Greece › Athens › Athens (Piraeus) to Santorini
by Santorini Dave • Updated: May 23, 2023
Ferries from Athens (Piraeus) to Santorini
Santorini is a 4.5 to 6-hour ferry ride from Athens by the fastest highspeed ferries and catamarans, and 7 to 9 hours (or more) by the slower car ferries and overnight ferries. Most ferries from Athens to Santorini also stop in Naxos and Paros en route. Some ferries will stop in Ios, Mykonos, Foledandros, Milos, Sifnos, and Serifos. In high season (May to October) there will be 4 to 7 ferries per day from Athens. In low season there will always be at least one ferry per day. Ferries from Santorini to Athens have a similar frequency but run later in the day. There are multiple flights per day from Athens to Santorini year-round.
Ports in Athens
Ferries to Santorini depart from two primary ports near Athens: Piraeus and Rafina.
• Piraeus: The largest and busiest port in Greece, Piraeus is located approximately 10 kilometers southwest of central Athens. The port is easily accessible via public transportation, including the Athens Metro Line 1 (Green Line) and various bus routes. Most ferries to Santorini depart from Piraeus.
• Rafina: Located 30 kilometers east of Athens, Rafina is a smaller port with fewer departures but offers a closer option for those staying near Athens International Airport. Buses run regularly between the airport and Rafina port.
Several ferry companies operate the route between Athens and Santorini, offering a range of services, vessel types, and ticket options:
• Blue Star Ferries: Known for their comfort and reliability, Blue Star Ferries operates conventional ferries with regular departures from Piraeus to Santorini. The journey typically takes around 8 hours.
• SeaJets: Specializing in high-speed catamarans, SeaJets offers faster connections between Athens and Santorini. The journey duration is approximately 4.5-5.5 hours.
• Hellenic Seaways: Operating both high-speed catamarans and conventional ferries, Hellenic Seaways provides services between Athens and Santorini. Journey durations vary depending on the type of vessel.
• Golden Star Ferries: Offering conventional and high-speed ferries, Golden Star Ferries connects Athens and Santorini with varying travel times depending on the vessel.
Ticket Classes and Amenities
Ferry tickets for the Athens to Santorini route are available in different classes, depending on the vessel and company:
• Economy Class: The most affordable option, offering basic seating in indoor or outdoor areas.
• Air Seat Lounge: Comfortable airplane-style seats in a designated indoor seating area.
• VIP & Business Class: A more luxurious experience with spacious, comfortable seating and additional amenities.
• Cabins: Available on overnight and some daytime trips, cabins offer private accommodations with beds and small but functional bathrooms and showers.
• Ferries offer a range of amenities, such as restaurants, bars, snack kiosks, and Wi-Fi. The availability of these services depends on the ferry company and vessel type.
Ferry tickets can be purchased online (recommended), at travel agencies, or directly at the Piraeus port. It is advisable to book in 2 to 3 months in advance, especially for high season (late May to early October) when popular ferries can sell out quickly. Be sure to arrive at the port at least 30 minutes before departure, as departure gates can change with little notice.
Example Piraeus to Santorini Ferry Schedule
• How to buy ferry tickets: Ferryhopper.com
• Best seats: I recommend Business or VIP if available (nicer seats in a more relaxed setting)
• When to book tickets: 2 to 3 months in advance (any sooner and some ferry routes might not be released yet, any later and some ferries could be sold out)
Common Ferries from Athens to Santorini
- Athens Travel Guide
- Piraeus (Athens) Ferry Port Guide
- Athens – Where to Stay
- Athens – Best Hotels
- Athens Airport – Car Rental
- Athens – Best Tours & Things to Do
- Athens – Travel Maps
- Santorini Travel Guide
- Santorini Ferry Port Guide
- Santorini – Where to Stay
- Santorini – Best Hotels
- Santorini – Car Rental
- Santorini – Best Tours & Things to Do
- Santorini – Travel Maps
Have you ever heard of Volotea airlines? I didn’t see that mentioned in your review. Are they newer to the scene? They seem to have the most flights from Athens to Santorini with competitive pricing but I’ve never heard of them. Any insight?
I have flown with them many times. Not especially new. They’re a fine, typical budget airline in Europe.
Just like you took many many hours out of your days to compile this AMAZING website – I wanted to take a few minutes to say a HUGE thank you for all the valuable information.
We are travelling from Johannesburg in South African and are starting to plan our trip to Greece. This trips always take SOOOO much time to research and drill down on all the necessary information. You, however, have saved me all this work and for that I really thank you.
I was hanging on every word and every tip you gave.
I feel comfortable and confident that our trip is going to be world class and all thanks to YOU.
If you ever find yourself in Sunny South African in Johannesburg please do not hesitate to call me as I would certainly like to host you as our guest and show you around our amazing country.
