Where is the best sunset in Santorini?
The sunset in Santorini has a special appeal. It is not just a natural phenomenon, but a real spectacle that gathers crowds of fans. Where is the best sunset view: at the caldera, at the winery, by the lighthouse, on the beach? Check out Santorini’s sunset map and blow up Instagram with your photos!
Sunset in Santorini
There are a thousand places in the world where you can watch a beautiful sunset or sunrise, but the “most beautiful sunset in the world” is on the island of Santorini. Many are willing to do anything to take a spectacular picture: take a seat at the caldera and wait several hours, pay for a suite at a five-star hotel or for dinner at an expensive restaurant with a view. Sunset in Santorini can cost a million, or it can be completely free.
We watched the sunset in different parts of the island. If your trip to Santorini is not limited to one day, try to spend each evening in a new location and you’ll feel the difference.
Sunset map of Santorini
Sunset in Ia
Ia (Oia) is depicted in all the postcard photos of Santorini: the mills, the white and blue houses. This is where most people come to meet the sunset. If you want to take beautiful pictures without strangers in the frame, you have 2 options: stay at a hotel on the caldera or book a table at a restaurant with a view.
Sunset against the backdrop of the mills of Santorini
Hotels in Iya with a view of the caldera are not cheap, but imagine enjoying a private sunset view in your lounger or right in the pool with a glass of wine. If you book in advance, you can find a good price or special.
Sunset view from the Kirini Santorini Spa Hotel
Best Iya hotels with a view
The second most popular “sunset option” in Iya is dining at a restaurant with a view. You have to make a reservation in advance and be sure to ask for the price. We were unpleasantly surprised by the bill of 30 euros for two servings of ice cream in an ordinary cafe without a view, where we went in the afternoon. I can’t recommend a particular restaurant in Eeyore – read the reviews and look at the photos.
The easiest and free option to watch the famous sunset in Iya is to arrive early and take a higher seat. Arrive in Iya at least an hour before sunset and walk to St. Nicholas Fortress, where the viewing platform is located. Be prepared to blend in with the crowd, sitting or standing shoulder to shoulder. There are not many accessible viewpoints; the best spots on the caldera belong to hotels and restaurants, and passage to them is closed.
Stairs from Iya to Ammoudi Bay
When the sun goes down over the horizon, everyone starts clapping and making out. If you don’t live in Iya, hurry to the bus stop to catch the last bus. We didn’t push for the exit, but stepped aside and took some beautiful pictures of post-sunset Iya on the stairs leading to Ammoudi Bay.
The “North of Santorini” tour ends in the village of Iya. To be in Ia at sunset, book the tour for the afternoon.
Sunset in Fira
Sunset contemplation options in Fira, the capital of Santorini, are similar to Ia. If you prefer dinner with a view, Fira has the largest selection of cafes and restaurants. You also need to book a table in advance.
A popular place to watch the sunset in Fira is at the Orthodox Metropolitan Cathedral. Depending on the time of year, the sun may set behind the island of Tirassia.
The choice of hotels in Fira is the largest in Santorini, but to stay in 2-3* do not advise, fantastic sunsets from their rooms will not see.
Hotels in Fira with a view
Sunset in Imerovigli
Settlement Imerovigli is located on the highest point of caldera, so there are beautiful panoramic views not only at sunset but also on the entire west coast.
There is a promenade between Fira to Ieya, Imerovigli is just halfway there. Take a stroll around the caldera at sunset. From the side of Imerovigli you get beautiful photos of Iya.
At the very edge of Imerovigli, Skaros Rock, are the ruins of a Venetian fortress. A path, starting from the Pearl on the Cliff hotel, leads to a small white church, where you can meet the sunset in privacy. Back up the steps.
La Maison Restaurant Imerovigli
Imerovigli has several good restaurants and is not as crowded as Iya and Fira. The restaurant “La Maison” is considered one of the best in Santorini, people come here not only for the view of the sunset, but also for the exquisite cuisine. Reservations are required.
We stayed in Imerovigli in Phaos Santorini Suites with a view of the sunrise, which we admired at breakfast.
Sunset at Faros Lighthouse
Akrotiri Lighthouse is located in the southwest, on the opposite side of the island from Iya. You can get to the lighthouse by renting a car. There is not much parking space, so it is better to come here in advance or leave your car on the road and walk.
The sunset at Faros lighthouse is radically different from the sunset at Iya – at the lighthouse it is a natural phenomenon, not a show. Everyone is seated in different parts of the rock and quietly wait for the sunset. You can grab a towel to sit comfortably on the rocks, food and drinks, there is a small café.
Sunset at Faros Lighthouse
On Cape Akrotiri, next to the lighthouse and the beach, a 2-bedroom house with a magnificent view of the Caldera sky & sea caldera is for rent. Included in the price is a rental car. description and photos
Sunset at the winery
Enjoy the sunset with a glass of wine in the heart of Santorini Island. Santorini’s finest wineries are a short drive from Fira, with terraces overlooking the caldera, the Aegean Sea, the islands of Nea and Paleo Kameni.
