The ultimate guide to Santorini


Santorini, Thira or Strogili (older name) is an island of the Cyclades complex, located in the southern Aegean Sea, south of Ios and west of Anafi. 

Its distance from Piraeus (the main port of Greece) is 128 nautical miles and 63 nautical miles from Crete. The island’s main port is Athinios. The whole island area reaches 76.19 square kilometers. Santorini has long been considered the most spectacular island of the Aegean sea and one of the most famous tourist destinations in the world. The myth of the Lost City of Atlantis even found its home here!

Santoni’s most distinctive feature and the one that gives the island some its most unique attributes is the fact that it constitutes an active volcano! In fact, the formation of the island as it can be viewed today is the result of series volcanic eruptions, the first of which took place thousands of years ago, causing a significant geomorphic, ecological and cultural upheaval across the Aegean Sea – and quite possibly across the entire world.

Three more powerful eruptions in the course of the last two millennia, the last one in 1650 AD, have formed the shape of Santorini as we know it today, complete with its breath-taking Caldera views, its multiple volcanic craters, most of which can be visited, its unique architecture, colorful beaches and fertile grounds, producing world-famous wines and vegetables that famously only grow here.


An island for all tastes

Visiting Santorini you may choose between any type of vacation you desire, since the island is ideal both for relaxing and more active pass-times. Depending on the time you have and the accommodation you choose, you will be able personalize your holidays according to your style and needs. All UP Living properties in Santorini guarantee the highest quality services, with foremost that of a good night's sleep. Combine the best in accommodation premises with the beauty of the island itself and you will sure be in for the perfect vacation treat.

From lounging at the edge of the Caldera to enjoy a cocktail and magnificent views to exploring underwater craters and from learning more about the island’s history, dating as far back as the Bronze Age, to tasting gourmet dishes made from fresh local produce accompanied by world famous wines, Santorini is an ideal destination for all types of travelers.

To learn more about Santorini and its unique features, just click play on the following video:


Map of Santorini

How to get to Santorini island

You may reach this unique island by air. There are two daily standard flights available throughout the year. The flight options multiply during the summer period, with four companies offering at least 10 daily flights from Athens (from 5:15 am until 23:15 pm - flight duration is just 45 minutes), while many international and charter flights fly to Santorini greece (or via Athens) from around Europe. The airport is located just 7 klm from the island's capital, Fira.

There are also plenty of ferry options to reach Santorini from the port of Pireaus (carrier ferries, speedboats, cruise ships) that depart early in the morning or in the afternoon. There are at least four ferry routes daily, with the speedboats (departing at 7:00 and 7:15 am) taking 5 hours and 30 minutes to reach the island and the regular ferry (departing at 18:00 pm) taking a little less than 7 hours. There are a couple of more regular ferry options on Monday, Tuesday and Saturday, which are slower because they dock in many other islands along the way.

Finally, you can easily combine your vacations in Santorini with other places in Greece, such as Athens or other islands of the Cyclades complex or even Crete, since there are plenty of options connecting the island with mainland Greece and the surrounding islands by sea or air.


Being one of the most popular Greek islands, there are plenty of options available for you to reach Santorini, especially during the summer period.

What are some of the best locals food specialties in Santorini?

Like any other region in Greece, Santorini has its own traditional food tastes.

One of the most famous ingredient that people of Santorini use almost everywhere is Santorini’s FAVA. Fava is a unique kind of beans that grown only in Santorini and is a part of Santorini’s diet and philosophy from the ancient Greek time of Minoans. 

One more legendary ingredient that Santorini has to show, is the little tomatoes (tomataki) that also grown only in Santorini and you can find them in almost all recipes that arising from the island. Crimson, juicy, aromatic and first of all healthy included on Mediterranean circle of eating. 

To find out more about local food philosophy of Santorini, meet Kapari, traditional barley rusk, katsouni (the real cucumber), goat cheese and the sweetest eggplants visit the link below.

Oia, built on the cliff of Santorini

One of the most famous settlement of the island

Oia is located at the north side of Santorini island and is one of the most famous villages. Annually Oia attracting million of tourists all over the world in order to rest for the summer, especially for its amazing sunset as well as they say it is one of the most beautiful all over the globe.

Geographically, oia is at the north side as we mentioned before, 11 km away from Fira, the modern capital of Santorini. We can say that the architecture of Oia is as special as the breathtaking sunset

You can hear by locals, calling Oia also as 'Apano Meria' or 'Anomeria' and themselves  'Apanomerites' meaning the people that living in Ia.


Santorini beaches you have to visit

Where is the best place to swim in Santorini

Hello Visitor,


In this section you can find a special collection of the best beaches of Santorini. Although Santorini is not the first that comes to mind for its beaches that offering, because of the strange surroundings, the island own some of the best beaches in the world, which when you visit, you will never forget.