Thanks for all your time and professionalism in putting together this website – Dave you are brilliant.
Thanks Jenny. I love to hear that this site is helpful. Have a great trip.
We will be in Athens for the marathon in November and we were considering traveling to Milos, Sifnos, and Santorini. We have not found any ferry schedule for November. Do you have any recommendations on how to get to these islands?
There will be a ferry from Athens to Sifnos in November. There should also be a ferry from Sifnos to Milos. But the ferry from Milos to Santorini is 50/50 at best (though there will be an Athens to Santorini ferry).
Hi there, thanks so much for your very helpful website!
I am traveling with a friend and her 12 year old daughter and will be taking the Blue Star ferry from Piraeus to Santorini. Since it is a long trip I thought it might be nice to book a cabin for our luggage and for our own restroom, etc.
The the L2/luxe cabins seem much more spacious/comfortable than the standard cabins, but they are only 2 berth.
Would it be a problem to book the two adults into a luxe cabin and then book an economy ticket for my friend’s daughter, but have her (and her luggage) join us in the cabin? I can’t seem to find any information on if they check the tickets to allow access to certain decks/areas.
Are there any other problems this might cause that I might not be thinking about?
Yes, they will check tickets but that doesn’t mean the child would be allowed to access the cabin. Email Blue Star ferries at email@example.com to ask how you should buy tickets.
Thank you very much for the detail information! This is a wonderful website.
We will be in Athens December 27 – January 1, would a day trip to Santorini be possible?
Possible? Yes. Take an early flight to Santorini and get the last flight back to Athens. But much better if you can stay even one night. Take a small bag with just a few necessary items. Stay the night at a cheap hotel. It’ll be worth it for the extra time.
What a fabulous website. My family and I are heading to Greece and Italy in June. We are hoping to spend 3 or 4 nights on Santorini. (Flying in from Athens). I have a recollection of flights during this time being quite cheap and abundant in January. Are you aware if all there special come out at the beginning of the year? We are then looking at flying from Santorini to Naples. There is only one flight at the moment, but hoping again that cheaper flights will come out at the beginning of the year. Any information on this will be greatly appreciated.
I would book flights as soon as possible as they tend to go up, not down. I doubt there’ll be more than one flight per day from Santorini to Naples so I would book that one too before prices go up. But in general, do I have any insight into what prices will be in January, no.
Thanks for the great info! We are arriving in Greece on November 18 and plan on heading to Crete via plane when we arrive. After Crete we want to go to Santorini for a few days. Trying to decide weather to buy a flight from Crete to Santorini ahead of time or if we should wait to see if there’s a ferry between the two island. Do you know if a ferry runs to Santorini from Crete around the week of November 20th?
Thank you in advance for your help!
There won’t be any direct ferries or flights from Crete to Santorini in November. You’ll need to fly via Athens.
Amazing details. Thank you so much.
My wife and I plan to visit Santorini in late April. We are in an early planning stage and are getting good price on flight (Ryan and Aegean). Do these airlines charge a separate baggage allowance over and above the ticket price we’ve already paid ?
I just want to be sure before I book cause I’ve heard the baggage charges are very heavy.
Every airline is different and they even have different rates depending on where you’re flying from. The information should be on their websites though. Or on the fine print when booking a ticket.
Hi Dave – I’ve just started looking into making plans to be in Greece November 17 to 26 (flying in and out of Athens). Based on this time of year where would you suggest we spend our time? Ideally, I’d like to visit Athens, Santorini, and another island (maybe Crete?). Thank you in advance for your advice.
Athens and Santorini are both recommended. But there are no ferries between Santorini and Crete in November so you’d need to fly via Athens to get between the two islands. With that in mind, Naxos is probably the best 2nd island. If you wanted to stick to other mainland destinations then Nafplio would be a great choice.
The greatest informative site by far. i was wondering how to pay you back as a token of appreciation, then i saw the Patron site. I loved it. I’m in.
My question: My wife and I will be traveling to Santorini in a week. We are going to take the bluestar ferry. If we book a cabin, do we get the whole cabin to ourselves or do we share it with others (as it has 4 beds)?. Also, if we get the Cabin, do we still get access to business lounge?
I contacted bluestar by email, and i am still waiting for their response. I was wondering if you know.
You need to purchase the whole cabin to be together. Otherwise you have to ticket separately (each on an individual line on the booking app) and you’ll be in (separate) male and female cabins. Some ferries do have 2-berth cabins but the ones on the Santorini route I don’t believe currently have these cabins. And you would have access to all the public areas of the ferry (which is most of it) but I don’t believe you’d have access to the business lounge. (I can’t say for sure on that last point.)
