Santorini on a Shoe String – A Budget Conscious Destination Guide

Santorini is a dream destination for many, and this beautiful isle is at its most impressive some say in August. But isn’t it well known for being a budget-busting destination? Not necessarily – here’s how to enjoy Santorini on a shoestring!

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Avoid staying in Oia

Head for Fira instead. Oia is the destination of choice, and a honeymoon paradise, so hotels and apartments are much more expensive here -as are the restaurants.

Keep your trip short

Things in Santorini can be on the pricey side, but it is only a small island which can be enjoyed during a short stay. You can make it a pit-stop as part of a multi-island trip, or just head there for a short break.

Opt to go camping

If accommodation costs are the thing threatening to use up your budget, you could consider camping. There are two camps sites on the island which not only offer pitches, but also ready-pitched tents with beds; bungalows; and hostel space.

Forget car hire

The towns in Santorini are great to explore on foot and the bus service between towns is great, and cheap! There are numerous KTEL Santorini Buses that run through the summer months (far more than in winter) with tickets costing between €1.80 and €2.50 – the thing to remember is that the busses here are cash only. It really is a much more relaxed way to explore this idyllic island, plus it is better for the planet!

Grab a beer and avoid cocktails

Probably the same money-saving advice the world over, but Santorini is well known as a romantic and luxurious destination, so geared up to people willing to spend on luxurious treats. Pints of beer are not where bars are hoping to make their money, so come in relatively cheap. If you are in Fira, you’ll likely find plenty of bars offering happy hours too!

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Go get food in Fira

Eating out in Santorini is well known to be an expensive affair – but there are plenty of tavernas and small restaurants offering affordable food, especially in Fira. The island is known for spectacular seafood, great gyros and there are places where you can get a cone of healthy nosh, plus a tankard of greek beer for around €5!

Go for a hike

It is the spectacular beauty of Santorini that draws visitors year after year, and the views cost nothing! Bring a decent pair of trainers and you can spend your days on some great walks that promise jaw-dropping views turn after turn. Top of the list is a 12km hike that runs between Fira and Oia – you can get a cheap bus back. A shorter, but possibly more challenging option is a 5.2km hike between Kamari and Perissa.


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Image by SofiaPapageorge CC0

Don’t worry about missing out on boat tours

There is a big push get get folks on a boat, luxury catamaran, or yacht, but it costs a fair bit, gives you the same scenic views of the sea, and is often choppier than some might like to admit! If getting on the water is part of your Santorini dream why not get yourself a water taxi instead? These can be cheap and a great way to go from Kamari to Perissa if you don’t fancy the hike!

Opt for a DIY wine tour

Santorini is well known as being home to some of the oldest wineries in Europe, as such there are numerous packages that pander to those buying into a luxury experience such as sunset packages. You can however save a fair bit of money by booking a tour direct with the winery.

Get cheap travel insurance

Not specific to Santorini, but important to mention nonetheless! Saving money on your travel insurance means you have more cash to splash on those little things that bring you joy on holiday. Get an instant online quote for single trip travel insurance or multi-trip travel insurance online at

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