Best Time to Visit Santorini

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Written By: Pavlos Inglesis

best time to visit santorini

Santorini is not the same every month of the year…it has its ups and downs. So…the best time to visit Santorini (or the worst…) , really depends on what you are looking for, from your holidays in this little greek gem. For example Santorini in May is a completely different island than it is in September or June.

If you visit Santorini with your bikini in the middle of January then there is something wrong with you… (eventhough you may get sunny weather and 20C degrees – and some swimming pools are heated).

Also, if you pack your UGG boots for Santorini in July, then there is also something seriously wrong with you…🤣

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  • Best Time for beaches, swimming and hot weather (more than 30C during the day): June, July, August, September

  • Best Time for activities, hiking, wine-tasting, restaurants and mild sunny weather: May, October

  • Best Time for partying, buzz, crowds: July, August, early September

  • 15th of August: massive celebration in Greece and a Bank Holiday (St.Mary’s day)

  • Many businesses, hotels, restaurants, cafes, bars close: between and including November-April 
  • Most crowded month of the year for Santorini: August

Keep reading…there is more! is the website with the most available rooms and Private Villas in Athens, Santorini , Mykonos & Crete (more than Airbnb!)

Ferryhopper is the best website to book your ferry tickets or check the timetables for Santorini, Mykonos , Crete & all greek islands

Get Your Guide has the best and largest variety of Tours in Athens and the greek islands (Santorini, Mykonos, Crete etc)

Rentalcars is the easiest way to rent a car or a quad for Greece with thousands of available options

Expedia has all the available flights to and from the greek islands

Best Time to Visit Santorini

First, let’s see how crowded the island is during the year:

(the following numbers are not official statistics but more of a feeling after visiting the island for many years and in different months)

santorini best time to visit
These are not official numbers but just my gut feeling after visiting the island for many years…

Santorini in January: 10% crowded – (Low Season – many restaurants, hotels and businesses will be closed, beaches will be empty but the island is not “dead”…Fira is the best place to stay, eat and entertain yourself)

Santorini in February: 10% crowded – (Low Season – many restaurants, hotels and businesses will be closed, beaches will be empty but the island is not “dead”…Fira is the best place to stay, eat and entertain yourself)

Santorini in March: 20% crowded – (Low Season –but slightly more people start to visit the island as the high season approaches, many restaurants, hotels and businesses will be closed or just about to open, beaches will probably be empty but the island is definitely not “dead”…Fira is the best place to stay, eat and entertain yourself)

Santorini in April: 40% crowded – (High Season – the beggining of the high season and most restaurants, beach bars, cafes and businesses open in April as it is also the Greek Easter and lots of Greeks visit the island to start preparing for the high season)

Santorini in May70% crowded – (High Season – All of the businesses of the island will be 100% open and operational but the island is still not full, the beaches are getting busier every day and the weather is awesome)

Santorini in June: 90% crowded – (High Season – almost at full capacity but not yet super busy…everything will be open and super fun!)

Santorini in July: 100% crowded – (High Season – the heart of the high season and when the island gets super busy and crowded, but still you will have a great time while the weather is super hot – do expect to spend most of your time on the beach or the swimming pool – not as busy as in August though)

Santorini in August: 110% crowded – (High Season – the busiest month for Santorini, try to avoid if possible because everything becomes more complicated and takes more time)

Santorini in September: 90% crowded – (HIgh Season –  it will still feel like the long tail of Aigust some times but it will get less busy at the end of the month – weather still feels like summer! See also below)

Santorini in October: 70% crowded (High Season – the weather gets colder but you can still possibly enjoy a swim in the sea or the pool – for many of the businesses October is their last operational month)

Santorini in November: 30% crowded (Low Season – the early days of winter and the month where the weather gets considerably colder – many businesses, hotels and restaurants might be closed)

Santorini in December: 10% crowded (Low Season – the heart of the low season and one of the coldest months in Santorini, no swimming, many closed businesses but always an amazing landscape and wild beauty)

To put it simply:

November-December-January-February-March: Low Season/some businesses will be closed

April-May-September-October: High Season / all businesses will be open

June-July-August: Super HIgh Season / all businesses open

(it is true that the last years, the Super High Season has started to extend in late May and early September and I do believe this trend will continue till the whole of the year is basically high season for the island)

So, let’s see one by one all of your options, shall we?

1. When Should I visit Santorini if I am looking for hot weather, swimming at the beaches or pools and I basically want to be with flip-flops all day…?

The hottest weather in Santorini is in June, July, August, September but even May and October are pretty hot – (see my Santorini Weather Guide).

santorini crowds
Santorini gets extremely busy in July and August and I suggest that you avoid those 2 months as you won’t enjoy your time there much

In October the sea water will probably be warmer than in May as it has been warmed all summer.

Try to avoid July and August as much as possible because the island is super crowded and the shops are always very busy.

It’s not that you won’t have a great time…it’s just that you might not be able to walk on the streets of Oia at sunset time because of the thousands of people…

I always visit the island between mid-September till mid-October while the weather feels really nice to swim and all the businesses are still open.

Most businesses (restaurants, hotels, cafes, beach bars) of the island close at the end of October.

Answer: if swimming and great weather is your only concern then mid to end September and early October is the best time for you!

2. When Should I visit Santorini if my only concern is sightseeing, hiking, wine tasting and great food but not with bad or super hot weather?

April, May, October and November (for most of the time) have awesome weather with low chances of rain and temperatures around 15-20 degrees and mostly sunny.

You’ve seen the amazing wineries of Santorini.