We will be traveling in Italy end of May-beginning of June and are planning to spend our last few days of the trip relaxing in Santorini. The only direct flight I see from Rome to Santorini on the day we need leaves Rome @ 23:40 and arrives the next morning @ 02:50. Will more flights from Rome to Santorini become available in the spring or is that typical? I am hesitant to book our Santorini room if there are not flights on the days we planned to go. Is it better to look at flights from Rome to Athens and then fly from Athens to Santorini? Really appreciate your advice! Thanks, Aubrey
I would guess that there will be more Rome-Santorini flights added but there are no guarantees – especially for any specific day. Is it better to fly via Athens? You’ll definitely find many flights and can pick and choose your flight times. But the Vueling one is so cheap, I’d be tempted to book it as an insurance policy if you do start booking hotel rooms but don’t want to commit to the Athens flight.
Hi Dave – we will be visiting Santorini in mid October, and arriving in Piraeus on a cruise ship in Terminal A, which appears to be E11 according to the maps. Our ship arrives at 6am, so I’m trying to determine if we can make the 7:25am Blue Star ferry to Santorini. Do you know approximately how far it is or how long it takes to get from E11 to E6 at the port? Thanks so much – loving your site.
You can see the route you need to take here. It’s just over a mile. It’s walkable but try to get a taxi which will be able to take you right up to the ferry. There should be taxis waiting at your cruise port but the first ones will get snapped up quickly so try to be the first off your ship. If you don’t have your tickets you’ll need to get them at the Blue Star kiosk (which is what I mapped as your destination). As long as your cruise is on time you’ll be fine but that’s not guaranteed by any means. Ferries leave on time so don’t expect any cushion. Good luck.
We are visiting at the end of December. How convenient are ferries to other islands (say IOS or Crete) from Santorini during December? Are there any convenient islands that you would recommend visiting from Santorini?
In December ferries are less common than in summer but there is always a daily ferry to Naxos, Paros, and Athens (and often Ios). Naxos is a great island to visit in the off season. Paros also very good.
I am planning to take ferry on September 9 from Naxos to Piraeus. I have 2 options:
Seajets duration about 3 hours or Blue star duration 5.5 hours.
Which one would you suggest to take?
Obviously the Seajets is faster, but if you’re asking for my personal preference then I’d go with the Blue Star. It’s much more comfortable/enjoyable/relaxing.
Hi Dave, super informative web site.
In Oct, I’ll be flying Aegean to JTR on a Sun, arriving at 16:25. Plan to stay in Oia. I looked up sunset time and it will be around 19:00. Is that enough time for me to settle down to watch the amazing sunset? I’m not sure how long it will take to collect luggage and get a taxi to Oia.
As long as your flight isn’t late that’s lots of time. You should easily be to Oia by 18:00.
I’m planning on going to Greece next September for 10 days any suggestions on how many nights I do in Athens and Santorini and Mykonos? I was thinking 3 nights each and the last night near the hotel but I’m up for any suggestions. Airbnb preferred. Your blog is very detailed and I really have gotten so much information on planning my trip.
Any information would greatly be appreciated.
I would recommend 2 nights in Athens, 3 in Mykonos, and 4 in Santorini.
Thank you for all the information, it’s been really helpful. I have a quick question about sea jet doing a morning round from Santorini to Rafina starting May 20, none of the travel agents are aware of this schedule. I was wondering if it runs and how do I go about booking it? I wanted to book it for May 24 as I have to catch a flight out of Athens at 8.
Thank you so much,
On May 24 it will depart Santorini at 9am and get to Rafina at 15:45. It’s one of the smaller Superjets (so could be a rough ride). Book through Seajets.gr
It’s thrilled to bumped into your blog and got so much useful info for travelling in Athens & Santorini!
We will be travelling to Santorini for 4 days from 22-25th September. We are thinking to book in advance the Blue Ferry when leaving for Santorini on 22th but leaving for Athens by the Hellenic Seaways on 25th, Monday. However, I’ve checked through the Hellenic website that there is no Highspeed ferry available for that day. Is that mean the tickets are sold out? Will it schedule another Highspeed ferry for that day and I shall wait for it? Would appreciate for your reply.
Thanks in advance.
There doesn’t appear to be a ferry that day. (In past years service has been every day in the high season, but this year Hellenic has dropped a few days through the week.) I would switch your ferries and take Hellenic to Santorini, and Blue Star (which runs every day) back to Athens.
This is an awesome blog David! Really helpful. We are travelling to Greece in August. We are trying to book Blue Star ferry from Athens to Mykonos via their website. But facing issues as the reservation is not getting completed. Can we book in other portals like greekferries.gr?
We are looking to book in advance as August is the peak season.
You can try another website but if the main Blue Star site is not working I have a hard time seeing how adding a middle man is going to help. You could try emailing Blue Star at firstname.lastname@example.org. But you have lots of time – it’s not going to sell out in May. Give it a week and check back to see if your reservation goes through.
