Best Time of Year to Visit Santorini

Updated: October 25, 2016

When is the best time to visit Santorini? A guide to the best months to go to Santorini.


Q. When is the best time to visit Santorini?

  • Best Time for Good Weather and Swimming: The warmest weather in Santorini (and all the Greek islands) is between June and September when it’s sunny, hot, and the water is perfect for swimming. Water temperature heats throughout the summer months and is warmest in August and early September. Swimming in May and October is usually possible but can’t be guaranteed.
  • Best Time for Sightseeing: If you’re visiting Santorini more for the sights, views, wineries, and food then you don’t need hot temperatures just warm pleasant weather. So the months of April, May, October, and early November are great times for touring the sights. The weather is still warm by northern european standards though there can be some rain and warmer clothing should be packed.
  • Best Time for Island Hopping: Santorini has a much longer travel season than the other Greek islands (because there’s more than just beaches here). That makes visiting in the quieter months (March, April, early May, late October, and November) a great option. But be aware other islands will be very quiet during these months so if you’re interested in seeing a few other islands it’s best to come between mid-May and mid-October.
  • Best Time for Saving Money: Hotels are much cheaper in the low season (November to March) and shoulder season (April, May, and October) than in the summer months. Transportation, food, and drink prices tend not to vary much by season. If you want good weather but cheap hotels then late May, early June, late September, or early October are great times. There are no guarantees but the first three weeks of October can often surprise visitors with great weather.
  • High Season (late June to early September): Hot, sunny weather with lots of people – but never so many that it’s unenjoyable. Prices are at their peak. Sea water at its warmest and best for swimming. Ferries and flights run with the greatest frequency. If you’re in Greece for the nightlife then this is the time to visit.
  • Shoulder Season (May and June, September and October): Great weather. Sunny and warm but not blazingly hot like the summer. Tourists are many but it’s never crowded. Everything is open and ferries are running nearly all of their routes. The sea might not be warm enough for swimming in May and October.
  • Low Season (November to April): Santorini is getting increasingly popular in the winter months. It can be a great time to see the sights and save money but weather-wise be prepared for anything. This is winter and that means gray skies, cool weather, and some rain. Many hotels and restaurants are closed (but there’s enough open to get by). Fira is the most practical place to stay in the off-season as it has the most open. Ferries and flights have very limited schedules though there’ll be at least one a day going to Athens.

Santorini Weather by Month

Santorini temperature by month. The hottest and coldest months to visit.

Santorini rain by month. The driest and rainiest months of the year.

The best weather on Santorini is from June to September. July and August are the busiest months when hotels are full and restaurants are crowded. If you’re more interested in sightseeing, hiking, and great views then May and October are great months to visit.

  • January Weather on Santorini: Damp, cold, and windy (by Santorini standards). January is the rainiest month and one of the coldest. The island is very quiet with few tourists. Many restaurants and hotels are closed but you will always be able to find something open in Oia and Fira. The beach towns are completely shutdown. (Average Max Temperature: 14°C. Average Rainfall: 42mm.)
  • February Weather on Santorini: Much like January. February is Santorini’s coldest month. There is a little less rain than December and January (Average Max Temperature: 14°C. Average Rainfall: 35mm.)
  • March Weather on Santorini: A noticeable change occurs in March from the previous 3 months. There is less rain, more sun, and warmer temperatures. This can be a nice time to visit for hikers and sightseers but visitors should be prepared for some rain and cold nights. By the end of March most hotels and restaurants are open. (Average Max Temperature: 16°C. Average Rainfall: 32mm.)
  • April Weather on Santorini: A great month for hiking, sightseeing, and touring the wineries. On warm years it’s possible to have a few beach days at the end of the month. (Average Max Temperature: 19°C. Average Rainfall: 12mm.)
  • May Weather on Santorini: There are big differences between early May (when cool cloudy days can still be common) and late May (when the days are consistently sunny and warm). May is the month when the beach towns dust off the cob webs and open for business. (Average Max Temperature: 22°C. Average Rainfall: 7mm.)
  • June Weather on Santorini: June is a hot sunny month and the start of beach season when tourists arrive in large numbers. (Average Max Temperature: 26°C. Average Rainfall: 0.3mm.)
  • July Weather on Santorini: Hot and sunny. Along with August July is the busiest month on Santorini. Book rooms months at least 3 months in advance for July visits – especially for luxury hotels. (Average Max Temperature: 27°C. Average Rainfall: 0.9mm.)
  • August Weather on Santorini: Hot and sunny with occasional strong winds (called the meltemi) that can cancel ferries and catamarans. Book rooms at least 3 months in advance for August visits – especially for luxury hotels. (Average Max Temperature: 27°C. Average Rainfall: 0.4mm.)
  • September Weather on Santorini: Hot and sunny but cooling a little from August. The weather is similar to June but the water tends to be warmer as it heats over the summer months. Winds have died down. September is the best month to visit Santorini. Hotels are still very busy and can be fully booked months in advance. (Average Max Temperature: 25°C. Average Rainfall: 6mm.)
  • October Weather on Santorini: October is much like May but the weather is moving in the opposite direction. There is often a large difference between early October (when days can be hot and sunny) and late October – when you can find some cool rainy days and visits to the beach seem a distant memory. (Average Max Temperature: 22°C. Average Rainfall: 18mm.)
  • November Weather on Santorini: The cool and cloudy days of winter arrive in November. Early November can still see some warm days when a visit to the beach could be possible for the very brave. Almost all luxury hotels are closed by November 15. Oia and Fira stay moderately active until the final cruise ship of the season makes its visit (usually in mid to late November). (Average Max Temperature: 18°C. Average Rainfall: 44mm.)
  • December Weather on Santorini: Cool, cloudy, and rainy, though there are often stretches of sunny days. Fira is the hub of most activity during the winter as most other towns are completely shut down. Oia will have at least a few restaurants and hotels open as well. (Average Max Temperature: 15°C. Average Rainfall: 46mm.)

How long to spend on Santorini – You need 2 to 3 days minimum to get a feel for the island, see the top attractions, experience the sunset from a couple of different locations, and try some of the island’s great restaurants. You could easily fill a week with long walks, swimming and sunbathing, and more eating, clubbing, and dancing. If you have more than a week in Greece then I’d encourage you to spend 7 to 10 days on Santorini and then travel to a different island as there are so many great islands to see. You’d likely experience more by seeing Naxos, Paros, Ios, Mykonos, Crete, or Rhodes than staying in Santorini for a second week.

Video: An Introduction to Santorini

See Also

246 Questions and Comments

  1. Santorini in Mid November

    Hi Dave,

    I’m thinking of visiting Santorini may be in the 2nd week of November. Is it worth visiting this time and which places would you recommend.

    Thanks in advance
    KSK Sharma

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Yes, definitely worth visiting for the beauty and sightseeing (but not good for beach time or swimming). Stay in Fira or Oia as the other towns will be very quiet by then.

  2. Where to go in Greece in April

    Hi Dave,
    Will be traveling to Greece with my hubby from 13th – 25th April 2017. Will be spending the first 4 nights in Athens followed by the next 5 nights in Santorini. I’m unable to decide where to go for the remaining days. Any suggestions on where to go for the early flower season? Thanks muchie! Alexis

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Crete is wonderful in late April. It gets warm there first before the rest of Greece and you can get some beautiful days towards the end of April. Ferries from Santorini start on April 7th in 2017 (on SeaJets) and leave at 5pm (arriving in Crete at 6:40pm).

  3. Football on TV in Santorini

    Hi Dave I’m wondering if there is anywhere in oia or close by which shows British football live? I’m travelling tomorrow for a week and will be looking for somewhere to watch the football at the weekend. Thanks, Ryan Graham

  4. February in Santorini

    Hi Dave, thanks for sharing.

    We are planning our Santorini trip in mid February 2017. I understand that it’s low season & winter time but was wondering if we could still see gorgeous blue skies and lovely sunsets. Would you suggest staying in Fira for easy access to restaurants or should we split our stay between Oia and Fira? I’m planning 6 nights in Santorini and 2 nights in Athens before we head home. I read so much about petty crimes in Athens & would appreciate any advice you could give? Thanks! 🙂

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Santorini can be wonderful in February (some people absolutely love it during winter/off-season) – as long as you know what to expect. There is more open every year as winter becomes a more popular time to visit but it is still very quiet. Fira will have the most open and the most activity by far. I would split my time with 4 nights in Fira and 2 in Oia. Weather can be anything from clear, warm, and stunningly beautiful to cool and overcast. I have never had a problem in Athens or even witnessed a problem. Stay in the central touristy areas of Syntagma, Monastiraki, and the Plaka and you almost certainly will not have an issue.

  5. Santorini in Early November

    Hi Dave
    My wife and I were going to Santorini in early November, we are from Puerto Rico wich is a tropical island. We are staying in Fanari. What are the recomended clothes and any tips that you want to share. It’s her dream trip and I want everything to go perfect. Thanks, Juan

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Be prepared for some cool weather (especially coming from Puerto Rico). Have at least one good warm sweater and rain jacket. Also have short/t-shirts as you should get some nice days too.

  6. Santorini – First Week of November

    Hi Dave, thank you so much for doing up such a detailed site about Santorini and the neighbouring islands! We will be visiting Santorini in first week of November and we aren’t sure where is good to visit. Are the beaches open then and what are the sea temperatures?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Beaches are always “open” but very unlikely that anyone would be swimming in early November – though with a late-season spike in temps and it’s not impossible. Weather is often great in November for hiking and sightseeing, but be prepared for cool evenings and some light rain.

  7. Santorini in February

    Hi Dave, I have planned a ‘low-season’ trip this coming Spring Break February, 2017, with my 14 yo daughter. I understand the weather and limitations of the time of year, but I would like to know of any special insights that low-season visitors could take advantage of, or be aware?

    Derek E Graham

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Yes, you won’t be hitting the beach and most tours won’t be running yet (e.g. boat tours of the caldera). But all the main attractions will be open Ancient Thira, Akrotiri, and the main archaeological museum in Fira. Lots of restaurants will be closed but the ones that stay open are often some of the best traditional places (as they are mainly serving locals). I would stay in Fira as it has the most open. It’s always easiest to get around the island when based in Fira but especially so in the low season with the reduced bus schedule.

  8. Ferries from Santorini to Crete in Late October

    Hi Dave,
    Thanks for the very informative site. We are planning to visit Santorini in the last week of October. We are thinking of going to Crete (anywhere in Crete) from Santorini on 26th of October. But it seems there isn’t any ferry service anymore at that time. May I know if you have any other suggestions?

    Thanks in advanced for your help.


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      The last ferries of October (and the year) depart Santorini on Tuesday October 25 (SeaJets) and Saturday October 29 (Anek).

  9. Getting to Santorini in November

    We are coming to Greece in Novemeber. We would like to take a boat to the islands, but none of the ferry lines seem to have schedules up. Are there any boats in Novemeber to Santorini?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      There will be at least one ferry to Santorini (the Blue Star) every day in November. Maybe some others too if it’s early November.

  10. Hotel with Open Feel, Lots of Light

    Hi Dave,

    Thank you for all of the wonderful information here! My wife is claustrophobic and it looks like a lot of the luxury Santorini hotels are in caves. Any recommendations on ones that might have more windows/lots of sunlight etc?

    George P.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Aria Suites in Fira are not cave rooms and have many windows with lots of light streaming in. Nice open feel.

