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Fira

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Earth : Europe : Greece : Greek Islands : Cyclades : Santorini : Fira
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Fira (also called Thera or Thira) is the main town of Santorini island, located on the top of a cliff of a caldera. Though it has little except its stunning view, the museum, the cable car, and the few bars and clubs, its central location makes it a good base to use as there are buses from many other parts of the island.

Understand[edit]

Every day during the summer, Fira is a bustling metropolis as cruise ships from all over the Mediterranean and Aegean seas descend. As a result, prices in Fira (and Santorini generally) tend to be a little higher than other Greek Islands. When there are several ships in port, the lines at the cable cars connecting the Old Port, where the cruise ship tenders dock, with the town of Fira on top of the cliff, may become very long.

Get in[edit]

Santorini Airport, Thera tel.+30 22860 28400, [33] (IATA: JTR, ICAO: LGSR), is located north of the village of Kamari. Fira is at a distance of 6 km from Thera airport. From Santorini airport, you can ride by taxi or shared-ride shuttle.

From the old port, where cruise-ship passengers arrive[34]: by cable car, donkey, or by foot up the cliff face.

From the new port (Athinios), where all the ferries arrive[35]: by taxi (expensive) or by local bus (2€, can be crowded), or by shuttle bus [36], value for money

Get around[edit]

The main bus station of Santorini is in Fira, where you can catch a bus going almost anywhere on the island, usually hourly (every 30 minutes). The schedules are posted here daily. Up the stairs behind the bus station and across a parking lot to the west is the main taxi stand.

Another great way to get around the (small) island is by hiring a quad bike (usually named "ATV") from numerous locations in the main tourist villages, it is better value than taxis and more fun than a bus.

See[edit][add listing]

Fira Catholic Cathedral interior
  • Archaeological Museum of Thera, Erithrou Stavrou, Thira 847 00 tel.+30 22860 22217 During the summer is closed. The museum display includes Sculptures, inscriptions, and vases.
  • Catholic Quarters and St. John the Baptist Cathedral, Agiou Ioannou, Thira 847 00. A Catholic cathedral creates a pleasant contrast to the Orthodox Metropoli, fully rebuilt after the earthquake and now dedicated to Christ. Lazaristes’ Monastery behind it makes the Catholic quarters look more impressive.
  • Emmanuel A. Lignos Santorini Folklore Museum, Kontochori, Κοντοχώρι-Φηρά, Fira 847 00 tel.+30 69870 48274 [37].
  • Faros Akrotiriou-Oias (Thiras Thesi Kalnteras), Santorini park
  • Fira Theotokopoulou Main Square, Ipapantis 307, Thira 847 00
  • Holy Church of Agios Gerasimos. Metropoli church, the Orthodox Cathedral is the main attraction of Fira and an easy-to-find place to meet someone. Its big, beautiful, white arches cannot be missed and form a nice background for your pictures. This remarkable church is a great sample of modern Cycladic architecture making the town much more special.
  • Megaro Gizi[38]. Megaro Gizi is another historical building located near the cable car built back in 1700. It provokes you to have a look inside, looking a bit strange in the narrow lanes of Fira. Megaro Gizi has been turned by the Catholic Monastery to a premise where many concerts are being held during summer. Some of the halls also act as a little exhibition presenting a part of the island’s history.
  • Museum of Prehistoric Thira, tel. +30 22860 23217, [39]. Pay a visit to the Museum of Prehistoric Thira, where the story of Akrotiri and other ancient settlements is vividly told through a stunning collection of Neolithic and Bronze Age artifacts. The Museum contains some of the artifacts that were found in the ruins of Akrotiri. If you have time, first visit Akrotini, where the items came from, and then this Museum to understand what the items are. The highlight is the frescoes of the blue monkeys -- a mystery since historians say there is no evidence that there were ever monkeys on Santorini. (free for students) Special ticketing package for the Archaeological Museum the Museum of Prehistoric Thera and the Archaeological Sites of Akrotiri and Ancient Thera.
  • Three Bells of Fira, Thira 847 00 It is a much-photographed church is known for its blue dome, whitewashed walls & views of the Aegean below.

Do[edit][add listing]

There are several options and things to do in Fira and the surrounding area. There are craft studios (which are open fairly late), wineries (most of which will show you around for free, except Santo Winery, who charge a fee), touring the countryside and seeking an out of the way Taverna, or meet some of the nicest people in the world in the local towns surrounding Fira.

