Experience Transat

Santorini Beyond the Postcard

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Two million people visit Santorini every year. While the image of sunsets over Oia, with its white houses and blue roofs, is dreamy, it is far from the only asset of this mythical island in the Cyclades. Between archaeology and boat trips, there is plenty to fill your eyes, your stomach… and your heart!

On a hike

No doubt, Santorini guarantees a lot of likes on Instagram. The problem is that, especially in summer, the postcard is crammed with travellers from all over the world. But step away from the hustle and bustle to see the many facets of this volcanic island.

The Caldera Walk gives access to exceptional viewpoints along the sea. It’s a chance to enjoy nature without the crowds, and to observe the chapels and villages that appear on the horizon. Fira is nine kilometres from Oia. Start early to enjoy the places before the tourists wake up!

By boat

A catamaran excursion is a wonderful way to explore the area at your own pace. Even in autumn, the water is still warm enough to take a dip between two intensive clicking sessions. Because, yes, you will want to photograph every inch of this island, which is as beautiful from the Aegean Sea as it is from the mainland! Enjoying a good meal while watching the sunset gives you a front row seat to the show without having to elbow your way in.

The Pompeii of the Cyclades

Akrotiri is one of those places that capture the imagination. A guided tour is essential to understand the significance of this archaeological site in the south of the island. It was in 1967 that the archaeologist Spyridon Marinatos rediscovered this city, which was first discovered in 1867 by the French geologist Ferdinand Fouqué. Between these two men’s visits, others were fascinated by the place, but it was really Marinatos who drew attention to this site, destroyed by a volcanic eruption and often compared to Pompeii in Italy.

Walking around the site, we learn that Akrotiri was the capital of a large port. The population would have had time to flee when the eruption occurred, around 1645-1500 BC. One of the most impressive details of this remarkably preserved Bronze Age city is the sewage system.

The vineyards

Greek wines are becoming increasingly popular for a good reason: they are fabulous! In Santorini, white grape varieties dominate. The most popular? Assyrtiko, followed by Aidani.

Concentrated in the southern and south-western parts of the island, the vineyards are a fabulous excuse to explore another facet of the island. You can enjoy a day trip by car or a walk of less than 10km around Pyrgos.

The streets of Oia

At the height of summer, visitors to Oia, at the north-west end of the coast, take turns at the best viewpoints, immortalising their passage through the winding streets that have been seen in the cinema. Walking through the streets you’ll come across the charming bookshop Atlantis Books. Although it’s usually very busy, you can find books in French here, especially on mythology. Don’t miss the opportunity to treat yourself to a good gyro at one of the small snack bars!

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