  11. Santorini in Early September

    Hi Dave,
    My wife and I will be arriving in Santorini on 4th September for a two week stay and chill holiday.
    Can we expect lovely sunny days?
    We have booked at Amperlonas apartments in Imerogivili, as it’s more our cup of tea, smaller, family run and with the bonus of a pool and great views, have we made a good choice with our accommodation and location?
    We couldn’t find anything that had the reviews/pool and views for anything near the bargain (we think) price of £1,300 for accommodation.
    My wife doesn’t swim, and whilst I can, I only swim where I can touch the floor.
    So on that basis can you recommend a good boat trip, which doesn’t involve lots of swimming stops, so we feel more involved opposed to sitting on the boat and watching others swim?
    Thank you in advance, and for taking the time to make such an informative and wonderful website for everyone.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Yes, weather in early September should be perfect. Hot, sunny, and crowds have died down from their summer peak. Ampelonas is a very nice hotel with a good pool and deck. But it doesn’t really have great views in the sense that it’s back from the caldera a little bit. It’s across a path from the cliff’s edge and sort of in the second row of hotels from the caldera. So, the views are right there, steps from your hotel, but you won’t really be sitting out on the pool deck gazing into the caldera – which is no big deal, as long as you know what you’re getting. As for the boat trips, yes there are some tours that don’t have a swimming component. That said, even the ones that do offer swimming (usually in the hot springs) – that portion of the tour is only 45 minutes to an hour long. So, not a big deal, but I agree, if you can avoid it you might as well.

  12. Family Quad Suites in Santorini

    Hi Dave
    Great site! We are planning a family trip for June 2017, with 4 adults (one will be 70) and 4 kids ages 6-10. We plan on spending 3 nights in Santorini and 3 nights in Naxos. Thinking Nissaki Beach Hotel for Naxos but unsure for Santorini. We will need quad rooms and would love an awesome view and a pool where kids are welcome. What’s your recommendation?
    Melanie W

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Imerovigli has the most and best hotels that both allow children and have great views. Four that are good for families are Astra (5 star hotel with great family suites), Tholos (smaller pool, not quite as luxurious as Astra), Kasimatis Studios (great pool but most rooms are set back from the cliff a little bit), and Merovigliosso (super friendly “budget” hotel with small pool, across the road from the caldera view).

  13. Booking Ferries in Advance

    Hi Dave ,

    Your blog is very informative and useful. We are in Greece in first week of June. We are doing island hopping starting from Santorini through Paros, Naxos and at last Mykonos.

    My question is, Do we have to book the ferries between these islands in advance? Or can we buy the tickets before hopping ferries ?

    Is there a price difference if i book in advance?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Early June you should be fine without pre-booking ferries. The only time when pre-booking ferries is essential is the week before and after August 15 (a huge greek holiday). At other times in July and August pre-booking can be wise for peace of mind but you’d likely be fine buying a day or two before sailing. In June it’s rare that a ferry will be sold out – but do buy as soon after arriving in Greece as possible.

  14. Staying in Perissa?

    Hi Dave,

    Your site is a great resource especially for the first time visitor. Thank you.

    I have booked Artemis Hotel in Perissa in early June. Have I made the right choice of hotel and resort for a couple in their mid sixties ?


    Ian Adams

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Artemis is a nice hotel a 10 minute walk to Perissa beach (the nicest sand on Santorini) with many restaurants and bars. Also, good access to the path up (way up) to Ancient Thera. If you do the climb, come down on the opposite side to Kamari and take the boat back to Perissa. The downside to staying in Perissa is that you’re a 20 to 30 minute bus ride to Fira (and the caldera) and a similar ride from Fira on to Oia. So, if you’re visiting Santorini to see the caldera and volcano, you’re not walking out of your hotel and enjoying the views. Probably good to rent a car for a day or two if you stay out here.

  15. Should I Pre-Book

    Hi Dave, love the site! It has been a great help for us. We are traveling from Athens to Santorini, arriving on the ferry and I’m wondering about rental cars. Is it worth pre-booking something online through a broker or are there lots of options at the port itself?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Pre-book a rental car under 2 circumstances: you want a larger vehicle or you want an automatic in July or August. Otherwise you should be fine. There are rental agencies at the port but I would take the bus into Fira and then rent from some place near your hotel. They should deliver it right to your hotel if you ask.

  16. Santorini, Athens, and Zakynthos

    Hello Dave,

    My friend and I are studying abroad in Europe and we’re planning on visiting Greece during one of our breaks. We’re interested in visiting Santorini, Athens, and Zakynthos. There seems to be daily ferries that travel to Santorini and Zakynthos. Do you think 3-4 days of traveling would be enough time?

    Thank you!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Santorini and Zakynthos are opposite sides of Greece and not connected by ferry. With just 3 or 4 days you have to pick one or the other to visit (plus Athens).

  17. Backpacking in Santorini and Mykonos without Hotel Reservations

    Hello Dave.

    My girlfriend and I are traveling from Canada, we are in our late 20’s and are planning to travel around southern Europe. We are planning to visit Santorini and Mykonos mid May. However we don’t want to be tied down with a concrete schedule and want to do lots of exploring. My question is if its ok to arrive on these particular islands without hotel reservations and still find somewhere to stay during this time of year. Hostels and cheaper hotels is the route we would like to take. Neither one of us have been to Greece, any advice from you would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      In May, it will be totally fine to arrive on an island without a hotel reservation. For the better hotels, booking in advance is best/mandatory but for budget hotels you’ll be fine. There should be hotel owners meeting all arriving ferries and offering rooms. These are usually pretty good. Just check location and really get them to pinpoint where their hotel is located before leaving with them (they’ll give you a free ride to the hotel). Try to arrive on a new island early in the day for the most choice and least amount of stress (say, before noon).

      1. Backpacking in Santorini and Mykonos without hotel reservations.

        Thank you very much for the advice, Your input along with your website has been very informative and helpful. We are planning to fly into Santorini from Italy to maximize our time in Greece. Are the hotel owners offering rooms as abundant at the airport as the ferry dock? Based on your video on Santorini we would like go straight from the airport to Fira and begin our stay there. Thank you.

        1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

          There are not usually hotel owners offering rooms at the airport. Just the ferry port. Take the bus from the airport to the Fira bus station. From there walk east a half-block to the first major street, turn left (north) and then start popping into any hotel you see on that street and the streets leading off to the right (east). You’ll find something cheap and decent quickly.

  18. Late September or Middle of October in Santorini

    Hi Dave,

    Plenty of information, thanks a ton. A quick query, planning to visit Santorini for 3 nights in late September (25-27) or Mid October (13-15). Which time is better late September or Mid October? Also, on hotel front which one is recommended Absolute Bliss or Astra Suites? Also with a proximity to the good restaurants. Rajnish

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Though it’s only 2 weeks the weather can be quite different between late September and Mid October. You can get still get some very hot days in late September but by mid October it’s almost always really feeling like fall has arrived (or is coming soon). So, if you were interested in beach weather or sitting by the pool then visit in September. That’s not to say you won’t be swimming in mid October, but it’s certainly possible that it’s too chilly by the middle of October. If you’re more interested in sightseeing, walking, and eating – then it makes less difference and maybe even mid-October is better: smaller crowds and less chance of an uncomfortably hot day – and yet you’re still very likely to get clear beautiful days.

      Both Absolute Bliss and Astra are great hotels but I slightly prefer Astra. They’re less than 5 minutes from each other so not a bid difference in regards to location. Absolute Bliss has fewer steps and is easier to access from the parking area.

  19. Santorini in Mid/Late October

    We came to Santorini in September 2014 and had a great time. We are now considering coming for our honeymoon in mid – latish October (14th onwards). Whilst we aren’t out and out beach and sun worshippers, we do like it to be sunny and warm to sit and watch the world go by.

    When we came last time it was lovely, but the wind cooled the temperatures quite a lot.
    Will October too late in the season to get properly warm and sit by the sea in Kamari or Thira at lunch and evening meals?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      In late October you can get anything. A mini heat wave and you’ll be lying at the beach with blazing sun. Or a storm from the north arrives and you’ll be dealing with wind, rain, and cool temperatures. On average, of course it’s somewhere in the middle: warm temps through the day, cool temps in the evening (you’ll need a sweater or light jacket for sure). Expect a cool breeze that can surprise you on even the warmest days. With a little luck you won’t see any rain, but you might want to plan for it anyways.

  20. Greece in May

    Hi Dave,
    I’m going on a study abroad to Greece in May of this year for two weeks starting the 15th. We’re going to Athens, Santorini, Crete and a few other places. I was wondering if the weather will be nice and sunny. Will it be like spring time weather? Nice enough to wear shorts and a t-shirt or even a sundress? Will I have to pack sunscreen? Great sight by the way lots of info.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      The weather in the 2nd half of May is usually sunny and warm (on Crete it might even be hot). I would expect shorts and t-shirt weather, for sure. Have a light sweater for at night and expect a little rain but in general should be great. But even if you get summer-like weather the sea will still be cool.

  21. Athens and What Other City


    We would like to come to Athens in late April, which we know and love, but we are now bringing our daughter and her husband and 2 young children. We are fine with Athens for 5 or 6 night, however we need another destination, our daughter is a bit fussy, she doesn’t love long drives over mountains and winding roads and she does not love boats. We need another town to go to that is charming and has a night life and shops etc, and we can do a few day trips to historic sites, yet she also would love to feel a beach atmosphere but a nice pool will do also. Soooo where else can we go to, possibly fly to Cyprus as it should be warmer in late April??? We are open to suggestions, actually desperate for suggestions. We live in NYC.


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Nafplio in the Peloponnese is a wonderful little town with great charm and some nearby historical sights (though most would require driving through hilly terrain). You can get from Athens to Nafplio on a comfortable air conditioned bus and the route crosses the Corinth Canal. Obviously if you’re open to flying then there’s really no limit to the number of destinations. Crete (and Cyprus) will both be warmer than mainland Greece during April. Nice spring weather though you still probably won’t be swimming in the sea.

  22. Hotel and Town for Senior Couple

    I am 77 and my partner is 80, I would love to visit Santorini but I do have a back problem. I was looking at Perissa hotels as our base, hoping that it is not as hilly as the other side of the island, and that we could bus to Oia and Fira. I would appreciate an honest opinion if this would be suitable for us, in say mid September.
    Mary Stockwell

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Kamari is a better base for you. More compact and easier to get around. Also it’s a much short bus ride from here to Fira (the hub of the bus system and where you’ll need to go to get a bus onwards to Oia). The caldera towns do have inclines and lots of steps, but the beach towns are pretty flat.

  23. Travel Warnings for Greece

    Thanks for a well informed site. We are currently scheduled to travel with family to Athens and Santorini Mid April. I was advised by some friends in the US that there is a travel advisory to check on travels considering the escalating refugee crisis. Please advise if there have been any such situations in the last few months and if there is anything that we need to be extra careful about.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      There are no current travel warnings or alerts for Greece. I consider the country one of the safest in the world.

  24. Weather in April on Santorini

    Hi Dave

    We are looking to go end end of April, do you think it will be t-shirt shorts weather? Where would you recommend to stay and for how long?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      It likely will be shorts and t-shirt weather through the day but cooler at night. Not beach weather though.