Your site is amazing with a wealth of practical info. So, thank you for that! I have a couple of logistics that I’m trying to work out and hoping you can help. Our total trip looks like this: Arrive Athens at 4:30 pm on May 21st, depart Athens on the 28th via 6:00 AM flight (yuck!). We’d like to visit Santorini, Paros and tour Athens on the back end. Because our flight into Athens arrives late afternoon May 21st, and 45 minutes is probably not enough time to make a turn around to catch the 5:15 to Santorini, we’re looking at alternate options. Acknowledging that we’ll be exhausted and good for a nice dinner out and early to bed, I’m thinking that we could stay the night in close proximity to the Airport to catch a relatively early departure to Santorini. Does that sound like a good plan? Do you have a recommendation for accommodations and restaurants close to the airport? Ultimately we’d ferry from Santorini to Paros and Paros to Athens.
Thanks for any help you can give.
Personally, I would go into Athens, enjoy an evening meal in the Plaka and stay at a hotel that is close to the Monistiraki metro station (e.g. A For Athens). Then take the Blue Star ferry the following morning at 7:25am from Piraeus. You’d be able to sleep in a little more (up at 6am instead of 4:30). And I find the ferry more relaxing than flying. Also, the ferry will get you to Paros at 11:30 when your hotel room will likely be ready. The flight will get you there before 7am and you’ll probably be sitting at a cafe in Parikia with your bags at your feet waiting for 2 or 3 hours. If you did decide to fly the Athens Airport Sofitel is very nice, has a good restaurant, and is steps from the airport.
Flights are a little more expensive than I’d like to spend now for October, Athens to Santorini and back. I am seeing a less expensive option for Sky Express. Is this a reliable airline?
Yes, they’re fine.
I’m travelling from Santorini to Athens on 29th July by Blue Star Ferry and was checking their website. There is a ferry (BLUE STAR 2) at 17:00 hours departing from Santorini. While booking the seat they are showing Economy and AIR SEATS LOUNGE-1. My question is are those air plane like seats in the later category and there are two such lounges, do you have any recommendation which one to opt for?
Thanks in advance.
Yes, the Air Seats Lounge are big comfortable seats, somewhat like airplane seats but bigger. That’s what I would recommend getting as it’s nice having a reserved seat. There is no difference between the different lounges.
Can you recommend any nice hotels near Athens airport? We only have one night there after flying in from Santorini?
The best hotel near the Athens airport (and the only one within walking distance) is the Sofitel. Good restaurants, nice rooms, great little pool, gym, sauna. About a 1 minute walk from the terminal.
We have a 2.5 hr connection time, arriving from Santorini to the Athens Airport to catch our international connection flight. Are we able to check through our luggage from Aegean airlines domestic to a Qatar Airways international flight (from Santorini to Doha), thanks.
Sometimes if the two airlines are partners then luggage can be checked through to the destination. But Aegean and Qatar airlines are not partners so I doubt it.
Do the ferries operate on March 25, Independence Day?
The pictures of the seating types on the ferry is just what I was looking for. Many thanks for putting that up. My wife and I will be visiting Santorini in the last week of January. We have a few queries –
1) We are considering taking the Aegeon Pelagos Prevelis ferry on the way out of Santorini to Heraklion which departs really early morning at 3:40 AM and reaches at 9:40 AM. Is that a good idea? Most flights via Athens reach Heraklion only around noon at the earliest, so half the day will be lost. That’s why we are considering the ferry but have a few concerns:
– Do these ferries operate on time in the winter months or they often cancelled or delayed?
– I am told that the ferry ride can be rough in the winter. Is it rough on the inside?
– We are planning to book the A2 outside cabin so that we can catch some sleep. I am told that it is a cabin for 2 only and has a window. Is that comfortable for some shuteye?
2) Given that January is off-season, I am told that the volcano & hot springs tour and other such tours will not be operational. Similarly for the open air theater. So we plan to do the Fira-Oia trek, spend some time at Santo wines, Amoudi Bay, etc. Is there anything you recommend that we see and which would be open in Jan?
3) Weather wise, I understand that the temperature will be in the low teens and windy. Does it rain a lot? Any advice on rain gear to carry?
Appreciate any light you can throw on the above queries.
Ferry can be rough in winter but it’s a larger car ferry so shouldn’t be terrible. Yes, they can be cancelled – but it’s not too common. Cabins are nice-ish and you should be able to get some sleep. In Santorini, try to get to Akrotiri and see the archaeological museum in Fira. January can be windy and wet or sunny and mild, no telling. Be prepared for anything and definitely have a good thick rain coat.
