If you are making a decision about where to stay in Santorini, you have a lot of options.
Do you want a villa with a private pool or hot tub? What about a room where you can have spectacular sunset views of the caldera? If you are traveling as a family or a small group, maybe you want the convenience and practicality of an apartment.
Not only do you have to choose what kind of accommodation to stay in, but you also have to decide where to stay. Located along the rim of the caldera are some of the most popular towns in Santorini…Oia, Fira, and Imerovigli, just to name a few. But you can also stay near the beach or in one of the smaller towns on the interior of the island.
To make things easier for you, we have narrowed down the long list of hotels into just a few properties, organized by town and budget.
Overview of Santorini
Before we list the best hotels in Santorini, here is a quick geography lesson. This is very important if it is your first visit to Santorini.
Santorini is shaped like a crescent. This island is the rim of an ancient volcano.
Located along the inside of the rim are the cliffside towns of Oia, Fira, Imerovigli and Firostefani. If you want amazing views of the caldera, spectacular sunsets, and the chance to stay in some of the most photogenic towns in Greece, this is the best place to stay in Santorini.
On the other side of the island are the beach towns of Santorini. From here, you can walk right out to the beach, and prices tend to be lower, so this is a good pick for families.
You also have the option to stay in one of the smaller, hilltop towns in Santorini. You won’t get the amazing caldera views like you would from Oia or Fira, and you won’t have easy beach access, so this is a less popular pick for many visitors.
Where to Stay in Santorini
Along the Caldera
Four main towns are located along the rim of the caldera: Oia, Imerovigli, Firostefani, and Fira. For views of the caldera, spectacular sunsets, and the chance to have your own private terrace with a hot tub or infinity pool, this is the best place to stay in Santorini.
Oia is one of the most picturesque towns in Santorini, if not all of Greece. This is where white-washed buildings tumble down the dark, volcanic cliffs of Santorini. Blue-domed churches and tiny aquamarine plunge pools add color to the town.
This is one of the best places to go to watch the sunset in Santorini, so expect big crowds midday through early evening.
Oia is filled with great restaurants, great shopping, and many, many hotels.
Due to popularity of Oia, and the busloads of tourists that wander the streets, this town feels busy and very touristy. We did not stay here (we stayed in Imerovigli) but some of the hotels seem to lack the privacy like you will find in Imerovigli. As you walk through town, it is very easy to peer down at people in their plunge pools and hot tubs, so keep that in mind when choosing where to stay.
Pros: One of the most beautiful towns in Greece, great place to watch the sunset, lots of restaurants and hotels
Cons: Crowded, touristy, expensive, some hotels may lack privacy. Since many hotels face south, there is a good chance that you won’t get sunset views right from your hotel, unless you stay at the western end of Oia.
Looking along Oia and the cliffs of Santorini from Oia Castle.
Oia at sunset
Andronis Luxury Suites. This gorgeous, 5-star property gets impeccable reviews for their location, service, staff, and food. Rooms are beautifully decorated, and most rooms offer a hot tub, plunge pool, or infinity room with a view of the caldera. If you are looking for a high end hotel or if you will be visiting Santorini on a special occasion, like a honeymoon or anniversary, Andronis Luxury Suites is a good hotel to consider.
Andronis Luxury Suites
Charisma Suites. Located on the southern tip of Oia, this is one of the few hotels in Oia where you can enjoy sunset views right from your room. It is also located on the edge of town, so it is quieter and more secluded than other hotels in Oia. Guests who stayed here stated that this hotel felt more private than many others in Oia. Rooms are beautifully decorated. You can even stay in windmill!
Marizan Caves & Villas. Located at the very end of Oia, this is another hotel where you can view the sunset right from your room. Breakfast is served daily in your room. If you are traveling as a group or as a family, this hotel offers a two-bedroom suite with a heated plunge pool.
Marizan Caves & Villas
Thirea Suites. This highly rated hotel offers an assortment of rooms that can accommodate two people. All rooms have a small, private terrace with a hot tub or a jacuzzi.
Captain John. If you are traveling on a budget, this small hotel gets very good reviews. Some rooms can accommodate up to four people. The apartment and the suite also have a kitchen.
Quiet, peaceful, romantic…
This small village is very beautiful and it is filled with some of the best hotels and restaurants in Santorini. It doesn’t have the shopping and small cafes like you will find in Fira or Oia, but it also doesn’t have the large crowds.
The views over the caldera are spectacular from here. And from your hotel room, you can watch the town of Oia sparkle at night.
We stayed here and loved it. With fewer crowds, Imerovigli felt much less crowded and touristy than Oia. We could easily walk to many top restaurants and the views from our hotel were jaw-dropping.
