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Where to Stay in Santorini Thira

Santorini Accommodation - stunning views of the caldera (image by Rambling Traveler)

Where to Stay in Santorini - great places for your stay in stunning Santorini.

The island has 14 villages and the larger capital Fira, so choose carefully whereabouts you would like to stay.

•   Do you want to be near a beach?

•   Near to the best views of the caldera and the sunsets?

•   In amongst the shopping and nightlife? 

•   Close to good restaurants?

•   How will you be arriving to Santorini, by ferry or perhaps flying into the airport?

Ferries arrive from Piraeus and all over Greece regularly into the port of Athinios in the west of the island.

The Old Port – Ormos, sits beneath the capital town of Fira, the stunning arrival and 220 meters to the town can be traversed by near vertical cable car or slow and steady donkey ride.

Whilst this was romantic and offered great views, this was the bottleneck of arriving in Santorini which has been solved by the opening, in 1998, of a new ferry port at Athinios, 12 km south of Fira on the west side of the island. Buses and taxis transport new arrivals on a very steep slope with switchback curves, still not as dramatic as the old port.

Air travel into Santorini is possible from all over Europe by way of the Santorini International Airport (code is JTR), which is located to the south east of the island near the beaches of Kamari and Monolithos. Remember Santorini is known in Greece as Thira Θήρα.

The airport is 6 km from the capital Fira.

On the Map

Where to Stay in Santorini - anywhere you choose to stay will be about thirty minutes travelling time from the port or airport, as the island is quite small, however you will need to keep this in mind when booking your accommodation.

Where to Stay in Santorini - Oia

Views from Oia are spectacular (image by Navin)

Oia, a village at the north tip of the island, has become famous and popular for its dramatic views of the whole caldera and dramatic sunsets. This whitewashed village is clustered atop very steep cliffs, looking back over the island the towns of Imerovigli, Firostephani and Fira clinging to the cliff tops.

The village of Oia spills over the steep cliffs of the caldera (image by Wolfgang Staudt}

Oia is a little distance from Fira, and also away from the ferry dock and the airport, so it tends to be a little quieter, especially after sunset. Many tourists do come especially for the sunset, so that is the busiest time of day in Oia. By the way, the name is pronounced "eeya". The village is also known as Pano Meria.

The timeless elegance of Mystique

In Oia is the beautiful Mystique Resort (left).

A whitewashed hotel with completely modern approach to the age-old sensual experience of the Cyclades; dazzling white simplicity against the overwhelming blue panoramic views of the Mediterranean.

A place to simply breathe and be. 

Mystique Hotel - superb styling

An exclusive retreat, all suites have sea views with a terrace or balcony, in-house spa with massage and aromatherapy are available, and alfresco dining perched above one of the most dramatic and romantic views in the world. 

More information and bookings at the Mystique Resort, Oia in Santorini

Oia - Mystique Resort - exquisite views

Where to Stay in Santorini Firostephani

Views over the caldera from Firostephani
Tsouras Collection Boutique Hotel - interior

In Firostephani, the beautiful views all over the caldera can be enjoyed, without the crazy crowds of Fira. Clinging to the rim of the cliffs, Firostephani is a whitewashed Cycladic village with its fair share of beautiful churches, stunning architecture and wide open spaces. The cave dwellings constructed all over the island can also be found here.

We have chosen the luxury retreat known as the Tsitouras Collection in Firostephani, occupying a mansion originating from 1780. The five suites were designed, renovated and decorated by the art collector, historian and author Dimitris Tsitouras, with his unique flair.

A truly luxurious Greek experience, the suites have welcomed such luminaries as Gianni Versace, Nana Mouskouri, Demis Roussos and Jean Paul Gaultier. Santorini Accommodation is proud to present the Tsitouras Collection. 

Ellion Thea Boutique Hotel

Ellion Thea Boutique Hotel - exterior
View from the balcony

Also in Firostephani is the small boutique hotel Ellinon Thea with only nine rooms, and balconies looking over the magnificent views of the volcano and the blue, blue Aegean Sea.

With a simple style, great location just between Firostephani and Fira, attention to detail and delicious breakfasts, this is a lovely choice of Santorini accommodation. With a steam room and gym, and in-house massage service available, it offers a haven to guests.

Some rooms are on the ground floor, so if you want a first floor room with a balcony, ensure you request this when booking.

The Belvedere Hotel

Where to Stay in Santorini - the Belvedere Hotel in Firostephani is a small boutique hotel. With 23 rooms, it has an intimate atmosphere, many of the rooms overlooking the exquisite view of the caldera, the bay and the islands, as well as the whitewashed villages of the island gripping onto the edges of the steep cliffs. 

View from The Belvedere Hotel

Elegantly decorated, with a romantic feel, this guest house is perfect for a couple’s secluded getaway or honeymoon.

Belvedere Hotel - interior

Just 6 km from the airport, and between Fira and Oia, this location is an ideal choice for exploring the island. 

Be sure to request a room with a view. We must remind everyone that sizes of all rooms on Santorini tend to be small due to the higgldy piggldy nature of the villages clinging to the rim of the volcano.

More information and bookings at the Belvedere Hotel, Firostephani in Santorini

Where to Stay in Santorini  - Fira

Fira is the hustly-bustly action-packed capital of the island. Galleries, jewellery studios, artists’ studios, fashion boutiques; world class shopping jumps out on every corner. Restaurants, cafés and bars sit jostling amongst all of the movement on the steep narrow streets.

