Santorini Honeymoon Guide
Be awed by the unique crescent-shaped Santorini – undoubtedly the most extraordinary island in the Aegean and the perfect Greek Island honeymoon destination.
The glamorous island of Santorini (also known as Thira) is often considered the most dramatically beautiful of all the Greek Islands and, along with Mykonos, is also one of the most expensive.
But don’t let the cost put you off enjoying a honeymoon or romantic getaway here, for Santorini offers all the necessary ingredients for the perfect Greek Island romance.
This uniquely shaped island was formed around 1600 BC, when the biggest volcanic eruption in recorded history blew out the centre of the island and left behind the impressive sea-filled caldera (crater) that we see today.
For a lasting memory, arrive by cruise liner at the spectacular harbour of Skala, which lies beneath 300m-high multi-hued cliffs that soar out of the deep blue waters of the submerged caldera.
From here, a narrow twisting cobblestone path leads up to the picture-perfect clifftop village of Firá.
To the west lies the equally stunning village of Oía (also known as Ia). With its white- and pastel-coloured structures and blue-domed churches perched high on the cliffs overlooking the blue sea of Ammoudi Bay, Oía is probably the Aegean’s most photographed town.
Sunsets viewed from Oía (above photo) are reputed to be among the world's most beautiful.
To the east of Fira lies the town of Megalochori, another beautiful settlement crammed with old white Cycladic churches.
Soak up the ambience of these picturesque villages by strolling the labyrinth of narrow and winding cobblestone streets lined with fashion boutiques, jewellery shops, gourmet restaurants and sophisticated boutique hotels.
Away from the major settlements, savour fine Santorini wines at one of the vineyards around Pyrgos and visit the 18th century monastery of Profitas Ilias, which clings to the island’s summit overlooking the east coast beaches.
Explore archaeological remains dating back to the 9th century BC at the ancient Minoan city of Akrotiri (buried under lava following the volcanic eruption in 1600 BC) and at Ancient Thera, a classical Doric city sprawling across the slopes of Mesa Vouno.
Alternatively, admire the ancient frescoes and ceramics from Akrotiri that are on display in the Museum of Ancient Thira in Firá.
Cruise the deep blue waters of the caldera and visit the tiny uninhabited black volcanic islets of Nea Kameni to peer into a smouldering volcanic crater. Or visit Palea Kameni to sample hot springs and therapeutic mud.
On the opposite side of the caldera, visit the island of Thirassia, boasting several seafood tavernas and great views across the caldera to Santorini. The unspoilt island of Anafi, located east of Santorini, offers a pleasant sandy beach and can be reached by ferry.
Discover pretty Kokkini Paralia Beach, located close to the ancient site of Akrotiri, or unwind on the volcanic black sand of Kamari and Perissa beaches.
This narrow strip of unique red and black sand, more commonly known as Red Beach, nestles between a soaring red lava cliff and clear blue waters, creating a magnificent setting for swimming and snorkelling.
Pack a picnic, relax on the fine-grained red sand and perhaps make time to visit the ancient Minoan ruins at nearby Akrotiri.
Red Beach is located on the south coast of Santorini, an easy drive from Thira, followed by a short walk down to the beach. You can also take a water taxi.
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Believed by many to be the site of the lost city of Atlantis, Santorini offers a choice of exciting sightseeing activities for active couples celebrating a honeymoon or romantic getaway holiday.
Explore probably the most important archaeological site in the Cyclades, famous for stunning frescoes of the Minoan civilisation. Wander through the streets of the ancient Minoan settlement, frozen in time following the eruption of 1600 BC and discover about 40 buildings uncovered to date.
Browse marble figurines, ancient vases and clay statuettes of various birds, livestock and dolphins from the dig at Akrotiri.
One of the most important and well-preserved Byzantine churches of the island, dating from 1100 AD. Another not-to-miss church is the monastery of Profitis Ilias, located at the highest point on Santorini – perfect for great views across the island and of distant Crete's mountains on a clear day.
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Often considered the most dramatically beautiful of all the Greek Islands, Santorini offers an excellent range of accommodation options to suit all budgets, including the following 5-star hotels…
Prices: from AUD1902 per room
Description: Perched on the cliffs of Oia, 92 metres above the blue waters of the Aegean, Katikies Hotel offers a rooftop restaurant. Its infinity pools enjoy sweeping views of the Caldera. Each of the white-washed rooms has a private terrace with unforgettable sea views. All rooms are air conditioned and come with satellite TV and CD player. Guests also enjoy a minibar, as well as a mini wine cellar and a fridge. The boutique hotel’s facilities include open-air and indoor hot tubs and swimming pools. Free Wi-Fi internet access is available throughout the hotel. American breakfast with champagne is served in your room, or on your private veranda. Guests receive wine and fruit as a welcome gift. Guests staying at Katikies Hotel are offered free transfers to the beach, 3 km from the hotel. Katikies Hotel is 18 km from Santorini airport and Athinios port.
Andronis Luxury Suites
Prices: from AUD1589 per room
Description: Nestled in the Caldera cliff with a view of the volcano, the surrounding islands and the Aegean Sea, this hotel combines classic luxury with modern minimal style. A healthy and natural lifestyle defines Andronis Luxury Suites. The concept extends from the massage room and luxury spa to the Mediterranean restaurant. Savour cuisine that is freshly prepared using only bio-organic ingredients. Andronis Suites are carved into the cliff, creating an authentic and charming base for your stay. The design of the suites combines traditional Cycladic and contemporary style. Relax in the atmosphere of your elegant suite, complete with a hot tub and views across the island. Andronis Suites' convenient location allows you to be close to Oia, while still enjoying peace and seclusion.
Kirini Suites & Spa
Prices: from AUD1313 per room
Description: This 5-star hotel, with its traditional architecture and its multi-levelled terraces, perches from the cliff, overlooking the blue waters of the Aegean Sea and the dramatic volcano island. The recently refurbished Kirini Suites & Spa features additional luxury amenities, such as the new Spa and the pool area with not only lounges with sea view, but relaxing facilities carved into the cliff. The recently redecorated suites offer a serene atmosphere, wooden floors, fluffy beds and luxury bath amenities. From every suite’s veranda, the views to the water-filled Caldera are mesmerizing. Each suite has air conditioning, satellite TV, direct dial phone, safety deposit box, minibar, hair dryer, bathrobes, feather-filled pillows and luxurious bath amenities. Kirini is located in Oia, just a short 15 minutes walk to the panoramic promenade. It is 30 minutes by car from the Santorini International Airport and the Athinios Port.
Find the best deal, compare prices and read what other travellers have to say about hotels in Santorini at TripAdvisor.
The best time to honeymoon in Santorini is during the mid-season (May, June, September and October) when the weather is warm and the islands are less crowded.
Peak season generally runs from July to August and is best avoided due to temperatures often exceeding 38°C; and to the fact that Santorini, together with the main islands, are swamped with European holidaymakers.
For more climate info: Santorini Weather Guide…
Santorini is the southernmost island in the Cyclades group of islands, located in the Aegean Sea south-east of mainland Greece. The Cyclades comprise: Mykonos, Paros, Naxos, Ios and Santorini, plus a number of smaller islands.
Time-pressed holidaymakers can fly direct into Santorini, with daily flights from Athens lasting around 45 minutes.
High-speed catamarans make the journey from Pireaus to Santorini in four and a half hours. Ferries dock at Santorini’s tiny port of Athinios (a few kilometres away from Skala).
More information on how to get to Santorini…
Latest update Santorini honeymoon destination: 7 June, 2017