  25. Beach Taverna for Wedding

    Hi Dave,

    Your website is great and very informative, thank you!
    We have recently booked our wedding for July at the chapel of St Irini. Eight guests are joining us and we are all staying at Goulielmos Hotel in Akrotiri. We are having a relaxed wedding and are hoping to book a traditional beach taverna for a meal after the wedding. Our wedding planner has offered to drive us around the island when we arrive so we can choose one, is there any you would recommend? Somewhere traditional, preferably on a beach close to Akrotiri?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      I can’t think of anything suitable near Akrotiri (which doesn’t mean there isn’t anything). My first thought (though it might not be what you’re looking for) is to go to Franco’s Cafe in Pyrgos. It has delicious appetizers (but no large meals), drinks, cocktails, and incredible sunset views. It’s a magical setting beneath the church at the top of Pyrgos. There are a lot of steps up so not good if someone in your party has limited mobility. A more typical restaurant (and one of the best on the island) is Metaxy Mas in Exo Gonia. Great food and good views. Be sure to reserve something on the patio.

  26. Santorini and Mykonos in Late March

    Hi Dave,

    I am planning to travel to Santorini and Mykonos in the last week of March (27th onwards) for a week for my honeymoon. Is this a good time to go there as I have heard that hotels and shops for tourists will be closed during that time?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      I wouldn’t call it a bad time but yes, it will be slow (especially Mykonos, Santorini will be starting to open up) – but there will be enough open to get by. Definitely stay in Mykonos Town as it has the most open.

  27. Santorini at the End of October

    Hi Dave,
    thank you for this great site.

    We’re planning to visti Imerovigli (Absolute Bliss) in October 22th to 29th.

    1) Is it possible to have some warm days to chill at the pool?
    2) How is the sundown view in late october?
    3) Is the Hotel a good choice?
    4) Are the shops/restaurants/supermarkets still open?
    5) Do you have any advice for sightseeing during a rainy period?

    Thank you so much Dave,

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      1. Possible, yes, but not a guarantee. Weather can be anything in late October, from coolish/windy/rainy to quite warm. But pools aren’t heated on Santorini so it’s unlikely you’ll be swimming.
      2. Great.
      3. Absolute Bliss is wonderful.
      4. Yes, nothing closes until at least November 1.
      5. Akrotiri is covered. And the Museum of Prehistoric Fira is also good when it rains.

  28. Oia or Fira in April?

    Hi Dave,

    Need your help with the below questions please.
    My husband and I are planning to visit Santorini for 4 nights in April and we are not able to decide if we should stay in Oia or in Fira.

    Will Oia be dead with not much activity during April?

    I understand Oia is more picturesque than Fira, but will I miss out on the best experience if I choose to stay in Fira?

    Also, will 3 nights be enough time to get the feel of the island or should we rather do 4 nights?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      I would stay in Fira in April. Much more going on. Oia is easy to visit and 1 or 2 trips there (perhaps one in the morning and one at night) and you’ll have seen plenty of Oia. Also, the highlight of Santorini is the walk along the caldera path between Fira and Imerovigli (and on to Oia if you have the stamina). Oia is very picturesque but Fira is equally incredible and has a better view of the actual caldera.

  29. Mykonos and Santorini in March

    Hi Dave

    This is a great website, I’m glad I found it. Thank you for the advice you have given. My wife and I are planning our honeymoon on Santorini around end March for about 8/9 days. We were also planning to go Mykonos and another Island (not decided). My wife is really into swimming and water sports so she would be disappointed if we couldn’t do those things. Based on your suggestions the weather doesn’t look great at this time of the year. What would you suggest? – should we stick to this option or pick another destination? Jay

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Santorini is often great in March – as long as you don’t want to do any swimming. The rains and grey skies of winter have largely passed. The scenery is as spectacular as ever and you almost feel like you have the island to yourself (but there are enough tourist about so that most restaurants and many shops are open). Mykonos is a little slower than Santorini in the shoulder months as there isn’t as much to do there when it’s not beach weather. I’d recommend doing Paros or Naxos instead of Mykonos. The first ferry between Mykonos and Santorini doesn’t run until March 24, so if your travel dates are before that then you definitely don’t want to do a Santorini/Mykonos combo trip.

  30. Paris to Santorini, Naxos, and Athens

    Hello Dave
    Your blog is the best!
    We are a family of 6: me (French), my husband (American), my parents and my two children (5 and 1 year old at time of travelling).
    My dream was always to go to Santorini. I know this is not the most kids-friendly island but I really want to go. I thought we can share our time between Santorini and Naxos.
    We are planning to leave Paris on Wednesday June 1st 2016. I was thinking about staying 4/5 nights in Santorini and 4/5 nights in Naxos. Then we would fly to Athens and spend two nights there. My questions are:
    1/ Is one order better than the other (i.e., Santorini or Naxos first)? If we fly to Santorini first (I haven’t found direct flights from Paris yet), can we fly back from Naxos to Athens? Since we have young children, we’d rather fly than take a ferry.
    2/ Since we are traveling with my parents we would prefer to rent a house/apartment. Any suggestion on websites to book it?
    3/ I am a very active person on vacation but my father and my husband prefer a quieter pace. Do you think that visiting only 2 islands will be frustrating for me or can you confirm that there is plenty to do with 2 young children for 4/5 nights in one island? If we only have 9 nights, where should we stay longer? I have heard Tinos is also a kids-friendly island. Would you recommend doing Santorini, Tinos and Mykonos or should I stick to Santorini and Naxos?

    Thank you for your suggestions,

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      1. Order should be Santorini to Naxos to Athens, or Athens to Naxos to Santorini. This is because only Santorini and Athens have international flights.
      2. There are not a lot of rentals on the islands (most hotels are small family owned properties to begin with) but is the best for what’s available.
      3. Santorini and Naxos are the best. Add Paros if you wanted to add a 3rd island.

      1. Aude

        Thank you! and Happy New Year !!!
        We decided to do 4 nights in Santorini, 5 nights in Naxos and 3 nights in Athens.
        For Naxos, we are planning on renting a house. For Santorini I am still debating between renting a house where we could all stay in together or staying in 2 hotel rooms. I found a house in Emporio. How far would it take to drive to Oia and Fira? Would it be easy to park? Or do you really recommend that we stay in one of those two towns? I would love to have the view but my husband does not like the crowds…. Also is it possible to rent a big car that can accommodate 4 adults and 2 kids?
        Thanks for your help!

        1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

          Emporio is a great little town (with twisty lanes and alleys) that’s fun to explore for 20 to 30 minutes – but I don’t think I’d want to base myself there. It’s very slow and at least 20 minutes to Fira, 40 minutes to Oia by rented car (longer by bus). Imerovigli is probably the nicest town along the caldera and it rarely has anything that could be described as a crowd. Yes, there are large van-like vehicle rentals that will fit a family of 6.

          1. Aude

            Thanks for your input on Emporio. I guess we should stay somewhere more central like Fira or as you suggest Imerovigli. I could not find house/villa rental that fit our needs and budget (pool, views, 3 bedrooms); I will then look for an hotel that accepts children.
            Again I really appreciate your help.

          2. Aude

            So as recommended by you I am thinking about staying in Imerovigli, maybe at the Santorini Princess hotel? It looks kids-friendly enough and the views look incredible.

            As for Naxos, I am debating between renting a house or staying in a hotel. I like the idea of a house where we could all stay together and cook our own food for some of the meals, but I am not finding a lot of villas that fit our needs and budget. I found a couple in: Stelida, Mikri Vigla, or Eggares. Are these locations fine, even if not near Naxos town? Or would you recommend to stay in a hotel (like the Nissaki Beach Hotel) ? For us it is important to have a pool since I am worried it might be too chilly to swim in the sea… Do you think it will be too chilly to swim in the sea?

            What do you think ? can you help with making this lodging decision. I really wanted to share a house/villa with my parents but I have the feeling it is not too common there;


          3. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

            Yes, in Naxos I recommend staying in Naxos Town. Great food and a friendly walkable vibe. The pool at Nissaki is not heated and can be cooler than the sea water in June. But weather should be warm in any case. The water at St Georges Beach (walking distance from Naxos Town) is very shallow and protected and thus a little warmer than most beaches. In any case, be aware that Nissaki Beach Hotel does not accept kids 12 or younger (change in policy about a year back).

          4. Aude

            Thanks for your input on Naxos. Since we won’t be able to rent a house/villa in Santorini I want to stay in one in Naxos. I found one that is located in Stelida, 3,5 km from Naxos town. I hope you think the area is okay. As you say the Nissaki Beach Hotel does not accept kids 12 or younger so it won’t work for us.

            As for Santorini I narrowed it down to 2 hotels in Imerovigli that are family-friendly and have rooms that can accomodate the 6 of us: the Santorini Princess Spa Hotel and the Remezzo Villas. Any preference? is one better located to get to restaurants for example?


          5. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

            The Remezzo has a more central location and is much closer to the restaurants of Imerovigli than the Santorini Princess (a 5 minute walk vs 15 or 20). The Santorini Princess has a larger pool. Both are wonderful hotels.

            Stelida is a nice area (not my absolute favorite but nice). It’s close to Naxos Town but you will probably want a rental car to get back and forth. There’s a good water park in Stelida (likely walking distance from your villa).

          6. How Long Layover in Athens

            thanks! we booked at the Remezzo. We want to be centrally located.

            I am looking at flights from Paris to Santorini. I found 2 on Aegean airlines. One has a layover of 1 hour in Athens; the other a layover of 3 hours. What do you think? Is one hour enough to change planes? It will be our first time at the Athens airport.

          7. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

            In most situations I would say you’d probably be fine with 1 hour but to be safe book the 3 hour layover. But since both legs of this flight are with the same carrier (or that’s what I’m assuming) then if you miss the first flight to Santorini they should put you on the 2nd flight for no charge (if there’s any room). Not sure that helps, it comes down to how much risk you’re comfortable with.

  31. June High Season

    Hey Santorini Dave, Love the website. Trying to plan a June wedding in Santorini — which week in June would you say changes from shoulder season to high season?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      It’s gradual throughout the month with each week being a little busier than the last. It never gets as busy as August though.

  32. Peaceful, Private Hotel with Balcony

    Hi Dave!

    I would like to visit Santorini on the 3rd week of May with my fiance. We are generally quiet people, we are not into clubbing. We love sightseeing, long walks, quiet dinners, and shopping. Can you recommend a perfect place for us in Santorini? As for accomodation, I want it peaceful and private, and a balcony with a fantastic view is a must for us.

    Mara and Ali

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Aenaon Villas has an awesome secluded location with jaw dropping views. Lots of privacy. The drawback for some is that it’s a long walk to Imerovigli (30+ minutes) but for you it might be the perfect locale. (There is a bus stop across the street with regular buses to Oia and Fira should you need it.)

  33. Santorini in September / Agia Irini in Imerovigli

    Hi Dave!
    My friend and I will be travelling to Santorini in late September 2016 (15 to 22). I just wonder if it is maybe too late to visit Santorini? We want basically just to swim, sunbath and relax there. I have also one question, what do you think about Agia Irini Hotel in Imerovigli? Is it too far from Fira? Are there any buses, or is it better that we rent a car? Thank you for everything, you’ve been very helpful with this site already.
    Kind regards,

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      September typically has great beach weather and is the best time of the year to visit. Agia Irini is not in Imerovigli (perhaps technically it is somehow within the town’s borders but in practice it is not). It is located on the eastern side of the island (sunrise views, not on the caldera) and a good distance from Fira, Oia, and Imerovigli. There are a few restaurants nearby but otherwise you’re a 10+ minute drive to Fira, Oia, and the towns along the caldera. There is no bus service out here so you’ll need to rent a car or take taxis (the owner will shuttle you to Fira and you can take a bus anywhere from there, then take a taxi back to the hotel which will be about 10€ to 12€). The hotel itself is nice with a good pool, and is very good value for Santorini.

