With its whitewashed buildings, stunning cliff views, and beautiful beaches, Santorini is the quintessential Greek island destination. We spent several days there during our trip to Greece, and we highly recommend it.

Below, you’ll find our favorite places to eat, drink, and see in Santorini, as well as some of the best areas to stay.

Where to Stay

  • Oia – The town to stay in if you want to see the dramatic calderas and white-washed buildings. If you want a good deal, book at least a year in advance (especially if you’re going in the summer).
  • Imerovigli – If you want somewhere that’s more affordable but still has great views, stay here. Note that it’s a less developed area than Oia or some of the larger towns.
  • Fira – The capital of Santorini, and also the largest, most touristy part of the island. A great place to stay if you want to be close to the action, but expect it to be busy. (Also spelled “Thera,” which is how it shows up on Google Maps).
  • Monolithos – Located on the eastern side of the island, it’s near the airport and right on the beach. A great place for families, but dining/nightlife options are limited.
  • Perissa – The place to stay if you want to be near the beach. Lots of nightlife and restaurants as well.

Where to Eat

  • Metaxi Mas – A delicious Greek taverna with cheap food and generous portions. The feta wrapped in phyllo was excellent, as were the potatoes. We recommend getting a reservation.
  • Afros – One of the best places we ate in all of Greece. In addition to delicious seafood, they also offer free beach access to anyone who eats at the restaurant.
  • Nick The Grill – A nice spot to get a quick gyro or falafel.
  • Solo Gelato – Fresh, tasty gelato in a quaint spot. Lots of sorbet and fruit flavors as well.
  • Lolita’s Gelato – We recommend getting a gelato here to enjoy while you watch the sunset in Oia.

Where to Drink

  • Santorini Brewing Company – A decent craft brewery, though be aware that you can only do tastings on the premises (full bottles of their beer are available to-go, however).
  • Art Space Santorini – An art museum and winery offering a fun experience.

Santorini Activities

  • Red Beach – As the name says, the beach is made up of red sand. The swimming is excellent, though be sure to bring something to eat since there aren’t any restaurants nearby.
  • Akrotiri – An prehistoric Greek settlement that was preserved in rock after a volcano erupted. If you’re into history, this is a must-see.
  • Hike from Kamari to Perissa – It takes about the same amount of time as driving, and you get to enjoy some gorgeous views (plus, there’s a beach waiting for you on the other side).
  • Hike from Fira to Oia – This hike takes you along the cliffs on the western side of Santorini. Note that this can take a few hours, so plan ahead.
  • Cliff jumping in Amoudi Bay – If you’ve ever dreamed of jumping off a cliff into water so clear that you can see the bottom, this bay is the place to do it.

Destination Map

Want to see all of our favorite Santorini destinations on a map that you can access from your phone? We’ve pinned each location mentioned in this guide on the Google Map below:

Final Thoughts

If you’re planning to visit Greece, Santorini should be one of your stops. We hope this guide helps you plan your Greek island adventure, and we’re excited to see what you find!

Prefer listening to reading? Check out the accompanying podcast episode.

If you’re traveling to Santorini, we HIGHLY recommend getting travel insurance. We’ve used World Nomads since 2013 and love it. Click here to get World Nomads travel insurance – don’t leave home without it!

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