Santorini is one of the most well-known islands in Greece, but many people don’t realize that one of the things that makes it most unique is the volcanic activity. The island itself surrounds the caldera of an ancient, dormant volcano, and because of that, is much higher above sea level than other islands. The island’s volcanic history can be found throughout its geography, but it’s especially obvious on the beaches. These are just a few of the reasons why these beaches are especially unique. Here’s a look at the beaches you won’t want to miss:
What is great about Red Beach is that it is within close proximity of some amazing sightseeing. It’s right next to the well-preserved, prehistoric town of Akrotiri. You can even watch archaeologists excavating the site! While at the beach you also won’t want to miss the breathtaking red and black volcanic cliffs that hover over the beach, evidence of the island’s volcanic beauty. Consider coming early to this beach. Since it is popular, space could fill up later in the day.
Kamari is a popular black-sand beach just a short drive from Fira, which is the island’s capital. While there are lots of great things to do there during the day, including a variety of sports in the crystal-clear water, this beach literally sparkles at night. Rising from sea beside the beach is a large rock formation called Mesa Vouno, which shines during the evening. There are also lots of wonderful restaurants, bars and night clubs within steps of the beach.
Not far from Kamari Beach is Perissa, which shares many of its characteristics, including the clear water, the black sand and Mesa Vouno. It also has many of the same great amenities, such as hotels, restaurants and bars, and many of them are quite affordable.
This beach is also not far from Ancient Thera, which is an antique city set on a mountain ridge where you will find lots of interesting ruins, which are accessible by foot or by taking a donkey.
If you are looking for a tranquil atmosphere, you should visit Perivolos Beach. Located to Perissa, this beach features amazing azure waters. It is a great place to lounge away your day. You can also find a variety of water sports there, such as scuba diving, jet skiing and windsurfing, and you can find some excellent seafood restaurants there as well. If you are coming from Perissa, you can either take a short bus ride, or walk the two kilometer-long pathway to the beach.
The first thing you will notice when you get to Vlychada Beach are the spectacular, seemingly hand-sculpted, cliffs in the background. Like Perivolos Beach, it is a quiet and relaxing beach, and it has some of the best sunsets on the island. There is also a section for nude sunbathers, and you will find some terrific restaurants there, too. While at the beach, you may also want to visit the nearby Tomato Factory Museum, where you can learn the history of the island’s tomato paste industry.
There’s no shortage of incredible beaches to visit while in Santorini! Just make sure that you give yourself enough time to visit them all.