Where to Stay in Santorini – THE ULTIMATE GUIDE

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Written By: Pavlos Inglesis

These are the best places you can stay in Santorini. Chances are you are probably confused with the weird names of the island’s towns, the different views, pros and cons each one has, or even wondering if Oia or Fira is better to stay. So, my guide on where to stay in Santorini will hopefully help you out 😉.

where to stay in santorini
If you want to have the best famous volcano and sunset views in Santorini you need to stay in the more expensive western areas but you won’t be close to a beach as these are on the east side of the island



Depending on your situation, this is where to stay in Santorini (Jump quickly with the links below or keep reading):

The place and the area you will stay in Santorini can really make or break your holidays on this magical greek island, but it’s also true that the famous views of the island come at a very high price, so you should be prepared to spend a lot of money as these areas are in high demand nowadays.

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So…you are probably wondering: Fira or Oia?
Or maybe Imerovigli (that’s a weird name…)?
What about Firostefani , Perissa or Kamari?
Where would you be able to see the famous Santorini sunset and the caldera?

(“Caldera” is the sea lagoon where the Santorini active volcano sits) and you can watch this video to understand how it was created.

Which town is really the best to stay in Santorini?

Overall, what are the best places to stay in Santorini Greece?

The answer is actually pretty simple:

“It really depends on your situation and what you are looking for from your trip to Santorini but it also depends on how much you are willing to spend per night, as prices differ a lot from place to place. As a rule of thumb though, the most expensive areas are the ones with the famous volcano views (Oia, Imerovigli and Fira) while the beach side towns of Perissa, Kamari and Perivolos are usually more affordable (but less instagrammable…)“

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  • Best Place To Stay in Santorini: Imerovigli – it has the best hotels and villas of the island with the most amazing volcano views and it is not as crowded as Oia or Fira
  • How to Book a Hotel for Santorini: go to Booking.com and make your choice with the right filters. Airbnb has far fewer available rooms and villas for Santorini.
  • Caldera (Volcano) Views: unfortunately you have to choose between the famous views you have seen on Instagram or being close to the beach, as you cannot have both; if you are staying on the cliff with the famous views (FiraImerovigliOia, AkrotiriFirostefani) you won’t be close to the beach (KamariPerissaPerivolos) and you will pay more per night as these are the most famous and premium areas on the island
  • Best Sunset Views in Santorini: undoubtedly these are in Oia but Firostefani and Imerovigli have amazing caldera and sunset views too and they are not that crowded
  • Fira or Oia: Fira is better for the winter (Nov-May) as it won’t be too empty (it’s the island’s capital with the most businesses). Oia is amazing, but it has thousands of tourists, especially in the evening at sunset time. In my honest opinion, you should better stay at Imerovigli which has amazing volcano views and the best hotels in Santorini.

  • Beaches: If you want to be close to the best beaches of Santorini then you have to stay at Perissa, Perivolos or Kamari; these are also the most family-friendly places of the island. These are all the famous black beaches of Santorini because of the black sand and pebbles that they have. For example, Perissa hotels and hotels in Kamari beach are now offering great accommodation options at a more affordable price usually.

  • Cheapest Hotels: If you stay close to the beach in areas such Kamari, Perissa or Perivolos you will generally get more for your money, as these places do not offer the famous views, but most of them have excellent services and swimming pools and are all close to the best beach bars of the island

  • Best Family Place in Santorini: Kamari, Perissa or Perivolos (close to the beach – ideal for kids); Santorini though does not have any large all-inclusive family resort and most hotels are rather small (but super cute)

  • Cave Hotels in Santorini: they are stunning but they come at a very high price, especially during summer (June-July-August-September)
  • Steps and stairs: if you have issues with your knees or in general you cannot use any staircase or steps, avoid areas such as Fira , Imerovigli, Oia and Firostefani as chances are you will have tens of steps every day to reach your hotel; you should better stay close to the beach where there are no steps anywhere. If you are not planning to get out a lot though that shouldn’t be an issue

  • Best Alternative Places to Stay: Pyrgos, Emporeio and Akrotiri ; they are super cute and you will be away from the tourist crowds for most of the time. However they come with its pros and cons as you won’t be having the famous views in Pyrgos or Emporeio and in the case of Akrotiri you probably need a car to move around as it’s at the far end of the island.
  • Santorini Bus: Taking the local bus to get around on the island is a great option as they are reliable and relatively frequent. The main bus hub of the island is at Fira and the tickets cost between 2-4 euros depending on the destination. However, it goes without saying that by taking the bus you waste more time waiting and planning ahead. A car will always give you more flexibility to move around.

