Santorini Fira

Information about Fira

Fira Santorini: Fira is the capital of Santorini and the most important of all villages of the island. It is located at the west side of the island and 8.5 km away from the main port, Athinios.
Fira has 1,600 permanent inhabitants. It is perched on the edge of an impressive cliff, at a height of 260 meters offering a great panoramic view over the submerged volcano.

Book your Tour in Fira or get there with your own car rental.

In 1956, the island of Santorini was hit by an earthquake that destroyed a large part of the island but luckily, some of the 18th century buildings were saved. The town of Fira is a typical Cycladic village made of charming white houses with blue windows and doors, separated from each other by small paved streets. Many of its beautiful buildings were constructed back in the times of the Venetian invasion, including some blue-domed churches and sun-bathed verandas that offer an incredible view of the volcano and the sunset.

In our days, Fira is a busy village. During summer and in its high season, the central streets are overcrowded with tourists and filled with all kind of shops, jewelleries, restaurants, cafes, bars and night clubs. The town has a large number of hotels and from a high position you can notice that most have swimming pools and verandas offering their customers a superb view. The caldera is considered the highlight of Santorini but there are some interesting churches that attract attention as well as the sheer beauty of the town's architecture.

Despite all the tourist traffic concentrated in town, there are some areas that remain quiet. Thus one will definitely find places to relax and enjoy a great view of the island and the surrounding area.

For those in search of a knowing better the culture of the island, an Archaeological Museum hosting many items from several excavations conducted in the ancient Minoan settlement of Akrotiri can be visited in the town of Fira. The town displays also numerous churches and monasteries such as Agios Minas, the cathedral of Ipapanti, the cathedral of Christ, the monastery of Panagia ton Dominikanidon, Panagia tou Rodariou and the Catholic Cathedral.

A nice proposal is also the Megaron Gyzi Museum with its fascinating collection of photos of Fira before and after the earthquake of 1956.

Fira also has a port (Gialos) that was for many years, the main port of Santorini. The port is accessible with a cable car. Locals also propose donkey rides but we do not reccommend to use them.
Today, this port is used for cruise boats but also for departure port for the boats that take visitors for a tour to the volcano of Nea and Palia Kameni.

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Tours and activities related to Fira

How to get to Fira

There are many different ways to get to Fira from any location on the island.
Airport to Fira: 5 km / 3.1 miles | Port to Fira: 8.5 km / 5.2 miles

Tours: Discover Fira with an organized tour of Santorini, starting from 20€.

Private transfers: We recommend using an online pre-booked Santorini transfer service, which provides transfer by taxi, minibus or private VIP car and arranging a pickup directly from the port, airport or your hotel. Alternatively, there’s the option of arranging a pickup by a local driver directly at the following numbers: 0030 690 679 4316, 0030 22860 22555.

Car rental: Τhere’s the option of renting a car in Santorini with as little as 14.5 euros per day and pick it up directly from the airport, port or your hotel. Using a car rental allows visitors to discover Fira and many other places of interest in Santorini at their own pace.

Public transfers: Fira is where the central bus station of the island is located. There are bus connections between this bus station and the most areas of the island. Consider that time schedules might change according to the season. Check the official timetables here.
From Santorini airport to Fira: There’s a bus station at the airport located between the arrivals and departures buildings. The buses that depart from there take visitors to the main bus station in Fira village, which is 5 km away. There is a bus from Santorini airport to Fira approximately every hour.
Buses from Santorini port (Athinios) to Fira: The bus station is located on the port of Santorini. From there, visitors who have arrived by ferry to Santorini can take a bus to Fira Central bus station, which is 8.5 km away.
Tip: Since buses don’t always stop in every scheduled stop of their itinerary, our advice to visitors is to inform the driver about their final destination, so that he makes a stop there.

✔ How to organize your holidays in Santorini

Ferry to Santorini: Book your ferry to Santorini from Athens, Mykonos and other islands.
Hotels: Discover our selection with the best hotels and accommodation in Santorini.
Tours and Activities: Explore the island with some amazing tours and activities.
Sport Activities: Book activities such as Jetskiing, Scuba diving, Standup Paddle and more.
Car rentals: Discover the island on your own by booking your car.
Island hopping packages: View packages including multiple islands like Sanrorini, Mykonos and more.
Tailor-made trip: Do you want to customize your trip according to your needs? Contact us!

