Santorini Hiking tours
Hiking tours in Santorini are ideal for the hikers who want to lose themselves in nature. Santorini walking tour from Fira to Oia is the most scenic trail and it holds many unexpected delights. So, gear-up and be prepared to be astounded… First, we drive you to our meeting point in Fira. Then, our excursion begins with hiking along the cliff-side of the Caldera. Further, we will hike through the villages of Firostefani, Imerovigli and finally in Oia.
So, choose to begin this route early in the morning to avoid the midday heat. Also, late in the afternoon it’s an option in order to enjoy the sunset. Another key point, this walking tour takes about 3-5 hours depending on your walking tempo, how many stops you require and … how much you love taking pictures!!! Just keep going North.
Generally speaking, the distance that we will cover in Santorini hiking tour from Fira to Oia is almost 10km / 6 miles … ok, let’s say 15.000 unique and different steps. For most of the trail, we will walk near the edge of the Caldera.
Why to do the hiking tour from Fira to Oia?
The main attraction of this route is that it includes all the villages built on the lip of the precipice and looking down into the caldera: Fira, Firostefani, Imerovigli, and Oia. In fact, the road will introduce you to the volcanic nature of the island-which is its most notable feature. The hiking tour will provide you with a unique view from several different angles.
Hiking tours in Santorini – A walking tour at the edge of the cliff-side
We will start walking from Fira, taking the road towards the island’s northern part. Then, we walk up the narrow street with the steps. In this street, there are many souvenirs or jewelry shops. Meanwhile, follow the signs for the cable car. Once we pass in front of it, we continue to Petros Nomikos Conference Center. The locals call this spot ” Patsouli.” As a matter of fact, the view from there is astounding. For many people, it is the most beautiful place on the island. It is undoubtedly the most romantic, with its incomparable view down over the road to the Yialos. The town of Fira lies to our left, merging into the village of Firostefani, whose square we reach after 800 meters.
HIKING TOUR IN Firostefani Village
In 20′ from the cable car, we will reach Agios Gerasimos church, in Firostefani village. Furthermore, some people claim that the village’s name is a modification of Firon Stefani. Fira derives from the adjective “pyros,” which means reddish, flame-colored, or even yellowish. It became into the Greek language as “fyros,” with the same meaning.
Also, if we take into account that” Stefani” can also mean “rock,” then the name of the village means “red rock.” However, the case may be, Firostefani is an extension of Fira and, on a different scale, of course, could be thought of as the northern suburbs of the capital. The village is long and narrow, standing on the edge of the precipice. It has its square, restaurant, hotels, coffee shop, and a large and impressive church of St. Gerasimos, which- unusually for the island- is surrounded by tall cypresses.
In addition, Firostefani has a deeper cliff. The view of the path with its steps and the little harbor at Mesa Yialos is picturesque. As we walk north from the square, we enter the central part of the village. To the left is the island’s most elegant and splendid rock mass, Skaros. This section of the town has now been completely restored. During the hiking tour, you will notice that the courtyards, roofs, and protruding portions of the “skafta” houses (cave houses) create a beautiful variety of shapes, masses, and colors as we see them from above. At the same time, we will follow the inner road that crosses the beautiful settlement.
HIKING TOUR IN IMEROVIGLI VILLAGE
While we admire the breathtaking view from the cliff and leave behind us the village of Firostefani, and on our way to Imerovigli village, we will see the monastery of Agios Nikolaos. Once we cross this settlement and reach Agios Georgios church, it would be a good idea to make a stop to admire the volcano from its courtyard. You will walk up to the town of Imerovigli.
Imerovigli has a unique location in Santorini. It is situated in about the caldera’s center and at its highest point. It allows for a panoramic view. Imerovigli owes its name to this position because it was the daytime observatory when the pirates infested the Aegean Sea. It is a gorgeous, picturesque cosmopolitan ‘village’ built-in with complete aesthetic harmony with the environment. In addition, its central church of Panagia Malteza takes its name from an icon. It seems that they found it in the sea of Malta.
As we pass through the village in the direction of Oia, there is a basketball court on our right. The first small part of a clear path, outside Imerovigli, is magical as it offers evocative views. We will continue to the alley next to Agios Ioannis and proceed to a dirt road on which there is a series of hotels.
Paved, unpaved, rocky, cobblestoned or dirt paths, that’s what we will walk after Imerovigli village. One of the detours will take us (near the end of the series of hotels) to Agios Antonios. The downhill cobblestone path leads after a route of 5-10 ΄ to the chapel. We return to the main road. After a while, you will hit small Greek Chapels at key high points along the way. Agios Markos Chapel. In fact, it’s a nice spot for some rest and also a sign that we didn’t lose our way!!! Ascend to the right of Agios Markos to reach the private church of Mikros Profitis Ilias. (You can also reach the place by car).This part of the trail is so quiet, not crowded too. For this reason, it’s a wildlife refuge and if we are lucky we will see on our way partridges and rabbits. We will continue until we end up arriving at a small white church called Stavros, this is a good time to relax and take photos. Before leaving the church, we can follow a small path that leads to a red hill with many rocks at the top. The view from there is wonderful.
HIKING IN OIA VILLAGE
We will continue until we end up arriving at a small white church called Stavros, this is a good time to relax and take photos. Before leaving the church, we can follow a small path that leads to a red hill. The route is covered with volcanic ash and white rocks that create a lunar landscape. The view above the hills is amazing, unquestionably beautiful, the scenery is breathtaking. After the end of the white road, the hiking is over, but another chapter of photography of the magical landscape begins.
Once we arrive in Oia village, we will walk through the traditional village in order to discover the way of life of its inhabitants during the 19th and 20th centuries. We will have the opportunity to see its beautiful mansions and homes built within caves hanging on the cliff side above the sea. After the end of the white road, the journey is over, but another chapter of photography begins and the magical landscape.
A unique hiking adventure
Our intention is to involve you in a special and unique adventure that includes beautiful scenery of Oia, breathtaking landscapes and picturesque architecture. After this long and eventful walking tour in Santorini, we will have the chance to replenish our calories with delicious souvlaki and taste the best homemade ice cream in Santorini. In any case, you’ve earned it!!! Of course, an air-conditioned bus will drop you off at your hotel or at the starting point.
You love Santorini hiking tours? So, in this case, it’s a must!!! There is no better way to appreciate the uniqueness of Santorini. To put it another way, it`s a great way to see the Island. Definitely, it`s a wonderful way to spend a day, a guarantee for a well sleep at night!!!
General Information & Tips
- Duration of Santorini hiking tour Fira to Oia: 4-5 hours (Depending on the stops for rest and photos)
- Not hard for experienced hikers.
- Hikers should have a moderate physical fitness level.
- Not recommended for pregnant travelers
Sneakers-sturdy walking shoes/ Hat with wide rims / Sunglasses/ Sunscreen
- The path consists of a sidewalk, cobblestone, and dirt. There is a good climb in both directions.
- The climb from Fira to Imerovigli is short and steep
- The climb from Oia to Imerovigli is long and gradual
- It is a very long walk for kids under ten y.o.
- Do not take a baby stroller on the hike.
- Transfer: Pick up & Drop off
- Local Tour Guide
- Bottle of Water
- Snack: Dry fruits & Fresh Fruits
Souvlaki and ice cream