The Greek island of Santorini is known for its picture perfect view of whitewashed houses, blue waters, and captivating sunset. In this volcanic island though, you need to remember that it is the view you are paying for usually when you go to a hotel, restaurant, or a coffee shop. We list down things you should not do in Santorini so your pocket will not hurt much and what you should instead:

Santorini is not the best party island and you must appreciate it for that

We are not saying that you cannot find a good time in Santorini but you should not look for an Ios or Mikonos which offer a 24×7 party lifestyle. There are some exciting clubs though in Kamari and Fira. Perissa, one of the island’s best beaches, can surprise you with some big party nights. You can check out the Yazz for some upbeat music or enjoy a drink at Soul Bar with some friends and locals. If you feel like getting into the groove, go  to the Beach Bar for some dancing.

You will find a party if you are looking for a party but you should remember that Santorini is famous for and appreciated by most travellers for its relaxed, perfect for coffee vibe. When I visited Santorini a few years back, I remember taking off my watch and just enjoyed the slow pace of life. Enjoy the view. Enjoy the fresh air. Enjoy some quiet time.

Do not do the usual but instead, create the Santorini tour of your dreams

When you do a research online on travel guides for Santorini, you will be overwhelmed by the number of choices for a Santorini holiday and tour. You can choose to see the hot spring, maybe the volcano, or get a different perspective while cruising on a boat. These are great tours but you can do a lot more in Santorini. After all, you will not be able to enjoy the hot springs because of its very high sulphur content or appreciate the volcano upclose. The best that you can do is go for something different.

Instead of joining other travellers for a tour of the island, rent a car, a scooter, or a bike and go around by yourself or with your family. You do not have to worry about getting lost. You can cover the island in a day or so. Aside from the usual stuff, you will be able to see donkeys, seal, and rub elbows with the locals. Of course, you can always stop to enjoy the beautiful sunset.

There is more to Santorini than the blue domed, white washed houses

No matter how low tech your digicam is, you cannot really have a bad picture of Santorini. Click away and you will have a great angle of the houses by the cliff, the pristine waters of the Aegean Sea, and the colourful flowers. There is so much more to Santorini beyond this postcard scenery.

Ask around and you will find yourself trying to get a tan on a ruby-colored beach, appreciate the white beach of Vlychada, or relax on the black beach of Perissa.

If you are more adventurous, you can arrange for a cliff jump just by the Amoudi Bay. You can also check out the Emporio cave houses. If you want to have a great Greek dining experience with the Aegean Sea as your backdrop, ask for directions for the old tavernas of Akrotiri.

No need to spend a fortune for dining with a view

The more tourists a village has, the higher you have to pay for food and accommodation. Compare what you need to spend in Fira to how you can save if you go to Perissa. Spending more does not guarantee the best food or the best room. The peak season stars around February but if you want to go without the usual crowds, try October through December. Some establishments maybe closed but it will be just you and the island without the honeymooner or starlets in bikinis. The prices of things are lot lower too. You can rent a place for as much as 50% off.

If you are on a budget, go for cheaper options in Perissa, Megalochori, and Vlychada. You can find the perfect lamb or moussaka in these places for a lot less.

The great view is everywhere you look at so you really don’t have to spend a lot and look for that fancy restaurant or bar.

Take it easy when things don’t work as expected

As picture perfect as it can be, the island of Santorini also has its share of problems. You may run out of water since water is supplied by trucks on a weekly basis. But don’t let your vacation be ruined by small problems like this. Breathe in. Breathe out. You are on an island and things are on a slower pace.

Chillax. Enjoy the view. Fall asleep while enjoying the breeze. Enjoy the fava. Appreciate the Vinsanto wine.

A holiday in Santorini is not so much about planning. It is really about enjoying what you will find as you explore the island. It is all about what life will brings. Enjoy.

Here are some important travel tips:

  • Santorini business hours is from 8 in the morning to 3 in the afternoon, Mondays through Fridays
  • When you party on the hotel balcony, remember you are 300 meters up a cliff.
  • Power supply is 220/240 volts
  • Crime rate in Santorini is nearly zero.
  • Travelers from members countries of the European Union do not need a Visa
  • When talking to a local, eye contact is very important; they focus a lot on body language
  • Santorinians eat big. Try to sample what’s on your platter so as not to offend the host
  • Expect your glass of wine , ouzo, or beer to be constantly and consistently top up
  • Smile and enjoy the relaxed way of life in Santorini; getting upset will not get you any where in Santorini
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