Santorini isn’t known for its beaches. Here you won’t find the long golden stretches you see in Mykonos or the pink coral sands of Crete, but instead you’ll experience something entirely different. You will see impressive towering geographic formations that are the result of thousands of years of volcanic activity and you’ll be blown away by the stark and otherworldly landscapes that this island has to offer.
When staying in Santorini you might not have time to visit them all but be sure to visit a few of these truly interesting and diverse beaches on the island. Whatever it is you’re looking for in a seaside setup, a spot to cliff jump, a secluded bay or a beach-side bar, there are plenty of options that await you.
☞ Related: 7 Greek Beaches You Definitely Need To Put On Your Bucket List
The Red Beach
One of the most impressive and well known of all the beaches in Santorini is the Red Beach. Located on the southernmost point of the island near the small village of Akrotiri this beach is famous for its colossal earthy red cliff faces.
From the car park take the sloping gravel path down to this small yet impressive black and red speckled stony beach and enjoy the stunning vistas as the exposed red heart of this volcano meets the blue of the Aegean. As it is one of the most popular beaches on the island it can get crowded in summer, so an adventure to another beach may be in order if you’d like to escape the crowds.
☞ Related: The Akrotiri Archaeological site is close to the Red Beach and is worth a look
Vlychada is another beach in Santorini with magnificent views of the stunning formations that are unique to this caldera. With a backdrop of huge white cliff faces that shoot skyward, you’ll soon see why it is another favourite for beach lovers.
Also located on the southern part of Santorini, Vlychada is a black sand beach that is organised and close to the capital of Fira. The small village is home to the Tomato Industrial Museum, so you can really make the most of your visit to this quaint village by exploring here as well.
☞ Related: Check out the Tomato Industrial Museum while you’re in the vicinity, just a few hundred metres from the beach
Kamari beach lies on the north side of the mountain Mesa Vouno which divides it from Perissa. A mixture of black volcanic sand and pebbles Kamari is a long stretch of organised beach that has all the amenities you could want for.
The village of Kamari is filled with plenty of seaside tavernas, boutique hotels and beach bars and cocktail bars, and is known for its vibrant nightlife. Kamari sits at the base of Ancient Thira, an archaeological site you can check out while you’re there. The site is located on Mesa Vouno mountain and a bus can be caught from the village.
☞ Related: Ancient Thira Archaeological Site
Lying on the south side of Mesa Vouno, Perissa is another stretch of black sandy pebbled beach. Here there are also a variety of tavernas, accommodation, stores, beach bars to explore and this organised beach has plenty of umbrellas to relax under and escape the summer sun after a dip in its refreshing blue waters.
Further south of Perissa you will find Perivolos beach and Agios Georgios beach. Together with Perissa they make up one long stretch of beach. Hotels become less frequent down this end and you might be able to find yourself a quieter spot to enjoy the seaside.
While Monolithos is just a stones throw away from Kamari beach, it is a favourite amongst travellers for being less busy than the beaches further south. This black sandy organised beach makes for the perfect spot to relax for the day if you are after a less crowded feel. Monolithos is also a great place to bring the whole family as the shallow waters make it a safe swimming spot for children and adults alike.
☞ Related: For how to choose the right Greek island for your family click here
Nestled right at the bottom of the idyllic village of Oia, home to the most famous Santorini sunset, is Ammoudi harbour. Located on the northern most tip of Santorini, this is a port and not a beach, but we are sure your time in Santorini will include a trip to Oia, so why not check it out while you’re close by?!
To access the harbour, you have two options: you can either walk down the steps from Oia or take the downhill road that leads directly into the harbour if you are driving. In Ammoudi there is a great spot for cliff jumping and can dine at a traditional taverna and have some freshly caught seafood.
☞ Related: 2 Sunsets In Santorini: How To Make The Most Out Of Two Days in Santorini
This beach in Santorini is unique in that it is the only beach located on this side of the island. Unsurprisingly this beach provides a fantastic view of the caldera and islands beyond. Located just below the village of Akoritiri you will find a restaurant and a bar right on the shore where you can enjoy something to eat or drink should you need. While the beach is unorganised, if you come prepared you won’t find this an issue and can relax in relative peace on this undisturbed slice of paradise.
For those who are a bit more adventurous and after a secluded spot to enjoy the island of Santorini the White beach may be the ideal spot for you to go. Its name becomes obvious when you see the grandiose white cliffs and white pebbles that cover this short stretch of secluded bay, a stark contrast to the rich colours of the nearby famous Red Beach. The White Beach is only accessible by boat, which is only a short ride from the Red Beach.
- Click here for directions
- Unorganised beach
- Accessible only by boat
- From Oia to Akrotiri Santorini has some incredible beaches to choose from, which will be your first pick?