The beaches of Santorini are a blessing on this enchanted island. It managed to survive all kinds of calamities, and despite its appeal to millions of tourists from all over the world, it stays true to its beauty in the azure of the Aegean.
The sea is a blessing for these lands: it glitters in charmed amber at sunset, it provides a bounty of seafood for all who step on the island, and it offers all kinds of opportunities for watersports enthusiasts. And there, the beaches of Santorini have an otherworldly appeal. In the following, we’ve put together a compendium of ethereal beach destinations to help you find your favorite spot in the sun.
South Coast Beaches of Santorini
A famous location for wedding ceremonies and receptions, Perivilos Beach is located on the south-east coast of Santorini, not far from the village of Perissa. It can be accessed by car, bus, bike, on foot, or by boat. It is a typical Santorini beach with black lava sand and clean water. It is well organized, featuring sunbeds and umbrellas, volleyball courts, watersports, and lifeguards. It is a lively destination, with beach parties galore and vibrant nightlife.
Agios Georgios Beach
Agios Georgios Beach can be reached on foot from Perivilos Beach. It is also accessible by car and by bus. It is a picturesque beach, with exotic looking straw umbrellas, sunbeds, and beach bards. Favorite pastimes here include diving and windsurfing, but there are several other water sports and activities you can experience. Taverns and restaurants are available too.
Also known as the Moon Beach, a well-deserved nickname for its spectacular lunar landscape, Vlychada Beach enjoys a striking location on the south coast of Santorini in an area dominated by impressive cliffs and shallow waters. Like most beaches of Santorini, it has black volcanic sand and pebbles. It is well organized, with sunbeds and umbrellas. It is noteworthy to know that the Sailing and Yachting Center has its headquarters in the port of Vlychada, not far from the beach. If you walk to the marina, you will find several taverns serving fish dishes, but there’s also a canteen on the beach.
Not far from Vlychada, Eros Beach is a charming pebbly stretch with deep clear waters, straw umbrellas, and comfortable sunbeds. It is noteworthy for its landscape dominated by white-brown cliffs, which were sculptured by the sea and the wind. You will also find a beautiful beach bar here, with swings and hammocks perfect for relaxing. It is a popular venue for wedding receptions, but also for other lively events. A volley court completes the picture.
Not far from Eros Beach, you will find the small, isolated Almyra Beach, which is a favorite swimming spot as it boasts clean, calm waters. The landscape is breathtaking, like the one offered by Vlychada Beach. It is not a famous beach, but charming and picturesque, perfect if you seek privacy. There’s also a fish tavern by the sea serving traditional fare – an excellent choice for a romantic date.
By many accounts the most beautiful beach of Santorini, the Red Beach is at least one of the most scenic you will find on the island. It is located in Akrotiri, just steps away from the famous ancient site that attracts hundreds of tourists fascinated with history. It’s a small, secluded beach, not so easily accessible on foot. If you are not into hiking, you can reach it by boat or water taxi. The beach takes its name from the red volcanic rocks towering over in mesmerizing contrast with the cerulean of the sea. Although hard to reach, the beach attracts many tourists who come here to photograph it or just to admire its beauty. Wear proper beach shoes as the shore is pebbly. You can rent sunbeds if you want to catch a tan. There are also two cafes on the cliff if you’d rather spend your time watching the boats on the sea with a glass of cold beer and a proper snack.
Still in Akrotiri, the White Beach can be mainly accessed by boat, so it is less crowded than the Red Beach. As its name suggests, it is white and pebbly, with daring white pumice rocks towering over its shores and turquoise, crystal clear waters great for diving and snorkeling. The landscape is scenic and fascinating. Besides a small cave tavern for drinks and snacks, there are no other facilities on this beach. Sunbeds and umbrellas can be rented if you want to spend a couple of hours here.
