Santorini may be famous for its cinematic sunset, but that’s not all about Santorini. It has an abundance of things to see and do that will impress you and prove to you that Santorini is not such a famous destination by chance.
A classic issue that arises with this particular island is how many days it takes to see Santorini. There is no specific answer, as it depends on the mood and of course the budget of each person – speaking of which, it is not famous as a financial destination.
For those of you who either don’t have a lot of time or can’t afford a longer trip or don’t really want to spend a lot of time on the volcanic island, you can see the most important things in Santorini in just 3 days.
So if you are dying to take a short vacation in Santorini, read carefully the guide for 3 days in Santorini. What to see, what to do and of course where to stay.
Where to stay in Santorini?
Let’s start with the most basic, your place of residence. If you want to be in the center of things in Santorini, since you will only be on the island for a few days, we would suggest you to stay in Fira, i.e. the capital. In Fira you will be next to all the restaurants, bars and shops, while at the same time you will have a view of the entire caldera. However, Oia and Imerovigli are equally beautiful areas to stay for 3 days.
Visit to Fira
You can start your tour from Fira, the capital of Santorini. It is a Cycladic town with white houses and narrow streets overlooking the caldera. There you will have the opportunity to visit the Museum of Prehistoric Thira and the Archaeological Museum of Santorini.
Beaches: Red Beach and White Beach
The Red Beach is the most famous beach in Santorini and is really worth seeing up close. It got its name from the red rocks that surround it and the red sand that exists on the coast, along with the black pebbles.
Right next to the map, because the road network makes a loop to reach it, there is White Beach, which is surrounded by white cliffs. The coast consists of a combination of white pebbles with black sand. Generally the black color on the beaches of Santorini is due to the volcano and you will see it on most beaches.
Archaeological Site of Akrotiri
Nearby is the Archaeological Site of Akrotiri. Akrotiri was a prehistoric settlement discovered in 1967. It is believed to be a Minoan settlement that was destroyed by the eruption of the volcano. It is very impressive and really worth choosing a visit there. Afterwards, you can visit the Akrotiri Lighthouse which dates back to the 19th century and overlooks the Aegean.
Santorini is famous for its wines and wineries. So you can’t miss a tour with wine tasting at one or more wineries. If you can book a wine tasting at sunset with Santorini Tours it will be even better.
Caldera Cruise (Old Kameni, Nea Kameni, Thirasia)
After you have acclimatized a bit on the island of Santorini, it is time to enjoy one of the top experiences on the island. A cruise to the caldera and its volcanic islands (Old Kameni, Nea Kameni, Thirasia). You can take the path that leads to the active crater of the volcano located in Nea Kameni, swim in the thermal springs of Palaia Kameni and explore and swim in Thirasia.
Visit to Oia
Oia is one of the most beautiful settlements in Santorini, located in the northwestern part of the island, at a distance of 11 km from Fira. The reason it is famous is none other than the enchanting sunsets that one can enjoy from there. The traditional settlement of Oia has the classic Cycladic architecture and is rightfully included in the most picturesque places in Greece.
Tour the settlement to admire the cave houses, windmills and blue-domed churches. For sunset time I should inform you that as you can imagine Oia attracts a lot of people. If you prefer quiet, choose another place for sunset time.
Imerovigli is a village of Santorini, built at an altitude of 300 meters. It is a declared traditional settlement and is often called the “Balcony of the Aegean”. It is one of the best places in Santorini and offers the most beautiful view of the caldera. Oia may be famous for its sunset, but the sight is also magical in Imerovigli.
For the more active I would suggest visiting Skaros Rock, the place where the Castle used to be. There is a small church, Panagia Theoskepasti, and it is definitely a good route to with sneakers and when the sun starts to go down.
Food and entertainment in the capital of Santorini
The options for entertainment in Fira are countless. You will find dozens of restaurants, cafes and bars. Browse first and choose what piques your interest.
You can spend your last day in Santorini exploring more beaches, beach-hopping and exploring the rest of the island’s settlements. So, start early in the morning, wear comfortable clothes, grab a hat and sunscreen and let’s go!
The first morning swim can be done at Vlyhada, it is one of the most famous and most beautiful beaches in Santorini. It is located at the southern end of the island and consists of fine sand and dark pebbles. Behind it stretch vertically imposing rocks and there is a beach bar that offers sunbeds to bathers.
Perivolos & Perissa beaches
Perivolos is a beach with black sand and many bars, cafes and restaurants around. It is one of the beaches that gather a lot of people. Next to it is Perissa, also a busy beach with black sand and crystal clear waters. You will also find many beach bars and restaurants there and it goes without saying that it is organized.