  • Agiou Mina street. This street goes through Fira part-way down the cliff, from the south part of town all the way to the cable car. It provides the stunning views of Fira that you came to see. You can walk either north or south, but walking north has the advantage that the main part of Fira is in front of you. To get there, from the main cathedral, walk with the sea to your right, just left of Hotel Atlantis, about 50 m. Walk around 1500 BC restaurant, and you'll be on the path. Just be careful of the donkey poo!  edit
  • Boat tour of the volcano (Santorini Boat Tours), Fira Old Port, 847 00, +30 22860 21563, [1]. You can swim in the hot springs and get a close up view of churches, walk on the volcano, and the famous three beaches in Santorini. The view of Fira from the sea is breathtaking.  edit
  • Donkey or Horse Riding (Santorini Donkey), Fira santorini 847 00, [2]. Tour agency  edit
  • Hiking. Ekklisia Theoskepasti hiking trail, 36°25'57.7"N 25°25'12.0"E is situated to the north of Fira. Or take the longer route of 10km from Firostefani to Oia to explore the edge of the volcano caldera.  edit
Old Port Fira
  • Motosantorini, Agiou Athanasiou 2, Thira 847 00, +30 22860 25807, [3]. ATV rental service  edit
  • Old port walk. Whoever said "Getting there is half the fun" was likely referring to the Old Port. Or, in this case, getting there is 99% of the fun. There is almost nothing to do at the Old Port (except perhaps take a couple of pictures from sea level). But the ride down and up can be fun. Your choices are the cable car, donkey ride. Walking is possible, but not very pleasant, thanks to the donkey excrement covering the path; moreover, donkey drivers are bent on making life difficult for tourists who refuse their business, so donkeys are not at all encouraged to avoid people while walking up or down. If you want to avoid the smell and the scene, just take the cable car; even though the line may seem long sometimes (especially when people from the ships arrive and leave); it moves 36 people every 5 minutes or so. Some local mule guides may also try to cheat you by demanding payment for walking down, they will try to sell you a small piece of paper that says ticket without any numbers on it. Ignore these people, the road is free. They will also try to convince you that the walk down takes one hour; it's a lie, it doesn't take more than 20 minutes, even zig-zagging to avoid the donkeys and their poo.  edit
  • Santo Wines, Pirgos Kallistis 847 00, +30 22860 28058, [4]. Santos Winery is about 5 minutes from Fira by car. The way the vines are woven in a circle forming a basket over many years is unique. The grapes are protected from the sun and wind and the leaves hold moisture in as rain is very rare.  edit
  • Small Group Santorini Tours, [5]. Enjoy cooking, wine tasting and Santorini highlights tour.  edit
  • Sunset watching. You do not have to travel to Oia though as the sunrise and sunsets are visible almost anywhere on the island.  edit

Buy[edit][add listing]

Strolling through the shopping district for tourist appealing jewelry, designer clothing, handbags and go to the numerous (American-styled) discos and bars. Just be careful because this is a tourist trap and prices may be high, but not always.

  • There are some excellent bakeries in Fira. You have to look hard to find them and some are just outside of the town of Fira. The best chocolate mousse cake was found in a bakery in Oia that also had the best Spinach pie found in Greece. Please note that there are two prices at many restaurants, bakeries, coffee shops, and Tavernas. One is for what they call Take away and one is for eating in. Pay the extra and sit and eat at the place of business. Most places have a rooftop patio that you can enjoy the scenery.

Eat[edit][add listing]

Thira: door to the sea (with menu on the sides)

In the early evening, the passengers of the cruise ships return to their vessels and cafes become much more relaxed.

  • Antoniou Traditional Cafe, Thera 847 00, +30 22860 22633. Greek Restaurant  edit
  • El Greco Taverna, Danezi M 207, Thira 847 00, +30 22860 22222.  edit
  • Kapari Taverna, 25is Martiou, Thira 847 00, +30 22860 27086, [6].  edit
  • Nikolas, Erythrou Stavrou (Head straight up the pedestrian mall (Danezi) and take the first right), +30 22860 24869. A local eatery preserving traditional Hellenic cuisine. No English menu is provided, but the staff is efficient in explaining the Greek menu board and provide suggestions if necessary. Service is a departure from the overly warm receptions with most tourist traps as it is quick, efficient, and sufficiently friendly. Must-tries include the Horiatiki (Greek) salad, moussaka, beef stew. Ask for "horta", a plate of simply boiled greenery ordered by the locals and not on the menu as it is both time-consuming and difficult to prepare on a mass scale. Though the dish may not look overly appetizing when it arrives at the table, sprinkle on some fresh lemon juice from the provided wedge and add some salt to bring the traditional veggie dish alive.  edit
  • Ouzeri, (Located in the center of Fira at the Fabrika shopping center which is next to the Cathedral), +30 22860 21566, [7]. George and Iordana, the owners, welcome warmly all their guests. You will find a great variety of traditional Greek dishes using the local products of Santorini, Greek salad, green salad with Chorotyri, Mousaka, Ouzo meatballs, Soutzoukakia.  edit
  • Romantica, Firostefani 847 00, +30 22860 22862. Greek restaurant  edit
  • Salt and Pepper, 25is Martiou 405, Thira 847 00, +30 22860 22747, [8]. Greek Restaurant  edit
  • Selene Restaurant, Fira town, Thira Old catholic monastery, Thira 847 00, +30 22860 22249, [9].  edit