Pros: Amazing caldera views, quieter and less touristy than Oia or Fira, easy to walk to many of the top restaurants in Santorini
Cons: None? It may not be as popular as Oia and its famous sunsets (but some people will see this as a pro, not a con).
Sunset in Imerovigli. Far off in the distance you can see Oia.
Absolute Bliss. This is one of the top-rated hotels in Imerovigli on Booking.com and Trip Advisor. This is where we stayed and we had a wonderful experience. Tim and I stayed in an Elegant Suite, which has a private terrace with a hot tub. Tyler and Kara’s room was upgraded from the Junior Suite to the Luxury Villa, which had a private pool and sauna. During our visit in April, temperatures struggled to hit 16°C (60°F) and with 25 to 35 mile per hour winds, it was too cold to get into the pool. But we did use the hot tub every night.
Every morning, breakfast was delivered to our rooms. To start and end our day on the terrace, overlooking the caldera, was one of our favorite experiences in Santorini.
Above Blue Suites. This is another hotel that we strongly considered. Like Absolute Bliss, it gets impeccable reviews on Booking.com and Trip Advisor. Start your day with a champagne breakfast on your private terrace. In the evening, dinner can be also be served in your room. All rooms are suites, with the option to have a hot tub or plunge pool on your terrace.
Above Blue Suites
Aqua Luxury Suites. This beautiful property offers a wide range of rooms. Take your pick from private honeymoon suites with a hot tub, two-bedroom suites with plunge pools and large terraces, or one-bedroom villas with amazing views of the caldera.
Aqua Luxury Suites
Athiri Santorini Family Friendly Hotel. If you are a family traveling on a budget, this is a great pick in Imerovigli. Rooms can accommodate up to four people. Rooms are large, come with kitchenettes, a terrace, and some rooms have a sea view.
The town of Firostefani sits between Imerovigli and Fira. Like Imerovigli, this is a quiet town that boasts amazing views of the caldera. Since it bumps right up against Imerovigli, it is an easy stroll to some of the top restaurants in Santorini.
Pros: Quiet town, easy walk to many great restaurants, great views of the caldera
Cons: No nightlife, fewer hotel options than other towns on this list
Ira Hotel & Spa. This family-run hotel gets rave reviews. All rooms face the caldera and room types range from traditional rooms to caves to suites. Some rooms have private courtyards and/or terraces.
Santorini View Studios. All rooms are studios and offer a kitchenette and wonderful views of the caldera. This property gets exceptional reviews on Booking.com, even though rooms do not offer hot tubs or jacuzzis, but this helps to keep the price down.
Fira, also called Thera, is the largest town in Santorini. It has a huge number of hotels, restaurants, and bars. It is centrally located and with its bus station this makes a handy place to stay if you plan on getting around by public transportation.
Pros: Centrally located, good place to stay if you plan you use public transportation, some hotels offer views of the caldera, lots of options for restaurants, bars, and shopping, hotels can be cheaper than in Oia or Imerovigli
Cons: Busy, noisy, lacks some of the charm you will find in Oia, Imerovigli, or Firostefani
The view of Fira from Firostefani.
Cosmopolitan Suites. This is one of the top luxury hotels in Fira and is a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World. This hotel offers ten rooms, ranging from suites with volcano views to luxurious two-bedroom villas.
Marquise Suites – Adults Only. To stay here, guests must be 18 or older. Rooms are modernly decorated and many have private terraces with a hot tub. Breakfast is served daily in your room.
Iriana Suites. All suites have either a hot tub or a heated pool and boast stunning views of the caldera. Rooms are large and traditionally decorated in Cycladic style. Some rooms can accommodate up to four people.
Bedspot Hostel. This hostel checks all the boxes. It gets exceptional reviews, has an excellent location in Fira, has a shared kitchen and lounge, and offers private and dormitory style rooms.
There are three notable beach towns on Santorini: Perissa Beach, Perivolos Beach, and Kamari Beach. They are both located on the southeast corner of Santorini, but they are separated by a giant, rocky hill (on top of this hill is Ancient Thira).
Perissa and Perivolos Beaches
These two gorgeous black sand beaches sit right next to each other.
Pros: Beautiful black sand beach, great for families
Cons: Long drive to Oia (roughly 40 minutes)
Stelios Place. This hotel is located just a short walk from Perissa Beach. This hotel has an outdoor pool and rooms can accommodate up to four people, so this makes a great pick for families.
Margarenia Studios. Located between Perissa and Perivolos Beaches is this family-friendly property. The apartment can accommodate up to four people in three bedrooms. This hotel has a large swimming pool and it just takes a few minutes to walk to the beach.
