Some ideas for your next Santorini sailing trip

Some ideas for your next Santorini sailing trip

 

Santorini is a beautiful small island with some of the best views into the Aegean Sea. But usually after you have been here a while, you start craving a different adventure. Then you know it is time to set sails and head into the sea and look at all this beauty from the water!

This time I’ll share some ideas on sailing trips around here. What goes on on these? What can you possibly do on a boat all day??? No worries, I got the answers, or at least some of them.

The first thing you need to decide is how long do you want the trip to be. Usually there are two options – you can either spend an entire day on the boat, which would mean a tour around the island and then some leisure time with swimming etc. or you can go with half a day and do mostly touring.

After that, you need to settle on the type of sailing trip you’re looking for. Around Santorini there are actually many options, some of the best include:

  1. sunset sailing
  2. volcano sailing
  3. fishing sailing
  4. sailing trip along with traditional Greek foods

So when you know the answer to these two questions, you can start contacting some of the companies offering trips. Be wise and call a couple before settling for one – sometimes the prices and the types of tours differ greatly. Of course, reading some online reviews from previous sailors does not hurt.

This should set you on your way to having the best time on the waters of the Aegean Sea. Let me know how your trip went and see you back on land!

 

Professional honeymoon photographer Anna Sulte

The search for the perfect hidden Santorini beach

The search for the perfect hidden Santorini beach

 

Greece – the place of perfect azure beaches all over. Not to mention the Greek islands that have some of the best hidden gems in the beach game. And I might even add that Santorini is definitely among the best among them. This little island is the perfect getaway for lovers that want to enjoy lazy beach days and each others company.

And what better place for you both than a hidden beach somewhere off the big crowds? Today I’m going to share some of them ;)

 

Theros beach

This one’s closer to the South of the island and has its own wine bar as well. A nice small beach with impressive cliffs. This is the place to go for a lazy day – since it is quite small, there won’t be big crowds of people and because of the cliffs you feel like your enclosed in your own small world.

 

Yalos beach

A small beach with dark volcanic sand. If you haven’t been in a black beach before, this will be a unique experience for you. The azure water is a nice contrast to the dark sand and gives a whole new understanding of the various beaches here. Also there’s a great beach restaurant waiting to fulfill all your needs.

 

Pori beach

This one is nearly a lagoon, so it’s a bit more shallow and really accents the nice color of the water of the Aegean Sea. If you’re after that white sand and azure waters, this is the place for you. No cliffs in sight, so maybe not the best for more windy days. Otherwise, a nice beach for escaping the crowds :)

 

Of course, there’s plenty more beaches to be discovered in Santorini! Use these as your starting point – they’re nice and more quiet, also very different from each other. Going to a beach in Santorini is a whole adventure, they come in all shapes and sizes. Enjoy the summer and sea you there!

Photo by Anna Sulte santorini honeymoon photographer

Adventurous couple photoshoot in Santorini

Adventurous couple photoshoot in Santorini

 

Chris and Julia came all the way from Atlanta, Georgia to enjoy some of the special Santorini sun. I was honored to find out that they themselves know a thing or two (and more ;) ) about cameras.

That being said, they trusted me completely as we set to climb all things climbable and went off to some of the smaller intimate Santorini streets in search for the golden shot. Now I can honestly admit that I’m a bit afraid of heights but their enthusiasm kept me going :) As I sit and review the shots and how lovely they look, I can’t help to think that it was totally worth it. I mean, look at this lovely couple!

 March 2018

Santorini honeymoon photographer Anna Sulte

 

 

Flying to Santorini direct or through Athens – pros and cons

Flying to Santorini direct or through Athens – pros and cons

 

The Santorini adventure begins even before you step on the island. Getting here is a quest, especially if you come from outside Europe – embrace the adventure and soak in the most of it! You read the title, today we’ll look at some basic pros and cons for choosing whether to fly directly to Santorini or to the capital Athens first. I’m by no means an expert, but here’s some of my own thoughts sprinkled with some things I’ve heard from the couples I’ve photographed over the years.

 

Direct flight to Santorini

  • Many times these end up costing more money, the companies know that Santorini is a hot destination so they adjust their airfare accordingly.
  • Flying direct you obviously save some time spent in the airports
  • These days airport worker strikes might occur – these people are fighting for better payment terms and that’s fine but you might get caught in the middle. So if you choose to fly direct, you minimise the chance of being stuck in an airport.
  • The island weather is a bit unpredictable, so you might have a bit of a rough flight if you come from overseas and the landing can’t be scheduled for a later time. Nothing serious, but if you’re not too comfortable with some turbulence, Athens will probably be more smooth sailing.

