Where Should You Stay in Santorini? Discover the Best Spots!

Escape Cadet Staff

Updated on:

An Introduction to Your Accommodation Choices in Santorini

Are you planning your dream trip to the idyllic island of Santorini? You might find yourself asking, “Where should I stay?”

Never fear – our comprehensive guide will walk you through some of the best accommodations the island has to offer, whether you crave the cosmopolitan bustle of Fira, the sunset haven of Oia, or the tranquil beaches of Perissa.

Contact with local culture, epic caldera views, proximity to historical sites, or serene beachfront vistas – what makes a holiday perfect for you? Whatever your preference, we’ve got you covered. After all, holidays are personal, and so should be your place of stay.

Ready to dive in? Let’s discover the magic that awaits you in Santorini.

The Best Places to Stay in Santorini

Santorini, a charming island nestled in the Aegean Sea, beckons travelers with its captivating beauty, fascinating history, and unique culture. However, deciding where to stay on this stunning island can be overwhelming. Let’s break down the best areas based on interests and preferences.

Fira: The Vibrant Metropolis

Fira, the capital of Santorini, is perfect for those who want a lively vacation experience. Here, the advantages of staying in Fira:

  • Diverse and abundant shopping, dining, and entertainment options
  • Direct access to a bustling nightlife
  • Proximity to many significant landmarks and museums
  • Stunning views of the caldera and sunset

Hotel Suggestion for Fira

The Cosmopolitan Suites offers upscale amenities with a panoramic caldera view and an infinite pool.

Oia: Romantic Getaways and Instagram-Perfect Views

If you’re seeking that postcard-perfect Santorini perspective, look no further than Oia. Ideal for a romantic getaway or sunset chasers, here are the benefits:

  • World-renowned for its mesmerizing sunset views
  • Picture-perfect blue-domed churches and cliff-side homes
  • Luxe accommodations that offer privacy and exclusivity
  • Access to unique attractions, like the naval maritime museum

Hotel Suggestion for Oia

Mystique Luxury Collection Hotel is nestled on the cliffs of Oia and offers luxurious suites with breathtaking sea views.

Perissa: Beach Lovers’ Paradise

Appreciate the beach? Perissa is the best area to stay in Santorini. Perissa Beach is magnificent, complete with a lively promenade and a striking mountain backdrop. Here’s what a stay in Perissa offers:

  • The largest beach on the island
  • Active watersport scene
  • Vibrant nightlife with beach clubs and bars
  • Close to Ancient Thira, an archaeological site on Mesa Vouna hill

Hotel Suggestion for Perissa

The Veggera Hotel on Perissa Beach offers beachfront rooms and a warm, hospitable setting.

In summary, the choice of location depends on what you are looking for in a holiday. Let this guide aid in your decision as you plan a memorable trip to Santorini.

Exploring Other Towns to Stay in Santorini

While Fira, Oia, and Perissa are worth considering, we don’t need to confine ourselves to these places. Here are a few more options for your first visit to the enchanting island of Santorini.

Imerovigli: Unforgettable Views and Peaceful Retreats

For those who prefer the spectacular caldera views without the tourist crowds, Imerovigli is an idyllic escape. Here are the highlights of this serene town:

  • Noted for its wonderful view of the sunset and caldera
  • Offers tranquility and respite from tourist crowds
  • Functional paths for hiking or casual strolls
  • Proximity to Skaros Rock, a popular viewpoint

Hotel Suggestion for Imerovigli

The Pegasus Spa Hotel is a romantic retreat in Imerovigli. The hotel features a lovely infinity pool overlooking the sea and spacious rooms with stunning views.

Kamari: For an Authentic Island Lifestyle Experience

Kamari is a delightful choice for vacationers interested in experiencing the laid-back island lifestyle. Here are a few of the unique offerings of Kamari:

  • Black pebble beach with crystalline azure waters
  • Lively beachfront promenade lined with tavernas and shops
  • Proximity to Ancient Thira and Heraion, notable archaeological sites
  • Vibrant cultural scene, including open-air cinema and summer jazz festival

Hotel Suggestion for Kamari

The Cavo Bianco is an elegant hotel in Kamari, featuring beautifully designed rooms and a proximity to the beach perfect for sea lovers.

Akrotiri: A Blend of Cultural Treasures and Beach Bliss

Akrotiri presents another fantastic option for those who seek both rich history and beach relaxation on their trip. What does Akrotiri bring to your holiday experience?

  • Covers the famous archaeological site of the ancient Minoan city
  • Comprises of beaches such as Red Beach and White Beach known for their unique geological structures
  • Home to the iconic Akrotiri lighthouse, which offers splendid sunset views
  • Abundance of traditional and local restaurants

Hotel Suggestion for Akrotiri

Astarte Suites Hotel in Akrotiri is a stunningly designed property that provides private balconies with sweeping views of the caldera.

While almost every inch of Santorini oozes charm and allure, there are a few areas which may not offer the quintessential Santorini experience to first-time visitors or those with specific needs. It’s worth noting these places as they might not be the best fit for your stay in Santorini.

Megalochori: The Sleepy Village

This traditional village offers a genuine glimpse of local life but might not be the best choice for those seeking a lively holiday vibe or easy beach access. Here are a few aspects to consider:

  • Lacks the nightlife and wide range of eateries found in more touristy areas
  • Some distance from key attractions and beaches means you’ll need transportation
  • While charming, the caldera views are not as impressive as in other towns

Hotel Suggestion for Megalochori

Vedema, a Luxury Collection Resort, offers elegant accommodations and a serene atmosphere, suitable for visitors seeking tranquility and solitude.

