Santorini is no doubt one of Greece’s most famous and popular islands. That being said, visiting the volcanic island with young or older children can be a challenge if you don’t do your research first.
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Santorini is actually quite large, with many villages scattered all over it; the capital town Oia may be the most scenic, but it might not be the most convenient place to stay with children, especially if you have strollers!
We have done the research for you and comprised the information we have gathered below for you to be prepared for your Santorini family vacation. Take a look!
Where is Santorini?
Akrotiri church, Santorini - credits: Mariia_Boiko/Shutterstock.com
Santorini is a Cyclades island on the southeastern Aegean Sea. It was formed in 1646 by volcanic activity in Thera. The volcanic forces divided ancient Thera into five smaller islands and a caldera in their center.
Our recommendations are to go on an adventure with a boat and hike the volcano island to find more insight into Santorini's origins. With the appropriate organization and equipment, this activity can be suitable for children, and it will make your trip to Santorini with kids a memorable experience.
How To Get To Santorini?
Kamari beach- fun for kids. Santorini - credits: elen_studio/Shutterstock.com
Santorini can be reached by plane from Athens International Airport, and the flight lasts just 40 minutes. Upon arriving at Santorini's national airport at Kaari village, you can get to Fira by car or bus.
The ferry from Piraeus to Santorini port is also a popular and more budget-friendly option. The whole process can be a good eight-hour trip, but you have an incredible view over Caldera.
Getting around Santorini (yes, this may include a cable car ride)
Catamarans in the Red Beach in Santorini dancar/Shutterstock.com
In Santorini, only several taxi companies are in operation, so do not be afraid of standing outside the city to hire a taxi. You'll see lots of ATVs or motorized scooters in the vicinity, but this type has very limited safety for young children.
A car rental is a very good means of travel during your vacation in Santorini with kids. But this will require maneuvering the narrow streets of Santorini. Public bus services link main towns and are usually slow or late.
As a result, if your budget allows it, we would highly recommend you book private transfers during your visit to Santorini with kids. This way, your transportation with run smoothly without any effort or the hassle of planning on your part.
What's incredibly interesting is that you can get around some parts of Santorini with a Santorini cable car. The cable car will provide you with fast, safe, and easy transport from the old port of Santorini to Fira, the island's capital. Most people use it to catch the marvelous view of the Caldera it offers from a 220 meters altitude. However, if your kids are afraid of heights, that wouldn't be the best option.
When to visit Santorini with Kids?
Colorful streets, perfect for kids. Santorini - credits: Anilah/Shutterstock.com
It is advisable to avoid visiting Santorini with kids in the high-season months of the summer. In particular, from July to August.
As Santorini is one of the two most popular Greek island destinations worldwide, the island is in tatters, and boutique hotels of traditional Cycladic architecture, seafood restaurants, and even car rentals are rising at high prices.
What's more, hotels are fully booked months ahead, and even when you are lucky enough to find anything, expect a minimum of $150 per night for a 3-star hotel in Oia.
Sunset in Santorini - credits: Georgios Tsichlis/Shutterstock.com
On the other hand, from early September, things simmer down in Santorini. The island is less crowded, making for a much more comfortable and authentic Greek island experience the kids will truly appreciate.
We understand that summer is the only season when a family travels with children at school, but, in this case, we would highly suggest you try to plan your trip to Santorini with kids during their midterm vacation when there will be fewer people and no tourism wave.
Of course, if push comes to shove, even the heart of the summer is magical n Santorini, so don't worry too much about it.
How many days are enough to visit Santorini?
Couple with kid in Santorini, Greece - credits: NadyaEugene/Shutterstock.com
Santorini is not a large island. However, its beautiful towns require time for exploring.
Most must-try activities in Santorini can be completed in just five to seven days when visiting Santorini. This is the perfect amount of time to visit.
Of course, it is your vacation, so the more days you have at your disposal, the merrier. However, you can fit most of the island's highlights in a week.
While the last might not sound like the most family-friendly activity, it would be a sin to leave the island of Santorini without having tried as many of the local wine varieties as possible.
Family-friendly hotels in Santorini
Mother and kid in Santorini, Greece - credits: NadyaEugene/Shutterstock.com
Traveling with little ones or strollers will add complications to your trip regardless of where you go, especially if you visit the traditional villages of Santorini, where sidewalks don’t really exist and the winding, twisty little alleyways are quite steep. This could add a lot of trouble to your vacation.
Therefore, perhaps the best places to stay for families are the surrounding villages rather than Fira and Imerovigli, where you will also find much more affordable and self-catering accommodation options.
Adelante 88 is a collection of absolutely exquisite villas. They are located in the village of Akrotiri, which is on the south side of the island and close to Santorini’s famous archaeological site, Akrotiri.
The panoramic views from the villas are stunning and very easily accessible, unlike other parts of the island. They are self-catered, often an important amenity for families when traveling, and equipped with a pool that the children will undoubtedly take advantage of.
Adelante88, Santorini with kids - credits: http://adelante88.com
Remezzo Villas Santorini is perfectly located between the villages of Fira and Oia, on the edge of Imerovigli, one of Santorini’s most picturesque villages, and it is one of the family hotels that look like they're made of dreams.
It is accessible by vehicle/taxi and on foot from Imerovigli village. These villas are just some minutes' walk away from one of Santorini’s most iconic spots for panoramic views: Skaros.