 

Flight through Athens

  • Well, you get to see Athens! That is, if you plan it right. I would recommend staying there for a day or two, best at the end of your travel – it’s a vibrant city with rich history and you can only gain more from your travels.
  • If you end up doing it, it of course comes with some costs, generally short hotel stays will be more expensive than longer package deals.
  • If you go for a simple layover without staying, you might save some money on the airfare expenses.
  • As said before, you have a bit more risk to get stuck in the airport due to strikes. In this case you could choose ferry for alternative travel option.
  • There’s also a slight possibility that your luggage can be lost. On long overseas flights that happens more often. Nothing is lost at the end, but you might arrive to Santorini and have to wait for your bag to catch up :)

 

So here’s some things to consider. Of course, do your own research for precise dates before choosing, but these should serve as general pointers on what to look out for.

Santorini located photographer Anna Sulte

KAMARI BEACH VS PERISSA, Santorini

BATTLE OF THE BEACHES – KAMARI BEACH VS PERISSA

 

No other question is on the minds of vacationers than this – which is the ultimate beach to be in Santorini? Everything is subjective, of course, but this time let’s narrow it down and look at two similar black beaches – Kamari and Perissa in Santorini. Which one is better and why?

 

Let’s start with Kamari. Here’s what I have to say:

 

  • It’s closest to Fira, so if you live around there, it’s definitely an option. If you don’t, each case varies but there’s probably some closer options to you.
  • This beach also has its own big rock on the right side – it’s called Mesa Vouno. It might be a nice place to explore or to gaze at while relaxing in the sunshine.
  • A lesser known fact is that this beach is actually the most beautiful at night (wink wink, time for a romantic night walk, maybe?). The rock shines in moonlight and creates a very special atmosphere.
  • Modern facilities to meet any needs.

 

On the other hand, Perissa can offer:

 

  • It’s basically right next to Perissa, only a tiny bit further from Fira. If you live there, it won’t make a huge difference, but if you come from outside Fira, this might be enough to change your mind – you can get your tan on quicker probably if you go to Kamari.
  • From this beach you can see the other side of Mesa Vouno.
  • Lots of modern facilities around – anything from cafes, resorts, hotels etc. etc.
  • Next to Perissa beach is Perivolos beach which is wider and has less restaurants than Kamari and Perissa.

 

The conclusion? Basically the beach look is almost identical – they’re two classic Santorini black beaches. So in my opinion, choose whichever you can get to the fastest and with less transport problems and if it’s full, head on to the other one. More or less, the only difference is choosing on which side you want Mesa Vouno to be :) Just relax and enjoy the sun, wherever you might be.

 

Anna Sulte Santorini photographer

 

 

CHECKLIST OF SOME STUFF TO REMEMBER BEFORE YOUR TRIP TO SANTORINI

CHECKLIST OF SOME STUFF TO REMEMBER BEFORE YOUR
TRIP TO SANTORINI

 

It’s all about the journey, not the destination. That’s probably one of the least true quotes ever, at least in the era of plane travel it IS totally about the destination. The journey is just a huge mess of a million things to remember and some pitfalls to avoid to make sure you get to your destination with the least amount of stress and effort possible.

Well, today is your lucky day, because I might help your life become just a tiny bit less stressful with this simple checklist of some things to remember when setting out for travelling to Greece, Santorini. This will be especially useful for all you guys taking those long international flights (i.e. enjoying the journey the most I guess :) ).

 

All things aside, here’s a simple list of some stuff. Feel free to print and checkmark. Remember your:

  • Passport
  • International drivers license
  • Credit card with no international fees
  • Call and notify credit card company and bank of travel
  • Download viber (or any other international communication app)
  • Update music on phone or MP3 player (yeah, the no-internet life is still a reality in some places)
  • Scan, print and add to iBooks app (great to avoid losing your ID info if the physical documents are lost or forgotten):
    • Passport
    • Divers license
    • Detailed itinerary
    • Maps
    • Hotel information – addresses and phone numbers
    • Ferry information – boat names, reservation numbers, times and gate numbers
  • Be sure to download all flight company apps and save your tickets there digitally, for a super safe option you can also print them.