Which is the best area to stay in Santorini?

The best area to stay in Santorini is the west side of the island in the towns of Fira, Imerovigli, Firostefani, or Oia. This is where the famous cliff views are, and it is the most expensive and premium area on the island. This is the area with the best Santorini hotels as well.The only negative is that you won’t be very close to the beach, so you will have to spend most of your time at your swimming pool (which is not a bad thing…). If money is an issue though, you should avoid all these areas and stay in Perissa, Perivolos or Kamari as these are generally more affordable areas.

Where should I stay in Santorini for the first time?

respect oia santorini sign
Oia is indeed a busy place in the summer months of July, August and September and locals have noticed…

If you are visiting Santorini for the first time, you should stay at Fira or Imerovigli, depending on your budget, of course. I do not recommend staying in Oia because it gets too busy during sunset with lots of tourists floating the town’s streets. Fira is the transportation hub of the island, and it also offers the most famous views of the island. If you are on a tight budget though, you should head off to the beachside areas such as Perissa, Perivolos, or Kamari where you won’t have any famous views, but the beach will be on your doorstep.

Where should I stay in Santorini Oia or Fira?

You should stay in Fira because Oia is far too expensive and it gets jam-packed every afternoon during sunset time. Fira has many more hotel options (some of them can be quite affordable), and it is the capital of the island and the transportation hub for all the local buses. Don’t get me wrong: Oia is magnificent, but it is also the main destination for all cruise ships passengers, and there is no way you can avoid that, unfortunately. Here you can read my full comparison between these 2 towns.

Keep reading…

1. Best Place To Stay In Santorini (overall)

best place to stay santorini
The swimming pool of the incredible Grace Hotel in Imerovigli overlooking the unique Skaros Rock

The best area to stay in Santorini is the west coast side, which actually offers the best uninterrupted famous views of the volcano, the caldera, and the sunset.

If you have ever seen a picture of Santorini, 99.9999% of the time, the photographer was sitting on the cliff’s edge on that west coast side.

The best towns to stay on that side of the island are Fira (where all the buzz is), Imerovigli (more quiet and seclusive), Firostefani (within walking distance to Fira but quieter) and of course, the famous Oia town.

Staying in any of these towns will allow you to open your window to the amazing famous views every morning…but remember that these are also the most expensive areas to stay in Santorini.

2. Fira Or Oia ?

Fira is the capital of the island and the busiest town but Oia also gets very crowded every evening at sunset time; both have amazing views of the volcano though

I have recently compared these 2 towns in my detailed post: Oia or Fira ?

However, Fira is the capital of Santorini, and it is the liveliest place on the island.

If you want to be closer to nightclubs, restaurants, shops, and the local buses that can take you almost anywhere on the island, then stay in Fira.

You will get amazing volcano, caldera, and sunset views and will be where all the buzz is at the same time.

Stay at Fira if:

– you are visiting any month between November and April as most other places on the island will be deserted and closed

–  you want to be close to the nightlife and the shops

– you don’t care about the beaches and swimming

On the other hand, if you want to stay in a much quieter place without any nightlife and impressive shops, with a more artistic atmosphere and vibe that, unfortunately, every afternoon will get super crowded because of the people who will gather to admire the beautiful famous sunset, then Oia is your place to stay.

Oia though is pretty quiet the rest of the day, even in the high season but it gets super crowded between 16:00 and 20:00 every day, almost all year round.

