Exploring Santorini: Fira & Oia

Fira

Fira is the capital of Santorini and is located almost in the middle of the island. It is the place to be for a night out, filled with bars, nightclubs and restaurants. Besides that, during the day you can go for a coffee and go around to see the view. During the evenings, it is a great place to see the sunrise.

goodwp-com_29191

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

santorini-night-1

Oia

Ohhh Oia!!! There is no place like Oia!! I fell in love with its beauty. I was simply captivated. Oia is the place you MUST visit while in Santorini. Be sure to visit it both during the day and afternoon.

Oia is known for all the luxury hotels and restaurants. You will find a few cheap choices, but mostly you should come here for expensive dining. Anywhere you go for a drink or dinner, you will certainly have one of the best views. The hotels around are all resorts with private pools and jacuzzis and the prices for about 7 days are more than 3000 euros.

What is special about Oia is the characteristic white and blue everywhere. White houses, hotels and shops, combined with the blue of the sea and sky. A perfect combination that can hypnotize you.

Oia is by far the best place for a photographer. During the day you can embrace the white, while during the night, you can emphasize on the nightlife.

The perfect time to visit is around 5 or 6 in the evening. You have plenty of time to see everything, and still be there for the sunset at 8 o’clock. Around 6 people will start gathering from all parts of Santorini,to see the enchanting sunset. At 8:15 it is almost impossible to leave, since there are hundreds of people struggling to get out.

20160711_204738

What makes this sunset so special, that makes people visit Santorini from all over the world? Truly, it is breathtaking. Being Greek, I have seen a lot of beautiful sunsets in my life. No sunset can take my breath. But this one did.  Now, I understand why it is so special to the foreigners.

5 minutes before the sunrise, hundreds of people just stop moving and talking. There is so much quiet and everyone is looking at the sky in awe. Just a few magical minutes, where you see the sun falling in the water and creating a breathtaking view. Yes, it is a pretty sunrise, but I have seen many. However, I have never felt such peace and calmness.

13640719_10154403917898623_3559558870053452280_o

Exploring Santorini: Perivolos, Perissa & Kamari

Perivolos, Perissa and Kamari have the best beaches on the island. They are the only ones, that you do not have to go hiking in order to access them and you can actually have a good time there. Relax, enjoy your cocktail and sunbathe.

capture

Perivolos

Although it may not be something special, it is one of the beaches you can actually enjoy on the island. You go chill for a few hours and after that, you can go shopping for souvenirs or eat in one of the local taverns.

All the beach bars are organized with sunbeds and umbrellas. In some you have to pay, but not in all of them. The prices vary from 3-10 euros for 2 sunbeds.

 

Perissa

Perissa is one more of the best beaches in Santorini. For me it is by far the best one, considering water temperature, view, and location. The view is breathtaking and relaxing. The location is great since it is easily accessible from any point on the island. As for the water temperature is was the warmest one.

20160712_154640

Kamari

Kamari is somewhat located in the middle of the island and it is very close to the airport. The beach is beautiful with black sand from the volcano. This area is full of hotels, restaurants, taverns, bars and souvenir shops. It is extremely enjoyable for a quiet evening.

 

**All three places are great during the day for lunch and swimming. But only Kamari, is nice visiting during the night. There is nothing to do in the other two, other than go for a small walk.

Related Posts: Summer in Santorini

 

 

 

Exploring Santorini: Akrotiri, Emporeio, Vlychada

Let’s begin from southwestern peninsula of the island, where you will find Acrotiri.

1.PNG

In the very last point of Acrotiti, the Lighthouse is located. The Akrotiri Lighthouse is among the oldest lighthouses in Greece and was constructed way back in 1892. It is nothing special, but the view there is amazing. The best time to visit the Akrotiri Lighthouse is during sunset. Actually, everything is better visiting during sunset in Santorini.

 

 

When you leave the Lighthouse, your next stop MUST be the Red Beach,  one of the most famous and beautiful beaches of Santorini. It is called red, due to the red stones in the mountain and the beach, which are basically rocks from the volcano.

20160710_120126
Stunning Red Beach

To be fair, the access is not the easiest, yet not the most difficult. You just need to hike for a while by stepping into big stones. But once you get there, it is so worth it. From the Red Beach, you can visit the White Beach, which is also gorgeous, but only accessible by boat.

15 minutes away is Emporeio, a place where there is nothing for you to do, but this small village across the hill is truly beautiful and is definitely recommended for photography lovers.  We didn’t make all the way to the top because the heat was insane that day.

Vlychada is also a very nice area. Most visit the Vlychada Beach, but we decided to visit one of the most known beach bars, called Theros Wave Bar. Be really careful with the streets, because we ended up taking another street and got stuck for 3 hours. Our car was stuck in the sand and there was access to get out. I have no idea how we even got there.

 

Related Posts: Summer in Santorini

 

 

Summer in Santorini

Trying to decide where to go for my summer vacation, I started researching about the best destination in Europe. Santorini is among the 10 best in Europe, and among the 20 best ones in the whole world.

It was a no-brainer at this point. Why not visit my country, since it has to offer one the islands you have to visit once in your life?

We booked the hotel for 7 days and rented a Smart, so that we could go explore the whole island. To be honest with you 7 days in Santorini is too much. If I had to it all over again, I would go for 4 days in Santorini and then visit one of the islands around it.

I have to say that the flight from my hometown was 55 minutes long, but the worst one I have had in my life. The plane was small and therefore you could feel every movement. We finally arrive in Santorini and we go pick up our car.

