The Greek island of Santorini is known to be one of the best places for a relaxing holiday.

Keen tourists visit the island each year and there is a good reason for that – Santorini has everything!

Black, red, and white beaches, volcanic islands, archaeological sites, and rock formations.

On top of that, there are classy restaurants, quaint cafes, and luxurious hotels with incredible views.

But what are the most unique places to visit on Santorini?

Keep reading because we’ll show you the best things to do in Santorini today!

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1. Fira – Oia Hiking Trail

Hiking the Oia to Fira trail is a must when visiting Santorini.

While hiking along the Caldera cliff, you will witness some of Santorini’s best beauties.

This hiking trail is 10 kms (6 miles) long and it takes approximately 1-4 hours to complete.

It consists of paved, pedestrian streets and dirt hiking trails.

While hiking, you will go through Firostefani and Imerovigli before reaching your final destination.

There are trail markers along the way but they are few and far between.

So here is a tip to help you stay in the right direction – Always keep the sea to your left!

You could hike early in the morning in order to avoid the exhausting sun.

But, the amazing sunset in late afternoon is also worth the wait.

  • Opening Hours: Daily 24/7
  • Duration: 1-4 hours
  • Prices: Free
  • Location: Fira to Oia Trail, Santorini

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2. Oia’s Main Street

Oia’s main street is justifiably one of the most famous places on the island.

It is a beautiful promenade.

You will find luxury clothing brands, jewelry shops, boutique hotels, souvenir shops, and restaurants.

As you explore, admire the whitewashed houses, the blue church domes, and the marble pathways.

Enjoy marvelous views on each corner of the street.

The view becomes exotic when the sun sets – You don’t want to miss it!

Bring a camera with you, because there are some great photo opportunities along the way.

The street might get overcrowded at sunset, so if you want to take the perfect shot, be patient.

  • Opening Hours: Daily 24/7
  • Duration: 1-3 hours
  • Prices: Free
  • Location: Oia, Santorini

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3. Three Bells of Fira

The Three Bells of Fira is the most photographed motif in all of Fira.

Despite the name, this attraction is located in Firostefani and not in Fira.

It is officially known as The Catholic Church of the Dormition.

It is famous for the three bells, the blue dome, and the amazing view.

On arrival, the scenery and setting will look much better than the pictures.

The view is just breathtaking!

The three bells are placed above the caldera with infinite blue in the background.

No need to say that at sunset, the view is extraordinary.

  • Opening Hours: Daily 24/7
  • Duration: 1 hours
  • Prices: Free
  • Location: Fira, Santorini

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4. Akrotiri Archaeological Site

The Akrotiri Archaeological site is one of the most important sites in the Aegean.

If you are a history buff, this will be a highlight on your trip.

The ruins are more than 4,000 years old.

A big roof covers the entire site in order to protect it from bad weather conditions.

Akrotiri is also referred to as the “Greek Pompeii” because it was also buried under volcanic ash.

The information on the display panels don’t always do it justice.

So your best option is to get a guide.

Combine your visit here with a quick swim on Red beach.

It’s only 250 meters away.

  • Opening Hours: Daily 8am-8pm
  • Duration: 1-3 hours
  • Prices: Tours from $42 USD
  • Location: South of Akrotiri village

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5. Ancient Thera

Ancient Thera might be a bit tiring to get to but it’s definitely worth visiting.

It is located between Kamari and Perissa beach.

The city was created in the 9th century BC by the spartans.

In ancient Thera, you can find elegant Hellenistic shops and some awesome Byzantine Walls.

The view from the top compensates for the exhausting trip.

You will have fun while going up the mountain by renting an ATV.

If you are planning to walk up, be prepared for a long day.

Bring water, wear good shoes and don’t forget your hat.

Finally, there is also a spring inside a cave which adds to this unique sight.

  • Opening Hours: Daily 8:30am-3:30pm
  • Duration: 1-2 hours
  • Prices: Tours from $160 USD
  • Location: East of Santorini, between Kamari Beach and Perissa beach

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6. Monastery of Profitis Ilias

The monastery of Profitis Illias is located on the highest point of the whole island.

If the day is sunny, you can enjoy the panoramic view.

The whole island is visible from up there.

The road to the monastery is winding, narrow, and at times, busy.

But while driving up, you can set eyes on vast vineyards and mountainous landscapes.

At the top of the monastery, it is very windy so be careful when standing near the edges.

The monastery is huge, one of the biggest in Santorini.

It is open during religious celebrations, and only then, you can see it from the inside.

But don’t worry, the external building structure is still a great photo opportunity.

  • Opening Hours: Daily 10am-4pm
  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Prices: Free entry
  • Address: Epar.Od. Pirgou Kallistis – Profiti Ilia 10, Pirgos Kallistis 847 00, Greece

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7. Nea Kameni

Nea Kameni is the youngest islet in the Eastern Mediterranean.

It is only 450 years old.

You’ll find it in the middle of the Caldera, right next to Palea Kameni.

In the islet, you will find craters and black volcano stones.

Many visitors go to the hot springs where you’ll find yellow waters, said to be healing.

If you want to reach the top of the islet then you should be prepared.

Wear good shoes and have lots of water.

At the top, there is an astonishing view of Fira and Oia hanging on the cliffs.

If you are seeking sunset beauties, you can always take a sunset tour to Nea Kameni.

  • Duration: 3-5 hours
  • Prices: Tours from $24 USD
  • Location: Island near Santorini

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8. Thirasia

Thirasia is a version of Santorini that has remained untouched by touristic development.

The island takes you back to when Santorini was still a hidden treasure waiting to be found.

There, you can experience the authentic greek life of the locals.