Stay in Oia if:

– you want to have the best sunset views (with lots of crowds every evening)

–  you don’t care about the prices of the accommodation (Oia has by far the most expensive hotels in Greece and some of the most expensive hotels in Europe)

– you just want to say to everyone that you will be staying in the famous Oia town

– you also don’t care about swimming in the sea (but of course there are some amazing hotels with incredible private pools in Oia)

3. Best Place for a Honeymoon in Santorini

Santorini is the ideal place for a honeymoon but the place you choose to stay can make or break your honeymoon…

In my opinion, Santorini is the perfect place for a honeymoon.

Make no mistake, this place is both romantic and adventurous.

Seclusive but also full of energy and with lots of things to do.

But when you are researching all the different areas to stay in Santorini the wealth of information might be confusing for most people.

I truly believe that accommodation is the A and Z for a great honeymoon.

Read Also: Best Honeymoon Hotels in Santorini

You don’t really want to be close to nightclubs and crazy parties (though you can certainly visit some…).

You have to make the best of your time with your other half and that’s all that matters during that short period of time.

Many people consider Oia as the perfect place for a honeymoon in Santorini.

Even though there is nothing wrong with Oia, the fact that during the summer months of July and August every afternoon is packed with people who are rushing to watch the magnificent and famous Santorini sunset is really not ideal, to be honest.

That is why you need a place with equally beautiful views, equally amazing hotels or suites but less touristic and crowded.

That place is called Imerovigli, my dear honeymooners.

Hands down Imerovigli is the best area to stay for a honeymoon in Santorini.

Imerovigli has the quietest and most amazing hotels on the whole island and the area with the perfect love nests…

Imerovigli has the best Santorini resorts overall with the best service and amenities.

DO NOT make the mistake to book a honeymoon package for Santorini as I have discovered from friends that these are charged surprisingly more than just a hotel room that you’d book by yourself.

Travel Agents market amazing Santorini honeymoon packages like the holy grail of honeymoons, but it’s really just a nice room with your private pool, maybe.

You may get some extras depending on the hotel but it’s not worth it in my opinion.

Just head over to Booking.com and book a suite or a room at Imerovigli.

I am warning you, though… Imerovigli (and Oia) are super expensive but without a doubt, you will probably find better hotels and private suites than you would do in Oia.

If you cannot find something nice at Imerovigli try searching the available hotels and rooms in Firostefani, which is pretty close and also has some very impressive hotels and private rooms.

4. Best Place for Families and Kids

Kamari beach, with its amenities and hundreds of sunbeds and restaurants, is the best place for families with kids

READ ALSO: Best Family Hotels in Santorini

People say that Santorini is only for romantic couples, for honeymooners or for solo travellers.

I say Santorini is perfect for everyone, no matter what!

Santorini is ideal for family vacations with kids.

There is a catch, though.

The most family-friendly places in Santorini are those close to the beaches of Kamari and Perissa/Perivolos.

You shouldn’t stay on the west side areas on the famous cliff with the famous caldera and sunset views. 

Why I say that?

Well…kids love to play on the beach, right?

A day at the beach is a fun day for every child.

At least…those were my best summer days when I was a kid.

And in fact, summer meant that I was allowed to be on the beach in Greece for four consecutive summer months. Yayyyyy!

Read Also: Best Beach Hotels in Santorini & Best Hotels in Perissa

Santorini and Greece are super safe and you don’t have to worry about anything (but that doesn’t mean you should not be careful every time you are on holiday).

I honestly believe the Best Place for family holidays with kids in Santorini Is Kamari Beach.

The long and wide famous Kamari beach is in walking distance and there are literally tens of tavernas, restaurants, cafes, grocery stores and other shops to spend your time in and have a great summer day.

There are lots of amenities, too, all within walking distance….

And tons of ice cream!!

A family day in Santorini could easily be a day on the beach and then evening walks and dinner in Oia or Fira.

Can you think of anything better?

Alternatively, you can also stay close to Perissa/Perivolos Beach (this is the famous black beach) but I‘d say that Perissa with all its beach bars and parties is probably crazier.

There are areas though, that are great for kids and if your kids are in their teens, they would probably enjoy Perissa and Perivolos beaches more as there are also plenty of watersports available for them to try.