Anastasia Princess Luxury Residence & Suites. If you want to stay near the beach but without the kids, this is an excellent choice. Rooms are beautifully decorated and some rooms have their own plunge pool or jacuzzi. The hotel also offers a large swimming pool with a poolside bar. Perissa Beach is just a one-minute walk from the hotel.
Anastasia Princess Luxury Residence & Suites
Similar to Perissa Beach, this is a black sand beach. It sits on the western coast of Santorini, not far from the airport.
Pros: Beautiful black sand beach, great for families, short drive from the airport
Cons: Long drive to Oia, but less than from Perissa Beach (about 30 minutes)
Amara Suites. This is one of the highest rated hotels in Kamari. All rooms are king suites and are whitewashed, similar to hotels located in Oia and Fira. This hotel has a large pool and is within walking distance of the beach.
Secret Earth Villas. At this gorgeous property, take your pick from villas with two, three, and even four bedrooms that can accommodate up to 10 people. The villas have their own private pool or hot tub as well as a kitchen and living area. Even better, it is just 650 feet away from the beach.
Secret Earth Villas
Sigalas Beach Hotel. This hotel is located right on the beach at the north end of Kamari. The hotel has a large pool and pool bar. Rooms have views of the Aegean Sea or the gardens that surround the hotel. Some units have up to four bedrooms, making this a great pick for families.
Where to Stay in Santorini: On a Map
How to Use This Map: Click the icons on the map to get more information about each hotel. Click the star next to the title of the map to add this map to your Google Maps account. To view it on your phone or computer, open Google Maps, click the menu button, go to “Your Places,” click Maps, and you will see this map on your list.
Tips for Choosing Your Hotel
Hot Tub or Pool? If you are booking a room and have the option of a hot tub or pool, consider the time of year you are visiting. During April, May and September, when temperatures are cooler, consider a hot tub. During the summer months, consider getting a room with a plunge pool.
Not all rooms with hot tubs or plunge pools are private. We were able to look down onto many plunge pools and hot tubs from the walking paths in town (most notably in Oia). Also, some rooms have hot tubs that literally sit next to the walking paths, giving these occupants literally no privacy. When choosing your hotel, look closely at the photographs for the hotel rooms so you know exactly what you are getting.
Oia will be the most expensive town on Santorini. To stay right on the caldera, without spending a small fortune for a private terrace with hot tub, Fira is your best best.
If you are traveling with kids, make sure you check the hotel rules before booking your room. Many hotels are adults-only or have a minimum age for children. If you are making your reservation on Booking.com, you can find this information under “House Rules” near the bottom of the page for the hotel. If you have any questions, (for example, they state “no children” but your youngest is 15 years old), send an email to the hotel. Absolute Bliss, where we stayed, states that children are not allowed. However, after a short email exchange with the hotel, we learned that Tyler and Kara were able to stay at Absolute Bliss, and they were 16 and 14 during our visit.
Sunset in Imerovigli
There are a lot of options in Santorini and even with our narrowed down list, picking a place might still feel overwhelming. So, how do you decide where to stay? Here are a few recommendations based on traveling style and budget.
As far as location goes, Imerovigli is our first pick. It’s quiet, it’s filled with great hotels and restaurants, it’s relatively centrally located on Santorini, and from this town you get the best views of the caldera. It’s also a little bit cheaper than Oia.
Oia is a top pick for many visitors and it is a great place to stay. Just expect higher prices and big crowds.
We loved our stay in Absolute Bliss and highly recommend them. They offer private terraces and top-notch service at slightly lower prices than many other hotels in this post.
If you have any questions about where to stay in Santorini, or if you want to share your favorite hotel, let us know in the comment section below.
More Information for Your Trip to Greece:
- SANTORINI: 20 Amazing Things to do in Santorini
- SANTORINI: Santorini Itinerary: How to Spend 1, 2, or 3 Days in Santorini
- SANTORINI: Two Amazing Spots to Watch the Sunset in Santorini
- SANTORINI: How to Hike from Fira to Oia, the Most Beautiful Walk on Santorini
- MYKONOS: 9 Great Things to do in Mykonos
- NAXOS: 15 Best Things to do in Naxos
- ATHENS: 2 Days in Athens: The Perfect Itinerary for Your First Visit
- GREECE ITINERARY: 10 Day Greece Itinerary: Santorini, Mykonos, Naxos and Athens
- TRAVEL ADVICE: Greece Travel Tips: Things to Know Before You Go
Read all of our articles about Greece in our Greece Travel Guide.
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