The famous volcanic eruption of Thera not only created the impressive caldera and steep cliffs that support the gorgeous villages of Santorini, it also created Santorini's velvety black, sandy beaches and stunning rock formations. On the east side of the island you'll find many small stretches of paradise with breathtaking views and scenery. Don't miss out on the best beaches for swimming in Santorini when you visit, here are the 5 top spots to enjoy the sun, sea and fun:
Kamari beach is the most popular beach on Santorini. It takes less than 20 minutes to get there by car and there are busses leaving from the main town of Fira all day.
The village and beach area are upscale and have everything you need to make your visit perfect. It is a family friendly place and suited for all generations. Kamari's black sand is impressive and the water is blue and crystal clear. There are sunbeds and umbrellas available for rent. Don't forget your sandals because the black sand gets very hot in the sun!
There are two water sports centers in Kamari where you can book fun activities or take classes. From water skiing to kite boarding and banana boat rides for the young at heart, there are lots of great things to do.
In the village of Kamari there are dozens of fun shops to browse, cool beach bars and cafes and restaurants and tavernas to have a meal or snack. In the evening, it's a great place for a stroll next to the water.
To the south of Kamari is Perissa beach (pictured above). It's the largest beach on Santorini because it connects with 2 other beaches, Perivoli and Saint George, to make a 7 kilometer (4.3 miles) long stretch of black sand and beautiful, clear water. Perissa has a small water park that is nice for children. There are also lots of beach bars for drinks and snacks, as well as restaurants and tavernas. On the beach, you'll find sunbeds and umbrellas for a relaxing day.
The most beautiful part of the 3-beach stretch is at Perivoli. On one side of the road, you have the sand and sea and on the other, rows of bright beach bars and cafes, small shops and great places to eat. The water here is shallower than at the other beaches making it perfect for non-swimmers and children.
At the far end of this amazing group of beaches is Agios Georgios (Saint George). Here is where you can find a quiet spot. It is not an organized beach so there are no umbrellas or sunbeds available, but, it's a perfect place to get away from the crowds.
At the southeastern tip of Santorini is Vlychada beach. As you walk down to the beach you see surreal volcanic rock formations that create an alien beauty that seems like a sci-fi movie set. It's a beautiful place with deep water and a red pebbled beach.
Before you get down to the beach there is an old factory that is now a shopping area where you get anything you need for your day on the beach. Also, a short distance from the beach are a couple restaurants that specialize in fresh fish. They are great places to relax and enjoy the sunset with a glass of wine and a delicious meal.
Found right at the south end of the island, Red beach is just a 21-minute drive from Fira. If you are spending the morning at the archeological site of Akrotiri, it's a perfect place to cool off afterwards. Just as Vlyhada beach, Red beach is a magical mix of red sand and pebbles and impressive rock formations that dominate the area. Here, you'll find sunbeds and umbrellas and small places for cool drinks and snacks.
At the opposite end of Santorini, in the north, is Cape Kolombo. It is a 19-minute drive from Fira and is closer to the village of Oia. There is no bus service to this beach, so you'll need a car or motorbike to get there. Kolombo beach is one of the few places on Santorini where nude bathing is "allowed." It is a quiet and isolated beach with natural beauty reminiscent of an alien landscape.
There are limited facilities in this area so make sure you bring everything you'll need for a comfortable day at the beach.
There are many beautiful, unique beaches on Santorini but, no matter which one you choose, you are sure to have an amazing time.