Authored by Andrew Wise
I first stepped foot on Santorini for my honeymoon. I had promised my wife the most romantic destination on earth, and all research pointed to Santorini; one of the most beautiful islands of Greece, and easily one of the most stunning in the world.
From cobblestone streets to stark white homes with colorful blue domes, straight from the front of a postcard, there is no shortage of things to do and see when you’re on this Greek island.
To kick start your research for putting together a Santorini trip, we have put together an introduction to the island.
An Introductory Travel Guide to Santorini
You can hover over these (or any image) to quickly pin it!
There is a small, circular group of volcanic islands in the Agean Sea, approximately 124 miles off of Greece’s mainland. Santorini is one of those islands.
In 2000 BC, the city of Akrotiri, on the island of Santorini, was an extremely civilized community. They’re even credited with creating the first water closets, which we now consider modern day toilets.
Unfortunately, the civilization came to a halt in 1650 BC. A massive volcanic eruption blew a hole into Santorini and left this originally circular island as the crescent shaped island it is so well known for today.
Only in the 1970’s did tourism really start to thrive again, with original settlements beginning to turn into hotels. Today, Santorini is one of the biggest international tourist hubs in the entire world, catering to over 1.5 million visitors every single year.
There are 3 cities that make up the island of Santorini, each with its own unique atmosphere and vibe. This means that there’s a little something for everybody.
First is Oia (pronounced “eee-ah”), which is home to some of the most beautiful sunsets in the entire world. Tourists flock to Oia every single night and flood the narrow streets just to get a peek at the beautiful few moments when day turns to night.
Oia is also the place you can most easily view those white and blue homes that Greece is so well known for, so it’s worth stopping if only for the stunning architecture. There is no shortage bars and restaurants for you to visit, but it is important to keep in mind that most places close by midnight here.
It is a completely walkable town – it takes roughly 30 minutes to walk from end to end – and is great if you want to enjoy some once in a lifetime scenery while dining in a beautiful outdoor restaurant.
Next is Imerovigli. Imerovigli is best known as Santorini’s #1 honeymoon spot. The town is extremely small (the smallest of Santorini’s 3 cities by far) and has significantly fewer tourists than the other two. Because of that, it is definitely geared towards couples looking for a bit of alone time.
There are a few delicious restaurants and the occasional bar or two, but Imerovigli is best experienced poolside in your hotel. It’s also a very short walk to Fira, which is Santorini’s hit nightlife city, so you can manage to transition from privacy to lively in just 15 minutes or so.
Speaking of Fira, let’s talk about it! Best known for its lively bar and restaurant scene, Fira is the place to go if you are looking for a night out on the town.
DJs from all over come out to play the nightclubs in this Santorini city, and there is never any shortage of things to do. Unlike Imerovigli and Oia, where the bars and restaurants close extremely early, Fira is up all night. If you are looking for a good time, look no further than this city.
Common Greek Phrases
If you’re headed to Santorini, you may want to know a few common Greek phrases so you can fit in with the locals. This is by no means a comprehensive guide for what you need to know, but it’s a good starting point.
➡ “Kalimera” means good morning.
➡ “Kalo apogevma” means good evening.
➡ “Efcharisto” (ef-haristo) means thank you.
➡ “Parakalo” means you’re welcome.
GUIDES WE RECOMMEND FOR GREECE: CLICK PHOTO TO LOOK INSIDE ↓
INSPIRED?! PIN THIS TO YOUR TRAVEL PINTEREST BOARDS ↓