  34. Greece in January

    Hi Dave,

    We have a trip scheduled for between Xmas and New Years to Paris and Rome but thinking to switch to Greece to be safer. Is Greece a good choice? Advice for going in January when it’s cold and slow?

    Thanks so much!

    Sheri Bienstock

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Greece can be great in January as long as you’re not expecting warm weather. Athens, Santorini, and Crete are the off-season highlights (though there aren’t direct ferries from Santorini to Crete in the winter so you’d need to use Athens as a hub for visits to both).

  35. Mykonos to Santorini in January

    Your website has been very helpful. Thank you. I’m planning a trip for New Year’s Eve to Greece. I’m running into an issue that I was hoping you could help me with. Flying from Athens to Mykonos on January 2nd and staying for 2 nights. On the 4th, I would like to travel to Santorini. There are not any direct flights or available ferries. Any suggestions? I appreciate your time. Thank you.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      You are right. There are no direct ferry or flights between Mykonos and Santorini in January. You’ll need to fly or ferry via Athens (which is obviously a major hassle).

  36. Santorini to Turkey Ferry

    Hi Dave,

    My girl friend and I will be travelling to Santorini in mid December 2015. Turkey will be our next destination after Santorini. I have been trying to search the ferry timetable from Blue Star’s website however the timetable therein only shows from 03/11/2015 – 21/11/2015 and 03/04/2016 – 25/06/2016. I just wonder if there is any ferry from Santorini to Kos (or other places) in December 2015? Any ideas how is the schedule like?

    p/s: flight is a bit pricey compared to ferry.



    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      There is 1 ferry a week from Santorini to Rhodes on Wednesday that takes 14 hours and goes via Crete. It leaves Santorini at 6am. (There’s also a Saturday ferry but it takes 20 hours.) From Rhodes you can take a ferry to Marmaris (Turkey) – but you’ll need to check on this schedule as it doesn’t run as often in winter.

  37. Beach Weather in May

    Hi Dave,
    Me and my partner are planning a holiday to santorini during second week of May 2016. I was wondering if its going to be a “bikini weather” then? Are the beaches busy/open during mid May? Thank you for your very informative blog.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Beach weather can begin the first week of May but it’s still 50/50 until the end of the month.

  38. Suite of the Gods Hotel

    My daughter is studying abroad in Athens and I am coming to visit for thanksgiving from the US. We planned a 3 day visit to Santorini. We booked the Suite of the Gods because of their spa. Is this too far from restaurant that will be open? Will any wineries be open? Should we rent a car?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Suites of the Gods is in a slightly isolated area of Santorini – not much within walking distance. When visiting in the off season, I’d stay in Fira or Oia instead. A rental car would help a lot if you did decide to stay there. The Wine Museum and Sigalas winery will be open for sure and Boutari Winery is open but you need to make a reservation – perhaps a few others too.

  39. Santorini and Europe in Late November

    Hi, planning for 2 weeks for a Europe tour and including Santorini in late November. Maybe around 21st – 24th of November. Is it a wise choice? More interested in the sight seeing, and not for the beach. What can you recommend?

    Thank you,

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Late November can be great for sight seeing in Santorini. Can also be rainy and grey. Be prepared for cool wet weather but if I had to guess I’d say you’d have a good visit and decent weather.

  40. Fira for Honeymoon

    Hi Dave

    Great site btw, many thanks.
    Was wondering where to stay on Santorini early September 2016 for our honeymoon. Kind of want to stay near Fira. Would that be a good choice to stay and is it good for bars, tavernas, restaurants etc. or would you recommend somewhere? Also getting direct flights back to the UK seems a nightmare or is that because its still early to book flights?



    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Yes, Fira has the most bars and restaurants by far. Other towns have a good selection of restaurants but nowhere else has the same number of nightclubs. It is early to book flights – waiting another few months might open up a lot more choices but book your hotel as early as possible – even before your flight. (If you book hotel on you can usually cancel your reservation, but you can never cancel flights so best to do hotel before flight.)

  41. Direct Flights from Italy to Santorini

    Great work on the website dave! It has lots of contents and have been of a great help.

    Me and my partner are planning to go to Santorini in Mid-May 2015. We will be flying from Italy. Choice of Airports are Florence, Pisa, Bologna. However, we can’t find a flight that flies direct to Santorini. Most of them requires a stopover in Athens. Just wondering if the flight schedules for Summer 2015 are out. Or do you know of any airlines that flies direct from the above mentioned airports.

    Thanks dave.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      For the most part, flight schedules for 2016 seem to be out already so I don’t see a lot of change. There are direct flights on Vueling and Iberia from Rome to Santorini starting in April. There are direct flights from Florence to Santorini on Iberia and Vueling starting in June and July (respectively). There are also direct flights from Naples to Santorini with Volotea but there are presently no flights from Bologna or Pisa to Santorini. If the layover in Athens is more than a few hours I would take the train to Rome and then fly directly from there.

  42. A Big Thank You

    Dave, no question here, just a big thank you for putting this site together. Spent 8 days with my wife in Santorini and your website was our bible for where to stay (Hotel Keti – 4 days, Ikies Traditional Houses – 4 days) where to eat (Metaxy Mas being the highlight) and what to do. Our trip would not have been as enjoyable had I not come across your site and subsequently take advantage of your extensive research and knowledge of the Island. Cheers from Toronto Canada.


  43. Staying in Exo Gonia

    Hi Dave, great website, very informative!

    I am planning a week in Santorini for my partners 40th Birthday, September 2016. I want a special place but we are on a budget. I really want a villa. I have found what seems to be a great little place in Exo Gonia, with a private pool, within budget. What do you think of that area? I note that one of the restaurants you rate is right nearby? We will be having a car for the week and will want to get around the island – we thought being central may be a good idea? We also like the beach – I think there may be a good one nearby? your advice/thoughts would be appreciated before I go ahead and book.

    Many thanks.
    Cath Woolley

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      I would not recommend staying in Exo Gonia but that doesn’t mean it won’t be a good choice for you. It is far away from the main centers and the caldera towns. You won’t be walking to anything of much interest. But it is central (about 2/3 of the way from Fira to Kamari) and swimming and a nice beach is less than a 10 minute drive. You can get really good value on accommodations when you stay outside of the main towns. It sounds like you know what you’re getting so, if you’re ok with that, then go for it.

  44. Santorini Weather in Late April

    Booked for April 17 to 24th..but now worried about temperature as I love the sun! I can change it but will cost a lot more..any suggestions?
    Louise Hosmer

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      You could easily get some nice clear days with plenty of sun but it won’t be warm enough to swim at the beach. Great for sightseeing though. Have something warm for cool nights and be ready for a little rain.

  45. One Night Trip to Nearby Island

    Hi, your site is great. We are travelling to Santorini with travel agency late September / early October with 2 year old child and will be situated in Kamari beach. We are thinking of one night stay to some other island because of better beaches (although we have paiid accomodation in Santorini). Do you think it is worth the effort and which isand do you reccomend? Naxos or Ios? Many thanks in advance, regards Tina

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Yeah, do it. Both Ios and Naxos have great beaches. Ios is closer, so it’s a very short ferry trip. But Naxos has the more kid-friendly beach (very shallow). I’d probably do Naxos. And Naxos is easier to get situated once you arrive. Hotels are just a short walk from the ferry port. Not that it’s hard on Ios but it’s a 15 minute bus trip from the port to Milopotas Beach (the best one on Ios) and that makes for just a little bit longer journey.

  46. Which Month is Best for Nightlife and Sightseeing on Santorini and Mykonos?

    Hi Dave ,
    Great information. Me and my friends are planning to visit Santorini and Mykonos. We are planning for water adventures, great food, and amazing beach party’s and night clubs! Can you please suggest which month would be great for our plans? Thank you

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Nightlife is best in August and good from late June until early September.
      Sightseeing is best from late April until early November.
      Beach weather is best from late May until early October.

  47. Mykonos and Santorini in Late October

    Hi Dave,

    Am so glad I discovered your blog, really hope you’ll find time to give me some advice –

    My wife and I really hope to have our honeymoon among the Greek islands of Santorini and Mykonos, it’s our dream location (it was my wife’s actually, but now it’s ours). Rather disappointingly, due to work commitments, we can only plan our honeymoon over the last 2 weeks of October. Having read through a lot of information including your blog as well, there are as many who feel it’ll still be great and those who suggest otherwise. We wanna hear from you, my friend – this October, how does the climate, both the weather and the political one, look for a holiday we’ll remember? And if so, how’d you suggest how we can spend our 11 days we’ve set aside for our honeymoon?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Late October can be great as long as you’re not hoping for hot beach weather. With a little luck you’ll be able to get a few days on the beach along the way but it’s not guaranteed. Weather should be clear skies with warm days (not hot) and cool nights. Some rain is possible but you could easily go the whole trip without any precipitation. Mykonos is mainly known for its beaches and parties – neither of which will have much to offer in late October – so I would spend 2 nights at most in Mykonos (Mykonos Town will still be nice to wander around). Then 2 to 5 nights on Naxos, Paros, or both. Both islands have lots to see beyond the beaches and a large local population so they make good stops in the quieter months. Then the remainder at Santorini which has lots to offer even when it’s not beach weather. It will still seem fairly busy (especially after Naxos and Paros) in late October.

  48. Flies on Santorini

    Hi Dave
    My wife and I were planning to visit Santorini and Mykonos in the last week of September but we’re recently told by an acquaintance to “avoid the Cyclades in September because they’re plagued by flies”. No-one else seems to mention it so should it put us off a September visit?
    Many thanks in advance for your advice.

  49. Santorini and Boat Tours in Early April

    Hi Dave!

    I am not sure whether I missed out your answer last time.

    We are planning a trip to Santorini in early April 2016. Do you think it will be a good time to take a volcano and hot spring trip? (I am a bit worried about the water temperature.)

    We are thinking about using AirB&B to book accommodation. Do you think it is a good idea?

    Roy & Chloe

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      I doubt there will be any boat tours running in early April. And the water would be very cold even if there was. The hot spring is warmish water but far from hot. I don’t think you’d be swimming in April.

      AirBnb doesn’t have much selection for Santorini. is better.

  50. Santorini in Early November

    Hi Dave

    Have been following your posts and would like to ask few questions, would be kind of you to oblige

    1. Do hotels have a hard stop of 31st October? Will they actually shut and 31st will be the last date?
    2. Do you suggest first week of November for honeymoon?
    3. Is there a site which will show the hotels that are operational after 31st Oct?
    4. How crowded is it during the first week of Nov?

    Thanks & Regards

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      1) Yes, some hotels shut up shop – usually on November 1. But not all. It’s easy to check availability and know which ones will be open.
      2) Yes, as long as you don’t want to swim. Most pools aren’t heated so you won’t be pool swimming either. But the island is still beautiful and if the weather isn’t terrible it can be a great time to visit.
      3) Search with your dates and the ones open in early November will pop up.
      4) Not crowded but certainly not dead either. Still plenty of places to get a drink and eat. Most restaurants will still be open.