The great thing about Kamari and Perissa/Perivolos places is that they are considerably cheaper than the places with the famous views (Fira, Oia, Firostefani and Imerovigli).

5. Best Place for Young Couples

Santorini is perfect for a young couple adventurous holidays as there are hundreds of things to do and experience together!

If you are adventurous and want to see the best of Santorini with your other half, I believe you should stay at Fira.

Fira is the hub of the island and it has great nightlife, and lots of shops and most importantly: it is the bus hub of the island.

If you don’t want to rent and drive a car or a scooter on the island (which will make your life much easier to be honest…) try to find a place at Fira as all the buses start from and end there.

As an extra tip, for those who are worried that Santorini is super expensive and that they would not be able to afford a room with a view well… accept it and try to stay in Karterados.

It’s where most of the locals hung out and it’s pretty close to Fira as well.

I am not going to lie to you though: there nothing fancy about Karterados.

Karterados is the place to be if money is an issue.

READ ALSO: Best Cheap Hotels of Santorini

On the other hand, if money is really not an issue, my advice would be exactly the same: Stay at Fira or Firostefani (15-20 mins walk from Fira) where all the buzz is.

You will enjoy the famous views, the amazing infinity swimming pools and your Instagram will be on fire! Period.

Here is a handy list of the best but good, decent and clean hotels in Santorini

6. Best Place for Caldera Views

Caldera is the sea lagoon that was created by the volcano thousands of years ago. All the famous views in Santorini, overlook the caldera and it is the most expensive area to stay

I believe that my sketch on top of this article will give you a rough idea of where the famous views are.

FiraFirostefani , ImerovigliOia and Akrotiri all have the famous views of the caldera (the famous sea lagoon with the active volcano-island in it).

You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to understand that these are the most expensive areas to stay in Santorini.

Akrotiri is awesome in my opinion, but it is far away from….civilization (25mins drive from Fira…). However, it’s still a great and possibly cheaper option if you want the amazing views but not willing to pay the high price of Oia or Imerovigli..

I have seen some amazing new hotels being built around Akrotiri the last years and I can easily predict that this is the area of the island that will be developed the most within the next years (if you are planning to invest in Santorini property then I strongly believe this is the place to do it!). If you stay in Akrotiri though, bear in mind that you will probably have to have a car as most of the shops and the restaurants are in Fira, in Oia or at the beach side areas of Perissa and Kamari.

So if you really want tot have the caldera and volcano famous views then you have to choose between Fira,  Firostefani , Imerovigli,  Oia and Akrotiri.

As I have said previously: You cannot have both caldera views and be close to Santorini beaches , as there is no beach that overlooks the caldera and the volcano on the island.

Overall, if you are looking for caldera views the best option is Imerovigli.

7. Best Place For Solo Travellers

Santorini is amazing for solo travellers as there are many places to meet new people from all over the world and there are also many areas to explore by yourself

Santorini is an amazing place and that makes it super attractive for solo travellers as it’s in the bucketlist of many people from all over the world.

Yes, it’s been marketed as a honeymoon destination or a super romantic place (which is true by the way…). Still, the diversity of the island makes it an amazing destination for people who want to explore its beauty alone or get the opportunity to meet other fellow travellers from all over the world.

I honestly believe that if you are a solo traveller you should stay at Fira because you will be where the buzz and the transportation hub of the island is.

Chances are you would probably spend your day on the beaches of Perissa and Perivolos meeting other people in one of the beach bars or just hiking in the island, but I truly believe staying as close to Fira as possible, would make your life much easier transportation-wise (all the buses start and end at Fira). Also, Fira is the place with all the nightlife so…it’s pretty obvious why you should stay in Fira. Staying in Oia is not ideal in my opinion as you wouldn’t want to get surrounded by honeymooners and couples, wouldn’t you?

But I am not saying that you shouldn’t go to Oia.

Visiting Oia is a must!

So…enjoy the sunset in Oia, take the bus back to Fira for a souvlaki, and then head out for bar hopping at Fira.