This should cover most of the bases for you. Also, if you’re from outside EU, you’ll probably thank yourself for bringing some nice sleeping gear – get one of those neck pillows, they save lives! Also, forget your high fashion, do the flight in sweatpants or even pijamas for super extra comfort.

Santorini in spring – pros and cons

Santorini in spring – pros and cons

 

Santorini is on everyone’s minds in the summer – they imagine lonely sandy beaches filled with sun and romantic walks through the village streets. But how about spring? Maybe it’s a good alternative to save money and avoid crowds of tourists? Today I give you some of my observations on the pros and cons of coming to this Greek island in spring.

 

PROS

  • There will definitely be less people around. For many couples that is a solid plus. No lines, less crowds, more laid back experience.
  • Hotels give off season discounts, so if you want to save some money for more travels in the season this is a good hack.
  • You will really be able to appreciate the scenery. If you don’t have to go everywhere with a big tourist group, you get more of the untouched nature to enjoy.
  • For most the summer weather is actually too hot. If you come then, during mid day you will just have not plan anything active, the most you can do then is sit by the pool in shade. Spring does not limit you, and you can fully use the daytime.
  • I would say that it is more authentic and romantic during the spring season. You mostly meet locals and some other active tourist couples.

 

CONS

  • Since there’s less visitors, some of the touristy places might still be closed. That just means you will have a bit less choice for, say, restaurants.
  • If you’re unlucky you might have a bit worse weather. But bad weather in spring just means you need to pack a sweater or two – nothing too crazy. The Greek island climate stays rather dry all year round.
  • If you’re looking for clubbing, you might be disappointed. Depending on the month, most of them will probably be closed. But on the other hand, that means emptier beaches.

 

So these are some of the main things to consider. If you visited during spring, would you add something? Hope this helps and gets you thinking and evaluating. Everyone is different, so I personally can’t say when you should come. All I know is that this is a place to see at least once in a lifetime.

 

Santorini vacation photographer Anna Sulte

Image

Add some spice to your Santorini travel – join a Greek cooking class!

Add some spice to your Santorini travel – join a Greek cooking class!

 

Travel is the best way to have new experiences. And that does not end with seeing some cool places or enjoying the warm breeze of Aegean Sea winds and the touch of the Santorini sun. For many of us, food is a very special part of the travel experience. So today I will share some of the essential info on taking Greek cooking classes right here on the Santorini island!

 

Good things come in pairs

This is true for cooking classes as well. More often than not they’re combined with a wine tour in some of the local Greek wineries. Prepare to blast your tastebuds with some of the greatest wine before heading to the kitchen.

 

Where to look for classes

Well, online of course :) But I  can say that the best ones are usually hosted by restaurants. Try to stay clear of some tour operators. As an example, the restaurant Selene is a solid choice, they have been in the business for more than 30 years and they know what they’re doing.

 

What kind of foods to expect

This of course depends on the people organising the class as well as the ones attending. I would suggest really trying to find out beforehand. More often than not they try to stick to classic Greek cuisine like fava, soutzoukakia, tzatziki etc. but do ask beforehand to avoid surprises. Occasionally there are modern Greek fusion classes which might not be what you’re interested in.

 

If you follow this you will have a great time, no doubt. Of course it’s not rocket science, but you just have to make sure to check some things. Bon apetit!

Santorini photographer Anna Sulte

 

 

Explore a different side of Santorini in wintertime

Explore a different side of Santorini in wintertime

 

Sure, the season is ending on the Santorini island, but that can be used to see a different, more authentic side of this Greek island. Let me share a couple of tips on how to come offseason, save some money and still get an awesome experience.

The type of traveler this is for

It really comes down to what you expect from your visit. Offseason Santorini is more suited to the people looking for a quiet getaway rather that someone looking for partying. Most of the bars and restaurants close down, some of the more authentic ones visited by locals are open.

What to do

The number one activity in this time is active exploring, especially nature hikes. This is the time when Santorini is not crowded by tourists and you can get a more genuine feel about life on the island.

You will have the chance to see some of the most impressive views that are not blocked by crowds, and this also means there’s lots of good photo opportunities – what is not often shared in this blog is the way we have to struggle to not include tourists in some of the in-season couple shoots we do :)

That being said, there’s still some tourist activities going on all year. You will probably still be able to arrange a horse riding trip or go diving (don’t worry, the wetsuits will keep you warm and toasty). The number one thing to check for in a hotel is whether they have a hot tub – this gives you a chance to spend your evenings enjoying life with a bit of wine and sunsets.

