Top 6 Best Hiking Trails in Santorini 

Nature lovers will be thrilled to learn that Santorini is laced with picturesque hiking routes offering crowd-free vantage points to marvel at the unique landscapes or witness the famous sunset. Walk on cobblestones alleyways past timeless pearl-white villages, amid endless vineyards or on top of an active volcano! Whether you want to break a sweat or just go for a long pleasant walk, the following 6 hiking trails will unveil this Mediterranean island’s sublime beauty and rich history. 

Fira to Oia

This laid-back 10-kilometer (~6 miles) hike is the most popular one among active travelers. The trail starts at the old port of Fira and leads you through the jaw-dropping rim of the caldera. Experience the captivating sights of Fira, the blue-crowned chapel of Agios Gerasimos in Firostefani and soak up the breathtaking vistas from Imerovigli’s fortress-topped Skaros Rock, the highest point of the island. At the end of your hike when you reach the Castle of Agios Nikolaos, you will be rewarded with the most magical sunset you have ever seen.


Megalochori to the Plaka thermal baths 

Home to historical Neo-Classical mansions, old traditional houses, pirate hideaways, and wine canavas. Megalochori is one of Santorini’s most authentic villages. It has a history of merchants and wealthy land barons exporting the famous Vinsanto wine. The easy 3.2-kilometer (~2 miles) walk will take you through enchanting whitewashed chapels and lush vineyards until you reach the old thermal bath of Plaka where you can have a refreshing dip in the hot, therapeutic waters.


Akrotiri to Balos Cove

Start your 10-kilometer (~6 miles) hike from the Archeological Site of Akrotiri, also known as the Greek Pompeii. The prehistoric town once gave home to an ancient Cycladic Bronze Age Civilization, the Minoans before it was hit by a devastating volcano eruption. It is a slightly demanding route to access Balos Beach but we guarantee you that the magnificent rocky landscape is worth the effort. 

Pyrgos to Prophet Elias and Ancient Thera

This 4.3-kilometer (~2.7 miles) panoramic hike connects Pyrgos, the former capital of Santorini, with Ancient Thira and brings you in touch with some of the most fascinating, historical sights of the island. The route is divided into two parts. You begin your hike a little before the Old School of Pyrgos, near the Agios Apostolous Church. It takes around a 30-minute uphill walk to reach the monastery where you can savor some local handmade delicacies the monks prepare for the visitors. The second part of the hike that leads you to Ancient Thera is easier but a bit longer. On the way, you can also pass by the seaside village of Kamari. 

Ancient Thera to Perissa beach 

The ancient 3.2-kilometer (~2 miles) path will lead you through the picturesque slopes of Profitis Elias and Mesa Vouno. During your hike, the history of the island beautifully comes alive through well-preserved ruins which once used to serve as theatres, baths, cemeteries, and churches. Bask in the stunning vistas of the dramatic caldera and take a well-deserved rest at the end of the trail by visiting the gorgeous black-sand Perissa Beach. 

Volcano Hike in Nea Kameni

It is a brisk 30-minute walk that includes regular breaks and information provided by the tour guide. In order to reach Nea Kameni, first, you will have to take a boat from Fira or Amoudi Bay. The ground around the volcano is very hot, therefore, wear closed-toe shoes instead of flip-flops. You will have the chance to see up-close many fascinating volcanic rock formations, craters, a few steam vents, and awesome views of the surrounding islands, including the cliffside of Santorini. At the end of the tour, do not miss visiting the therapeutic hot springs at the neighboring Pale Kameni islet.

The best times to visit these trails are May through October. Regardless of the route, we recommend starting your hike either in the early hours or in the late afternoon to avoid the heat. If you do not want to look like a lobster at the end of the day, cover yourself up – use a cap or a trendy straw hat. And remember to always stock up with plenty of water and sunscreen before your set off!

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