You can join a small international group for a tour of the wineries. You will visit the wine cellars and taste 12 different types of wine and local delicacies: a 4-hour wine tour at sunset.
Sunset on the Beach.
Most of Santorini’s beaches are on the east side of the island, where the sun rises. The only beach with a sunset view is Caldera Beach, located under the caldera near Akrotiri. The road to the beach is steep and rocky, it is better to go by jeep. Caldera Beach has a restaurant where you can dine with a view.
Neptune Luxury Suites Hotel Terrace
The hotels above the beach boast the best panoramic views of the volcano and the Aegean Sea. It’s a quiet part of the island with very few tourists. At Neptune Luxury Suites, each room has its own private pool and an optional candlelit dinner with butler service – perfect for a sunset meeting!
Sunset on board the ship
In Santorini, “Sunset and dinner” – evening boat trips (yachts, catamarans) with dinner – are very popular. Numerous ships sail past the volcano and neighboring islands and approach Ia. The captain makes the itinerary so passengers can enjoy the sunset longer and see the sun setting directly into the water. Book online and admire the extravaganza of colors: Santorini Sunset Cruise
Our last Santorini sunset cruise was on the ferry on the way to Crete. Everyone snuggled up to the window, catching the last rays of the setting sun, clapping and taking pictures. The amazing phenomenon of the Santorini sunset cannot be explained in words, it must be seen.
Santorini: the island of sunset lovers
If you have decided on a romantic voyage and are choosing where to go, let us tell you right away: Santorini. You’ll find absolutely everything you could want in a couple in love: solitude against the sea, the famous Caldera with its white and blue houses, great restaurants and wine. Don’t doubt for a second – you will fall in love with Santorini!
I’ve been living my dream of going to Santorini for a long time: all those photos with the white houses, the amazing light and the volcanic rocks were beckoning me! And one day I had the perfect opportunity, and what an opportunity – I didn’t just rest on the island for a few days, but spent my honeymoon there! Plus, we managed to arrange a trip spontaneously, which means you can get to Santorini without booking a tour six months in advance.
My heart flutters at the memory of the first seconds I saw Caldera and the Santorini Volcano from the plane window. Caldera is the preserved part of the crater of the volcano that, according to legend, sunk Atlantis. It so happens that the very word “caldera”, referring to the hollow after the eruption of the volcano, has become a toponym here.
Caldera is home to premium hotels, restaurants, bars with great views and, of course, white houses and churches with blue domes overhanging the sea. This alone justifies Santorini’s status as an ideal destination for a romantic trip – everything here is imbued with a gentle and intimate romance: views, sea air, delicious food, wine, beautifully decorated restaurant terraces, chic hotels, stylish souvenir stores with handmade jewelry. And to top it all off, you’ll watch a beautiful Santorini sunset every evening.
Santorini is connected to the outside world by water and air. In the summer charter flights from Moscow fly to the island. You can also get to the island by ferry, speedboat or plane from Athens.
Perhaps because of the inaccessibility of the island and its small size (the entire Caldera can be walked from one end to another in four to five hours) for many tourists visit it in a hurry: in one or two days the crowd from the cruise ships move from one tourist spot to another. We, on the other hand, as a couple in love, were looking for solitude on this touristy island. We were lucky enough to arrive on Santorini before the peak season in early June.
A couple of things to do in Santorini are a must: take a boat or catamaran ride around the bay around the volcano and walk from Fira to Ia along the ridges of Caldera (about 2.5 hours).
The central island of the bay, which is, in fact, the crater of the dormant volcano, is worth a tour. But this activity is purely touristy – lovers of solitude may not like it.
Sunsets in Santorini are the most spectacular evening spectacle. And for this, of course, one of the most popular places is Ia. Let’s be honest, the sunsets there don’t stand out in any way from the other spots on the island. Our favorite place to meet the sunsets was Skaros Rock.
I would also like to give some practical advice for those who are going to visit the island.
If you stay on Caldera, you should not rent a car: the island is small, the roads are narrow (all the time you have to back up to let someone pass), there are few places to park. A car may be needed only for those who have chosen to stop on the beach side of the island.
You can find inexpensive accommodations on Santorini. Yes, it is a very expensive and prestigious resort, but if you stay in a hotel on the back (beach) side of the island, you can find a hotel at a reasonable price. You can get to Caldera by car or by bus if you want.
In summer, Santorini is very hot and very crowded. We left the island in mid-June and the tourist situation looked disastrous. The best time to visit Santorini is late spring and early fall.
In conclusion, don’t believe the nagging tourists who say that a week in Santorini is too much. This is not true at all: the island is mesmerizing in its beauty, which simply cannot get boring.