In short, there’s still plenty of places to explore and stuff to do, but you have to be active and spend some time planning. If you’re up for that, Santorini will reward you with an authentic experience.

Santorini vacation photographer Anna Sulte

The dreaded dilemma – Santorini vs Mykonos.

The dreaded dilemma – Santorini vs Mykonos.

Let me just start off with pointing out that you will have a great time on both of these Greek islands, no doubt! And now let’s get ready to rumble!

In the right corner of the ring – Mykonos:

  • This is considered the best party island in Greece. If you want to dance till sunrise with your buddies, this is definitely the place for you!
  • They have clubs with such awesome names as Paradise and Super Paradise which are filled with super high quality thumping club music. These attract famous DJs whose sets usually run into the next day.
  • Sandy aches with clear water to rejuvenate you after the parties.
  • Not too family friendly, it will be harder to find things to do for the little ones.

And in the left corner of the ring – Santorini:

  • Mostly known as the best destination for loving couples, many even arrive to the island from abroad to get married in its scenic destinations.
  • More cafes and restaurants with a quiet and chilled vibe.
  • Swimming pools with STUNNING views, like infinity pools that end on the edge of cliffs overlooking the Volcanic Lagoon.
  • All types of interesting and different beaches, like black beaches formed from volcanic sand.
  • More family friendly, you can for example go on horse rides and go to a waterpark. If you take kids, double check that with your hotel – some hotels are on a Cliffside and they do not allow children for safety reasons.

 

The winner: Well, nothing in life is easy. You decide it’s subjective and depends on your needs. But this should help clear up your mind, at least. Whatever you do, make sure to come to Santorini someday.  See you there.

Santorini photographer Anna Sulte

Go on a Santorini island expedition – visit Thirasia

Go on a Santorini island expedition – visit Thirasia

Thirasia is one of the islands that lies close to Santorini. For travellers this means that you can pack much more in your Greece trip! Although the Greek island of all lovers and cute architecture is still Santorini, this smaller island definitely has its own unique things to offer. Today I’ll share some insider tips on how to organize your mini island expedition there.

Thirasia is relatively close to Santorini, the only way to reach it is by boat. Depending on the spot you would like to get off it should take you around 10-20 minutes to reach it. Sounds not so tough, right?  It’s a pretty bumpy ride.

To get there, you can either use the offers from tourism companies or pay 1 EUR if you go with the boat from Amoudi Bay (right next to Oia village).

Now, the point you get off in Thirasia will define your experience on the island. Here’s some options:

Riva: Has a beach from which you can see Oia and a small restaurant. Good spot for swimming and sunbathing.

Korfos: View of Santorini Island, volcano and the unique rocks of Thirasia. You will be able to take a quick swim, but keep in mind that the beach is quite rocky. Still, this place has several restaurants and cafes. Also keep in mind that you will have to do a small climb up a hill to reach the town – you can also rent a donkey.

And there you have it, the secret formula for a day on the neighbouring island, let me know how your trip turned out!

Photo of Amoudi bay, from my phone :)

Anna Sulte Santorini based photohrapher

 

Image

Cliff jumping in Santorini

Have a dose of adrenaline – cliff jumping in Santorini

Santorini is an island of romance – narrow streets, cute houses and perfect sunsets. It’s all great, but sometimes you really need a dose of adrenaline to feel alive. No worries, we got that. Santorini has plenty of cliffs where both locals and tourists enjoy diving into the clear azure water. Here’s the essential spots:

Amoudy Bay: It’s right next to Oia. It has a pretty well-built platform where you can take stairs to get up on the jumping point. I would say the jump is medium height and is good for beginners as well.

Perissa Beach: Yep, it’s a beach with its own cliff jumping spot. The height is also good for beginners.

Kamari Beach: This one is higher and you have to jump ahead a bit – I would say don’t try this as your first jump.

 Here’s the main safety tip: Do not jump anywhere, if you’re not 100% sure that this is the cliff jumping spot! Wherever you go, you’re likely to see someone else already doing it. If not, make sure to ask some of the people there or even better, some locals to know the spot to jump into. Also, if you’re there only with your friends, make sure to swim to the spot in the water first – dive and check what is underneath.

OK, stay safe and have fun!

Organise a classy party in Santorini

Organise a classy party in Santorini

Being classy takes effort, not necessarily bags of money. Let me share some local tips on how to make that perfect occasion to enjoy the company of your loved ones and closest friends in Santorini.

