As you may know, Brad and I recently travelled to Santorini for our Honeymoon. I didn’t want to write a super long post about what we did each day as I’ll be editing the vlog soon which you can watch each day as it happened very soon. I wanted to share all my photos, seriously I took about 200 photos a day so this is only a small selection! I also wanted to share my top 15 places to see and do in Santorini if you’re heading out there.
First off I’m going to start with my warning, be prepared to walk, a lot, and climb a lot of steps! It’s one hell of a mountain! You might want to work out those glutes before you go too, you’ll need them, I’ve come back with buns of steel from all the walking we did! Comfy shoes are a must!
There’s a lot of Santorini guides on the internet but I still wanted to share a few of my personal favs from the ten days we spent there in October, in no particular order.
It’s not the first place you think of when you think of Santorini and isn’t one of the main tourist areas but I think it was one of the most beautiful. In keeping with their traditional white curved walls and blue gates galore, it’s very similar to the like of Oia and Fira but with way less tourists and and a more rustic feel. It’s almost the highest point in the island but inland, which means you have views over both the north and the south of the island – if you dare to climb the steps to nowhere and explore on top of the old buildings – it’s worth it for the view. There’s also an old church there if that’s your kind of thing.
We stayed south of the island in Akrotiri at the Aura Marina, which although you’ll still find beautiful apartments it’s much less built up and way more traditionally Greek. We still managed to find a caldera view from our apartment which over looked the hustle and bustle of Oia and Fira.
3. We discovered a restaurant called The Good Heart with lovely traditional home made Greek food from a family run taverna. Only thing is, they chill their red wine which just baffles me. It has a fab view of the sunset too.
4. I’d defo recommend heading down to the very southern point of the island to the lighthouse where you can sit on the rocks and watch the sunset with way less people than in Oia and Fira.
5. Kamari beach vs Perissa beach.
I preferred Kamari beach, it’s much more luxurious than I’d imagined (it’s like sandbanks vs Bournemouth beach if you like!) the hotels look really nice and the promenade is full of restaurants all touting for your business.
6. We liked Zorbas with a very friendly waiter who claimed to have served all number of famouses, I hear tom jones was there just weeks before us! The food was good although we only had a gyros but it was good value.
7. Also Hot Rocks, the one covered in all the pink flowers had the only free beach sunbeds as far as we could see (which happened to be pink so win!) and served their mai tai cocktail in an awesome skull glass – win win!
8. If you do go down to perissa beach, stop in to Yaas bar, cuz YAAAAAASSS, the frozen cocktails are delish!!
9. Caldera Yachting
I’d 100% recommend the afternoon sunset cruise with Caldera Yachting. It was one of our more extravagant excursion but well worth it. There were only 14 of us on the catamaran plus 3 crew, on a 6 hour trip out of the port on the south of perissa beach. The crew gave us an informative guided tour around the south peninsular all the way to the volcanic hot springs, which are not really hot as you’d imagine, and smells a bit whiffy due to the minerals sulphur in the water. They stop off so you can swim if you want to, but be warned it will turn any silver jewellery brown and possibly your swimwear although it’s meant to be amazing for your skin. I declined, I mean have you seen all my rings, I didn’t want them going rusty! It then sails back to white beach (don’t be fooled, it’s named only because of the rock colour and not the sand as you’d hope) anchors up for an hour for another swim and snorkel in crystal clear waters before cooking a lovely BBQ aboard the boat. It was one of the best meals I ate that week IMO. Then to top it off before heading home you can relax and watch the sunset from the back of the boat!
10. It’s well worth hiring a car as we got to see pretty much all of the island during our trip, although I hear the busses are quite good during high season it was much nicer to be free and have some aircon.
11. Santo wines was a special evening. Sited in the middle of the caldera view we enjoyed many wines with another beautiful sunset.
Well yes it is defo as pretty as the iconic photos make out but it is also very popular with the tourists which means it was so busy and SO many people taking photos everywhere. And SO many Asian weddings, I’m sure we must have seen about 20-30 weddings, what a cool place to have wedding photos. There are lots of little shops to browse and I even found a sephora which I was not expecting! Pretty much everyone sells the same thing though so once you’ve seen one shop you’ve pretty much seen them all. One thing we didn’t end up doing was the cable cars down to the port but I think that would have been worth the money. I defo would NOT have wanted to go down on the donkeys, the lady at our apartments warned us it’s a very steep and windy route down and I didn’t fancy dyeing on a donky mid honeymoon! Not to mention I felt like the use of them was pretty cruel, the amount of suitcase I saw piled up on some of them was insane, and they don’t look big enough or strong enough to carry my weight!
13. My highlight in Fira was Volkan Cinema bar. We didn’t actually use the cinema but it’s at the very top of Fira and if you like beer they sell a variety of Volkan beer, I love a dark beer and the Volkan black was my fav! And the view was pretty spectacular. Dare you to press the button on the entrance and see what happens!!
The most quintessentially beautiful place of them all. Much like Fira it’s crammed with tourists, especially at sunset but it very much reminded me of a Cornish village. Very quaint. I’d recommend walking down all the steps to see what you discover. 100% the best place for photos. We did also want to go down to the port there too but I was put off by the 500 plus steps down and back up. If you’re feeling rested and fit then I hear it’s a good swim!
15. Atlantis Bookshop
Finally one of my most memorably magical places we discovered was Atlantis bookshop. Bookshop I hear you ask, you did not come all the way to Santorini to look in a Bookshop. This is not just any old bookshop, it’s a tiny cave of a place where the owners sleep above all the bookshelves and live breath and work books. Cute little notes and anecdotes fill the place, all kinds of books belong here including original books priced at €20000 and things to look at in every nook and cranny, filled to the brim with magical literature.