All the hubbub is over-crowded in summer and we highly recommend visiting in the shoulder season of spring or autumn. In any season be prepared for stunning views and many, many steps to climb.

In central Fira is the stunning white washed guest house Pantelia Suites, with layers tumbling down the steep hillside of blue and white seamlessly entering the blue and white bay.

Pantelia Suites - exterior

We have chosen this lovely guest house as it is small and friendly, the six self-catering suites are elegant simplicity. Built from a family home, the interconnected suites span three levels in a quieter part of Fira town.

The suites on the lower level are actually cave-houses, made famous on the island. They have been completely renovated and decorated, as the other suites, with a reserved style.

Pantelia Suites - the most stylish cave houses you will ever visit...

With a high quality of personalised and caring service and a stunning location just moments away from central Fira, this will be a real highlight of your Greek holiday. The views are spectacular, with sunsets a particular attraction, from your own private balcony.

Close to many cafés, restaurants, world quality crafts and jewellery shops, the Fira Cathedral, bus stops and bars, these suites would suit those wanting to explore the whole island.

More information and bookings at the Pantelia Suites, Fira in Santorini

Accommodation Santorini
San Giorgio Villas 

San Giorgio Villas Santorini
San Giorgio Room - Santorini

Where to Stay in Santorini - also in Fira are the San Giorgio Villas which represent very good value for budget travellers. The rooms are beautifully renovated, it is a small place with only 20 rooms, located in the cobbled back streets of town. 

Located close to bus station, you can catch buses from here all over the island, it is not on the caldera and the rooms do not have views over the volcano. It is a two minute walk into central Fira and a 5 minute walk to see the views over the caldera. This is why the rates here are competitive.

The hosts offer warm hospitality and loads of local knowledge, and can arrange port or airport pick-ups and drop-offs. As the family helps with the service, there is a nice family-run atmosphere. Take advantage of your host’s local knowledge. It is close to the supermarket and the wi-fi service is great.

This little hotel is ideal for travellers wanting to be centrally located on the island.

'Great location, tasteful modern design, quiet room in a busy area, wonderful staff who were very friendly and accommodating.'

Accommodation Santorini

Galatia Villas Santorini

Galatia Villas - just a 10 minute walk from Fira, in a quiet neighbourhood, this small set of villas offers a good budget price with modern stylish rooms and a pool. Enjoy air conditioning and an ensuite in your double room.

'Beautiful spot. Quiet and very comfortable. I enjoyed that it was out of the main, busy part of town. The walk to town centre was quick. The staff were exceptional. I would stay again!'

Accommodation Santorini

Accommodation Santorini - Megalochori Μεγαλοχώρι is a small village in the south-west of the island, where a resort – Vedema – has recently been established, very much like a whole village of its own.

Vendema Resort is like a little village
Vendema Resort - interior

Vedema Resort - Located 5 km from Fira, the resort offers lush gardens and views to the east over the Aegean Sea, and a rest away from the crowds along the edge of the famous Santorini caldera rim.

Surrounded by greenery of vineyards, this is the other side of Santorini, a restful peaceful haven in a luxury setting. Encased in a wall much like a medieaval town, the resort has been built around a 400 year old wine cellar, in tune with the then Venetian architecture of Santorini. This is a really vibrant choice for Santorini Accommodation.

The rest of the resort combines Cycladic architecture with modern flair, each suite with its own unique style. Abundance is close at hand in the relaxation spa, with world class attention to guests’ every need in beauty and rejuvenation.

The resort is 7 km from Santorini International Airport and 4 km from the port, with access to a private beach within 3 km.

Aegagros Caldera Houses

Aegagros Caldera Houses in Santorini

Accommodation Santorini - are you looking for views of the caldera? A rural traditional home? Rustic meets modern country chic? You've found your place to stay in Santorini, away from the madding crowd.

Aegagros Caldera Houses are so charming, your socks are off already. Anastasia, the creator and visionary says "We wish to share with our guests Santorini itself in its purest form as it used to be in the old days, when the island was still untouched by mass tourism, excess construction and overrated high class hotels, where tradition and personal contact, hospitality, authentic greek and local cuisine, and human touch were the norm."

This is achieved in these very different and low-key adobe houses, with traditional Greek friendly warmth and true hospitality. A real find on Santorini.

Santorini Accommodation

Perissa Περίσσα is a dark sand beach in the south-east of Santorini, away from the steep sides of the caldera and the famous views of the island. It is 15 km from the capital Fira.

Villa Dima Perissa Beach Santorini

Where to stay in Santorini - Villa Dima, another budget option for accommodation on the island, a quiet place with only 14 rooms, a two minute stroll to the beach.

Friendly staff will take care of you in these very clean guest houses, many of which have self-catering kitchenettes. A transfer can be arranged from the airport or the port.

The village of Perissa is very modern and has sprung up to cater to those wanting to enjoy the beach in summer. The steep sparse cliffs contrast with the dark sandy beach and the typical Cycladic architecture, including a beautiful classic domes Cathedral.

A good choice for budget Santorini accommodation, there are tavernas and supermarkets in the village, and local buses stop there.



We trust you have enjoyed these tips from the We Love Crete team. Evíva!

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