Dave! Help! I want to come to Greece, but I’m overwhelmed. I think I want to visit Athens briefly, then go to Mykonos, Santorini and possibly Crete. I have a good travel agent, but she is using a wholesaler, Gate 1. I’m just not happy with the direction they are leading me in. Can you help? I feel like if I can start with the hotels than I can figure the other things out.
Yeah, travel agents suck, not as people obviously – but what they offer in terms of hotels are lame. First decide where you want to stay: Mykonos Town or one of the beaches on Mykonos; Oia, Imerovigli, or Fira on Santorini; Chania, Rethymnon, or Agios Nikolaos on Crete. Then use Booking.com to find hotels with a rating of 8.0 or better. If it’s got a good rating the chance of getting a bad hotel are almost zero. Hotels are ultra-aware of online forums and reviews and bend over backwards to keep guests happy. The end-result is that most hotels nowadays are good or better – and the bad ones don’t stay around long.
Your site is so informative,I would like to see Santorini’s in its full swing with blue sky and blue water. Which is the best month for such climate? Is it OK in March or April?
March and April can be wonderful on Santorini (blue skies and warmish weather) as long as you don’t want to swim or suntan (for that you have to wait until early May).
We are planning to visit Greece (Athens, Myconos and Santorini) during the 1st week of December. We have 5 days for this trip. Is this an okay time to visit Greece in December? Any advice on trip planning?
Athens and Santorini can be great in early December. Mykonos, less so, as it really shuts down in the off season. Also, there are no ferries between Mykonos and Santorini so you’d need to travel via Athens to get from one to the other. So, I would focus on Athens and Santorini and save Mykonos to another visit.
Thank you for your site! I am looking into a Paros to Rafina ferry because I plan on flying back to US the following morning and think it might be easier to stay in a hotel near or attached to the airport. I do not see this port on the Blue Star website. I might also mention I am looking far in advance to get acquainted with the website because my trip is planned for the week of the July 17, so right now the ferry times are not posted. I assume there is a bus in the middle of the night that would transport us from Rafina to the airport, but we might be willing to do a taxi directly to the hotel. Thank you again for your help! My proposed itinerary is: 7/17 Piraeus to Santorini (maybe by flight), 7/20 Santorini to Paros (ferry), 7/22 Paros to Rafina or Piraeus. Or perhaps simplifying it and just staying in Santorini only for 5 nights.
Yes, there will be a Paros to Rafina ferry in July. Easy to book at a later date so don’t worry about that. And yes there will be a bus from Rafina to the airport. I recommend staying at the Airport Sofitel which is steps from the terminal.
I am going to be traveling from Athens to Santorini on September 26th. I went online to Blue Star Ferry’s website and there doesn’t appear to be a ferry that day (or perhaps their website has an error?) Anyway, I wanted to book ahead of time and now I’m worried that there is not a ferry that day. Is there any other way I can confirm or find the ferry schedule?
Thanks so much!
Yes, there’s a ferry every day to Santorini. On September 26th it departs at 7:25am. Blue Star does appear to be having trouble with their website. If you don’t get a chance to book in advance you’ll be fine showing up at the port an hour before the ferry departs and buying a ticket. Or, assuming you’re in Athens the night before, it’s easy to purchase at any travel agent in central Athens (they’re all over the place).
Hi, wonderful help your website is. I have purchased tickets from Athens to Santorini with high speed ferry.
Can you tell wether I can board with the online tickets or do I have to go and collect the tickets from the ticket office?
If the e-ticket has a bar code it’s good for boarding the ferry. If not, then you’ll need the email and a passport to pick up your tickets from the Kiosk at Piraeus.
Santorini Dave – first and foremost congratulation on the best traveling report I have ever seen. AT this moment my family travels to Santorini and I wanted to look it up. Great research, comments and pictures on every step you have to take. Last year I traveled with my girls in Europe. Myself I put the trip which was great success. BUT ….. of course there were few bumps like not validating my metro tickets on the platform. Looking for the box in the metro I was told how to do it. Until I got to the next station and validated the ticket I had a vision of paying 3000 euros fine. With your pictures and explanation that will not happened to anybody going to Santorini. Keep it up.
Thanks Dorothy. Glad it’s been helpful.
Just found your site and it is so helpful. We are going to Greece from September 18 – October 1 for honeymoon. We land in Athens on September 18 at 12:25pm. We want to go to Santorini and one other island and then on the back end of our trip a couple of days in Athens. I am having difficulty choosing the 2nd island. I want it to be different than Santorini but also not too far away from Athens. I have been looking at Paros, Naxos, Folegandros, Serifos, Kos. Any recommendations?
Also, we have been told that we should go to Santorini as our 2nd island as nothing compares to it. Do you agree?
