- Don’t do a cruise to Santorini. They suck. You only get a few hours to see the island and it’s busy, hectic, and packed with tourists whenever a cruise ship is in port. The Best Santorini boat tours are day trips you do while staying on the island – but you won’t have time to do them if visiting from a cruise ship.
- All of the best things to do in Santorini are hard to enjoy on the limited time you get on the island if you visit on a cruise.
- If you want to see what makes Santorini the most magical island in Greece you need to stay overnight.
- In recent years Santorini has been limiting cruise ship access to the island. The restrictions should increase in 2020.
- The Best Santorini Hotels are some of the most awesome and incredible places to stay anywhere. Waking up with views of the caldera out your window is a very special experience.
- Five to seven days is what I recommend for most visitors but even a one night stay is better than visiting on a cruise.
- If you absolutely must do a Greek island cruise then book a Greek sailing tour on a small yacht – the best type of cruise to Santorini.
- Santorini is a year-round destination. If you’re into wine, great food, and sightseeing the best time to visit Santorini is from April to early June and late September to early November.
Cruises to Santorini and the Greek Islands
The top 5 reasons not to do a Santorini cruise:
1. You get a limited amount of time on the island (just 3 to 8 hours when you account for getting up to the top of the caldera).
2. You only see the island when it’s crowded with other cruise ship passengers (your shipmates).
3. You won’t have time to see the sunset.
4. You won’t have time to do any of the best Santorini tours: a catamaran tour of the caldera, a boat tour to the volcano, a winery tour, a photography tour, a fishing tour.
5. You miss out on staying in one of the magical Santorini hotels on the caldera.
After the shore excursions have returned to the ship and the cruises have departed, Santorini returns to a calmer and more tranquil pace. So if you can stay a few nights on the Santorini you’ll see a completely different side of the towns, restaurants, and attractions. It’s just much more fun, more relaxing, and more beautiful on the island after the cruise ships have sailed away. And if you arrived on this page after watching the absolutely awful Rick Steves’ Santorini episode – just ignore everything that guy recommends about seeing the Greek islands. He’s clueless.
Recommended Greece Travel Agents
- Fantasy Travel – Good for planning trips to Greece and the Greek islands.