Legend has it that the Santorini Island in Greece was inhabited by an extremely advanced civilization – we’re talking about the inhabitants of the lost continent, Atlantis / Atlantida.
It doesn’t really matter if this is true or not, what matters is that Santorini is the perfect destination for a romantic getaway, an amazing stop for a perfect holiday and one of those places you really must see at least once in your lifetime to feel complete.
This is the island where people seem to drink more wine than water. The island that amazes you from the first second you set eyes on it. This is Santorini, one of the most beautiful Greek Islands!
Its popularity made it also one of the most expensive destinations in Greece (if not THE most expensive one), but as you will see in today’s guide to Santorini Island, it’s all worth it!
How to get to Santorini Island in Greece?
The easiest way to get here is by plane, no matter where you come from.
There are tons of companies that offer direct flights to the island – and even more holiday providers, so you shouldn’t have a problem finding an option.
The main airports in Europe also offer plenty of budget plane tickets to the island, so start looking there even if you are traveling from across the ocean. Splitting your flight in two might be a lot cheaper.
You could also drive all the way there and cross the Mediterranean Sea with the ferry, but really that would be just a waste of time, in my opinion (unless you’re already in Greece – maybe living as an expat here).
Also, believe me when I say it that as soon as you set your eyes on it, you will want to spend as much time as possible in Santorini and not worry about parking spaces or driving your car.
Where to stay during your vacation in Santorini?
There are basically two choices for accommodation when you visit the island and each has its Pros and Cons: first, you could choose a smaller city (like Kamari) where costs are lower and you can quickly get to the beach.
Or you could choose one of the more famous regions, like Imerovigli, Fira or Oia, where you will enjoy the best views of Santorini and experience your holiday at its fullest, but expect prices to be at least double.
Also, since these are the flagship places to be in Santorini, they might get a little bit crowded during the peak of the season, so either prepare for that or visit in late spring or from September onwards.
During my stay in Santorini I went for the first choice, the main being the lower costs I had to pay: we stayed at the Smy Mediterranean White in Kamari which was more than decent with its amazing sea view and two steps to the beach.
Kamari is also very close to the airport and still has plenty of that amazing Santorini vibe, with the legendary white houses, cobble streets and breathtaking sea views.
We also had the chance to spend one night at a 5 star resort in Kamari, Santorini as a gift from the agency for some problems we had (no need to mention them here since they were not directly related to the holiday) and it was amazing to experience the room with the jacuzzi and a huge balcony and feel like royalty.
How are the beaches in Santorini?
Santorini is a volcanic island and therefore the beaches are of a spectacular black color.
The sand is not the most delicate you have ever seen and water shoes are generally required.
But there’s also an amazing red beach that is absolutely amazing and you can even find the Monolithos beach for example with sand and barely any rocks to upset you.
In other words, for beach lovers – and especially for sandy beach lovers, there are still options.
The water itself is clean and clear and beautiful. You can go swimming or just walk in the water, looking out for small fish or shells or anything. The sea is crystal-clear and perfect!
And despite the rocky beaches, Santorini is still considered one of the most romantic destinations in Europe (and even in the world) and many couples choose to spend their honeymoon here.
And I can guarantee that they have no reasons to leave disappointed. But you can still greatly enjoy it if you bring your established family here, or travel alone. Santorini is a place that has the power to make every visitor happy.
And if the amazing view that’s almost a trademark to Santorini (and obviously breathtaking, as you can see in the attached photos) is not enough for you, you can visit the volcano itself and bathe in the thermal waters there.
You can also choose to go for a tour of the island or check out the Churches in Santorini (there are a lot of churches there). Or just walk around your city or explore the island at your own pace.
The trademark buildings, with Greece’s colors – white and blue – are absolute Instagram-worthy wonders and even if you’re not a social media fanatic, you will still want to see more and more just to take it all in and remember this experience for a lifetime.
And if you go to Santorini, you owe it to yourself to check out the sunset from Oia – many people say that from there you will see the best sunset the world has to offer!
Who knows? If you travel alone, then you might actually meet one amazing Greek woman on this island of love (although, truth be told, chances are higher to find a foreigner than a local).
And I won’t ruin it by posting a photo of it – you really have to see it for yourself to actually feel the magic! It’s one of those cases where a photo simply can’t capture the feeling of actually being there and experiencing it yourself.
Food and drink in Santorini
As I already said, the wine is the beverage that everybody seems to love on the island and we’re talking about some really great local wines, with an amazing taste offered by the volcanic soil of the island.
About 70% of the island is covered with white grapes and you have to drink their local star VinSanto (Saint Wine) that comes at prices of 30 – 70 Euros per bottle to really appreciate what the island has to offer.
Of course, there are cheaper options available as well and you will find them really enjoyable too (we didn’t spend all days drinking wine at 30 Euros per bottle!), but at least once try the VinSanto to delight your senses.
Maybe grab a bottle when you check out the sunset on Oia island, to make the entire experience even better.
When it comes to eating, there are a lot of choices you can make and you should “risk” it with the local food.
The tomatoes filled with rice, tzatziki and tons of dishes based on fish and seafood – these are the delightful foods that you have to try while in Santorini for your perfect romantic vacation.
And, yes, you can still hit a homerun with some more traditional foods, like the chicken you can see in the photo above. Anything you eat there will simply taste better than anywhere else in the world, trust me!
Prices in Santorini
The island is probably one of the most exclusive and expensive in Greece, with prices increasing constantly – maybe also because of its glowing reviews and increasing popularity.
Although you can still find hotel rooms at rates of around 50 EUR per night, they can go as high as 300 EUR, so make sure to check out all offers in advance and also book your stay early to get the best rates.
You can also find great deals with tour operators, with 7 nights with breakfast and plane fare costing around 5-600 Euros at a 3 star hotel, while an extra star and dinner included can be as low as 750 Euros (prices for Kamari).
Which is, in many cases, cheaper than what you can get if you travel on your own, so don’t ignore the operators!
And since the weather is nice even in late spring or early fall (think May, September and even early October), don’t ignore these months if you’re on a budget, since prices are the lowest at this time of the year.
If you choose to dine at a restaurant, a really good meal will cost around 20 Euros (or double at the top restaurants), which includes a drink.
You can find cheaper options and the local gyros is tasty and filling, with prices going as low as 7 Euros per piece – which usually comes with some fried potatoes on the side.
So all in all, the prices can be decent if you don’t plan to eat out and stay at the most luxuriant places in Santorini. But you can easily break a budget, so set up one before you get there and stick to it!
Hopefully my words – and especially the photos above – have convinced you that Santorini is an amazing destination, especially for a romantic getaway where sun and relaxation are the top priorities.
There’s not much to visit in terms of museums and other similar attractions, but the cities themselves and the beaches and the entire island can be considered a tourist attraction, so I am sure that even the most demanding tourists will love Santorini. Everybody seems to!
It is definitely a lot better than my first experience on the Greek shores – my vacation in Olympic Beach which wasn’t as impressive as I would’ve liked it to be.
Or maybe it was even more beautiful for us because we got there after seeing how uninteresting it can actually be in other places…