Paros, Naxos, Felegandros, and Serifos are all wonderful islands. You can’t really go wrong with any of them. Serifos might be a little harder to get to depending on the schedule. Kos is definitely a no as it’s a long way from Santorini and few direct ferries. Order you visit doesn’t matter. Do what’s best based on the ferry schedule.
Hi Dave. We are travelling from Santorini to Athens on Tues 26 July. My intention was to travel Blue Star for the advantages you outline above (cheapest, most unaffected by weather, most fun). However the only options are the Blue Star 2 leaving at 6:10am which heads straight to Piraeus arriving 11:15am, or the Blue Star Delos leaving at 3:30pm and arriving Piraeus at 11:15pm. I really don’t want to arrive in Piraeus at 11:15pm given we are only in Athens for 2 nights. With the earlier option I imagine I would need to get up before 5am to try and organise ourselves to be down at the port by 5:30am? Would you suggest just getting the Hellenic Seaway Highspeed 6 which leaves 12:25pm and arrives Piraeus 5:05pm, a much more attractive schedule?
Thanks for your help and for this wonderful website!
I agree. I’d do the Hellenic too.
Hi Dave! Thank you for this website. It is SO DANG HELPFUL!
My husband and I will finally be taking our honeymoon to Santorini. We’re going to go in using the Blue Star ferry, but plan to take a flight out directly to Athens. The only flight available from Santorini is at 8:20am, arriving in Athens at 9:10am. Our international flight is at 1:10pm. Do you think this gives us enough time? Would love to hear your thoughts on this! Micaela
There are no guarantees but I’d be fine with your 4 hour connection time in Athens.
Thank you so much for the all the information you provided in this forum. It really helped me a lot, planning my trip in August. One question though, I would be arriving in Athens on 14th afternoon and would be leaving for Santorini the next day by taking the early morning Ferry from Piraeus. So I was thinking about booking all my Ferry tickets through Danae Travels and collecting it from the airport when I land in Athens. So, do you think it is a good idea? Do you know how their service is?
If you really wanted to have them in hand then sure. But it will cost you extra to book with Danae. I would recommend booking directly with Blue Star then picking up from the kiosk at Piraeus (right beside the ferry leaving for Santorini). Just be sure to arrive in Piraeus 60 to 90 minutes prior to departure.
Hi Dave, Such amazing work you are doing.
I with my wife will be in Greece from April 15 till April 23, for 9 nights and will be distributing 3 nights each with Athens, Mykonos, and Santorini. Should I book ferry tickets in advance? Also, can i get ferry back to Athens from Santorini in the morning around 7?
You’ll be fine booking ferry tickets when you arrive in Athens (buy from any travel agency you come across in Athens a day or two before traveling). There are morning ferries in April from Santorini to Athens that leave at 7am on Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday.
Hi Dave, Such an awesome website!! My husband and I are planning a trip to Greece the last 2 weeks of July. Neither of us has been to Greece. We definitely want to go to Santorini and are thinking of adding Paros and Mykonos. The issue we are having is in what order to do the islands and if we should do Athens first or last. The flights from Montreal all arrive around 10 am ish (so far). So we’re thinking Athens for 1 night and then to Santorini for 4 nights, then Paros for 3 nights, Mykonos for 3 nights, then home. Do you have a better itinerary idea or any suggestions. We are considering flying from Athens to Santorini to save time.
Jen and Jon
I would fly Athens to Santorini to start your trip (you’re already at the airport) and save yourself the time going into Athens and then back to the airport the next morning. Visit Athens at the end – this has the added benefit of giving you some buffer time at the end of your trip in case there are ferry cancellations. From Santorini ferry to Paros, ferry to Mykonos, and ferry back to Athens.
Your website is brilliant! Really found it helpful when looking at getting about in Santorini!
I’m hoping you may be able to give some advice on the airport – Me and my partner are flying overnight from Birmingham (UK) to Athens on Saturday 23rd July and arrive at 4:30am local time. The Ryanair flight departing Athens for Santorini at 7am looks like the best option to me, as I’m thinking 2 hours 30 should be enough time in between the flights to get our hold baggage, check in again and go through security. My only concern is the return flight on Saturday 30th July. We’re scheduled to leave Athens and return to Birmingham at 8pm local time. The only return flight through Ryanair available from Santorini to Athens is at 4:55pm, arriving at Athens airport at 5:45pm (all being that there are no delays etc!). Do you think this will leave enough time to collect our hold baggage, check in for our flight home to Birmingham and go through security etc again? Neither of us have ever flew to Athens before so not sure what the airport is like, how far away terminals are from each other, how many check in desks etc there are and what baggage collection carousels are like (some airports are notoriously slow – Birmingham being one of them!)
Any advise would be really appreciated!
There are no guarantees but 2 hours 15 minutes should be plenty of time. Or rather, I’d feel fine making those plans.
