A Romantic Escape to Santorini

Things to do in Santorini
Our time on the island of Santorini was short, but we loved every second. From the copious amounts of Greek food, to the jaw-dropping sunsets, Santorini stole our hearts and we’ll never get them back. Santorini get away Greece was the last country we visited on our month-long trip through Europe. We spent two nights in Athens before heading to Santorini. It was the perfect way to see another city while breaking up our long journey. The second we landed on Santorini it was like a dream. The island really was as beautiful as it looked on social media, which was surprising since many destinations rarely live up to the hype.
Santorini blue church

We had to wake up very early to get this shot

We stayed in the most stunning AirBnb in Oia called Pano Meria Studio 3 with host Vasilis. It wasn’t the fanciest or even the best one out there, but it was perfect for the two of us. Our criteria for picking our AirBnb was simple: It must be in Oia and it must have an incredible view.
Things to do in Santorini

View from the balcony of our AirBnb

We like to think that we are budget conscious when we travel, although we do splurge every now and then. Our splurges for Santorini were our accommodations and one excursion, so we decided to keep our food spend to a minimum. Our favorite restaurant in Oia was a small gyro shop called Pito Gyros. The staff were so friendly and made some of the best food we had in Greece. Instead of paying $80 for lunch with a view, we paid $20 and took our gyros back to our AirBnb to eat on our balcony. It was the perfect way to stay on budget without giving up anything.
Santorini Pitos Gyros

Eating gyros from Pitos Gyros on the balcony of our AirBnb

The excursion we splurged on was a sunset catamaran tour with Sunset Oia. We booked the Red Cruise with some leftover credit card points and it ended up being one of our favorite excursions from our entire trip through Europe. Sunset Oia picked us up from a central location near our AirBnb to drive us to Amoudi Bay to board our catamaran. The catamaran stopped at several spots around the island where we were able to swim and snorkel off the boat. The unlimited Greek wine and delicious Greek dinner served on board were a huge bonus to an already incredible day trip. It was a bucket list experience we will never forget!
Santorini things to do : catamaran

Enjoying some Greek wine while waiting for the sun to set

Speaking of Amoudi Bay, it was our first stop the day we arrived in Oia. We dropped our things, put on our bathing suits, and headed down the steep stairs to find the swim spot our AirBnb host recommended to us. We quickly learned there was a right and a wrong way to do this. Wearing flip flops was our first mistake. The island was so casual, so we thought they would be perfect for walking down to the water. However, they were not ideal for the steep stairs covered in donkey droppings.
Santorini Amoudi Bay

The stairs to Amoudi Bay

Our second mistake was bringing valuables. There was no where to store our things, so one of us always had to stay with our bag. This meant we couldn’t swim with each other which wasn’t as fun.
Santorini swimming

Swimming in the beautiful, clear water

Santorini Amoudi Bay

Jumping rock at Amoudi Bay

Our third mistake was underestimating how difficult and time consuming it would be to get to the swimming spot. It was not an easy place to get to for a quick dip in the water. There were over 300 stairs to get down to the Bay from Oia. Then there was a short hike along a volcanic rock path that was not easy to navigate in flip flops. The way back was obviously a little harder having to walk up those 300 stairs in the heat. So, was the struggle worth it? Absolutely! The water was so clear we could see straight to the bottom. I just wish we were more prepared.

Only 100 more stairs to go! The stairs were numbered so at least we knew how far we had left

After all that work, we had to reward ourselves. Lolita’s Gelato was the perfect spot to relax and cool off with a delicious treat. It didn’t hurt that they had a perfectly instagrammable courtyard! We may have stopped here more than once during our stay in Oia. Santorini Santorini was truly a dream. But this heavenly island did come with one drawback: crowds. The dreaded cruise ship crowds would descend on Oia during the day clogging the tiny alleyways and picture-perfect areas. It was inevitable, and we knew it, but we never let the crowds ruin our time there. We woke up early each day to experience the island at its calmest which showed us the Santorini we had dreamed about. Since the crowds usually didn’t arrive until around 10:00am, we would leave our room around 8:00am to wander the small alleyways and soak in the beauty and silence while we could.
Santorini

Beautiful blue dome near our AirBnb

There was still heaven and serenity to be found in Santorini despite what we had heard prior to our trip. We had to get creative with our time, but we wouldn’t trade our memories of this beautiful island for anything. Santorini was exactly what we dreamed it would be and more.
Santorini Oia

The magical sunset in Oia

By Le Travels – 

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