Oia is the star of Santorini. It sits at the northern tip of our crescent shaped island, atop the cliffs with spectacular views to the Sunset, Volcanic Caldera, neighbouring
Thirasia island and towards the rest of the island. Marble pathways thru the village lead to the numerous picturesque spots overlooking the caldera. White cave houses, blue domed chapels,
winding stairways created from volcanic red and black stones, historic sea captain’s mansions, unique shops, atmospheric cafes, elegant restaurants and artist workshops are all
within the pedestrian only zone of the village.
OIA (Latin spelling is often IA and it is pronounced Eah) and Santorini have a long history connected with the Aegean Sea,
our local wines, international trade, the simple tomato and of course, the focal point of Santorini – the volcano and it’s sea-filled caldera or crater.
Look inside 1864 The Sea Captain’s House and you will find our island’s history.
Santorini’s earliest sailors from the 1700's BC are beautifully immortalized in the colorful Akrotiri wall paintings depicting these Minoan voyagers.
The numerous ruins of 14th and 15th century castles and village fortifications on the island, tell us of the invading pirate sailors.
Italian sounding names, even that of “Santa Irina” herself, recall the frequently interrupted reign of Venice over the island.
But by walking through the marble and volcanic stone paths of Oia, you will find the memories of more recent sailors and their sea captains.
The unique, white cave houses, dug into the cliffs of volcanic pumice and rocks, were home to the village’s sailing crews.
The prosperous sea captains and ship owners, also skillful international traders, built cliff-top mansions influenced by the architecture they found on their exotic voyages.
Their 18th and 19th century homes were financed by the shipping and trading of the popular Santorini wine to Russia, Russian wheat to France and treasured French products onward to Mediterranean and Greek merchants.
Tomatoes, although not traded extensively abroad as the Santorini wines, were and still remain, unique by growing in the rich volcanic soil without rain. Receiving moisture only by the heavy night dew or morning fog.
Served fresh, sun dried or in the island’s traditional tomato fritters ‘tomato keftedes’, they have a powerful flavour despite their small size.
Constantly in view, the Santorini volcano’s several heads pop up from the Aegean Sea in the center of our crescent island. Black, and now thankfully silent, the volcano has dramatically shaped the land and sea here for thousands of years.
Useful phone numbers
- Santorini Health Center: +30-22863-60300
- Santorini Tourist Police: +30-22860-22649
Oia and other locations on the island
- Santorini Airport: 18 km / 25 minutes
- Santorini Port: 22 km / 35 minutes
- Ammoudi Beach: below the Oia castle ruins, 15 minutes by stone staircase path or 2 minutes by road
- Baxedes Beach: 1,5 km / 5 minutes
- Perivolos Beach : 30 km / 40 minutes
- Fira Town: 10 km / 15 minutes
Santorini is for... beach time
Swimming, snorkelling, sunbathing, relaxing, water sports and even clubbing are all possible along the Santorini Black, Red and White beaches. Tip: Perivolos Beach has some of the best places for swimming, water sports and eating at the waters edge. We offer sun-beds with umbrellas (complimentary), to our guests, at one of the coast’s most beautiful beach bars for swimming and relaxing.
Experience Santorini with us
Please email us for Availability and Prices for these Santorini Experiences. We can book on your behalf.
Sailing into the caldera...
aboard one of the smooth, balanced catamarans is a wonderful way to view the island from the water. Options range from your own private sailing catamaran to the larger value-packed craft. Tip: We know the best trips that also include a visit to the volcanic hot springs, time for swimming and wonderful included barbecues.
Caldera Massages Studio is the ideal place to recover from a long flight or to perfectly adjust to Island Time. A full menu of massage treatments includes exclusive Oia Sunset Glow Couples Massage, Honeymoon Package, Hot Stones Massage and traditional techniques. All treatments with your choice of natural aromatherapy oils. Relax in the unique treatment rooms or on the sea view terrace. Tip: Book ahead as appointments are limited.
AKROTIRI ARCHELOGICAL SITE
Newly reopened in 2012, this is the famous site of the Minoan Bronze Age village destroyed and buried by the volcano in the 1600?s BC. Similar to Pompeii, the entire village was preserved in volcanic pumice until discovered in 1969. Tip: To fully appreciate the site, join a guided tour. The site is not well sign posted and an expert will open your eyes beyond what appears as a confusing stack of stones. Ask us for suggestions.
FOOD & WINE
2013 was the Year of Gastronomy for Santorini, and the celebration continues till today. Oia is known as the most scenic spot on the island and also for hosting the top cafes and restaurants.
Tip: Explore Oia’s fine dine restaurants for your special celebration. For later afternoons, relax over fresh seafood at the Ammoudi Bay tavernas.
Famous for it’s unique vineyards, Santorini is amongst the top wine producers in Greece. And we aren’t talking about retsina or overly sweet table wines. Visit the wineries on your own or let an island expert do the driving and introduce you to the unique vineyards. Tip: Most tours are daily for 4 hours including 3-4 wineries with a small group or the option of a private tour. We can recommend the best tours.
ISLAND TOUR – RENTAL CAR - HIKING
Santorini can be explored by car with time for swimming, shopping, wine tasting, museum visits, taverna stops and more. A rental car can be delivered at the House with 15 minutes notice and free parking is nearby. Private tours for a more detailed understanding or for your specific interests can be arranged. Tip: Relax for your first day and stroll the pathways of Oia, walk down to Ammoudi Bay and adjust to the slower pace before exploring the island.
Explore the rim of the Santorini caldera by making the scenic hike between Oia and Fira. The volcanic stone path, part of the original trail-road to Oia, crosses the top of the cliffside. A leisurely 3-4 hour walk passes numerous Greek orthodox chapels, amazing vistas and countryside landscapes. Tip: Ask us for our map as the walk is sometimes on and then off the main road. Not recommended for hiking in the mid afternoon during the hot summer months.
Oia Sunsets are famous, and can be enjoyed on the water or from the tip of the island located just down the village pathway from The Sea Captain’s House, 4 minutes walk. Tip: The caldera holds the changing colours reflected in the sea and against the rest of the island – while the Oia castle ruins are the spot for seeing the sun dip into the sea. Everyone from across the island shows up on time for the sunset.
Santorini’s famous volcano rests in the sea at the centre of the crescent shaped island. Take a private catamaran or a simpler excursion boat trip to the volcano to appreciate it’s formation and power. Swimming in the hot springs is a popular stop after completing the hike up the rugged, black lava pathway. Tip: Take with you water, wear solid shoes (put the heels and flip-flops in the backpack) and use sun protection.
Holiday & Special Dates
- Greek Orthodox Easter “Paska” is celebrated 8th of April 2018
- Western Easter Sunday is celebrated 1st of April 2018
- Greek National Summer Holidays are 1 May, 15 August, 28 October