Alternatively though, and only if you are visiting Santorini in June, July, August or September you can also stay at one of Perissa or Perivolos beaches. Still, you won’t get any of the famous views.

What you will get though is much lower prices in accommodation and amazing beach life and beach bars. 

Be careful though: Those areas are pretty much deserted in November, December, January, February, March and April and all shops, hotels and restaurants are closed.

8. Best Place for Seniors

Main famous towns in Santorini have hundreds of steps and you should better avoid them if you have mobility issues

If you are travelling with seniors or with people with difficulties in mobility in general, I would strongly advise to avoid the areas on the west side of the island such as Fira, Oia, Firostefani or Imerovigli.

There are literally thousands of stairs everywhere and it’s going to be a nightmare.

That doesn’t mean that even those people cannot enjoy the magnificent famous views but living on those areas would make a terrible holiday, honestly.

On the other hand , I truly believe that staying in Kamari or Perissa beach would be ideal in such a case.

However, if you do choose to stay at any of the west side areas (Fira, Firostefani, Imerovigli, Oia, Akrotiri) please make sure that you inform your hotel in advance and let them know of your situation.

I am sure they will do their best to make sure you have a great and comfortable stay.

9. Best Place For Nightlife

Santorini’s nightlife is amazing in the summer months and the best place to enjoy it is Fira, the capital of the island.

Ok…that’s an easy one.

If you really want to be as close as possible to all the nightlife of the island then you should stay at Fira.

Read Also: My Ultimate Guide on Santorini Nightlife

Apart from Fira (and possibly Perissa in the summer months of June, July, August and September) there is literally no serious nightlife elsewhere on the island.

Oia has literally no clubs or bars.

Just restaurants.

It’s supposed to be a quiet place and rumour has it that Oia’s residents didn’t want to ruin that with crazy club-goers or drunk tourists so they never let a big club or a bar to open in that area.

Fira has the best clubs and bars of the island and if you are looking into crazy nightlife then you should stay as close as possible to Fira. If you stay anywhere else than Fira, then coming back home early morning might be tricky as there might not be any buses you can take or not that many available taxis around.

I have to say though that if nightlife is the main purpose of your travel, then I would probably visit Mykonos as it is a place with much more options in clubs and bars.

Best Bars and Clubs in Santorini are: 

10. Best Place for Beaches

Santorini’s beaches are amazing to swim between June and October but everything will be closed outside those months

Hands down, the best area in Santorini to enjoy the amazing crystal clear greek waters is Perissa/Perivolos beaches.

Perissa and Perivolos are basically the same long beach and it is the famous black beach with black sand and red volcanic pebbles.

Perissa/Perivolos beach has the best beach bars of the island, the best beach restaurants of the island and overall the best beach life of Santorini. The great thing about Perissa and Perivolos beaches is that accommodation prices are considerably lower than in the other areas that have caldera views.

Bear in mind, though:

If you stay in Perissa or Perivolos black beaches you are not going to have the famous views that Santorini is known for but you will be in walking distance to the beach!

If being close to the beach is your highest priority in your Santorini holidays then you could also stay in Kamari , eventhough I would say Perissa and Perivolos are much funner places for younger people with lots of good beach parties during the summer months, amazing sunbeds and yummy cocktails.

Even world famous DJ’s often play in Perissa’s beach bars.

ALSO NOTE: Perissa, Perivolos and Kamari ARE NOT good places to stay any month outside the high season (May-October). Most shops, restaurants and businesses close at the end of October and open in late April.

ALSO VERY IMPORTANT: You won’t be able to swim in the sea water in the winter as the water will be pretty cold! If you are visitng Santorini in November, December, January, February, March and April FORGET about staying close to the beach as you will be missing a lot! These places are only for the summer months and mainly between June-September. 

11. Best Place for the Winter in Santorini

All beach bars and restaurants are closed in the winter in Santorini (mainly in Perissa, Kamari and Perivolos)

The best place to stay in Santorini during the winter or low season months of November, December, January, February, March and April is Fira.

The main reason for that is that Fira is the only place that stays busy during the winter months.

