Situated in the south of the Aegean Sea, at 200km from continental Greece, Santorini boasts, besides tourists from all over the world, one of our planet’s most incredible landscapes, since its area of 73km2 lies on top of an active volcano. Perhaps that’s the mystical reason for its being called the Island of Lovers, thanks to the charms of its millenarian volcanic formation, after the last big eruption in 1680 BC, together with the enchanting buildings painted blue and white – the colors of the Greek flag – that adorn the rocky landscape and are the scenery for incredible moments. Although its population is estimated at only 15 thousand inhabitants - equivalent to the Leme district in the south zone of Rio de Janeiro – for most of the year the streets of Santorini are crowded with tourists.
In Santorini, everything can be done on foot, but if you’re looking for comfort, rent a scooter (€13/per day), a quadricycle (€20/per day), or even a car (€20/per day). For sports lovers, there’s the option of renting a bicycle to face the island’s slopes and sun. You must also be physically fit to face the 587 steps of Skála Fion, although the climb can be made on a donkey or a cable car (€4 each). From the same port, you can take a boat (€18) to Palaia Kameni and Nea Kameni, two other volcanic islands.
Way beyond the beaches and the diving, Santorini offers great vineyards as a tour option for wine lovers, passing through Ammoudi, the charming fishing village, as well as archeological sites and museums. For those who are younger and livelier, there’s a bustling nightlife, with parties and small show houses. To eat, there are good options of restaurants and taverns, especially in Óia, the most charming and best structured village in Santorini. Outstanding: the delicious fish in wine, accompanied by ouzo, the Greek national drink. Not to mention the incredible risottos, salads and seafood.
Óia also has the best options for hotels, inns and even hostels, but the most outstanding, of course, are the seaside villas and hotels, with Jacuzzis, spas and open air swimming pools. The small village has beautiful little churches with blue cupolas that offer a lovely sight at sunset. The downside is the price of the experience: there, a cup of coffee can cost 5 euros, for the view of the sea and the volcano. Beer isn’t cheap, either: whereas in other Greek cities it costs 2.50 euros, in Santorini tourists pay up to 6 euros.