Santorini is one of the most famous of the Greek islands. One of the most visited places in all of Greece, it is justly famous for its stunning views of the Aegean, magnificent sunsets, and picturesque cliff-side villages.
However, it’s best to remember that Santorini isn’t like any other Greek island. Here are 6 things you shouldn’t do when traveling to Santorini
1. Try not to visit during the summer
During the summer high season (May to October) the island gets super busy and is extremely crowded. While this doesn’t necessarily mean that you can’t have a good time, everything moves at a considerably slower pace due to the sheer numbers of visitors. Perhaps the best months to visit are March, April, and November, when it still isn’t too cold to go swimming and quite a few of the restaurants, hotels. and businesses are still open.
2. Don’t go looking for Ios or Mykonos
Unlike the nearby islands of Ios and Mykonos, Santorini is not primarily a party destination. While some of the bigger towns, such as Fira and Kamari, do have a few clubs, the island is better known for its relaxed vibes. While it is entirely possible to go for a big bash on Perrisa’s beachfront, it’s far simpler to put your feet up and enjoy the slow pace of life on the island.
3. Go beyond Oia, Fira, and Perrisa
Oia and Fira are some of the most popular villages on Santorini and for good reason. The blue-roofed houses almost sparkle against the cliff sides, and they are often covered in colorful pink bougainvillea blossoms. However, there is much more to the island, including the black pebble beaches at Kamari, Vlychada’s white beach, and the charming backstreets of Pyrgos.
4. Don’t stick to the beaches
There is much more to Santorini than its admittedly stunning beaches and even its colorful towns. It is also full of history and natural wonders. Visit the once-buried Minoan city at Akrotiri, often called the “Pompeii of the Aegean,” or the ancient castles, or kastelli, and churches at Emporio.
5. You needn’t spend a fortune on food
The more popular a spot on Santorini, the more expensive it is likely to be, much like on Capri. You’re likely to pay much more for food and drink in Fira and Oia than you would at Vlychada or Perissa. It’s also worth noting that these smaller towns also have many traditional taverns which serve generous portions of delicious food for much less.
6. You don’t have to go on a tour to see the island
Santorini is full of pre-booked tours – volcano tours, hot spring tours, boat tours, winery tours, you name it, they have it. However, going on a tour is likely to restrict your experience of the island. Instead, rent a bike, a scooter, or a car, and explore the island at your own pace. It’s so small, you’re not likely to get lost, but you are likely to see so much more.