Don’t stop reading this because you think Santorini, Greece is a crappy place tourists go!!! I’m going to tell you what I love about Santorini Greece… and you’ll love it too, promise.
It is a stunning, magical place that made me beyond happy. Like all Greek islands, there are tourists for good reason! The food, the sunsets, the
over-priced uniquely priced shops, and gorgeous people all are worth it. Yes, it’s expensive. There’s a sunset that “will change your life” that doesn’t. But there is so much more! I think the photos alone in this post will induce your wanderlust with Santorini (Fira), but just in case I’ll add a little story.
Couchsurfing in Santorini was one of my luckier ones. We stayed with a Greek God who has been on the cover of magazines for being the “Island Boytoy”. He wasn’t around much, and at first I wandered why he even bothered hosting couchsurfers- but, I think it’s because he was hoping they’d pay for his Scuba classes. I was so naive back then!
Why I Loved Santorini
- Scuba with Greek Hotties for like 50 bucks… I mean that’s pretty cheap, and considering where we were!? We had no training in a pool before like many places in Thailand tried to enforce. We tipped over backwards straight into the ocean and started a whole day of my first time scuba diving. I can’t wait to go again and plan to in India soon. I almost got the bends when water got in my goggles and I panicked. My guide/Greek warrior saved my life. No big deal. There are many shipwrecks which is the main draw since visibility isn’t that good.
- Couchsurfing. Just in general here. It not only introduced us to amazing people, but after the budget bummer in regards to clubs in Mykonos, it was so lucky that we stayed with these guys. We got to scuba and go to an old family friends’ bakery to try all the yummy Greek desserts. (PS: I have couchsurfing safety tips).
- Clubs galore! They had free access to all the clubs being locals and we got to take advantage of that. We got back on budget, and had a baller (did I just say baller?) time at the coolest clubs in town. We went to a birthday party of a stunning Greek woman at a rented out bar before our biggest night out. The Greeks know how to party. Yamas!
- Driving through the town on a Greeks motorcycle. Getting to see all the best sights from a local’s point of view. The best thing about couchsurfing is that you are with a local who can show you which guidebook advice is bullshit and which is worthwhile. They know better restaurants, or teach you how to cook something at their home.
- A reminder on a trip that had some bumps and bruises like getting the airline losing my backpack and getting pickpocketed that I was lucky to be on the road. Travel is my life and I was feeling pretty down at that point.. the universe had NOT been rewarding me. It was nice to sit back and enjoy what the world was offering.
- Nea Kameni the volcano on the island, which has one active crater. I bought an awesome candle that has a covering made from the lava. It’s gorgeous. I bought one for my mom too, how fun to carry too hunks of hard lava in my backpack…
- The “life changing sunset” at Oia is not so life-changing as it is shoulder bumping on the edge of the island to see the sun go out of sight like it does every. single. day. Regardless, here’s a photo and a blog post from someone who explored Oia Santorini better than me, lol.
- The Greek Gods. I’m not talking mythology. I’m talking greased up tanned guys with blonde highlights in their beautiful hair. Yes, Greeks can be blonde! They have great accents, love to drink, and are quite funny. Because we stayed with a Greek hottie, we got to meet his friends. I love couchsurfing. Their friend Anna was pretty cool to meet too and I still talk to her often!
- The white on blue. The white buildings with the blue sea backdrop, or the white buildings with blue doors or window frames. They even paint white in between the cobblestones.
- Donkeys are so cute. I didn’t ride one because is it just me or do they seem too small to carry people? Maybe like children, but me and a big bag? Yes, I’m aware this has been going on for ages, but I just couldn’t.
- There are so many things to do in Santorini for tourists that I didn’t even scratch the surface!
- Rounded corners on all the buildings. Why does this make such a big difference? Something about it just makes the whole town look soft and inviting. It’s like some of the Portuguese houses here in Goa that I fawn over.
- Pink and Red flowers on top of the white and blue. It’s just enough color pop. I won’t overload here but I could.. I really could.
- Long lunches at the beach hold a spot in my heart. The food is amazing and the Greeks love to feed. I had the most amazing shrimp in my life in Santorini. I eat Greek at the numero uno restaurant in Goa sometimes once a week, sometimes twice a day. I can’t get enough Greek food.
- There was one thing I didn’t love. Leaving. It was a sad day… even though I was off to another island, I had a sinking feeling that Santorini was the most beautiful place I’d ever see. ever. and to this day, I think it still is!
Have you been to Santorini? What did you think- perfect island or tourist trap?