From the moment you arrive on Santorini you will be blown away by the island’s striking beauty. The most romantic and picturesque of the Greek islands, prepare for a view worthy of Greek theatre. The volcanic history of the island translates into a unique spiritual quality. One of the main attractions on the island is the restaurants, boasting viewpoints resting peacefully in the cliffs, offering you a vision of beauty and (arguably) the best sunset in the world. It is a scene only nature can produce, and one you will remember for a lifetime.
Saving Money Tips | Santorini
Santorini can be an expensive trip but if you organise your stay wisely, you can get by relatively cheap.
- Avoid taxis– The buses run mainly from Thira. They are both frequent and cheap. They are a great way to see the island, you can get to the famous Red beach, Oia and all the main attractions from Thira. On other parts of the island the buses are infrequent and the taxis are expensive. For those willing to, the best way to get around is to rent your own ATV, the roads are safe and you can see most this way.
- Drink Deals– Stick to the local wine for delicious flavours and at reasonable prices. Drinks are expensive on Santorini however there are offers if you look out for happy hour for example 2 for 1 on drinks.
- Food deals – Stick to buying lunch and extra snacks in the supermarket, although prices are high in the supermarkets, it still works out cheaper than eating out every meal. For a delicious cheap Greek cuisine you can find Gyros on Santorini for 2 – 3 euro, although the more health conscious may want to avoid this kebab style dish high in saturated fats.
- Avoid Oia hotels– Most definitely worth the day trip however to stay in Oia is more expensive than other parts of the island – try and keep this destination as a day trip as room rate rocket here during the peak months.
- Visit the island off peak – If you book in advance you can get great deals for peak seasons however it is much cheaper to fly and stay in Santorini in the off peak seasons before June – accommodation and flights can be up to half price.
- Book in advance – Book 6 months in advance for the best deals! Accommodation gets snapped up quickly on the island and you can get great deals in advance.
- Flight Search engine – Use Sky scanner for the best flight deals – you can choose to view flights monthly to find which days are the cheapest to fly.
Top Things to do
Santo wines – Visit Santo Winery in Pyros for the best value for money and breath-taking scenery. Enjoy wine tastings over looking the ample terrace with caldera views. Transport to the winery is relatively easy, let the bus driver know when you get on the bus and it will stop a few minutes walk away.
Red Beach – Easy to get to from Thira on bus, this beach is at the south of the island. In peak season it can get overcrowded here so I would go early in the day to get a good spot on the beach.
Perissa Beach – If you are looking for a relaxing spot on the island, Perissa is a great place to be, offering you a choice of great restaurants & beaches.
Amoudi Bay – There is not many sandy beaches in Santorini, however you can find coves hidden into the rocks where you can jump into the sea and sun bathe comfortably. A 30 minute walk (300 steps) or a 20 minute donkey ride away from Oia town, you can find many sea front restaurants along Amoudi bay, the restaurants here serve fresh fish from dusk ‘til dawn.
Boat trip – Departing from the main port in Santorini or Amoudi port you can experience many boat trips on the island visiting parts you cannot get to on foot. Prices range from 60 euro – 90 euro and each boat holds around 50 passengers. If you have extra money to spend you can enjoy a private boat tour starting from around 300 euro and above.
Where to eat | Santorini
Athenian House $$$$ – Imergovigli – For an unforgettable experience visit the Athenian House. This fine dining experience with spectacular views on the caldera is the experience of a lifetime, and the undoubtedly one of the finest dining experiences in the Cyclades. The service is possible the most attentive on the island, but most impressively is the food. Critically acclaimed chefs contribute towards this outstanding menu, a perfect mixture of tastes and accompanying aromas combined with the impressive setting mean this place is perfect for a special occaasion in Santorini. Recommendations are the Baklava for dessert and the award winning lamb mosuaka for main.
Noma Kuzina Mediterra $$ – Perissa – Noma Restaurant is located along the front of the promenade offering beautiful views of the beach. The décor and atmosphere is relaxing and comfortable, the food is fresh yet clearly made with love. One of the most interesting facts about this restaurant they cook with a special ingredient, the zea grain. Noma is the only restaurant in Perissa, which offers this Greek hidden gem, the grain boasts many health benefits compared with traditional wheat based carbohydrates.
Pito Gyros $ – Oia – Located down one of the side streets in Oia, you will be for sure greeted with great customer service at Pito Gyros. Food is served promptly and you have the option to sit outside in the courtyard. Prices are cheap here for Oia, you can get two beers and two gyros for around 10 euro.
Where to stay in Santorini
Recommended Hotel – Meltemi Village (Perissa) $$$ – Only a couple of minutes walk to the beach and promenade the location is perfect for a relaxing holiday! A warm, comfortable and relaxing stay close to the beach. The décor of the resort is white and blue with blossoming flowers welcoming you as you enter into reception. As you walk around the pool area you will admire palm leaf umbrella with sunbeds! One of the special features is the service, the staff are extremely attentive. Enjoy a glass of wine or beer at generous prices at the pool bar area. The breakfast offers a range of choices with something for everyone. There is also a bus stop seconds away from the hotel for getting around Santorini.
Soulis Apartments (Oia) $$ – If you are looking for a cheaper option in Oia but still with a touch of class this is a great option! Extremely inviting, friendly staff and set in a quiet location. The complex offers a large pool with plentiful sun loungers, which are not over crowded. The apartments are spacious with the garden view including a queen bed with 3 singles in a private room. The breakfast offers plentiful options and you can find delicious food for example Greek salads for dinner at the resort.
Absolute Bliss $$$$ – Imerovigli – Set in one of the most relaxing parts of the island with the most spectacular views, this part of the island is situated between Thira and Oia. On arrival you will feel the luxurious ambience with a refreshment drink and staff that cannot do enough for you. You can expect room service here and a breakfast you will not get bored of. Exceptionally clean and your own hot tub on the balcony is a real treat with breathtaking views.