  1. Location

Having an awesome location definitely adds a lot to a party. People usually come to Santorini for two things – the Caldera view and to see the traditional white architecture. Give the people what they want! There are loads of restaurants around that have great views. I have already shared some of the greatest restaurants here  —>  Santorini restaurants with a view (and a great food),
and here  —>  Best Santorini restaurants to enjoy authentic Greek/Santorini food.
Another option is to start with hotels, they also might offer you to rent out their pool for a warm evening dip. It’s also quite exciting if you keep the location a secret to the guests and meet them in the city. That adds that extra wow factor when you arrive and is a good party starter!

  1. Dress code

You might think that this is a bit too much, but believe me – a clear dress code only adds to the ambiance of the location. Santorini is quite warm in summer even in evenings, so you can get inspired from traditional Greek fashion. Long free flowing toga dresses for girls and smart casual in light tones for guys always does the trick. Be sure to include this in the invitations (or messages that you send out).

  1. Entertainment

Music adds the extra cherry on top. Many restaurants and hotels will have their own musicians on offer, but you can also search around. The best thing is that to get traditional Greek music in your party, you don’t necessarily have to hire a professional band. Many Greeks are talented with music instruments, so you can safely get almost any street musician and have the best time!

And that’s it. Simple as that – if you pay attention to these things, your party will be one of your highlights of your Santorini trip.

Santorini vacation photographer Anna Sulte

 

Image

GET YOUR VACATION VEGGIES IN THESE AMAZING SANTORINI VEGETARIAN FOOD PLACES

GET YOUR VACATION VEGGIES IN THESE AMAZING SANTORINI VEGETARIAN FOOD PLACES

            Whether you’re looking for a light vacation meal after a day at the beach, exploring the Greek vegetarian food world or looking for a place to relax after your Santorini photo session these restaurants will not disappoint. Here’s my top 3 of the best places to get your veggies at the heart of the Aegean Sea.

 

Falafel Land in Fira

Who does not like a good falafel, right? Their diverse menu will have something new even for the most enthusiastic falafel lovers. It is a small and simple place, but provides all you need to enjoy a cool evening or grab a snack in the middle of your excursion day. The staff are some of the most active and positive vegans on the island!

Where to find it: It’s close to Fira bus terminal, address: Fira, Fira 84700

 

Melitini in Oia (vegetarian friendly)

This is a nice choice if you’re non-vegetarian friends don’t want to give up meat for the meal. It’s a vegetarian friendly restaurant with a relaxed vibe, classic Greek cuisine with a twist and one of the greatest views around! It’s in a classic tavern with a terrace overlooking the Caldera. Careful if you’re planning a short meal, you might stay the whole evening just to stare at the horizon and the Aegean Sea!

Where to find: It’s on the main Caldera walk in Fira, address: Epar.Od. Firon-Ias, Oia 84702

 

Sea Side by Notos in Perivolos (vegetarian and vegan friendly)

Another treat that will spoil you with food and great views. As the title suggests, this place is right next to the waves of the sea which you can always watch for hours. Great place to visit after enjoying a day at the beach. Has vegetarian and vegan options, but your meat-loving friends won’t be disappointed. They have nice chilled out seating on the beach, you can always take a quick dip in the sea in the middle of the meal if you want to – it’s your vacation, you make the rules!

Where to find: just go to the beach and you won’t miss it, address: Agios Georgios Beach, Perivolos

Santorini vacation photographer Anna Sulte

MAGNIFICENT TOWN OF FIRA – THE CAPITAL OF SANTORINI

MAGNIFICENT town OF FIRA – THE CAPITAL OF SANTORINI

Fira is, of course, the gem of the island of Santorini. If the time of your stay here on the island is limited for some reason, you can just visit it and really take in the various opportunities and sights it has to offer. It lies on the caldera opposite the volcano, so you can be sure that the views will be no less than awesome. However, it does not end there – Fira has much more!

The town has loads of museums, galleries and hosts many cultural events. Moreover, it also has the biggest shopping centre and a large choice of places to dine and entertain – this is the place where nightlife is bustling on the island of Santorini.

The town has one of the largest varieties of architecture and variuous cultural landmarks that have preserved from the times when the island was ruled by Turks as well one of the oldest, largest and most scenic ports in Santorini.

If you’re looking for the perfect village for all sorts of activities and want to enjoy a big selection of various restaurants, hotels and places for entertainment, Fira is probably the perfect place for you!

 

Santorini photography by Anna Sulte, Thera based photographer.