Our hotel was about 10 minutes away. It had great reviews online and it was located in one of the island’s villages, Kamari. We arrive at ‘Acropole Sunrise Hotel’ and I was blown away by the view. The hotel was located in a high point in the mountain (not very high, it is within walking distance) and the view of the sea was amazing.

It was not one of those expensive, luxurious hotels you will mostly find in Santorini. It was a family business, run by the most helpful and nice people. The moment we arrived, the owner, Petros, offered us juice and cookies and gave us a map. For about an hour he was telling us where to go and how, and what to eat and the prices of each place.

Our room was simple, but thankfully it had air condition (when visiting Greece during the summer you ALWAYS need air condition). We had a private balcony, which allowed us to look at the view day and night. The breakfast had very basic choices, but it was free.

rsz_20160709_104133

 

20160709_092314.jpg
Breakfast Time: Juice, Coffee, Eggs, Toast, Marmelade, Nutella

 

And from the next day, we began exploring.

I will not get into detail right now. There are so many things you need to know when it comes to beaches, food, and sights. I will analyze each part of Santorini in different posts.

It is great if you visit for 3-4 days as I have mentioned before, since the island it not as big as it seems. We went everywhere within 3 days, and after that, we were just sitting for hours on the beach drinking cocktails (no, I do not complain about that).

The food is top notch anywhere you go. In some places, they are a bit overpriced, but you can find cheap ones all over. ‘To Pinakio’ in Kamari, is the best food I’ve had on the island. It is mid-range when it comes to prices. The menu has a few items and they are all delicious and cooked perfectly. I recommend this place 1000%. If you do not like sweet foods, you can skip it. Be sure to call them a few hours before you go, so they book you a table because it is always full.

 

 

10 Best Greek Islands

Let’s be honest. Greece is known for its insane beauty and its tasty food. Any island you decide to visit, you will experience a strong culture, beautiful beaches and landscapes, great and fresh food and welcoming people.

 

1. Santorini

Location: Cyclades

Famous for: Sunrise, wine, volcano, white eggplant

What to do: Sunset in Oia, Winery, Black pebble beach.

Santorini-Greece-2-1

Village of Oia in Santorini at sunset
Santorini at sunset

2. Crete

Location: Crete

Famous for: Traditional dialect, Raki, Mantinades, History

What to do: Elafonissi beach, Balos beach & Lagoon, Knossos Archaeological Site, Gramvousa Fortress.

telegraph.co.uk

Pink-Sand-Elafonisi-Beach
Elafonissi Beach

3. Zante – Zakynthos

Location: Ionian Sea

Famous for: Intense nightlife, raisins, olives, honey, herbs

What to do: Navagio beach, Porto Limnionas beach, Xygia Sulphur Beach

fotos-zakynthos-036

P1000926
Navagio Beach

 

4. Kefalonia

Location: Ionian Sea

Famous for: Wines, Olives, Turtles

What to do: Assos, Myrtos Beach, Venetian Lighthouse of Fiscardo

dafnoudi-hotel.gr

1157336009
Myrtos Beach

5. Paros

Location: Cyclades

Famous for: Architecture, Golden sand, exotic beaches

What to do: Parikia Town, Kolymbithres Beach, Lageri beach

1

the-port-of-naoussa-in-paros
Paros Port

 

6. Chios

Location: Aegean Sea

Famous for: Mastic, Mastello, Architecture

What to do: Pyrgi, Mavra Volia, Vrontados, Daskalopetra

xios.jpg

img_2401.jpg

 

7. Milos

Location: Cyclades

Famous for: Rocks, Volcano origin, Caves

What to do: Sarakiniko Beach, Kleftiko Beach

Milos_029.jpg
Sarakiniko Beach
kleftiko
Kleftiko Beach

 

 

8. Lefkada

Location: Ionian Sea

Famous for: Crystal clear beaches, Historic sites, Landscape beauty, Savoro

What to do: Egremni Beach, Kathisma Beach, Nydri Waterfalls

home_banner

nidri
Nydri Waterfalls

 

 

9. Folegandros

Location: Cyclades

Famous for: Wine, Matsata, Souroto, Kalassouna, Karpouzenia

What to do: Livadaki Beach, Latinaki Beach, Agios Nikolaos Beach

folegandros-travel-beaches-26

9599268699_ba7dc91ef4_b
Livadaki Beach

 

 

10. Ios

Location: Cyclades

Famous for: Crazy nightlife, Chora, Traditional Food

What to do: Mylopotas Beach, Manganari Beach, La Tomba di Omero

pic_0

6
Party until the morning

5 Things You Need To Know Before Visiting Santorini

Santorini is one of the most beautiful islands in Greece and among the most popular ones around the world. Visiting the island for 7 days, I came up with some essential things you need to know before visiting.IMG_20160710_131645

  1. Rent a car or an ATV. We were staying in the middle of the island (Kamari). The furthest we had to drive was 40 minutes with traffic.You definitely need a mean of transportation, since it is truly worth it to go around the whole island. There are also local buses that depart every half an hour.
  2. 4 days is more than enough. We were so eager to see everything and afraid that we will not make it in 7 days. Within 5 days we had visited each area more than 2 times and we spend the last 2 lying on the beach.
  3. A bit overpriced. Compared to Europe, the prices in Santorini re pretty much the same. But comparing them to Greece, they are a bit much. However, you get what you pay for. The food quality is outstanding and so is the view no matter where you go.
  4. Eat fish. They have the freshest and tasty fish in Greece. Do not miss the traditional foods, such as fava, santorinia salad, kapari and tomatoes.
  5. Hiking to go swimming. Some of the most beautiful beaches on the island require some hiking on mountains. So, be prepared with hats and water.

 

IMG_20160714_111905