Tourist Places To Visit In Santorini (Thira)
Santorini is a beautiful Greek Island in the Aegean Sea. It is one of the Cyclades Islands and is a popular tourist destination. Though the island isn't all that large, there are many tourist places to visit in Santorini; from its many beaches to the picturesque towns on the cliff. There are also some inhabited islands nearby that can be visited by boat. The island is a wonderful place to enjoy a romantic, adventurous and relaxing getaway.
Fira is the capital of Santorini and is packed with tourists, especially during the summer. The narrow pedestrian streets offer beautiful views of the Caldera and a stunning view of the sunset every evening. Fira is thriving with restaurants, bars, shops and nightlife. Many churches and museums give this town a historical touch as well. The Santorini Archaeological Museum located here has some interesting artefacts that were found in ancient Thira and around the Island, some dating as far back as the 5th century.
Oia is located towards the north end of Santorini. It is also the fancier side of Santorini and offers luxurious resorts and cave hotels that have tourists flocking to it. Located towards the end of the Island, the sunset view from Oia is also much talked about. The town is thriving with street shopping, cafes and restaurants and can keep you occupied for long. The iconic white painted houses of the Cyclades, the blue domed churches, the windmills, everything that is often seen as a symbol of Santorini, can be found in Oia.
The volcanic island of Nea Kameni is located just off the coast of the main Santorini island and can be seen from the cliffs of Santorini. The island has many large craters, out of which 1 is still active (fumarolic activity only). The last time it erupted was in 1950 but did not cause any damage. The crater is now a tourist spot offering splendid views of Santorini Island and the Aegean Sea from atop the volcano. The hike to the top is about 20 to 25 minutes. From Santorini's old port, you can find many guided tours to take you to the island by boat.
Santorini's sister island - Therasia is an island formed in recent centuries due to volcanic activity. It has a population of fewer than 500 people. A ferry from the old port of Santorini (also known as Thira) will take you to the island. The beach is full of volcanic pebbles and sand with crystal clear water. While it is not the best place to swim, you can enjoy sunbathing and good seafood in the restaurant-shacks on the beach. To get to the village at the top, you will need to climb roughly 300 steps. There isn't much to do here however, except to get another lovely view of the Aegean Sea.
A scenic beach in Santorini is definitely Red Beach. As the name suggests, red is a colour that stands out at this beach. The cliffs are ripe with red mud and look quite stunning. It is a popular beach among tourists and you will find many people lazying under the sun or having a quick swim, though, like most beaches of Santorini, the sand is full of pebbles and large rocks under the water. You will find a lot of yachts and small boats which make for a pretty sight. You can also get a boat to the white beach from here. Getting down to the beach isn't an easy path, so make sure you wear good shoes.
Perissa Black Sand Beach
Santorini has some very unique beaches and Perissa Black Sand Beach is one of them. It is located in the village of Perissa, towards the south-east of the island. The sand is black due to the volcanic activity on the island and makes for a very interesting visit and definitely picturesque photos. You can also enjoy snorkelling and scuba diving activities on this beach along with sun-bathing and swimming.
Prehistoric Town of Akrotiri
Akrotiri was once a flourishing town of the Minoan settlement, but due to the volcanic eruption in the 16th century, the entire town was eradicated and turned to ash. However, it is believed that the people of Akrotiri escaped or fled the island as no human remains were found on the site. The archaeological site is now open to visitors and is remarkably well-preserved. Also, there is a lighthouse at Akrotiri that is a lovely photo-point!
Paralia Vlichada is a beach located towards the south of the island. It is unique for its beautiful carved cliffs that almost look sculpted, but in fact, they are due to the volcanic activities happening over centuries. The beach is quite lengthy and shallow with many pebbles and dark sand. There is also a Sailing and Yachting Center that can be found in the small port nearby where you can indulge in these activities.