      1. Santorini and Mykonos in Early November

        Many thanks Dave! During November, will I get ferry from Athens -> Mykonos -> Santorini?

        Also, I am contemplating 2 options as below. Would be great to have your thoughts based on the ease of travel.

        1. Athens -> Mykonos -> Santorini

        2. Athens -> Santorini -> Mykonos

        Which of the above 2 routes would you suggest for 1st week of November, 2015?

        1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

          I do not recommend doing a Mykonos and Santorini trip later than October as it’s too hard to get from one to the other. The last direct ferry between Santorini and Mykonos is October 31st. If that’s not possible then visit Naxos or Paros and then Santorini.

  51. Early November on Santorini

    Hi Dave!

    My sister and I we’re planning to go to Santorini on November 6-11, do you think this is still good time to go there?
    Thank you so much in advance.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      The island will be quiet. Many hotels close sometime between November 1 and November 15 so things will be shutting down but you’ll have no problem finding hotels and restaurants that are open. If you get a little lucky with the weather it can be a wonderful time to visit but be prepared for chilly windy weather. You definitely won’t be swimming in the sea.

  52. Wedding Reception in October

    What a treasure of information your blog Dave! Really great!
    We are celebrating our wedding in Santorini on October 6. Of course, it’s going to be a sunset wedding 😉
    After the ceremony we are planning to have a reception on the Theros Wave beach bar. However, we are not sure whether the first week of October is still a good time for such a location. Does it make sense to have a party on beach bar beginning October or are we going to freeze all our guests? 🙂
    Thank you very much for your advice
    Gianfranco & Alexandra

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      It all depends on the weather which is obviously difficult to predict. You could get a nice night and it could be really magical (the club has a great setting) but you could also have a cool windy night and it could have a deserted wind-blown feel. It is a long way to get to and from. I imagine most of your guests will be staying along the caldera and getting from Vlychada to Fira (let alone Oia) is a good drive in the dark. It’s a tough call.

  53. Wind on Santorini

    Hi Dave,
    We are going to Santorini next month. Is one side of the Island warmer and less windy than another?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      The wind on Santorini usually comes from the north making Oia the town with the most wind. But no, one side of the island (east/west) is usually not more windy than the other.

  54. Santorini, Skopelos, Naxos, Crete in March

    Hi Dave!

    I’ve been reading through your article and previous responses and have learned so much! Thanks for all you’re doing!

    Question for you: my friend and I are trying to decide if we should visit Greece (definitely Santorini, maybe Skopelos, Naxos and/or Crete) over Easter from March 19 to April 3, or in October. We want to hike, visit churches/monasteries, kayak, visit markets, eat local, etc. From your site, it sounds like October would be better because it’s warmer and there will be many more places open, but we can’t go this October and would have to wait til October 2016. Also, I have read that Easter is a cool time to visit Greece since it’s such an important holiday there. What I’m wondering is if you do think those four islands we’re thinking of visiting (and/or just the Greek isles in general) will be lacking in open shops/restaurants/people in late March. And if accommodations/ferry tickets might actually be more expensive because of the Easter holiday. Can you help me?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Greek Easter (which usually has different dates than western Easter) is on May 1 in 2016 – so you won’t be there for those celebrations.

      You’ve picked 4 great islands but Skopelos is a long way from Santorini, Naxos, and Crete. It has separate ferry routes and those ferries depart from different mainland cities. Thus, combining Skopelos with those other islands does not make for an easy travel itinerary. To get to Skopelos from Athens involves a full day of bus and ferry travel or a flight to Volos or Skiathos and then ferry from there. I’d recommend dropping Skopelos and visiting only Santorini, Naxos, and Crete.

      October is certainly more busy than March. Many hotels and shops open the first week of April but March will still have enough open to keep you happy and well fed. Naxos, Santorini, and Crete have good sized local populations and still have many places to eat and drink in the off season. As long as you’re able to dress for a wide range of temperatures and don’t plan on swimming or sitting on the beach then late March and early April are great times to visit. The islands are at their greenest after a winter of rain.

  55. Should We Go To Greece During Crisis?

    Hi Dave,

    My husband and I had planned to visit Santorini this past May, but had to cancel at the last minute.. We have not rebooked yet, but were about to rebook and use our flight credit to visit Santorini for October, but then we heard about Greece’s economic crisis. How will this affect tourists, and what would you recommend we do? Should we just wait until next year?

    Ester Ballesteros

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Santorini and the Greek Islands are fine for tourists. I’m in Greece now and everything is fine – no problems using ATMs or with any travel issues. I recommend going ahead with your trip. There are many tourists here but probably a little quieter than most years so it’s a great time to visit.

  56. May/June or Early September in Santorini

    Hi Dave,

    GREAT SITE! Thanks for all your hard work. I’m looking to travel to Santorini next year but I’m tossing up between the end of May/early June or early September.I would still like to go when it’s warm with blue skies however with fewer tourist, what would you recommend? Would you recommend on splurging on a hotel in Mykonos or just saving it for Santorini?

    Thank you!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      May and early June will have fewer tourists and slightly lower hotel prices. Early September will have better, more reliable weather, and the sea will be much warmer for swimming. If you could only splurge on one island then definitely do it on Santorini.

  57. Santorini in December

    Hi Dave,

    I am planning to visit Santorini in December.
    Is this the right time or there will be lot of rain?
    I am a bit confused.
    Would December be the worst time to visit Santorini?
    Please suggest.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      December is far from the best time to visit Santorini but that doesn’t mean it has to be terrible. It can be rainy, wet, and chilly in December (and that’s what you should prepare for) but some people still have a great visit. Most of the hotels, shops, and restaurants are closed in December but there will always be enough open to get by. Fira has the most open and is the best place to base yourself.

  58. Santorini in 2nd Week of October

    Hi, I would like to visit Santorini this year in the 2nd week of October. Could you advice if it would be a good time to visit Santorini in the 2nd week of October? And if there would be flights from Athens to Santorini at that time? Would accomodations be available at that time? Would shops and restaurants be open too? And how would the weather be like?

    Thank you!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Early October is a great time to visit Santorini. Crowds have thinned, prices dropped, but everything is still open. Still several daily flights from Athens to Santorini. The only caveat is that the temperature will have dipped a bit from summer and hot days to sit on the beach are not guaranteed. My guess is that if you were in Santorini for a week you’d probably get 4 or 5 days that were hot enough to hit the beach – so still pretty good. But, if you’re here to walk, hike, eat, and explore then the weather is perfect.

  59. Santorini in October – Closed Down?

    Hi Dave,
    Planning a Europe trip and we don’t have a lot of time but have always wanted to experience the greek islands. We are looking at October 2016. Santorini is something we have always wanted to do but we are being told it’s end of tourist season and restaurants will be closed etc. and so we shouldn’t go, is this true? We have 6 days where do you suggest we go, ages from 28-54? Thank you 🙂

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Santorini is wonderful in October. Pretty much all shops, restaurants, and hotels are still open but there are fewer tourists and it’s just all around more enjoyable to tour the island. The only caveats are that the weather might not be warm enough for swimming and suntanning (early October is usually warm enough but by late October it’s still sunny and warm but typically not beach weather); and also the nightlife has quieted down a bit so the big dance clubs are either closed or quiet – but there are still plenty of places to grab a drink.

  60. Book Hotels and Ferries in Advance in August?

    Hi Dave!

    I was thinking of traveling to Greece to Athens, Santorini, Ios and Crete this summer at the beginning of August for 3-4weeks. I know it is the peak season, but I was wondering if you need to book your hotel and ferry’s before you go? Because I was just wanting to book things when I get there and be flexible, but people told me you need to book these things in advance?

    Thank you!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      If you want to stay in great/special hotels with great views then yes you have to book them in advance. But if you’re happy staying sort-of anywhere then you’ll just about always be able to find something decent and clean (especially if you’re traveling solo). Ferries are good to book in advance if you need to be somewhere on a specific day (e.g. you have a hotel booking) but if your hotels aren’t booked then your ferries don’t have to be booked. In a way, you have to either book everything or book nothing. You get into trouble when you book hotels but don’t book the ferry connections. On most islands there is a small scrum of hotel owners that meet most ferry arrivals and offer you a place to stay. These are usually inexpensive, clean, friendly, and have lousy locations. But they’re often a good choice for one night until you find something better, more central, or both. Try arriving on the earliest ferry or bus to a new town.

  61. Advice from Travel Agent

    Hi Dave,

    We are trying to book our honeymoon and our dream would be Santorini and maybe one or two of the other islands. We are looking at 10 days starting October 6th, 2015. Our travel agent mentioned that this is “low-season” and that we will find many of the restaurants and hotels are closed, yet I am finding other (better) information elsewhere, such as here on your page. Can you testify as to whether this is a good time to come or not? I am not opposed to missing the overly packed tourist season but also don’t want to be limited on places to eat/things to do while we are there. Also, any recommendations on other islands to visit and how many days to spend in Santorini vs elsewhere? (We were thinking Crete maybe??)


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Don’t listen to travel agents – most don’t know what they’re talking about and even when they do they’re just trying to sell you the pre-arranged packages they’ve got for sale. (My guess is they don’t have any profitable packages to sell you for October and are trying to push you towards some other time or destination.)

      Early October is an excellent time to visit Santorini. The weather is usually good to great. (There are no guarantees with the weather, of course, and some years you can get some windy or cloudy days that make the beach not terribly inviting but most years the weather is great and hot enough for beach and swimming.) If your interests run more towards sightseeing, wineries, dining, and walking then October is probably the best month of all to visit Santorini.

      One thing for sure, everything is still open (shops, restaurants, hotels) in the main caldera towns in October.

      Crete, being the farthest south of all Greek islands, has very good weather in October. If you’re wanting hot beach weather then Crete is your best bet in October.

      Good luck.

  62. Weather in Early May

    Hi Dave,
    I am going to Santorini for the first week of May. I just care about the weather. Will it be gentle as in classical spring? Or does it begin to get hot? I really want to swim in the magnifico Agean Sea…

    Do you have any idea?

    Thanks a lot,

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      It can get very nice and warm/hot weather in May but the sea will still be cool regardless of the air temperature. Swimmable, if you’re bold, but not warm.

  63. Turkey and Greece in June and July

    I apologize if this question has already been answered elsewhere. We have our tickets booked for round trip LAX to Istanbul. We plan to spend 20 days in Turkey and 10 days in Greece. We arrive June 24th and are trying to decide whether to start in Greece and end in Turkey or vice versa. My husband is leaning towards starting in Greece in the hopes that it won’t be as crowded. My thought is that it won’t make much of a difference if we’re there June 25 – July 5 or July 11 – July 21. Any thoughts on if it really would be less crowded if we choose to start in Greece?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      There is a definite difference with crowds between late June and mid July. It just slowly gets more and more busy as the summer progresses (mid August is the peak). But … my first thought is that I would rather tour Istanbul in June when it’s (on average) cooler than July. If you get scorching hot weather when you’re in Greece (and at the beach) that’s better than scorching hot weather when sightseeing in Istanbul.