Things To See And Do In Fira

Map Of Fira, Santorini

Hotels in Fira

Reviews of Fira, Santorini

15 Reviews
  • Ang68mon 28 Apr 2018
    Wake up to this cruelty ... you are killing your own tourism
    These donkeys are so sad. No water in sight for them. Tied up in the heat of the day in direct sunlight. Lazy and often overweight tourists abuse them further. Disgusting and shameful, walk it or cable car it. Insist that these donkeys are better treated.
  • puddpirt03 09 Jan 2017
    It's Cruel to the Mules
    It’s Cruel to the Mules…

    I have personally witnessed handlers severely mistreating the donkeys. PLEASE, do not support this!

    The abuse takes several forms. The donkeys are forced to climb up and back down a pathway with around 600 VERY STEEP steps, making as many as seven trips a day between 9 o’clock in the morning and sunset. Often, the animals are required to carry tourists who, putting it bluntly, are obese and may weigh considerably more than the donkeys themselves. And the mules must do this exhausting, grueling work in blazing sunshine and searing summer heat, often with unsatisfactory food, water and rest periods, plus few if any breaks in the shade. To add insult to injury, they may be wearing ill-fitting harnesses that inflict cuts and sores on their bodies, while their owners or handlers may frequently strike them with sticks to make them move or hurry up. In short, they toil under cruel and deplorable working conditions.
  • susanne 27 Jul 2014
    Please DO NOT ride the donkeys
    I write this from our holiday in Santorini, a holiday that we decided to make short. We just rebooked our return tickets back home, 4 days earlier than planned, due to the terrible way the donkeys are treated. What we have witnessed during three days here is absolutely unacceptable. Owners kicking the poor animals legs hard, and after that forcing them to carry tourists several hundreds of stairs, in strong heat, no water or shade, beatened. No, we do not support this and will never return as long as this continues.
  • ramondelc 06 Nov 2013
    Great experience
    I ordered a replica of an antique thira fresco and, apart from obtaining a true piece of high quality art, I received one of the kindest attention I have ever experienced when making a purchase. I enthusiastically recommend going and visiting them if in Fira, or on their web page. Ilias is really worth, a true artist and a great professional. Thanks a lot
  • jonathan.schofield 18 Jun 2012
    How long does this barbaric and pathetic farce have to continue.
    The sight of the donkeys together with the 'owners' hideous treatment of them ruined what was otherwise a lovely place. I will NEVER return whilst this is allowed to continue and will do anything I can to prevent others witnessing this travesty.
  • jennifercm 16 Jul 2011
    Great place to swim
    A little cold, but so salty. You are so buoyant all you have to do is let your legs hang down and put your arms out to float. Amazing. Touring the volcano is brutally sunny but worth the hike.
  • reton32 16 Oct 2010
    Best spot for wedding
    What to say about caldera? There are no words. The best place in the world, best view, best spot to get married. Actually I saw many couples getting married in Santorini while I was there. No wonder, because truly you can't find a more romantic place for your wedding. Looking at the sunset was a marvelous experience, the sun going into the sea in pink and orange background! It is too sad that the sunset ended so quickly!
  • potiro 12 Oct 2010
    Can give a backache
    Nice experience and very traditional! Only in Greece you can find so traditional things! I've seen donkey rides only in Santorini and I've heard that in Hydra you can do it, too. My first time on a donkey was a pleasure, but a bit frightening! Why do donkeys go so close to the edge? I was afraid we would both fall, but obviously a donkey can balance very well, better than people. Otherwise, you have to take the cable car to get from the port up to the town of Fira because the way up is very tiring (plus the heat that makes it worse). Just my husband had a backache from the donkey, so pay attention...
  • summer 29 Jun 2010
    For all history buffs
    All the museums buffs should go and visit the Prehistoric Museum of Thera. The historical imprint, the varying culture and art find their place in this marvelous museum. The serene and tranquil location adds to the beauty of the place. This is one of the best museums I have visited in Greece, although still a lot of things should be done to help visitors. For example, the labels of the exhibits must have more details because not all people know the archaeological terms. Also guided tours should be organized in fixed times. It is a pity that Greece has so nice museums but no people working in them.
  • tessydat 12 Jun 2010
    Smelly but nice experience
    I remember the boat ride and the cruise but mostly I vividly remember the graceful and enchanting donkey ride that I enjoyed in Santorini. I had read about donkeys being hard working animals and this statement is so true as I enjoyed the scenic beauty of Santorini the donkey was pulling my weight through the entire journey. The slow yet steady pace was relaxing and the guide made me see some of the most beautiful spots in the island. One of the major problems was that the native did not understand English so I had to practically talk to him in sign language. The balmy weather made me sweat profusely. The only problem was the smell but you can stand it. After all, it is an once in a lifetime experience!
  • christr 11 Jun 2010
    Lovely architecture
    I am a freelance photographer by profession and recently I visited the village Fira, in Santorini island of Greece, for one of my personal photo shoots. My friends suggested me to visit this place and I think this is a photographer's paradise. The bird's eye view makes this island look like a conglomeration of white edifices with domes, shining beautifully in the clear daylight. While photographing the interior of some of the buildings, I witnessed some of the exquisite instances of architecture dating to the Venetian era of Santorini.

