Santorini has to offer so many more things to do than just a sunset in Oia or a swim at the black beach. There are literally so many things to do in Santorini that makes it by far the most interesting and diverse greek island.
As the island has gone through some tough times in the past (Roman period, Venetian occupation etc) its landscape is full of some amazingly hidden castles and fortresses that you can visit pretty much for free.
1. Kasteli (Castle) of Pyrgos
Why you should visit it: this castle is in Pyrgos Village which is by itself a great visit and a really picturesque location.
History: you can read a little bit of the castle’s history here
How to get theret: just go to Pyrgos Village and then head to the location shown in the map below
2. Skaros Rock : The Fortress
Why you should visit it: this is the most important castle of Santorini built to protect the island from the pirates in the 1200’s. It is in a unique location close to Imerovigli offering some amazing views of the volcano. It is also a great opportunity for hiking and trekking.
History: Skaros Rock was basically a small medieval city. You can read a little bit of the castle’s history here.
How to get there: just go to Imerovigli and then head to the location shown in the map below
3. Castle of Agios Nikolaos : Oia
Why you should visit it: ok…we know you are going to visit Oia to watch the sunset but this had to be on the list! It is the ultimate touristic attraction not only of Santorini but perhaps…of Greece. So, get prepared or arrive there at least 1 hour before the sunset to get a nice spot. There are no words to describe this experience and as much as we hate the “touristy” and packed locations…we have to admit there is usually a good reason why they became top spots.
History: Oia Castle exists since the 1400’s. You can read a little bit of the castle’s history here
How to get there: it’s extremely difficult to miss it…just go to Oia and then head to the location shown in the map below. Or just follow the tourists queues…
4. Kasteli (Castle) of Akrotiri : La Ponta
Why you should visit it: we won’t say anything more on why you should visit “La Ponta”. Just watch the video below and visit symposionsantorini.com for more information. Get prepared for an amazing time travel with Greek music…This is indeed a Santorini Secret!
History: Akrotiri Castle exists since the 1200’s. You can read a little bit of the castle’s history here
How to get there: go to Akrotiri village and just follow this Google Maps link for directions.
Santorini is a fantastic island that has much more to offer than just some sunsets in Oia, some picturesque pathways at Fira or some unique beaches to swim.
The island is full of history, traditions, music, food and amazing local people that make this place one of the most unique and fascinating destinations in the world.