The best sunset spots in Santorini

Ok, we all know that the summer is to enjoy the sun and much more when you have visited a greek island maybe is the only reason. Therefore there is also a reason to be happy when sun is leaving, the sunset. Sunset in Santorini is unique, romantic and easy to approach from many places. Click below to see all the spots.

Best restaurants of Santorini

Dining with the Gods in Santorini

This place on earth has truly been blessed: as the beauty of the surroundings wasn't enough, all natural elements – including the disasters that have befallen it through the ages – have nurtured Santorini's soil to bear of some of Greece's most coveted produce. Combine that with some of Europe's best vineyards and the culinary artestry of some of the world's best chefs and you get a collection of gourmet restaurants worthy of the Gods. 

Santorini Island experiences

The explosive power of this volcanic island creates an energy that overwhelms the senses: a summer holiday dream.

Among hundreds of things you can do in Santorini island is of course sightseeing, visit the museums, visit Akrotiri, have a romantic dinner on the rim of Caldera, follow gastronomic destination and organised routes, experience scuba diving in Santorini’s bottom, visit the Volcano and learn how it started.

The island of Santorini fits to those who love to have vibrant vacation life, also for people who have as main objective the knowledge and history and want to choose an island from this aspect and finally for those who want to spent their holidays with their families and need to spent their vacation at a family friendly island. Santorini fulfilled all prerequisites above.

Whichever group you belong to, find here the 20 things you have to do in order to tell your friends that you have enjoyed your staying at Santorini.

Santorini Museums

Santorini Class Clash

With agriculture and nautical commerce leading Santorini's financial life all through the second half of the second millennium A.D., the island's social classes have mainly been distinguished by their involvement with the local industries. People either exercised a craft or owned the land producing the materials for those crafts or the ships that carried their products to neighbouring countries and even further away. The social classes were thus easily distinguishable, between the nobles and the workers, both of whom lived in different types of houses, worked under different circumstances and enjoyed different types of privilegdes.

Two historical mansions, one cave house and a winery complex, dating from the 17th and 18th centuries, are still standing today, fully restored and refurbished and open to visitors, offering a unique and authentic glance into the life and works of the Thiran upper and lower class of not so long ago.

Santorini: An insider's view

An interdisciplinary creative platform, a non-for-profit foundation, a traditional musical organs' workshop and an alternative summer school

As many a travel guide will tell you, Santorini is a truly majestic place full of sights and wonders. The architecture, the scenery, the volcano, the tastes, sounds and traditions give you more than enough motives to go exploring. But if you really want some inside knowledge, these are the four places you should visit.

Santorini: Adrenaline Rush!

Alternative things to do in Santorini

If you are not really the type to lay on the beach soaking in the sun all day, you can definitely pick a more energetic way to spend you time and explore Santorini's sights and shores. Your options range from the lightly stamina challenging to outright daredevil!


Santorini's Castles

5 Testiments of Old

Many conquerors have come and gone, but the natural structure, the land and the people of Santorini have persevered through the ages. Today, there are several remnants of the way they lived and dealt with danger, most important of which are the five castles, still standing above the island's most popular settlements.

The Famous Santorini Festivals

A rare mixture of art and spectacle

Inspired by Santorini’s unique landscape, the locals have always been fond of the arts and eager to combine their love for the island with their appreciation for music, plastic arts and… physical stamina! And they organize four festivals every year to celebrate it.

The yummiest desserts in Santorini

Santorini is the perfect place to let all your senses indulge to your heart’s content…

The sun, the view, the scenery, the architecture, the sea, the traditions, the nature, the volcano, the wines, the gastronomy… The list is endless. And it needs a cherry on top! 

Imagine diving into a mouth-watering dessert, while enjoying one of the most magnificent views in the world. Your eyes savour the colours of the plate artfully arranged in front of you, while wandering off to the blue horizon between the Aegean and the Caldera. You can almost taste the sweetness of the crème, the richness of the chocolate, the refreshing juices of the fruits and the crunchiness of the nuts, so exquisitely joined in the recipe….

Practical info for Santorini

  • Municipality: +30 22860 22231 - +30 22863 60109
  • Police Station: +30 22860 22649
  • Health center: +30 22863 60300
  • Vets: +30 2860 31482 - +30 6976 573236
  • Port Authority:+30  22860 22239
  • Tax Office: +30 22860 24619
  • Airport: +30 22860 31525
  • Olympic Airway: +30 22860 31666 - 21035 50500
  • Aegean: +30 22860 28500
  • Bus Station: +30 22860 23812
  • Taxi Station: +30 22860 22555
  • Funicular: +30 22860 22977
  • Post Office: +30 22860 22238
  • Fire department: +30 22860 33199
  • Pharmacy: +30 22860 23444
  • National Bank: +30 22860 22662


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