When is the best month to visit Santorini? Words of advice from a local.
When considering travel options, for some reason we often get consumed on the idea about tourism season. Here’s some quick thoughts on the best times to visit Santorini, based on what you actually plan to do on this little island in the Mediterranean.
My name is Anna, and I’m a local Santorini couple’s photographer – I observe the flow of tourists and weather pretty much all the time. So I think I do have some insights on this :)
Determine what activities you would actually enjoy on the island
We’re all different and plan our perfect vacation differently. The main point I would like to drive home here is that you need to know a bit about the possibilities uphand. Do you want to just lounge at the beach or do some active exploring around the island? Is this a honeymoon trip or are you looking for an escape with your loved one? All of this actually has an impact on the best time when to travel to Santorini.
Quick rundown of options for different travelers
Active travel (hiking, village walks, restaurants)
End of April, May and October are the best – the weather gets milder, and you can actually enjoy a walk or sit in the sun at the restaurant. Mid season with the around +30C weather is actually very tiring, most locals prefer to stay indoors or in shade during the day. May and October are still warm, but it’s not blazing hot. Even when it rains on Santorini, it mostly rains for few hours only and then day opens up and it’s sunny again.
My best bet would be July, August and early September. But keep in mind that these times are a bit more crowded. But that’s what you need to have an awesome party on a Mediterranean island, right?
What you need is the sweets pot, where it’s still on the hot side (for that one to one chill time), yet not ridiculously crowded, because you still want to tour the best Santorini restaurants (a rundown of those here). My best bet for you would be June, end of September or October. That’s the magical pocket when tourism slows down a bit, but not too much.
If you enjoy being in crowds
This is probably an anti-recommendation. The most crowded time in Santorini is end of summer – August (and first part of September) officially takes the price for being the worst month. I would assume that it’s nobody’s vision to enjoy sunsets from narrow streets together with hundreds of other tourists shoulder to shoulder is not anyone’s idea of perfect travel. So now you know – avoid August if you can, it’s really not worth it.
Of course, you can get that here all the time, but there’s two hot times of celebration that transform the island. It’s around Greek Easter (most likely in April, but it’s different every year) and St.Mary’s day which is a massive Greek bank holiday with large festivities all around the country (15th of August).
So yeah, this should get you by and help you with some decisions about when to visit Santorini. All I can add is that of course this island is a magical destination any time, but if you’re smart about it, you can actually get more experiences and value out of your travel :)