    The museum was a good haunt for me to click images of the archaeological findings from the excavation of Akrotiri, a flourishing port town to be found in southern Santorini. I found some very interesting frescoes depicting the pompous life of the Greek civilization that once flourished on this island. Coming back to the town, the main hub is Theotokopoulou Square. This area is thronged by restaurants, bars, shops, cafes and night clubs. It has all the assistance for tourists. I picked up a few souvenirs for my friends from some of the shops here and they loved them. They also loved me!
  • tressy47 09 Jun 2010
    Best view of little town
    The one thing I enjoyed at the Ampelos restaurant was the view! Situated high on top of Fira, here you have the best view of the entire little town. The restaurant was clean and nicely decorated with comfortable seating and elegant cutlery. The food is good, very typical Greek but with interesting twists to the recipe. The menu offered varieties of fish, although in the cuttle fish and kalamari could have used some more spice. The swordfish was delicious and all are served with rice only. I am not a Greek food expert, but I think the moussaka was just like it should be.
  • tessydat 04 Jun 2010
    Strenuous hike but nice view
    The day we reached Santorini, we determined that we have to take the Caldera cruise to visit the famous Nea Kameni volcano from close! Our cruise took us from Fira straight to the volcano. My boyfriend and I are avid outdoor enthusiasts and hence, we were determined enough to hike to the volcano. If you haven't enjoyed outdoor activity, I have to warn you because the hike is strenuous. There are no steeps, but the hot sun will surely consume a lot of your energy. It is better to limit your luggage and we carried only water with us. Once we reached volcano top, we realized that we made a worthwhile trip. The view of island from the top was incredible. You can get a nice 360 degree view of the low lying islands, something no one wants to miss. We took a lot of snaps of the island. We didn't take hot springs tour mainly because we didn't want to get wet. However, we saw many people enjoying the springs despite the horrible smell.
  • gareth 02 Jun 2010
    The beautiful beaches, buildings of special beauty, mouth-watering Greek dishes with view to the sunset and excellent spots for coffee early in the morning – that's what Caldera is all about to me.

    The romantic spot, beautiful experience of tranquility and proximity to nature is to be cherished. The imprint of the caldera is evident all over the island, in all the aspects of life: architecture, food, tourism, beaches, everywhere. The caldera is certainly the most tourist attraction of Santorini. The scenic beauty and the mesmerizing spots, all made excellent impressions to us and we realized what makes all the beauty of Santorini.

    However, the bad thing is that the locals take great trade of this beauty. I found that some of the exquisite hotels and spectacular restaurants with view to the caldera were way too pricey. Well, that's life, isn't it? You have to pay for something so beautiful! But it's worth it, my friends, it's totally worth it!
  • J_Perez 02 Nov 2006
    Amazing view
    Nationality: Spanish

    Age: 24

    -How did you get to the village: By foot as my accommodation is located in the area

    -Where is your accommodation located: Fira Camping

    -How much time did it take you to reach the village: 5 minutes

    -What are the conditions of the roads that take you to the village: Quite well

    -If you used public transportations, did you have to wait long for the bus: No

    -Did you enjoy the trip to the village: Ii is just out 5 minutes from the camping so it is no very long

    -In order to get to the village were enough signs in order to find it: I stay in the area

    -Why did you choose this particular village: My accommodation is located in the area and the amazing scenery.

    -How would you describe the village: Picturesque, labyrinth streets, beautiful architecture, touristy industry, restaurants, cafes, crowded, expensive

    -Can everything, one might need, be found in the village: Telephone, bank, mini market, restaurants, cafes, bars, clubs, shops, travel agencies, internet cafes, hotels and other accommodations

    - Did the village meet your expectations? Yes - alot of wonderful people Rate: 7/10

    - Favorite thing about the village: The houses perched on a hill, the view from the top to the port, night atmosphere

    - Is there anything that you don’t like about the beach or things that should be done by the authorities to improve it or is something missing: The traffic, a little bit chaotic

    - Would you come to this village again: Yes

    Other recommends villages? Pyrgos is beautiful and more silent, less people