  64. Restaurant with Greek Dancing, Music, Plate Smashing

    Hi Dave,

    I got engaged at Homeric Poems in September 2013, wow what a hotel and the people who work there offer just the best customer service I have experienced. Anyway, I am getting married at Dana Villas on 2nd August and on 1st August I want to take all my guests to a typical Greek restaurant as a thank you, I mean Zorbas Dance, plates smashing etc.
    Can you recommend anywhere good, I am staying in Kamari for the first part of my stay.
    Also, I am contemplating booking some music, I like the idea of a guitarist playing in the background, can you recommend anyone?

    Many thanks and this is a great site.
    Lee Jackson

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Dish breaking is rare nowadays but the music and the dancing you can find at several places. Dimitris in Kamari has a Greek night with dancing and music and the restaurant serves traditional Greek food. Of course, this is all for the tourists but can still be a lot of fun with the right crowd and sounds like you’ll be part of a larger group that can make its own fun.

  65. Best Time of Year for Wedding in Santorini

    Thinking of a wedding next year in Santorini looking for a warm time of year but without the crowds any idea what month would be best? was thinking mid May – early June 2016.

    The other big question I have is, which part of the island to stay for wedding?

    Also as our party will only have 2 people I want best the hotel for views for pictures etc.

    We’ll be travelling from London and have been Mykonos so have an idea of what to expect and where very flexible for us its about getting the details right.

    Any advice would be much appreciated.


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Anytime from mid-May to Late June would be great. Mid-September to early October good too. I’d recommend staying in one of the caldera towns of Firostefani, Imerovigli, or Oia.

  66. Santorini and Ios/Nightlife

    Hey Dave,
    First congrats and thanks for this amazing site. On my first trip to Europe im going from Rome to Santorini for 3 days and back (April 22 -25). April 22nd I arrive in Santorini in the afternoon at 12pm and on 25th I leave to Rome at 4pm. Since I’m going alone and looking to admire the views and beauty of Santorini im also looking to go to a party island like Ios (since as far as a I understand it is cheaper than Mykonos and just as fun). My time as you can see is very limited but, maybe I can catch a ferry and stay overnight in Ios on the 23rd-24th? What do you think about this? What would you suggest? And if you have any recommendations on where I should stay on either island that would be hugely appreciated. Thanks again.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Ios does have a better singles party scene than Santorini … but not in April. Ios will be very quiet/dead in April. Santorini will be quiet but starting to perk up a little. So, you won’t find any raging parties in Santorini in late April but there will at least be something. And there’s a lot more out-of-season things to do in Santorini than Ios.

  67. When is Sunset on Santorini in July?

    Hi Dave,

    Great, informative website!

    I am in Santorini 11th-15th July staying in Imerovigli. I’m looking to book restaurants for dinner and was wondering what time would be best to see the sunset whilst at dinner…Online it looks like Sunset is around 20.30ish, is that accurate?


    Sukh Rai

  68. Santorini Wedding in July or September?

    Hi Dave,

    Great site 🙂 we are looking to get married next year 2016 in imerovigli. We have looked through your weather page and have now been able to narrow it down to two dates. What do you think would be best time for a wedding out of these two? Saturday 2nd July 2016 or Saturday 3rd September 2016. We have a few children in our wedding party, we don’t mind it being hot but not unbearable, I’ve heard it can reach 35 in July ans August? Also, is one of these dates generally less windy than the other? Any advice would be fab! Thank you !!


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      I would select September over July as it’s a little cooler (bus still hot), the sea is warmer, there are fewer visitors, and it’s easier to book hotels. Of course, your dates are at the very beginning of September so you won’t feel much different than the summer months – but some years you really can notice a change in the intensity of the heat and the crowds over that last week of August. If possible, I would encourage you (and your guests) to spend most of their time in Greece after the wedding as opposed to before. The closer you can get to mid-september the more idyllic it will be.

  69. Greece in November

    Hi Dave,

    Cool info buddy!

    Me & wife are planning a visit in late Nov for 3 nights. Since we are from Sri Lanka and it’s pretty hot in here I really don’t mind gloomy weather so have chosen November. Where would you suggest us to stay? Santorini, Mykonos or any other place or any must see that we shouldn’t miss?

    Thanks in advance!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      For a short visit I would stay in Santorini as it has plenty to do for 3 days. Ferry schedules are not robust in November so getting to Mykonos would not be as easy as it looks on a map. If you had a little extra time then use it to explore Athens.

  70. Santorini, Athens, Naxos, Rome

    Hi Dave, there are 3 of us wanting to go to Santorini, Athens, and Naxos then on to Rome in October next year. Which would be the best order to stay?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      There are direct flights from both Athens and Santorini to Rome so I would try to find the flight that works best for your dates and then fly directly to the other one. So you could fly into Athens (from wherever you’re coming from) and then ferry to Naxos, ferry to Santorini and fly Santorini to Rome. Or fly directly to Santorini, then ferry to Naxos, ferry to Athens, and fly Athens to Rome.

  71. Extra Bed or Cot

    Hi Dave
    Thanks for the info…FABULOUS. Wondering if you know if there is any place I can rent a cot or a blowup bed. My friend and I are going but having a hard time finding a luxury hotel with two beds and gorgeous ocean views.

    Thanks for help and thanks again for the info!!

    Belinda Gillett

  72. Weather in May on Santorini

    Hi Dave,

    Very informative site you’ve got! Planning on visiting Santorini on the 11th of May for four days for my honeymoon! Just wanted to check on the rainfall in mid May, we don’t want to be stuck inside 🙂 Both of us are very fond of site seeing and would be great if you could suggest another place in Greece for us to go site see!

    Thanks so much!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      There are no guarantees but weather in May should be very nice. It’s not usually hot in May but clear skies and warm weather is the norm. Be prepared for some rain but with a little luck you shouldn’t see much, if any. Santorini has many nearby islands that are great for sight seeing: Naxos, Mykonos, Paros, Milos, Folegandros – there is no shortage of great places, all of them just a few hours away by ferry.

  73. Santorini in early March

    Hi Dave

    Thank you for this amazing resource with such a wealth of information.

    I’ll be arriving in Athens on the 5th of March, sailing to Santorini on the 7th. I’m staying in Imerovigli. Is it difficult to get around the island this time of year? I’m planning to pack very light for this part of my trip, just carry on, any suggestions to keep comfortable? Will it be relatively warm? I’m traveling on my own and am hoping to meet people on the island, I’m guessing Fira would be the best to find friendly locals and/or fellow tourists? Are the restaurants considered expensive or not, just want to make sure I bring enough Euros with me to make sure I have no troubles.

    Thanks for any advice, and if you’re on the island I’d be more than happy to buy you a drink!


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      The weather can be nice through the day (or not) but will usually always be cool/cold at night so be prepared with a warm jacket (not a winter jacket but not a wind breaker either). The bus service is less robust in March than the summer but it’s still enough to explore all corners of the island. Meals can be both expensive and surprisingly cheap depending on where you choose to eat. Not currently on the island (soon) but thanks for the offer.

  74. Athens, Paros, Naxos, Santorini

    My partner and I will be visiting Athens, Paros, Naxos and Santorini from around 5-18 April. Would you recommend visiting in that order? Which towns do you suggest we stay at in these places? We like hiking and exploring and eating and will be looking for a romantic stay as well!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Yes, that is exactly the order I would go in (the Blue Star ferry follows that exact route). In Paros stay in Naoussa, in Naxos stay in Naxos Town, in Santorini stay in one of the 4 towns along the caldera (the best towns in Santorini).

  75. Santorini in Late April

    Great site, really does help!
    Booked in April this year 19 to the 26th.
    Staying in Firostefani. Great walking weather apparently!
    But my other half would not be happy if thats all we did! We aren’t too interested in clubs but would like to know:
    1. Is there other walks across the island appart from the caldera walk?
    2. Do the boat tours opperate this time of year?
    3. Are there any wineries/museums etc open?
    4. Will it still be fairly quiet or will shops and restaurants be a plenty?
    Many thanks!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      1.) Yes, there is a hiking trail between Perissa Beach and Kamari Beach that passes the archaeological site of Ancient Thera at the top of the mountain. From Perissa to the summit is a dirt trail and back down to Kamari you follow a paved road with switchbacks.
      2.) Maybe. They’ll start late April or early May. Hard to know exactly when.
      3.) Most wineries and all museums will be open.
      4.) It will be quiet but almost all shops and restaurants should open.

  76. Flying Into and Out of Chania

    Hi Dave,

    Just looking for some guidance (same as everyone else!), flying into Chania August 1st and flying home from Chania August 15th. I booked the flights before looking into my route which at the moment is looking like a mistake.

    My plan at the moment is 2/3 nights in Chania then the bus to Heraklion and get the ferry to Santorini..after that I haven’t a clue. I think it’s trying to get back to Chania will prove difficult.

    Hoping you can give me a push in the right direction 🙂

    Thanks in advance,

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Not sure what to tell you (as you haven’t asked any questions) but I would take the Highspeed5 from Heraklion to Santorini and the MegaJet back to Rethymnon so that you’re not retracing your steps.

  77. Santorini and What Other Island?

    Hi Dave
    First of all- fantastic site! Very helpful and helps calm a lot of infrequent travellers like me! Also- great patience answering all the questions!

    So I’ m going to pile on and ask your opinion on something- me and my fiance are definitely looking at santorini as one of our to-go places in October first week. We probably will have 8 days in hand, but dont intend to spend all of them there- any ideas on what other great spots in Greece can be combined with Santorini? We do like to relax but we’d like to see and do stuff as well! Your thoughts would be welcome! And thanks again!


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Naxos is a great island for getting out and seeing stuff. Great hikes, picturesque traditional villages, good bus service, wonderful Chora (main town). Crete also offers similar traits but is much bigger so for a 3 or 4 day visit Naxos is the better choice.

  78. Hotel with Amazing View and Private Pool

    Hello Dave,

    Incredible website and Great Work ! We are planning a trip to Greece with our 2 year old. I have a few questions to help me better plan this trip. We are thinking of spending 4 nights in Santorini in Last week of MAY

    1. What is a kid friendly hotel with amazing views and a private pool – OIA/FIRA/Imerovigli
    2. What are some of the good vegetarian restaurants
    3. Which place is the best for sunset views
    4. What are some shorter picturesque tours on water – boat rides which allows kids on board
    5. Do you recommend any walking maps to go around the cities with good views ? Are walks between Fira and Oia pleasant during the day
    6. Do you require a car seat for the child if we are renting a car ? Are kids allowed on the motorbike if we rent one ?

    thanks in advance

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      1) The villa with private pool at Grace Santorini. (Grace doesn’t allow children in the hotel portion but the villa does.)
      2) Most restaurants have plenty of vegetarian dishes so no need to single out specific restaurants. Metaxi Mas in Exo Gonia is my favorite restaurant in Santorini.
      3) Imerovigli has the best sunset views.
      4) Take the ferry from Amoudi Bay (below Oia) to Thirassia.
      5) Maps aren’t necessary – and for the little paths that lead this way and that, they wouldn’t be very helpful anyways. It’s pretty easy and intuitive to make your way along the caldera from one town to the next. In summer the walk between Fira and Oia can get very hot through the day. Start early if you’re there in July and August.
      6) “Required”, probably not. But they can be rented or if you want to be certain you have one and it’s in good shape then bring your own. I don’t think anyone will stop you from taking a kid on a motorbike. Now whether it’s a good idea is a different question. Motorbike and scooter accidents are the top reasons to end up in a hospital in Greece.

  79. Santorini in February

    HeyDave, Great info!