Winter is Santorini are considered the following months: November, December, January, February, March and April

You won’t be able to swim in the sea if you are visiting Santorini in any of these months. The sea water will be too cold for most people’s standards.

So, the best thing you can actually do is stay at the liveliest town which is by far, Fira. There will still be open restaurants and hotels all year round in Fira.

Read Also: Santorini in the Winter – What to Expect

The great thing about winter in Santorini is that you should expect to pay far less for your accommodation as prices are considerably lower.

The other benefit is also the fact that most areas will be really quiet with not that many people around.

But the weather can be windy and cold (5 degrees Celsius for example) though it might be sunny!

12. Best Place Cheap Hotels in Santorini

You don’t have to break the bank to visit Santorini, and the secret is to stay away from the famous views but closer to the beach areas of Kamari and Perissa

The secret to finding the best cheap hotels in Santorini is to avoid the famous caldera views and Oia. 

Basically, if you want to find the best cheap holidays in Santorini you have to stay in PerissaPerivolos or Kamari.

Because all the beach side areas have less promotion than the famous cliff caldera views of Oia, Fira and Firostefani they have reduced prices.

But that doesn’t mean you won’t find amazing hotels in those areas! Quite the opposite…

You will actually be getting more for your buck if you stay in Perissa or Kamari (and that applies to the restaurants as well..).

Read Also: Best Cheap Hotels in Santorini

Read Also: Best Beach Hotels in Santorini

Another area where you can find some good-priced hotels is Akrotiri

Akrotiri is the only area of Santorini where you can have caldera views without ripping the bank.

This is because most hotels in that area are quite new and they haven’t been promoted as much as Oia for example, during the last 20-30 years.

Akrotiri is amazing to stay but you have to understand that is a bit further away from the main hub of the island which is Fira (25 mins drive…the island is small!)

So, if you stay in Akrotiri you probably need to get a car or a motorbike to get around the island though there is a local bus that can take you to and from Fira.  

Another option to get some lower prices on accommodation is to look at the villages of Emporeio and Pirgos

You won’t be getting any of the famous views but these are extremely picturesque and cute places with lovely traditional houses and even wineries you can stay in.

The prices in Pirgos or Emporeio are definitely lower than the ones you would pay in Oia.

So, my overall suggestion if you want to find cheap hotels in Santorini is to search in KamariPerissaPerivolos or Pirgos and Emporeio.

13. Where to Stay in Santorini without a car

santorini without a car
You can definitely visit Santorini without a car if driving on narrow roads with the possibility of donkeys and horses on the roads is not your thing

Driving in Santorini can be challenging with lots of unexpected obstacles (donkeys, horses, ATV’s or even other drivers…) and increased difficulty as you may have to drive on very narrow roads with old asphalt and minimum side protection.

If you are wondering where to stay in Santorini without a car then you need to stay in Fira where you will be very close to the main Santorini Bus station and the taxi terminal in Fira.

santorini bus station fira
The main Santorini bus terminal in Fira has a bus for every town on the island and if you live in Fira you won’t have any issues visiting many other destinations.

If you stay in Fira you would be able to get the Santorini Ktel local bus in the easiest possible way as the main terminal is within walking distance.

For example, the bus from Fira to Oia takes about 25 minutes to get you there and it costs less than 3 euros. So, it’s a no-brainer if you don’t want to drive on the island but you still want to explore a few other Santorini cities.

santorini taxi
The taxi terminal of Santorini is in Fira and it will be extremely convenient (though pricing…) to hop on a Santorini taxi to get to your destination. I do not recommend using a taxi as it can be very expensive and there is a limited amount of taxis on the island so finding one in the high season (July-August-September) can be very challenging.


So, there are the best places to stay in Santorini!

Always have in mind that Santorini is not a cheap place to stay but if you search a hotel in areas closer to the beaches of PerissaPerivolos and Kamari you won’t be dissapointed.

The best area to stay if you are a couple and you want to enjoy the amazing volcano and caldera views is definitely Imerovigli which doesn’t have the thousands of touristas that visit the island. They basically go to Oia for the sunset.

Fira is also a great option if you want to be closer to the shops and the nightclubs.

