Cruises to Santorini

1,039 Reviews
Santorini (Photo:PHOTOCREO Michal Bednarek/Shutterstock)

About Cruising to Santorini

Spectacular Santorini -- scene of one of the world's most violent volcanic eruptions around 1450 B.C. -- is inarguably the most scenically dramatic of all the Greek Islands. Officially the island is Thira, yet the Latin name of Santorini persists. With its pitch-black beaches, rugged landscape and stunning caldera (volcanic crater), it's more akin to one of the Canary Islands than the Cyclades, though its whitewashed churches and clifftop houses score highly in the charm stakes.

This is the island for lovers of natural beauty, though sun seekers may not fancy its beaches. Best views are from the cliffs bordering the caldera, which was formed when the center of the island basically collapsed into itself. Geologists marvel at the cliffs' multi-hued strata of rock, lava and pumice, so take your camera and be prepared to feel the earth move (perhaps even literally -- Santorini's most recent major earthquake was in 1956, although there was one nearby in 2009).

It's worth remembering that the bay surrounding Santorini is actually the world's largest volcanic crater, created 3,500 years ago by a massive eruption of the Thera volcano (which is still active). The bay is also believed by some to conceal the legendary lost city of Atlantis. There's plenty here to set your imagination working, even though the modern-day city of Thira, officially Fira, was completely rebuilt after an earthquake in 1956.


If you're happy to enjoy a browse around the shops and a lazy lunch with a view, Fira will fit the bill perfectly -- and it even has some 9th-century clifftop ruins to explore. But to see the best of Santorini, you should take a shore excursion, via bus or taxi, further afield.

  • More about Santorini

  • Why Cruise to Santorini?

  • Santorini Cruise Port Facilities?

Loading...

We found you 769 cruises

Loading...
Loading...
Star Legend
Star  Breeze pool lighting

8 Night
Aegean Sea Odyssey Via The Corinth Canal 8d Pir-is...

124 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker
Oosterdam
Oosterdam

10 Night
Athens & Adriatic Allure: Croatian Coast & Santori...

1,086 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker
Cruise Critic Favorite
Oosterdam
Oosterdam

10 Night
Mediterranean Odyssey

1,086 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker
Riviera
Riviera

7 Night
Mediterranean Cruise

782 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker
Sponsored

Presidents’ Day Sale

  • Up to 40% off Cruises
  • Drinks & Wi-Fi Included
  • Up to $400 Onboard Credit
  • Limited-Time Offer

MSC Cruises

11 Night
Greek Isles & Italy

2,401 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker
Cruise Critic Favorite

7 Night
Jewels Of The Mediterranean: Greece Turkey & Cypr...

1,086 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

10 Night
Western Mediterranean Cruise

1,488 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

10 Night
Greek Isles & Italy

4,401 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

7 Night
Greek Isles & Turkey Cruise

1,488 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

8 Night
Aegean Sea Odyssey Via The Corinth Canal 8d Ist-pi...

124 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

10 Night
Greece & Adriatic Cruise

2,037 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

10 Night
Mediterranean - Eastern Cruise

398 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

11 Night
Greece, Turkey & Italy Cruise

32 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

12 Night
Mediterranean Cruise

782 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

10 Night
Greece, Italy & Spain

2,098 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

More about Santorini

Why Cruise to Santorini?

Pros:

Santorini is home to one of the world's most iconic skylines and offers excellent dining and sightseeing

Cons:

To see much of anything beyond the main town of Fira, you'll need to book an organized shore excursion or tour

Bottom Line:

Santorini is scenic spot to soak up Grecian culture and enjoy some sunshine and shopping

Santorini Cruise Port Facilities?

Tenders shuttle passengers right to the base of Fira; you must ride the funicular (or a donkey) up to the town itself.

Good to Know?

Ubiquitous -- and noisy -- Greek motorcycles.

Getting Around?

Fira can easily be explored on foot, and buses run hourly to Akrotiri and Oia from the bus station at the end of Gold Street. Taxis also abound (negotiate a rate in advance) and are a more reliable option if time is at a premium.

A lot of people hire quad bikes now, just for the day. It's a massive new industry, and you can't miss the hire shops in Fira.

Currency & Best Way to Get Money?

Euro. There are banks and exchange bureaus in Fira.

Language?

Greek, but virtually everybody speaks English.

Where You're Docked?

There are actually two ports within caldera, Fira and Athinos. Ships have to anchor off Santorini and tender passengers into Skala Fira, the small port below the capital, Fira (also known as Thira). Thira dates from the 9th century and lies atop 1,000-foot cliffs at the edge of the caldera. You can reach it by funicular, bus or go up the steep, winding steps the fun way -- by donkey! Some ships transfer their passengers direct to Athinos from where there are bus transfers to the top.


Santorini Cruise Reviews
Santorini is exceptionally crowded, I'd do a private boat tour in the future.Read More
CruzinMermaid
Simply stunning. Taking pictures in Oia at sunset was unforgettable. We had an excellent guide and saw many, many beautiful houses and churches there. Santorini is one place I want to return to for a land-based vacatRead More
DCGuy64
I guess is so difficult to arrange differently but the Santorini day we wasted a lot of time to visit the island because a huge line to get the cable car to go upstairsRead More
VirginEma
Santorini is beautiful, but get up early to beat the crowds. We left Fira and headed to Oia first thing. There were about 50 tourists when we arrived, but there were thousands by the time we left. A cab took 5 of Read More
flsun

Related Cruises

Cruises to Newport

261 Reviews

Cruises to Montreal

94 Reviews

Cruises to Hilo

654 Reviews

Cruises to Amsterdam

1,057 Reviews

Cruises to Rouen

121 Reviews

Cruises to Saint John (New Brunswick)

449 Reviews

Cruises to Kauai

627 Reviews

Cruises to Gdansk (Warsaw)

120 Reviews

Cruises to Marseille

934 Reviews

Cruises to Maui

714 Reviews

Cruises to Rangiroa

30 Reviews

Cruises to Perth (Fremantle)

101 Reviews

Cruises to Phuket

148 Reviews

Cruises to Hakodate

26 Reviews

Cruises to Iles des Saintes

14 Reviews

Cruises to Lautoka

97 Reviews

Cruises to Palamos

30 Reviews

Cruises to Picton

165 Reviews

Cruises to Puerto Quetzal (Antigua)

387 Reviews

Cruises to Speyer

48 Reviews

Get special cruise deals, expert advice, insider tips and more.By proceeding, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

© 1995—2024, The Independent Traveler, Inc.