Part of the dazzling Cyclades, Santorini rivals Mykonos in popularity and has this summer attracted more tourists than ever according to the locals. It’s a destination that changes drastically year by year as every summer season sees more homes and businesses sprouting around the island.
Known for its majestic sunsets and unique one-of-a-kind setting, Santorini is also celebrated for its selection of beaches including those with white, red, and black sand and rocks. Though located close to each other, each of these beaches has its own character, and if you’re on the island long enough, it’s definitely worth experiencing them all!
The Red Beach: Known as Kokkini Paralia, this red-earth beach is one of Santorini’s most impressive. Situated under an imposing red-tone cliff, it is accessible by vehicle up to a point and then requires a little bit of climbing to the waterfront. Canteens and parking are available on site by the church of Agios Nikolaos, as are fresh fruit stands that will satisfy your beach day appetite for a summer treat. This beach is very close to the Prehistoric City of Akrotiri (turn right when you reach it) and is a great choice for a swim after you’ve visited the settlement of Ancient Thira. If you prefer going by boat, ferries that run every half hour to the Black, Red, and White beaches are also available in the area.
The Black Beach: Known as Perissa, Perivolos, and Agios Georgios, the black beaches of Santorini are a feature of the island’s volcanic past. Visited by celebrities and thousands of tourists each year, this organized beach hosts a strip of good seaside cafes, bars, and taverns. You can grab a drink or bite at one of these establishments or have it served to you right across the street while you lounge on your sunbed. The beach is comprised of fine black pebbles but becomes very slippery when you enter the water since the pebbles quickly turn into large stone slabs. It’s difficult but fun to try walking on this surface! When you eventually give up, enjoy your swim.
The White Beach: Known as Aspri Paralia, this secluded and unorganized beach is accessible by boat only. Set before a white cliff on the southwest coast of Santorini, Aspri Paralia is full of white stones and is in close proximity to the famous Red beach. If you’re travelling by car you can visit this special place with a boat ride from Akrotiri. There’s no canteen here so it’s best to bring whatever you need for your visit, and don’t forget your snorkeling gear!