Remezzo Villas, Santorini hotel - credits: www.remezzo-santorini.com
Rocabella Santorini is perfect if you are looking for a bit of pampering on your family holiday. With super-easy access via car, as this hotel is located right outside Imerovigli, on the main road, with stunning views and a spa and pool, Rocabella is a little piece of heaven.
Rocabella Santorini - credits: www.rocabella-hotel-santorini.com
Aria Suites are also one of the best luxury family hotels located in Fira. They are an elite boutique hotel with spa services, jacuzzis, and pools that the kid will love. It is also located in the heart of Fira where there are lots and lots of things to do!
Aria Suites Santorini Hotel- credits: ariasuites.com
Family Restaurants in Santorini
Parea Tavern - credis: parearestaurant.gr
One of the great things about Greece in general that many travelers find endearing is that there are so many great food options available at all times of the day.
Unlike other Mediterranean countries, which have strict working hours, the laid-back Greek lifestyle ensures you will never be short of delicious food options during your travels - especially great when you have hungry children to feed!
Suppose you stay near Akrotiri or want a bite to eat after visiting the archeological site. In that case, you could go to 'Aeolos Tavern,' which serves great traditional Greek food, with fresh seafood being its specialty.
'Parea Tavern' in Fira is also a great food spot and very child-friendly, with magical views and good value portions. If you are looking for good old souvlaki to satisfy your fast-food craving, check out 'Why Not!', which is one of the best-rated souvlaki spots on the whole island.
Best family-friendly beaches in Santorini
Santorini streets - credits: Feel good studio/Shutterstock.com
While the best beaches in Santorini don't follow the typical postcard aesthetic most beaches in the other Greek islands do, it doesn't mean that they are any less, as they belong to the southern Aegean sea.
In fact, Santorini is full of beaches that are safe for kids, and the kids are going to love them. Our top favorites include the black sand beach of Monolithos, Pristina beach, Kamari beach, Red Beach, White Beach, and Perivolos beach.
Alternatively, for a fun, unique, and therapeutic swimming experience, you and your kids (especially if they're older kids can visit the famous hot springs in Santorini.
The hot springs there are perfect for parents who want to give their bodies some pampering and for kids who despise the cold water. Plus, have you ever immersed yourself in a volcanic hot spring before? We bet you haven't!
In any case, don't forget to bring the sunscreens, towels, and beach toys, and we promise you will have the time of your lives wherever you choose to go! You can conquer Santorini with kids that easily!
Santorini with kids, What To Do & See
Santorini island - credits: turtix/Shutterstock.com
A family itinerary to Santorini may differ according to your interests. Santorini may not be an ideal holiday destination for children in your head, but it certainly offers an enjoyable experience for everyone.
Families can rent cars on the island to visit Santorini's charming cities, visit the stunning beaches, and explore Santorini's history and culture.
You may try a variety of local foods such as the famous moussaka, fried salami, and traditional baklava. You may also enjoy a family movie in an open-air cinema. The open-air cinema is a popular form of entertainment on the Greek islands your kids will love; you may find one even within walking distance from your accommodation!
Finally, cruisers can enjoy the Caldera as one of the most exciting activities of Santorini. Children can surely enjoy the turquoise water and breathtaking views over the coastline.
You have finally got to one of the world’s most famous islands, and you want to see all that it has to offer in the limited time that you have.
Perhaps one of the best ways to do this is on our Santorini Highlights Tour, where you will be driven in a luxury vehicle around the island with an expert local guide.
If you feel like taking it easy and soaking up as much sun and sea as possible, have a look at our Santorini Sailing Cruise, which can be arranged at sunset if you wish.
These Santorini sailing tours are great for couples and children as you will stop at amazing swimming spots and be given snorkeling gear to explore the deep blue, food, and unlimited refreshments.
Charming village in Santorini with kids- credits: Stockforlife/Shutterstock.com
Also, ensure that your kids have beach shoes because visiting the red and black beaches in the middle of summer will mean scorching hot sand.
Infinity swimming pool in Santorini - credits: Netfalls_Remy_Musser/Shutterstock.com
Is Santorini good for children?
Santorini with kids is an experience you don't want to miss. Whether you reach the island during a stop on your cruise ship or for a planned family vacation, you and your children won't regret a single moment on the island.
Among its many assets that make it a fun destination for kids, the island has a volcano caldera which is easily accessible through a boat trip or a boat tour.
What's more, the luxury accommodation options Santorini is known for will provide your kids with their own private pool for endless hours of fun.
All in all, Santorini is such a beautiful place you and your children won't help but fall in love with.
What is the most family-friendly island in Greece?
Sunset in Oia, Santorini - credits: Cara Foto/Shutterstock.com
While Santorini with kids is a travel experience with having, the island is not among the most family islands in Greece. The Greek islands that are mostly advertised for their kid-friendly elements are the island of Crete, Naxos, Paros, and Rhodes.
Regardless, there is no Greek island where children and their parents will not have a great time. This is just an indicative list of the most favored among families.
Avoid summer and July as much as possible because the island during those months is hugely crowded. It doesn't mean anyone can't have fun. But it may make things just a tad bit more difficult, especially during the booking phase of your trip planning process.
Sunset at Imerovigli, Santorini, Greece - credits: Georgios Tsichlis/Shutterstock.com
If you are looking for a trip that you and your kids will never forget, Santorini with kids is a fantastic choice, as well as Greece in general, where there are plenty of options for all family members!
Your young kids will be able to tell their friends they've witnessed a Santorini sunset from up close. Imagine the cool points they will earn and the sunset views they will remember forever!
See our selection of Santorini tours:
- Santorini private tour with local driver-guide