You’ve seen the best things you can do on the island.

You are not really a big fan of swimming or weather that makes you sweat if you walk 5 mins and it’s absolutely fine for you if you don’t wear a t-shirt, shorts and bikinis 24/7.

Answer: if you are the person above then you should better visit Santorini in April, May or October

3. When should I visit Santorini if I want to have all the buzz, the nightlife and the awesome beach parties and the fun?

July and August is when everything really happens on the island.

If you are going to party, you will do it in these 2 months (and it’d be awesome!)

Answer: July and August (and early September…)

4. When should I visit Santorini if I am a solo traveller?

solo traveller santorini
Santorini is ideal for solo travellers and if you want more chances of meeting up with people then July and August are probably the best months

It really depends again on what you are looking for from your travel.

Answer: if you are looking to meet people or just network with other travellers then July and August is the best. If you are looking to see the place but not being super lonely then I would say June or September is the best option for you.

5. When should we visit Santorini if we are a couple on our honeymoon?

I suppose you don’t really care who else is on the island since you will only have eyes for each other, right? 🙂

santorini honeymoon beach
June or September are the best months for a honeymoon in Santorini

But on the other hand, you wouldn’t like the island to be packed with people or not be able to find a table at one of the best restaurants of the island, would you?


Answer: I believe June or September is the best for you. Not too crowded and not too empty. Not too hot but not too cold so that you won’t be able to cuddle in your outdoor pool.

6. When should I visit Santorini if I am looking for the cheapest hotels and flights?

Answer: You should look for any off-season deals which means any date between November-March. However, you may find some good deals in April and October as well.

7. When should I visit Santorini for island hopping ?

If the main purpose of visiting Santorini is to use it as your base to visit other Greek islands then you need a time when you will get the most available options of flights and ferries between the islands.

Read Also: 4 Amazing Greek Islands Near Santorini

Also, bear in mind that other greek islands are not as crowded as Santorini or Mykonos and the high season will be absolutely normal (you won’t be alone but you won’t have hordes of tourists around you). So…

Answer: June, July, August and September are the best months to do your island hopping in Greece. But especially in July and August you should expect lots of crowds in Santorini and Mykonos as well. Other greek islands (Naxos, Paros, Ios, Milos) won’t be that crowded.

8. When should I visit Santorini if we are a family with kids?

Santorini is a very family and kids friendly place to spend your holidays.

So, if you are coming with the kids you’d probably want to spend your time close to a beach like Kamari or Perissa/Perivolos where the hotels and the restaurants have lots of amenities.

You also don’t want the weather to be crazy hot.

Answer: it’s better if you visit Santorini in May, June or September to avoid the crowds and the super hot weather

Photo of author
Pavlos Inglesis
Greek, born and raised in Athens. I have been to almost every greek island and pretty much in every region of mainland Greece. I have also been eating souvlaki and gyros since the 80s. I love being a dad to my 2 beautiful daughters and also taking great photos of the places I visit. This is my blog to help you out explore the places I have visited with my inside tips as a Greek, knowing the ins and outs of my country and culture. Feel free to ask any questions under the post you are interested to and I wIll try my best to respond asap.

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6 thoughts on “Best Time to Visit Santorini”

  1. Pavlos, Wonderful website so much info thank you so much!! We hope to visit one day as we are a retired older couple. How is COVID there now? We still don’t feel ready to travel abroad. We live in NYC. Thank you again this is terrific. We can’t wait for the time we feel safe to visit! It looks absolutely beautiful a trip of a lifetime!

    • Hi there,
      Thanks for your kind words.
      I wouldn’t say this year is also the best time to visit Santorini or Greece in general as there are still quite a lot of Covid-19 cases, and it’s still not clear what the situation will be in the next few months. You can check the live official updates on Covid on the Greek government website:
      Santorini is a fantastic destination, and it is no coincidence that it’s on the bucket list of so many people worldwide. I would highly recommend you guys visit next year and probably in a month outside of July or August. June or September are really the best months in. my opinion as there are not that many crowds around and the weather is still very warm. But it also depends on what you guys like to do in your holidays, because if you are not interested on swimming in the sea you could even visit in May when the weather will be summer-ish but the sea water won’t be very warm (you can still try it though!). Prices on everything are usually cheaper outside of june-July-August and September. October can also be a very good option as it’s when things are slowing down on the island but all businesses are still open. hopefully you can make it next year!

  2. Hello. Loved the article! Great info! My husband and I are coming March26-April 4 2022. We are staying in Athens and Oia Santorini. Are most restaurants open then or will most still be closed? What about the shops? I am celebrating my 60th birthday and really hoped to eat at a nice restaurant. Thanks!

    • Hi there,
      Thanks for your kind words.
      During that period many restaurants will be closed but mostly the ones near to the beaches of Santorini. You will definitely find restaurants to eat but as the weather is very unpredictable during that time you might be seated indoors. Your best bet would be Fira and Oia (but mostly Fira) as it is the capital of the island and businesses are pretty much open any time of the year. Hope you have a great time!

  3. I am planning to go to Greece (Athens, sailing, Mykonos and Santorini from the middle of June 2022 to the end of June 2022. Will this be a good and safe time to go with Covid?

    • Nobody can really predict the Covid situation anywhere in the world but the data and the cases seem to slow down so I definitely believe June this year would be a great time to visit the greek islands as per your plan. It goes without saying that things will be much smoother anywhere you go if you are fully vaccinated as all places in Greece require a complete vaccination to allow you in. Otherwise you have to provide a 24hrs rapid test.


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