    What’s it like going to Santorini in February? Are many of the shops and restaurants open yet?

    Many thanks

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      There are enough shops, restaurants, and hotels open to get by but things are still pretty quiet. There is always at least one ferry per day to and from Athens (with stops in Naxos and Paros).

  80. Santorini in May/Single Traveler/Firostefani/Ferry to Rhodes/Swimming in May

    Hello, great site you have here!

    I’m going to Santorini May 20-24 before taking the ferry to Rhodes. I had some questions:
    1) How is Santorini for a solo traveler?
    2) I’m staying on Main St. in Firostefani, is this close to restaurants and shops?
    3) The blue star ferry I think picks up early Monday morning from Santorini to Rhodes, so should I be at the port around midnight on Sunday?
    4) Any chance of swimming in the water this time of May?



    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      1) It’s great for solo travelers. There are lots of couples but plenty of others too. Single travelers are well represented in the Fira nightlife.
      2) Main St. can be pretty much anything in Firostefani. The footpath is often referred to as Main St for hotel addresses. So, depends on what hotel but for the most part everything is close and walkable.
      3) The Blue Star leaves at 12:50am from Santorini to Rhodes. Being there by 12:20 would be fine. Check the bus station the day before for the schedule. There will be a bus going down to the port about 45 minutes or an hour before the ferry arrives.
      4) The water will still be cold but certainly swimmable for the bold and brave.

  81. Santorini in September – Weather and Prices

    Hi Dave,
    How is the weather in the second half of September? We were hoping to catch great weather for swimming. Also, in comparison to the high season, is mid-September when prices tend to drop?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      The weather is usually great in late September and perfect for swimming. Hotel prices will drop a little in September from August but food and transport prices are consistent across the months.

  82. Ferry Cancellations Common?

    Great site! I have pre booked our ferries for the end of May, beginning of June and I booked our last ferry from Santorini back to Athens the day before we fly home to Toronto to spend one night in Athens before we leave the next day. Are ferry cancellations common? Was just thinking if it was cancelled our window to get back to Athens would be limited

    Thank you!


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      No, I would not say they are common but they do happen. Usually because of windy weather/rough seas. They are least common (i.e. rare) on the Blue Star Ferries. Slightly more common on the Hellenic Seaways Highspeed ferries. And more common still on the SeaJet ferries.

  83. Mykonos, Santorini, Crete in late March

    Hi Dave,
    Me and my friends are planning to visit greece in March. We are landing in athens on the 24th of March and since none of of us is a big fan historic monuments and since we are travelling from the UK we would like to see some sun and beaches. We will reach on the 24th morning at athens and leaving back from the athens on the 31st.
    We are keen on doing some adventure sports like sky diving and jet skii.
    We want to spend equal time in mykonos and santorini and if possible go to crete as well.
    Please help us in planning. Thanks a lot for your help. Umang Aggarwal

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Santorini will have the most going on in late March (Mykonos will still be very quiet) but it will not have an beach activities available at that time of year. The south coast of Crete will (probably) have the best weather in late March but even still there won’t be any sky diving or jet skis. Unless there is some unseasonably hot weather you won’t be swimming in the sea at all.

  84. Greek Islands in March


    It’s a really nice piece of information. I’ll be visiting Greece in the 2nd week of march with my husband. We plan to visit Athens, Santorini & Crete over a period of 8 days exclusive of travel. Many people have told us that the islands are not as beautiful at that time as they are in summers (secluded islands, closed outlets, ferry timing problems, unpredictable weather etc.). Therefore, I wanted to know if traveling at that time will be safe or not. Also, will it be a complete waste to visit at that time or will we still have options to visit places that are not closed & are equally beautiful?

    Would really appreciate your early advise on the same!

    Aditee Sharma

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      March can be a great time to tour the islands as long as you’re not expecting sunny hot weather and you’re prepared for some rain (which isn’t a certainty but can happen). It is most definitely a safe time to travel.

  85. Athens, Santorini, Crete for 6 Days

    Hi Dave,

    It was an amazing experience viewing your video and reading your comments.
    Me and my wife are planning trip to Greece for 6 Days Mon 16th Till Sun 22nd.
    We arrive at Athens late Mon Night.
    We are interested in spending few days in Athens then Crete & Santorini .
    How much time do we need at each place ? And what’s the best mode of travel to and from Athens to Crete and from Athens or Crete to Santorini at this time of the year ?
    Would you recommend 1 or 2 days In Santorini ? Should we keep Crete as Base ?
    Just if you could help us plan our 6 Days in Greece ? Some one recommended Rhodes ? Would we have time to visit that island or is it too far out of the way ?
    I am struggling to find Ferry Crossings in Feb ! What’s the best way to travel from island to island in Feb and how to travel from Athens to Crete ? And then Crete to Santorini ?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      For 6 days all 3 destinations is too much. Instead focus on Athens and Santorini. You don’t say what month you’ll be visiting. Only February and March have a Monday the 16th so I’ll assume it’s one of those in which case there won’t be any ferries between Santorini and Crete. Take a flight from Athens to Santorini since you won’t want to spend 2 of your days on a ferry there and back.

  86. Santorini in February

    What a wealth of insight – thank you Dave!

    My husband and I are visiting Santorini for 3 days in February and staying at Dana Villas in Firostefani. Being that it is low season, I’m starting to worry if maybe we’ve made a bad decision in choosing to visit Santorini at this time – Apart from the caldera walk, what other activities would you suggest – we are a young couple who loves food/history/culture etc. In terms of nightlife – should we expect that all clubs/bars will be shut? Do you have any recommendations for good winery/boat tours that run in February (the companies we’ve contacted are all closed for off season)? I would love to hear your thoughts & suggestions. Thank you so much!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      A February visit comes down to the weather. Good clear weather and you’ll have a great time exploring the towns along the caldera. Cold rainy weather and you’ll be inside with not a lot to do. There will be a handful of restaurants open (certainly enough to get by) but no clubs or bars and no tours. The Archaeological Site of Akrotiri and the Museum of Prehistoric Thira should both be open in February and are worth a visit.

  87. Mykonos and Santorini over Easter

    Hi Dave!

    You’re website has been extremely helpful in planning our upcoming trip to Greece! April 4-13, 2015. We are tentatively planning to arrive in Athens on Sunday April 5, 2015. Spend 2 nights there, ferry to Mykonos for 2 or 3 nts, then Santorini for 3 nts.
    1. With the Easter holiday would there be any difficulty with travel (ferries, etc)?
    2. With the holiday will we have difficulty with finding restaurants/activities that are open?
    3. In Mykonos, would we need 2 or 3 days to explore the island?

    We are looking to explore culture, nightlife, food and just take in the scenes!


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      1) Ferries will run as regular but it’s one of the few times of the year the Blue Star can be sold out. Book in advance if possible.
      2) No trouble, lots open.
      3) 2 days should be sufficient but could easily fill 3 as well.

  88. Santorini in January


    What exactly is available to us to do on Santorini from 16-21 Jan?
    Some say it’s okay, some say it’s hit or miss and still others say it’s not the place to be.



    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Obviously the weather is a big factor (and unknown). You could have a nice 5 days with clear skies and temps in the mid to high teens. Or you could have cold, windy, stormy weather that makes it hard to go outside. So that will go a good way to determining your enjoyment. With most shops and restaurants closed there’s little to do if the weather is bad. But if the weather’s nice you’ll have the walks and towns of Santorini almost to yourself. Personally, I think it’s worth the risk if you’re not going to otherwise get there.

  89. Getting from Perissa to Fira

    Hi Dave

    Thank you so much for this website, it is wonderful.
    I am visiting Santorini on 14th October for 3 nights with my Mum.
    We have booked a deal that was way too good to say no to in Perissa and we are very happy about this however we will be mainly going to explore so I realise the Caldera would have possibly been a better base. How easy will it be for us to get from Perissa to Fira/Oia by bus or taxi in October please? what sort of time and distance are we talking about to do this?
    Is there usually a central point for taxis if we wanted to spend an evening in Fira to watch the sunset and enjoy the restaurants so that we could get back to Perissa easily ?

    Many thanks

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Here is the current bus timetable. It will change between now and October but that will give you an idea. You won’t know for sure until you arrive in Perissa and look at the timetable posted at the bus stop. It takes about 30 minutes from Fira to Perissa. In October the high season schedule will not be in effect so you’ll likely need to take a cab to get back to Perissa. This shouldn’t be hard though might take a bit of patience to find one that will do the trip (if it’s too late).

  90. Santorini with 3 and 5 Year Old

    Hi Dave,

    Your page is so helpful; thanks for putting it together. We have two little ones aged 3 and 5. Accodring to my sister who has been to Santorini, it’s not a place for kids and would be best enjoyed as a short getaway by me and hubby alone. I’m thinking of going in late May or summer holidays. Would you agree that it would be difficult with little kids if we have the option of bringing them or not? Dilemma being if we brought them along, we could also visit Crete and have a longer holiday vs. three days on our own.


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Santorini can be difficult with young children. There are steps everywhere you walk and strollers are close to useless. It’s also an island geared towards couples and honeymooners. So yes, I largely agree you’d probably enjoy Santorini more on your own. But, of course, having more time is nice too. There’s a trade-off – you just need to decide.

  91. Fira or Oia in early March

    Hey Dave!

    Fantastic website about Santorini! Makes me want to go even more now!

    Speaking of, I’m planning to hit Santorini from March 3-6. Where would you recommend I stay? In Fira or Oia? I read that Fira would have more things open, but I do love the scenery in Oia. Also, is it hard to get to Oia from Fira?

    Benjamin Po

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      In March I would stay in Fira as they’ll be more open and much more activity (though still not busy). There are regular buses from Fira to Oia that take about 20 or 30 minutes.

  92. Oia or Fira in March


    I’m planning to go to Santorini next March 10-12, 2015 for a honeymoon. I heard that most of the attractions are still closed. Which one is better, stay in Fira or Oia? I have booked a hotel in Fira but still wondering about stay in Oia but again people say it’s empty on March.

    Need an advice.

    Marsha Claresta

  93. Day Trip from Santorini

    Hi Dave,
    I’m taking my 17 year old daughter to Santorini in early April for 5 nights. Are there any day trips available to other islands nearby? When I was in Kos a few years ago I took day trips to Bodrum, Turkey and Patmos. I’m hoping there’s something near Santorini we can visit for a day. If not, would you recommend we spend 2 nights in Mykonos and then ferry to Santorini for 3 nights? Or is that too much logistics?
    Julie Franzone

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      There is a boat tour of the caldera which is worth doing. It usually involves a stop at the nearby island of Thirassia which is very small but still interesting to explore. You can also visit Thirassia on your own by taking a boat from Amoudi (below Oia). Other than that there are no large nearby islands that make for an easy day trip. I would recommend visiting Naxos instead of Mykonos. In April Mykonos is still very quiet. Mykonos is known for its beaches and outside of the warm summer months there’s more to see and do on Naxos than on Mykonos.

  94. Santorini to Crete in March

    Thanks for all of the information Dave! We are planning a trip to Santorini March 24-28, 2015, and wanted to know if there will be tours, etc available, and how often the ferries run (we will be coming from Crete on 3/24, and wondered the best/fastest way to get to Santorini? Thanks so much for any help you can provide.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      More than likely there won’t be a ferry from Crete to Santorini on the day you need. Regular ferry service between Crete and Santorini doesn’t start until late April. The full schedule for 2015 is not out yet so keep checking with

  95. Ferries in December

    Hi Dave

    You are a walking Santorini Encylopedia! I planning to visit the island soon and was ordering how what is the likelihod of a ferry delay in december for the daily ferries (Blue Star etc). I would not want to miss my flight from Athens to Istanbul.