If you are visiting Santorini with your kids then the best thing you can do is to stay closer to the beach and then visit the areas of the famous view whenever you feel like it.

The kids will always enjoy the beach more than just the amazing views…!

The best area to stay with the kids is definitely Kamari and Perissa.

As a final note, always have in mind that you should book your accommodation at least 6 months in advance as most hotels sell out quickly every year!

Santorini’s beautiful landscape won’t leave you disappointed in any case, and you will want to come back someday…

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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 in the comments section under the post you are interested in and I wIll try my best to respond asap.

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16 thoughts on “Where to Stay in Santorini – THE ULTIMATE GUIDE”

  1. Very factual and indeed just what is required from knowledgeable person. I am seriously considering visiting next year for my 60th , most likely October we like walking eating out and live music . Happy to have recommended places to go .. Considering Perissa and taking time out to visit to see the sunset/ volcano area(s) on a day trip?

  2. Hi Pavlos – this is really helpful. We are a couple in our 50s, hoping to visit in October this year. Our visit is purely cultural as my husband is a Greek civilization enthusiast and we want to visit all the historical sites on the island. We would be using public transport mostly so would Fira be our best place to stay? Or can you suggest somewhere else that is central but maybe less crowded? Thanks

    • Hi Celine,
      Yes, indeed. If youa re going to be using mostly the local buses then make sure you stay at Fira becasue this is where all the buses depart from. It’s the main bus hub of the island. Where you are actually staying really depends on your budget really. October is a great month to visit Santorini so it won’t be that crowded anyways.

      However, if I had to pick up a slightly less crowded area I would have picked either Akrotiri or Perissa. Akrotiri is where the prehistoric ruins are (you have to go there…) and Perissa will be very quiet in October. But please avoid Oia in any case!! Also, Fira is still a great option as I said but because it’s the islands capital it’s more crowded anyways.

  3. Hi Pavlos,

    would you recommend the Porto Castello in Santorini

    its a package deal that i have seen.

    i live in South Africa

    • hi there,

      It’s a great option but you probably need a car if you are staying there as it’s not that close to Fira or Oia or the main attractions. Also, you won’t be having any of the famous views that Santorini is known for. I am not saying it’s that important but you should know that. You will have the sea at your doorstep though! Hope that helps!

  4. Your website was incredibly detailed. Thank you for this wealth of information. My family is staying for 3 nights in Santorini and we have adult daughters. Would you recommend the Cresanto Luxury Suites in Imerovigli or should I look for a hotel in Fira? Thank you in advance for your input.
    Kind regards, Diana

    • thanks for your kind words!
      Cresanto is a great option and Imerovigli is the best area to stay on the island.
      Yes, Fira is a proper town with lots of options for restaurants and nightlife but there is literally nothing blocking you from visiting Fira every day or whenever you want.
      There are options for restaurants even in Imerovigli but these are limited (though very good).
      You can always take the bus back to Imerovigli or even walk if you wish (it’s around 30-35 mins walk depending on where you are staying).

  5. Hi Pavlos
    Thanks so much for your great site.
    We will visit for 3/4 nights end of March ie very soon! We have visited on day trips twice before. Your advice for us (couple, on a budget and mid 40s) who like views, history, walking and good food but not bothered about beaches nor nightlife seems to guide us to stay in Imerovigli but will it be too quiet in March ie will there be enough restaurants etc open for dinner at night?
    We will be using the bus, rather than a car so again Fira seems a good option for the bus terminal.
    Thanks for your advice
    Kind regards Eimear

    • Hey,
      Thanks for your kind words.
      Imerovigli is beautiful but it will be too quiet in March and in any case most hotels and businesses will probably be closed without any options for restaurants.
      I highly recommend you stay in Fira as it will be really nice and not too crowded.
      You can always hike to Imerovilgi but other than just the hotels and the suites, there is not much going on there to be honest.
      Hope that helps!

  6. I came across on the Google search engine this while deciding where to stay for the first time in Santorini thank you for your no-nonsense honest guide it was helpful to know and much appreciated.


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