Hi Dave, great website and it really helps a lot!
I’ll be arriving Athens on March 25 and plan to do the blue star ferry to Santorini on March 26. Knowing that March 25 is the Greek Independence Day and it is followed by the Easter holidays, I’m wondering if there will be a lot of people taking the ferry during such vacation? Will the tickets sold out fast? My plan is to buy the tickets at the airport without prior booking.
Greek Easter is different than Western Easter – so not an issue for your trip. You should be fine buying ferry tickets at the airport when you arrive.
We are planning to come to Santorini from Athens on April 1 for 1 night.
I was hoping you can help advise that fastest route to get to Athens to Santorini on that day. Are there any fast hydrofoils the period we are going? The ferry will take too long. It seems to be the low season and not much transportation available when compared to the summer months.
Your reply is most appreciated. Thank you.
The fastest boat is the SeaJet that leaves at 7am and gets to Santorini at 11:50am. If you want faster than that then you’ll have to fly. Aegean has a 5:15am flight that arrives in Santorini at 6am.
Thank you for the reply. Given that we are staying in Santorini for one night only, we would also like to visit Mykonos for a few hours. Is it possible? Which fast boat will take us there. Can we stop over at Mykonos from Athens to Santorini or vice versa?
Your info is much appreciated.
Not really. There’s no easy/quick way of stopping at Mykonos en route to or from Santorini. With such limited time don’t waste any more of it on a ferry than you have to. You’ll have more than enough things to see and do to fill your time in Santorini.
Your site is great! Good thing I stumbled upon it! I have few questions.
We will be travelling to Greece, first time for us, on August 11. We haven’t decided for how many days yet.
1. Which islands beside Santorini will be a highlight to visit them during that time? Or will Santorini will fullfill 90% of things we will see in the other islands?
2. Which are the best beaches to visit during that time?
3. Can you propose an itinerary (when to travel to the islands/beaches, how many days, which ferries/port etc.) when we arrive in Athens (around 9PM on 8/11) for us to maximize few days both at Athens and the islands?
I have 3 kids (16, 11, 10) and so if I need to consider that into the equation?
Also, which Hotels/B&B should I choose for a reasonable price?
We are very excited and Thanks in advance.
It’s hard to give advice for an indeterminate number of days. If you only have 3 or 4 then spend all of them on Santorini. If you have a few more then go to Ios, Naxos, or Paros to find some great beaches. Since you’re arriving late at night there won’t be any ferries so you’ll have to wait until the next morning to get something – and you won’t be to an island until the early afternoon at the earliest – so I would consider looking for a flight from Athens to Santorini for the night of your arrival. This will save you the time and hassle of coming into Athens.
Very informative website!
Do you know if Hellenic high speed ferries operate in mid May? I tried searching one-way from Piraeus but Thira was not loaded in the to drop-down list. I do, however, manage to select the above under SeaJets.
I was hoping to compare the time and price before booking.
There should be a Highspeed4 and Cat4 from Piraeus to Santorini throughout May. The schedule is not official yet but that’s what it’s currently showing. Both leave between 7am and 8am from Piraeus.
We are coming to Athens for 3 nights in September then over to Santorini for 3 nights. A ferry would take all day (8 hours) where as plane is maybe 4 hours including security but more expensive. Is that correct? I was hoping you could tell me if the water is very choppy at that time of year? I get extremely sea sick but I’d love to travel by sea for the views.
Those times you suggest are roughly accurate. The sea in September is about as calm as it gets – but that’s no guarantee for what it will do.
Great information! Do you know of a ferry option for Santorini to Piraeus that would leave early (7:00?) but arrive in the afternoon? I found one from Zante Ferries leaving at 7:00 but arriving at 20:00, which is too late for me. I would be traveling next Tuesday.
The Zante and the Blue Star are the only ferries next Tuesday and the both get to Piraeus late.
your website is amazing,
Would you like to ask what is the best romantic Island to visit for 3 night? Is it cheaper to buy Ferry tickets online and in advance? And then pick them up from the airport? And how is the weather in May? Is it beach weather?
The most romantic island in Greece is Santorini, for sure. With one or two rare exceptions it doesn’t save money to book in advance. Picking the ferry tickets up from the airport will be a few euro more than booking or buying through the actual ferry companies. Weather in May is generally great for sightseeing and relaxing but can be a tossup for beach weather. There can be a big difference between early May (generally sunny but still some rain and cool days) and late May (rain is less common, can be quite warm).
May I know from your opinion, is it possible if i only stay for 1 night in santorini? Or do I need at least 2 days for me to explore Santorini if I come on February 16?
thanks in advance!
More time is always better, but yes, you could see a fair bit in one day. It obviously depends on when you arrive and depart on each day. If you arrived really early on day 1 and left late on day 2 then you could get a fair bit accomplished.
