Famous for the cliff-side white house with blue roofs and the unmistakable romantic sunset. Santorini is a postcard-perfect island which many tourists think of as a beach destination but in fact, locals know that the dreamy views are of those from the cliffs.
We found our apartment in a quiet residential quarter, 7 minutes walk from the Chora (town). Inside was a 2 room apartment equipped with a small kitchen and living space, a bounteous double bed with a cute dressing area and a medium-sized bathroom. Each apartment in the building had a sunny terrace; the apartments also had a communal pool and breakfast area.
Since we were only there for two days, we decided on getting a tour for our second day to see the major tourist points. After settling into the hotel we walked up to the Chora to hop on a bus to go to the magnificent Red Beach, which sits south of the island. Known as one of the most colourful beaches in the world, it takes its colour from the iron-rich rocks formed as a result of a volcanic eruption. Generally, the water is a few degrees warmer, and we sure experienced that. I cannot imagine coming to this beach in July or early August, I’d be roasting!
Early evening, we headed back to the hotel to go an enjoy a romantic dinner at Nicholas Tavan. Every dish is made fresh and daily and also the produce is sourced seasonally and locally. Word of advice, come early if you want to ensure you get to try the dish you want. The staff were kind and welcoming, offering advice on what to try and their recommendations went down a treat.
The next day we had an early start and set off on our tour, we took a bus to the port where we took a boat to the volcano and we had about 1hr 15 to explore the craters. After that we moved onto the hot springs of Palaia Kameni where we have the opportunity to swim in at the risk of smelling like sulphur for at least the rest of the day. After we moved on to the island Thirassia where we had free time to eat lunch or enjoy the clear waters of the island.
The tour ended in Oia to enjoy the iconic sunset. Oia sits on top of a steep slope of the caldera and to get from the port to the town we had two options, walk up or take a donkey and I’m sure you all know which I chose. My donkey had zero chill and started going up without the leader, but I’m still here to tell the tale. The main places to view it get super packed so the best idea is to find a hidden spot as soon as you arrive. The bus then took us back to Fira at 19:30 with enough time to have dinner and a little boogie before heading to the airport for our early morning flight.
Santorini is a dream, it’s one of those islands you have to visit in your lifetime and preferably with someone special. If I ever get the chance to return, which I hope I will, I would love to spend more days exploring the towns and smaller villages.