Ammoudi Bay: The Hidden Gem

Located below Oia, Ammoudi Bay is a small port known for its seafood restaurants. While staying directly in Ammoudi Bay may not appeal for the following reasons:

  • Accommodation options are sparse and often lack modern amenities.
  • The port is accessed by a steep path that may not be suitable for people with mobility concerns.
  • Its remoteness means it’s not as conveniently located for sightseeing.

Hotel Suggestion for Ammoudi Bay

The Armeni Village Rooms & Suites guarantees a unique experience, situated right on the edge of the caldera cliff in Oia.

Monolithos: The Quiet Suburb

Monolithos, located near the airport, provides minimal options for accommodations and less developed infrastructure, which may deter some visitors. Some characteristics that may not suit your holiday needs:

  • Feels more like a residential suburb than a holiday destination.
  • Rather isolated and further away from Santorini’s key sites and activities.
  • The beach, while tranquil, does not boast the unique colored sands found elsewhere on the island.

Hotel Suggestion for Monolithos

Memory Beach Hotel offers a clean, comfortable stay within walking distance of Monolithos Beach, suitable for those in search of peace and quiet.

Choosing Between Fira and Oia: A Detailed Comparison

Now that we’ve explored the many towns and villages in Santorini, let’s dive into a more detailed comparison between the two most popular destinations: Fira and Oia. This comparison will provide insights to help you make the best choice for your individual preferences and holiday needs.

Activity Levels in Fira and Oia

Both Fira and Oia are bustling with activities, but the energy level differs in each location. Fira, being the capital city, has a more vibrant atmosphere. It offers a wide variety of entertaining activities including vibrant clubs for night owls, while Oia is noticeably quieter with a more laid-back vibe, making it perfect for a tranquil retreat.

Cultural Experiences

Both towns have numerous cultural landmarks. Fira is home to the Archaeological Museum, the Folklore Museum, and the Megaro Gyzi Museum, among others. Visitors to Oia will enjoy the Naval Maritime Museum and certainly must not miss the opportunity to wander its scenic streets dotted with iconic blue-domed churches.

Scenic Views: Fira Vs Oia

When it comes to views, both Fira and Oia offer breathtaking sights. Fira boasts a vibrant panorama of the caldera and sparkles with city lights after sunset. Oia, on the other hand, is famous for postcard-perfect sunset views. The entire city eventually bathes in warm hues, painting an unforgettably romantic picture.

Accommodation Choices

Similarly, there exist differences in styles of accommodations. Fira has a vast range of options from budget-friendly hotels to luxury resorts. Oia’s accommodations are typically more upscale, with luxurious villines and suites that offer privacy and opulence – ideal for honeymooners and couples.

Access to Other Locations

Fira’s central location allows easy access to other parts of Santorini. It’s the hub of bus services that facilitate transport to different towns on the island. On the contrary, Oia situated at one end of the island needs a bit more of a journey. Fira is also the starting point for hiking trails leading to other towns like Firostefani and Imerovigli.

Dining Options

Both Fira and Oia offer plenty of dining options with breathtaking views. Although Fira, as the capital, boasts a more diverse selection of restaurants, cafés, and bars, Oia isn’t far behind. Plenty of eateries line the clifftops of both towns, providing dining experiences with amazing caldera views.

Which One is Better for You: Fira or Oia?

Now that we’ve elaborated on the specific characteristics of Fira and Oia, it’s time to decide which suits you better. As always, this is a personal choice and depends on what you’re looking for in your Santorini holiday.

Choose Fira If:

  • You prefer a lively energetic vibe and want to indulge in nightlife
  • Your travel budget is lower but still want a good range of accommodation choices
  • You plan to travel extensively across the island as it is centrally located
  • You love a blend of modern amenities and cultural attractions

Choose Oia If:

  • You are seeking tranquility or planning a romantic getaway
  • You don’t mind spending more on upscale, luxurious accommodations
  • The world-famous sunsets and the iconic blue-domed churches are high on your must-see list
  • You are more inclined towards a relaxing, slow-paced holiday without much journey around the island

In conclusion, Fira and Oia both embrace visitors with their respective appeals. Choose the one that resonates with your travel style and enjoy the unique, unforgettable beauty of Santorini.

Wrapping Up Santorini’s Best Accommodations

From the bustling excitement of Fira to the tranquil beauty of Oia; from the beach vibes of Perissa to the cultural treasures in Akrotiri, Santorini has something for every kind of traveler. Your choice depends on whether vibrancy or serenity speaks to you, whether your heart yearns for bustling nightlife or picturesque sunsets. Each location is unique, each has its own magic. Santorini is more than a destination – it’s a sensory experience waiting to be discovered. First-timers or seasoned travelers, remember this: no matter where you stay, the captivating spirit of this Aegean jewel will make your trip unforgettable.


Which part of Santorini is best for nightlife?

Fira, being the vibrant capital, is the best choice for those looking for nightlife. It offers a wide range of clubs and bars to choose from.

Which is more expensive, Fira or Oia?

Oia tends to have more upscale, luxurious accommodations and may therefore be more expensive than Fira, which offers a broader range of budget to luxury options.

Which Santorini town is best for stunning views?

Both Fira and Oia boast awe-inspiring views of the caldera. However, many consider Oia’s sunset views as the most picturesque.

Are there any quiet retreats in Santorini?

Yes, places like Imerovigli and Akrotiri offer a more peaceful escape, away from the major tourist crowds.

Leave a Comment