My wife and I are in the early stages of planning a visit to the Greek Islands when it gets warmer. Not so much concerned about the mainland. We’ve looked at the tours provided by the big firms like Insight, Trafalgar, and Globus, but each one uses the same cruise line for the visits to the island – Celestyal. The problem is that the ship arrives in Santorini about 1600 and leaves after sunset. I’ve been to Athens and Santorini, but my wife has never been to Greece. She wants to see Santorini in its proper glory with all the vibrant colors. I’m thinking that maybe after the tour ends in Athens, we could go back to the ferry port or airport and go to Santorini. You site popped up first when I went to Google with the question about how to get from Athens to Santorini. I can’t believe the detail you provided … and the photos! You should be the island’s tourist bureau chief. Thank you so much. Now we just need to sort all this out. Right now I’m searching the Internet for some other tour company that will allow us to spend a reasonable amount of time on Santorini.
You have it exactly right. By taking a tour you miss out on the best times to see the islands: early morning and evening. Though it seems tempting to do a cruise/tour I highly recommend planning and traveling on your own. It takes a little more effort but creates a much more memorable trip.
I am thinking to leave Santorini in mid December for Istanbul and transit in Athens. Do you think the proposed flight transit is workable?
8.20 am/11.20am (Which is better?) Santorini – Athens
1.40 pm Athens – Istanbul
Do you think there will be a problem taking the public transport from Fira to the airport considering I need to be in the Santorini airport about an hour before the flight (right?) around 7.20am?
Yes, that early flight should work fine. Getting to the airport that early could be a problem (and winter bus schedules are very thin). I’d plan on taking a taxi.
I totally agree with Hitesh!
I absolutely LOVE this. We’re going to Greece this December and I almost cancelled my trip since I kept reading negative comments about going to Greece in Dec BUT, I feel so much better now after reading your comments.
So, we’re taking my parents to Greece for my dad’s birthday. My sister and I are both in our early 30s and parents 60s. We’re flying to Athens on Dec 16 at 7pm to Dec 24th at 7:55 am.
I know it’s gonna be a little cold and quiet. Would we be able to see Santorini? I was planning to see Athens, Mykonos, and Santorini. We’re pretty chill people. Would be happy seeing some historical sites, beautiful ocean, and spend some time with family. Definitely not a party person. Of course have good food too.
1. Should we just stay in Athens and Santorini since we’re going in December?
2. How much Euro we should bring for 4 people if we book our hotels from here? We’re not big drinkers and I would say we’re pretty conservative with money. Also, we’re bringing a credit card too with no foreign transaction fee.
3. Should we spend first few days in Athens then go to Santorini?
4. Any other island would be nice to see in December? I keep hearing that Crete is too big and need one week just there!
I would really appreciate any feedbacks.
Thanks a lot.
1. Athens and Santorini are 2 of the better destinations in December. Crete, Naxos, and Paros are also good. Mykonos not so interesting outside of summer months.
2. Without knowing your budget I can’t say. There are bank machines on all the islands so getting more cash is never a problem.
3. No big difference, but if you do Santorini then Athens you’ll have a built in buffer (so as not to miss your flight) in case ferries or flights from the islands are delayed or canceled.
4. Crete is great. The only disadvantage is that there are no ferries from Santorini to Crete in the off season so you’d have to return to Athens then go to Crete. Naxos and Paros on the other hand have direct ferry service with Athens and Santorini making island hopping easy, even in December.
Your website is very informative. I’m feeling a lot more sorted about travelling to Greece after reading this site. My Husband and I are planning to travel from 31st January to 6th February. I have a few questions as I want to plan this trip on my own and I absolutely detest Indian package tours.
1. How is the weather going to be in early February?
2. Will it be crowded?
3. Apart from Santorini and Athens, which places can we see during this span?
4. What are the hotels in Santorini that offer a good sea view?
1. Cool and grey.
3. Those are the 2 best places to visit in the off season. Any other place will be very quiet and hard to get to and from.
4. Here are the best hotels in Santorini.
Thank you so much for all the info. Your site is very helpful!
I’m planning to visit Greece from November 28 to December 4 this year.
I’ve just read that it’s not great season to visit islands since it’s cold and wet.
Do you recommend I should stay in Athens and see attractions in Athens as many as possible, instead of heading to Islands, such as Mykonos, Santorini ?
Please give me any suggestion for great experience in Greece in Winter season.
Definitely skip Mykonos as there’s not much to do there outside of the summer season. Santorini still has much to see even when the weather is not-great (as long as it’s not pouring rain). If you’re traveling by ferry then you don’t have to book your tickets in advance so you could check the weather forecast and go if it looks decent. Athens still has lots to do in the winter, so no worries there.