From exploring the culinary differences of Athens and Santorini to admiring the ancient scenes of Delphi and the extravagant sunsets over the Greek Islands, the following top six things to do in Athens and Santorini are essential highlights.
Athens is the home of Ancient Greece and the magnificent monuments that reflect millennia-old heritage for visitors eager to wander from the dazzling districts to the steps of the Acropolis and beyond. Across the Aegean Sea at Santorini, sunsets silhouette the typical blue-roofed and white-washed town that hangs on the island’s rugged cliffs.
Athens and Santorini vacations will amaze you as you explore the heart of Greece and the famous Cycladic island in the following ways.
The best way to immerse yourself in the culture of Athens is through the cuisine on a gastronomy tour that will lead you to a collection of celebrated restaurants, bustling food markets, and more.
Gourmet eateries spearheaded by celebrity chefs swing their doors open along elegant boulevards and culinary artists express flair and passion that’s evident in every dish.
You will follow your guide down narrow alleys where family-run restaurants and food stalls share an authentic taste of Athens, while a culinary class will complete your taste tour through a city that speaks through its food.
The enormous, sacred Acropolis casts shadows across Athens and its looming presence can be seen from every corner of the city’s pulsating streets. Athens and the Acropolis are intrinsically linked, bound together by a history that spans centuries and captures some of the best places to visit when touring Athens and Santorini.
You will navigate the exuberant districts of Athens to the foothills of the rocky outcrop on which the Acropolis stands, proudly displaying millennia of heritage. You will browse the complex and its impressive architecture, reaching the Parthenon, the Erechtheion, the Propylaea, and more magnificent Greek monuments.
Delphi is a cornerstone of Greek mythology that offers visitors a chance to experience the country’s ancient heritage around the corner from Athens. This day trip is certainly not an experience to skip and you will be wowed by the wonders of Ancient Greece as a reward for your adventure to the UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The legendary home of the world-famous Oracle of Delphi rests on the slopes of Mount Parnassus and shares stunning views of the surrounding hillside that you may snapshot from the Ancient Theater, the Temple of Apollo, and the Ancient Stadium that once hosted epic athletic events.
The azure waters of the Aegean Sea sweep the seaside of Santorini and can be seen from the lofty town clinging to the cliffs that compose the rugged coastline. You will head to a pier nearby in the silhouette of the recognizable blue-roofed Cycladic homes that feature in Instagram feeds, glossy magazines, and travel videos.
Here you will board a glamorous catamaran and set sail across waves to have your heart captured by the stunning volcanic beauty of Santorini while the sun slowly dips beyond the horizon and the sky is set ablaze. A cocktail or two blended by a mixologist onboard will complete a dreamy evening out at sea.
Santorini’s seascape is but one of the many marvelous environments to explore when you visit the famous Greek Island. A day tour will reveal the history on which it rests and the century-old geothermal activities that continue to shift and shape the sensational emerald scenery.
Educational and irresistible, tours of Santorini allow visitors to bask in the island’s breathtaking natural beauty and admire phenomenal archaeological sites, such as the Minoan coves of Akrotiri. You will also visit Prophet Elias Monastery and complete the day by taking in an incredible sunset in Oia village.
Greece boasts regional cuisine specific to different destinations and the climates and conditions that impact how produce is grown, bred, or sourced, no matter the time of year you visit. The islands are no different, with cultural history influencing the ways meals are curated and flavors are presented.
The Mediterranean flavors of Santorini come to life at coastal restaurants serving succulent seafood dishes and hill towns celebrating ancient culinary traditions and historic wine-making processes. You will explore the world’s best gourmet enclaves and sip on a selection of palate-pleasing vintages to views of land and sea during your food discovery of Santorini.
Thinking about the history of Ancient Greece will conjure images of the impressive stone columns of the Acropolis that rise from a rocky outcrop shading the city, while dreams of Greek Islands will bring forth images of the iconic blue-roofed townscape that hugs the coast of Santorini.
You can explore these sensational destinations and experience the essentials of Athens and Santorini on our best Athens & Santorini vacations. If you wish to learn more about Greece, check out our Greece travel guide or find a wider array of ideas with our Greece tours and vacations.