    Thank you

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Ferry cancelations are more common in winter, so yes it is possible. I would still say it’s unlikely. It’ more likely that the ferry will run and the seas will be very rough and the ride unpleasant. Look into flights with Olympic.

  96. Recommended Hotel in Santorini

    Hi Dave.
    Amazing site I stumbled upon. My partner and I are thinking of visiting Santorini for the first time in June 2015 from Jersey! Looking for 4/5* hotel with pool and with a good night life/restaurants etc but also somewhere that’s not too loud! Something romantic maybe. First holiday together and to Greece. Can you recommend anything for first timers there’s so much choice! Also what can we expect ‘food’ wise?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Aria Suites is both quiet and close to the nightlife. One of the nicest pools in Fira too. It’s a little back from the caldera and isn’t perched right on the cliff but the almost gives it a more peaceful feel. Food in Santorini is very good. The more touristy places on the caldera in Fira can be expensive and only average. The best restaurants are away from the caldera and don’t have a view. Naoussa (just steps from Aria) is an exception – great food with a view. If you like gyros (and you should) go to Lucky’s Souvlaki on the main street in Fira – cheap and delicious!

  97. Jacket in December?

    Hi Dave I am going on December 2 and staying for 2 days then back to Athens for today would I be needing an over coat or just a jacket will do. Also I wanted to know what resturant would be open the reason we have chosen December we don’t like hot weather. I am interested in walking, hiking, and sightseeing. Can u advise me please.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      It’s possible you could wear a winter jacket and be quite happy you had it. It can be windy, rainy and cold in December (not northern Europe cold but still you’d want to be wearing something thicker). The weather can also be fairly nice in December. Warm, but never hot. Pack for almost anything. Fira will have the most open restaurants but it changes year to year. Walk around and see what’s open.

  98. Santorini over New Years

    My husband and I are spending a quiet New Years Eve this year in Oia (our first time in Santorini). We are only staying 2 nights but have nearly two full days to spend there. We are expecting a cool, possibly windy/rainy, and obviously quiet time there, but perhaps you could suggest a few restaurants that will be open for NYE dinner. We are fine with taking a taxi to another town, if necessary. Also, can you suggest some must-dos on the island? We are open to outdoors, even in less than perfect weather, but also open to renting a car/taking a bus/etc etc etc. Ashley

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      At that time of year I’d rent a car. The walk from Oia to Fira (or Fira to Oia) is a highlight if the weather cooperates. There will definitely be some restaurants open in Fira and should be some in Oia too – though you have to wait until you’re there to know which.

  99. Santorini in Ios in July

    Hi Dave,

    My partner and I are going to Santorini in July 2015. We are then planning on going to Ios.

    Can you recommend the best way to get from Santorini to Ios? I can’t seem to find websites that will give me a rough idea of ferry schedules for that time of the year from Santorini to Ios..



    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      The Blue Star goes 5 days a week from Santorini to Ios (on its way back to Athens). This year it was Monday and Saturday that it didn’t make a stop on Ios.

  100. Oia in November

    Hi Dave!

    You seem like a wealth of information about Santorini!!
    I’m hoping you can help me make a decision on where to stay.

    My boyfriend and I will be on the island from November 10-13th and are torn over Oia, Fira and Imerovigli.
    We’ve seen beautiful and affordable places in all locations, but have also heard some comments that led us to believe that Oia may be too “shut down” that time of year.

    We’re both in our mid-30s, interested in making the walk from Fira to Oia, potentially renting a motorbike to get around the island and see the beaches, eating delicious food, visiting a winery or two and enjoying the view.

    Any thoughts or recommendations?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Oia will be quiet but not shut down. Still restaurants open and hotels running (although most of the very best luxury hotels will close on October 31). The cruise ships run until mid/late November and shops stay open for them. Fira will undoubtedly have the most going on though.

  101. Crete to Santorini in November


    Thanks for wealth of Information.
    I will be in Heraklion, Crete on November 1st. What is the best way to get to Santorini.

    Please let me know.


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      There is the Prevelis that runs from Heraklion (and Sitia) to Santorini. It leaves Heraklion at 18:05 on November 2 and gets to Santorini at 00:01. It usually runs once per week but at present the November 2 date is that last scheduled for the year.

  102. Santorini in December


    I would like to visit Greece, especially Oia, business wise I cannot get away in the high or shoulder season, we are not beach people, more interested in the whitewashed architecture, food, wine, markets, cool alleys and streets and scenery. We are thinking of a quick trip end of December over new years into January. Is this a foolish idea?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      I wouldn’t call it foolish. It could be a great trip but, of course, you are taking a risk with the weather. It could be pretty miserable (cold rainy days). It could be decent (cloudy, cool days but fine for walking about). It could be quite nice (warm days with clear skies). I’d go for it myself if it was my only chance to see Santorini.

  103. Good Value Hotel

    Hey Dave,
    First-off, what an amazing site! Such wealth of information, richness of description and attention to detail… This resource is a true gem 🙂
    My wife and I are planning a short vacation in Greece at the end of May 2015 (no kids this time…) and were thinking of spending it on one of the Islands. We’ve never been to Greece before though Santorini seems to be a popular place so we figured we’d go there… your site seems to justify our decision.
    We were wondering if you had any advice or recommendation for hotels and locations. Katikies seems great but it is way way way beyond our budget… Any ideas for a great value-for-money place? I don’t mean a cheap B&B/Hostel… just someplace that is ‘easier’ on the wallet…
    Also, we are wine enthusiasts so any wineries we should see – we’d love to hear it.
    One last question – our flight home leaves Athens at 10:15 am and we were debating which flight to catch from Santorini… theres one at 6:40 am and one at 7:25 – any thoughts?
    Anyway, thanks in advance and looking forward to hearing from you.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      There are several good-value hotels on this page (scroll down a bit for hotels with views). There are many great wineries on Santorini but Santo stands out for its amazing views. The Athens airport is not huge and it’s easy to get from one flight to another so I either flight would be fine.

  104. Early November on Santorini

    Hi Dave,

    Thanks for the useful info. My hubby and i are planning to go santorini on early Nov for honeymoon. We are more interested in sightseeing and the cooling whether would be nice for us who from a tropical country. However, we are worry that we cant take nice photos if the sky is gloomy (since it’s raining season) and can we still see the sunset? Thanks!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      The weather is starting to turn in November to cloudier skies and cool/cold weather. But if I had to guess I would say you’ll still get several nice days with clear blue skies.

  105. Santorini in Late October

    Thanks for the amazing information, Dave!
    My husband and I are looking to travel to Santorini at the end of October ~29th and stay there for 3-4 days. I’ve heard things may start closing around then. When does that typically happen? Would we still make it before everything closes?
    Thank you!!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Cruise ships visit until mid-November and many shops, restaurants, hotels remain open until the last ship. So late October is a fine time to visit.

  106. Santorini with Kids – Hotels

    Thanks for the video Dave.
    We are planning to go to Santorini on Easter holiday next year (29 march – 5 April) with our 2 boys age 9 and 7yo.
    Still can’t decide which area the best to stay with children? What is the best hotel (in reasonable price) with caldera view? Can you recommend or give us an advice please?
    Also what’s like an Easter on the island? Are there restaurants or any public places open during Good Friday – Easter Sunday?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      At that time of year I would stay in Fira as the other towns will still be quiet. Fira will give you the most choice of open hotels and restaurants. Easter is great in Santorini – a big celebration – be sure to get to Pyrgos. For hotels: Family Hotels in Santorini.

  107. Safety for Chinese Female Tourists


    A great source of information about Santorini. However, I have a question about safety. My friend and I are traveling alone (both women from China) and is it safe for us to go about discovering this magical place? I ask about safety in general and harassment form guys…

    Thanks in advance

  108. Sea Sickness on Ferries

    Hi there I will be travelling to Santorini from Athens early October and I just wanted to know what the water conditions are like? I’ve booked the ferry but having second thoughts about it, I’ll be traveling with my 18 months baby and I really hate sea sickness.

  109. Swimming in October

    Hi Dave thanks for that. Wanna go October 6th – will the sea be warm enough to swim in? And if so, is there a good place to snorkel?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      The sea should still be great in early October. Santorini is not known for its snorkeling. There are some rocks off Kamari and an islet near Amoudi Bay that are somewhat interesting to snorkel as long as your expectations are modest.

  110. Winter in Greece

    Great information. Thanks for taking the time to put it all together.
    My husband and I are researching our plan to spend an extended time (approx 3mths) on Santorini. We are wanting to escape our very cold, harsh winter here at home and were thinking of Jan thru March. Reading your reviews especially about the weather are giving us pause for thought. We are really just wanting to have some serious downtime to read, relax, walk, hope to meet people who actually live there and take part in life there. While your weather reviews are poor for the area, they seem pretty OK to us compared to what we get. I’d be grateful for your feedback.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      The weather will not be great, for certain, but compared to a harsh northern European winter (or similar), it’s not so bad. The island is very quiet however. Many locals and business owners leave the island during the winter and don’t return until March or April to dust off the cobwebs and open things back up. Not that there’s no one here. It’s not deserted and there are always a few restaurants and hotels open. But … If I were looking to spend winter in Greece it would be in Crete. Rehtymno and Chania, in particular, are great towns with a large permanent population (plus colleges that are in attendance over the winter) so they will offer much more to do. Most restaurants will be open and bustling. Tourists will still be few and far between. You’d have a much greater chance of meeting locals in this environment than on Santorini. And the weather on Crete is a little warmer through the winter months than Santorini. Hope that helps. Good luck.

  111. Santorini in a day

    Hi Dave

    Thank you for all the insights on this island. Im using your website to plan my upcoming trip.
    I will be visiting Athens in the first week of october. Im planning a day trip to Santorini so wanted to know what are the must visit places in santorini (since I’ll be there only for a day).

    Thanks a ton 🙂

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      If I could only do one thing it would be the walk along the caldera from Fira to Oia. Then stay there for the sunset and maybe go down to Amoudi Bay (below Oia) for a meal at one of the tavernas (there’s great swimming nearby from some large rocks). If you had time for one more thing it would probably be a visit to Ancient Akrotiri.

  112. Trouble Choosing Which Hotel in Firostefani


    Thank you for all the terrific advice! My partner and I are headed to Santorini for two day side trip in June and have been able to book either a regular studio or double room at Mill Houses Elegant Suites, Belvedere and Homeric Poems. We are in our 40s, like the W Hotel kind of vibe, and were wondering which of the three you would pick? Thanks again for your help.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      All are great hotels. If I had to choose the more-W of them it would be Homeric Poems.

  113. Patrick McKenna

    I am a coeliac (gluten free). Will I have much difficulty with a gluten free diet in Santorini?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave

      Shouldn’t be a problem, simple dishes and salads are common and the ingredients are easily discovered.

  114. Amelie

    Nothing’s available at Katikies during our honeymoon visit. Can you recommend a similar hotel in Oia with amazing views and a pool. Thanks!

  115. Jo

    Great video.

    What’s the name of the hotel you mention with the incredible pool overlooking the caldera?


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