tour which is safer and more fun. These tours happen in two shifts morning and evening. Needless to say, the evening tour is better as you get to see the sunset!
  • These tours generally take you the Red and white beach, caves and more places. There are various routes that are available based on the season and tides. You may have to check as to which tours are happening on your travel dates.


6. Walk on a Active Volcano

  • There are a few volcanic islands located right in front of Santorini. One of these islands known as Nea Kameni, is home to an active volcano.
  • The best way to reach here is via a guided cruise or jet ski as mentioned earlier. Once you disembark, you can right up to its crater. You will see sulfur vents along the way which is very fascinating. Overall it’s not aesthetically beautiful. But its very interesting to walk up to the crater of a volcano and there are very few places in the world which offers these kind of tours.

7. Swim at Amoudi Bay

  • Ammoudi Bay is the answer to the question, ‘Which is the best place to take a dip in Santorini?’. This island only have only few places to swim, and this one if the best.
  • It is located in Oia. So you can plan on watching the sunset while swimming, or you take a dip and then enjoy the sunset while sipping a drink at one of the bars.

8. Swim in the Hot Springs

  • The island of Santorini overlooks many volcanic other islands. One of them is Palea Kameni. At a specific point on the coastline of this island, natural thermal springs are available. This offers for a great bath hot in the middle of the sea, especially on a pleasant day.
  • As mentioned before in this article, you can reach here via a cruise or a jet ski.

9. Red Beach

  • The famous red beach consists of volcanic sand. This is a mixture of black and red sand made from grinded volcanic rocks. This unique color and indirect accessibility makes Red Beach very famous.
  • To get there you will have to reach Akrotiri Ruins, and then climb down a cliff. It is not a steep climb and can be done my almost everyone. Its pretty fun actually.

10. Drive around the Island

  • Driving in Santorini is a must for 2 reasons. One is obviously the fact that it is a beautiful ride. And the second is you will save a lot of money while going places because point to point transfers on this island are very expensive. And there is no public transport available on this island, its all private. For a 5-10 min ride, you will be paying a minimum of 20 Euros.
  • We were there in the peak season but still there was almost no traffic. We took a convertible(one of the best decisions ever) and drove around the entire island, from one end to the other TWICE. Almost all the roads has gorgeous sea on one side and cliffs on the other. We stopped at numerous viewpoints, ate lunch, took a million photos and ended the day in Oia to watch the sunset. It was one of the best rides of our life.
  • There are many self drive car providers around the island, especially in main areas you can expect to find dozens of them. Plus, they are not expensive. I paid 70 Euros for a convertible mini cooper for a whole day. And there were many cheaper options available. So its the best that you bargain with them on the spot and then take the car. But if you want a car of your choice, visit Santorini Car Hire to book it in advance.

11. Stay at a Cave Hotel on the Caldera

  • Throughout all my travels, budgeting is always necessary. So we generally don’t spend too much on accommodation, because you won’t really be using the hotel facilities if you are roaming around the entire day. But then experiencing the best thing about a particular place is what travel is all about, right?
  • The unique cave formations on the Santorini island was made naturally millions of years ago. The cave hotels that we see today are literally into these natural caves. Living in such natural caves is a wonderful experience. It is definitely not cheap, but worth every penny. When they will serve you your breakfast in patio of your cave room, which will be overlooking the caldera, you will forget all the dollar bills! Visit where to stay in Santorini article for details about the best areas to stay on the island, which is the best for you, hotel recommendations and more.

12. Stay in a Windmill

  • Yes you can actually experience staying in a windmill on this island. This windmill is actually a 3 storey suite room in the Windmill Villas hotel in Santorini. Its in shape of a windmill and overlooks the sea and the volcano. The views from this room are spectacular.
  • This property is located in Imerovigli, which is one of the most tranquil area on the island. Imagine having this huge room with a private pool and breathtaking views away from all the bustle, sounds likes a dream right?  There is only one like this on the entire island, and its almost always booked. So make sure to book this in advance (Booking.com link). Staying here might cause a hole in your pocket as it costs 700 Euros per night on an average.
  • Windmill Edge Villa provides similar accommodation and facilities and is located on a higher height. Thus it provides better views at half the price than Windmill Villas. You can book that from Booking.com link.

13.Watch the Sunset from Oia & Fira

  • ‘Santorini sunsets’ are famous around the world. And honestly, it is worth the hype. Sunsets from both the areas, Oia and Fira, are gorgeous.
  • Both the locations offer super pretty views. Oia is located on the northern tip of the island, so it looks right into the vilages located at Santorini shoreline on one side and looks at the volcanic islands on the other. Fira has a view of the volcanic island in the center and the shoreline on the right. Overall, in Fira the prices of cocktails will be much cheaper as compared to Oia. Visit best sunset bars in Santorini for the list of list of best sunset bars along with contact information and highlights of each place.

14. Greek Food

  • This goes without saying, right? No matter where you’re traveling to, make it a high priority to seek out delicious and authentic food.
  • Most meals are filled with fresh seafood, fresh vegetables, olives and homemade hummus. Don’t fear, it’s not all healthy though! There are delicious and not so healthy options – like Saganaki and Moussaka (which I highly recommend ordering at every meal).
  • Remember most places consider seafood as a vegetarian so please be specific about what you want.

15. Explore on Foot!

I drove around this entire island for an entire day which was so much fun. But the real vibe and charm of this island lies in the whitewashed streets and buildings which can be explored only on foot. These narrow streets with quaint cafes and spectacular views overlooking the volcanic islands and the sea just seem unreal. And that is what is this island is all about, right? So just wear your flip flops and get lost in the streets of Santorini!

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