Mesa Pigdalia Beach
Mesa Pigdalia Beach is in Akrotiri, not far from the lighthouse and close to the White Beach and the Red Beach. It can be reached by boat, by car, or by bike. It doesn’t count as one of the top beaches of Santorini, but it is well worth it because it is easily accessible, clean, picturesque, and peaceful. Fishermen’s syrmata with colorful doors add a plus of ethnic charisma to this small and unassuming coastal attraction. You can rent sunbeds and umbrellas, explore the cave if you feel adventurous, or sit down at a tavern to sample the regional fish and seafood cuisine.
North Coast Beaches of Santorini
The Armeni Beach is located on the north coast of Santorini, just below Oia. It is a scenic beach with spellbinding views of Therasia. You can reach the beach from the 286 steps from Oia, or by boat from Ammoudi Bay. The beach has a small pier, in use since Armeni was the port of Oia. The beach is small, but its landscape is beautiful. Plus, there are some local restaurants where you can enjoy good seafood at reasonable prices too.
Ammoudi Beach is a favorite swimming spot below Oia. It is a small cove with clean water, scenic and picturesque, and rather busy in summer months. It can be reached by car, on foot, by boat, or with a traditional donkey ride – which is fun for the little ones. It is also worth mentioning that there are several fish tavernas here, serving typical dishes prepared with fresh, catch-of-the-day, fish. It’s not a beach per se, but there are a dock and several diving areas from high rocks for the adventurous types.
Columbo Beach lays about 4 kilometers from Oia on the north coast of the island. It can be accessed by car or bike, on foot, or by boat. It’s a quiet, isolated beach, more popular with locals than with tourists. Come prepared with water and snacks as there are no taverns here and the beach is not organized. Bring beach towels too: there are no sunbeds and umbrellas. It’s a naturist-friendly beach with black pebbles and strong waves. Also called Kouloumbo Beach or Kouloumpos Beach, it takes its name from Cape Columbo where it’s located and from the Kolumbo underwater volcano. The volcano is still active, and it last erupted in 1650.
East Coast Beaches of Santorini
Pori Beach on the east coast of Santorini in Imerovigli is quite close Columbo Beach. It enjoys a peaceful countryside location close to vineyards and the harbor. It can be reached by car or bike, on foot, and by boat. It is a favorite of the locals, and it is not well known by tourists. It has no facilities, sunbeds, or umbrellas. The water is clean and clear, perfect for swimming. There’s also a traditional tavern nearby, serving typical cuisine based on fish and seasonal produce.
Monolithos Beach is a peaceful destination on the east coast of the island, in Kamari, not far from the famous Kamari Beach. It is usually frequented by local families with small children, as tourists are not very familiar with it. The beach can be easily accessed by car, bus, bike, on foot, or by boat. You can rend sunbeds and umbrellas. The beach is well organized, with lifeguards on duty, as well as sports facilities for football, basketball, and volleyball. There are many taverns and cafes in the area too.
Located in the south of Monolithos Beach, Avis Beach takes its name from the former Avis Tomato Factory. Because it is close to Exo Gonia village, the beach is also called Exo Gonia. It’s a typical Santorini beach with black pebbles and crystal-clear waters. It has sunbeds and umbrellas, and you will also find traditional taverns nearby. Avis Beach is a popular spot for windsurfers and kite surfers.
One of the most famous beaches of Santorini, Kamari Beach lays at the foothills of the Mesa Vouno Mountain. It can be easily reached, and it is well organized. It is a Blue Flag beach with lifeguards and all kinds of facilities, diving center, water sports, paddleboats, football field, volleyball court, and more. You’ll find all sorts of bars and restaurants, nightclubs, and shops, as well as a delightful promenade.
Perissa Beach is located at the foothills of Mount Mesa Vouno, not far from Kamari Beach. It is a well-organized Blue Flag beach with lifeguards on duty and all kinds of facilities, including a playground for the little ones. It is a typical Santorini beach, with black volcanic pebbles and clean waters perfect for windsurfing and parasailing. You can enjoy many watersports on the beach and fun activities at the water park, which offers slides and pools for all ages. Perissa Beach is also popular with divers, as two diving centers are headquartered in this area. You’ll have a good choice of tavernas and cafes, as well as beach bars and clubs.