You can get there by taking a tour from a local travel company.

There aren’t many hotels or restaurants.

Instead, you will find traditional tavernas, cafes, and ice cream shops.

Many fish tavernas are by the sea and offer amazing views both day and night.

  • Duration: 4-10 hours
  • Prices: Tours from $31 USD
  • Location: Island near Santorini

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9. Hot Springs at Palea Kameni

The hot springs of Palea Kameni are not meant for everyone.

First of all, you have to know how to swim.

The boat will drop you off in the Aegean sea, about 150 meters from the hot springs.

It is a long swim and if you are not experienced, you shouldn’t try it.

The hot springs are full of sulfur and other minerals.

It’s best to wear a dark-colored swimsuit because the minerals will stain lighter colors.

They are known for their healing properties.

The small church by the hot springs makes the place really special.

  • Duration: 3-5 hours
  • Prices: Tours from $100 USD
  • Location: island near Santorini

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10. Red Beach

The red beach is considered a rare site, one of the most unique places in the world.

You have to walk for about 10-15 minutes in order to get there.

Your other option is to access the beach by boat.

There are many tours offering trips to this wonderful beach.

The waters are cold and clean, perfect for swimming.

Admire the big red rocks while you are sitting on this scenic beach.

This palette of colors will mesmerize you.

There are no water sports, but you can go snorkeling.

Discover many small caves and the beach’s rich marine life.

  • Duration: 1-5 hours
  • Prices: Free
  • Location: South coast near Akrotiri

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11. White Beach

The white beach is well-known for its wild beauty.

It is not populated and people come here to find peace and quiet.

You can access the beach by boat from Akrotiri port.

While it’s not the general sandy feel, there are many small white rocks – a typical Cyclades beach!

The only facilities on the beach are a canteen and some umbrellas.

Remember to bring the essentials with you including a hat and sunscreen.

This is a great walk for couples on a romantic date.

  • Duration: 1-5 hours
  • Prices: Free
  • Location: South coast near Akrotiri

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12. Kamari Beach

Kamari beach is an attraction visited by everybody in Santorini.

Characterized by its black sand, this volcanic beach is a very unique landscape.

Umbrellas are placed everywhere but there is also free space if you want to place your own.

The waters are cold and clean – You will love swimming here.

The most developed water sports club is also located in Kamari beach.

You can try scuba diving, snorkeling, jet ski, tubing, and stand-up paddleboarding.

If you get hungry or thirsty, Kamari beach has you covered.

Many beach bars and restaurants are operating right next to the beach.

  • Duration: 1-5 hours
  • Prices: Free
  • Location: East coast on Santorini, near airport.

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13. Skaros Rock

Skaros is a rocky headland located near Imerovigli.

The views from Skaros rock are astonishing and are literally a treat to one’s eyes.

There is a well-defined trail that connects Skaros with Imerovigli.

Like many places in Santorini, the view at sunset will be incredible.

Around the rock, you can find many bars and restaurants.

This rock is the perfect place for a wedding ceremony.

So don’t be surprised if you see brides and grooms preparing for a memorable photography session.

  • Duration: 10-20 minutes
  • Prices: Free
  • Location: Imerovigli, Santorini

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Santorini Map

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What’s the best place to visit in Santorini for couples?

Oia is the most romantic village of Santorini.

Couples have many options to choose from.

You can watch the famous sunset, take a wine tasting tour, dine in a restaurant with a view, or rent an ATV.

Plus, you have the chance to visit Santorini’s heart.

Make some beautiful memories with the person you love!

Also, read our guide Romantic Oia Santorini Hotels with Private Hot Tubs.

What’s the best place to visit in Santorini for families?

The best option you have is Perissa black sand beach.

It is quiet, clean, and a perfect place for the kids.

It rarely gets overcrowded so there will also be plenty of space for the kids to play.

Alternatively, Pyrgos is another great option for families.

Quality food, peaceful place, not touristically developed – Everything that your family needs.

We’ve covered a list of recommended hotels in Perissa and Pyrgos if you’re thinking about staying here.

What’s the best place to visit in Santorini for day trips?

The best day trips from Santorini are to Nea, Palea Kameni, or Thirasia.

You can even visit all the famous attractions in one day.

Explore Nea and Palea Kameni, enjoy the wonderful view and swim in the hot healing springs.

In Thirasia, you will find the peace that you need.

Eat at a traditional restaurant, walk through the village and enjoy the peaceful surroundings.

When is the best time to visit Santorini?

The best time to visit Santorini is from September to October and from April to May.

At that time, the weather is not hot, so you won’t suffer from the sun.

It is warm and cool – much more comfortable temperatures!

Besides that, the crowds have not arrived yet and the island is much quieter.

You can take your favorite pictures without waiting in line for an hour.

You can walk Fira’s narrow alleys without getting lost in the crowd.

However, if you do plan a trip during summer, make sure you book a hotel with a private pool.

There are some luxurious rooms with private pools in Imerovigli, Oia, and Fira.

Where to Stay in Santorini

With so many unique places to visit, it can be hard to decide where to stay.

Especially if you’re on a honeymoon.

There are many areas where you can enjoy the gorgeous Caldera views, and there are others where you can relax on beaches.

Do you head to the most popular tourist districts like Oia and Fira?

Or, enjoy more privacy in beach areas like Perivolos and Kamari?

Check our guide on Where to Stay in Santorini: Best Area for Honeymoons.

We’ll also show you the best hotels with private pools and hot tubs in the room.

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For all new cities, I go overboard on my itinerary, just to see every major attraction. Countries I've visited include New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, China, Cambodia, Japan and Thailand. Mostly Asian countries. Next target - Europe!