Drink[edit][add listing]

  • 2 Brothers Bar, Dekigala, Thira 847 00, +30 22860 23061, [10]. An internationally famed watering hole, catering to the tourist party crowd.  edit
  • Highlander, +30 22860 24072, [11]. Happy Hour from 9-10:30 PM. Scottish bar  edit
  • Koo Club, 25is Martiou 404, Thira 847 00, +30 22860 22025, [12]. Cool nightclub to hang out after drinking at the other bars and to close out the night.  edit
  • LukuMum, Danezi M, Thira 847 00, +30 22860 24672. Cafe  edit
  • Marinera, Ipapantis, Thira 847 00, +30 22860 25026, [13]. Cocktail bar  edit
  • Tropical Bar, Stairs, Thira 847 00, +30 22860 23089, [14].  edit

Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • Adamant Suites, +30 22860 23432, [15]. Adamant suites is a small private complex consisting of six private suites, all different in size and shape.  edit
  • Anteliz Suites, Markou Nomikou 89, Firostefani, Santorini 847 00, +30 22860 28842, [16]. Four star hotel on the top of the cliff ridge along the Caldera path, overlooking the Caldera Gulf, the Volcano and the settlements of Oia and Akrotiri.  edit
  • Aressana Spa Hotel & Suites, Fira, Santorini, 84700, Greece, +30 22860 23900, [17]. Aressana 5 Star Spa Hotel & Suites in Fira Town of Santorini is a 5 Star Hotel that provides guests luxury vacations in Greece from the first moment.  edit
  • Aria Suites, +30 22860-28650, [18]. Boutique hotel with a view of the volcano and Acrotiri.  edit
  • Astraea House, Markou Nomikou (Fira), +30 69771 22887, [19]. checkin: 15:00; checkout: 12:00. An original captain house , with Amazing view! from 240.  edit
  • Athina Luxury Suites, +30 22860 24910, [20]. A short walk from downtown. Mounted on a rock top. Offers a panoramic view of the Caldera cliff and the volcano.  edit
  • Cliff Side suites, +30 22860 22141 (fax: +30 22860 22187), [21]. 23 rooms and suites with all four star conveniences. Respecting the Aegean Architectural style, the complex promotes the design and comfort of the locality, combined with modern colors. Includes on-the-edge-of-the-rim swimming pool with views of the caldera plus spa services and outdoor heated Jacuzzi.  edit
  • Cori Rigas Suites, Agiou Mina Street, Fira [Caldera], +30 22860 25251, [22]. checkin: 14:00; checkout: 12:00. Cori Rigas Suites is located on the most beautiful part of the Caldera's cliff in Fira Town, offers breathtaking views to the Aegean Sea, the sunset and the volcano. (36.416503498339502,25.430744111537933) edit
  • El Greco Hotel, +30 22860 22052 (fax: +30 22860 24945), [23].  edit
  • Evgenia Villas & Suites, +30 22860 22575, [24]. 300m from town center.  edit
  • Manias Fira Residences, +30 21057 89320 (fax: +30 22866 00003), [25]. Manias Fira Residences is an old mansion which was renovated completely in 2015. The rooms have a unique cave design, view to the Aegean Sea and ideal location, 3 minutes walk from the caldera.  edit
  • Mill Houses Suites, +30 22860 27117 (fax: +30 22860 25400), [26]. The exterior architecture of Mill Houses Suites in harmony with the geological peculiarities of the landscape.  edit
  • Mylos Hotel, +30 22860 23884, [27]. Hotel Mylos is located in Firostefani,350m above the sea level offering to the quests a spectacular view towards,the Volcano of Santorini and the popular Breathtaking Sunset in Santorini.  edit
  • Panorama Studios & Suites, +30 22860 25750 (fax: +30 22860 25751), [28]. The Studios are located in the center of Fira on the Caldera edge all rooms have balcony facing the sea and the volcano. 12 studios, one Grand Suite, one honeymoon suite and 2 Petite Suites  edit
  • Serenity Suites & Villa (2 Bedroom/2Bathroom Luxurious Residence), Markou Nomikou(Fira) (Next to Nomikos Conference Center), +30 69425 34926, [29]. checkin: 14:00; checkout: 12:00. Beautiful Santorinian guest houses right on the side of the cliff with amazing view to the volcano and a plunge. The Residence fits up to 6 guests. 160. (36.421105,25.429545) edit
  • Sofia Hotel, [30]. Economy family run hotel.  edit
  • Summer Time Pension, +30 22860 24313, [31]. 100 meters from the center of the town.  edit
  • Villa Stella, +30 22860 23517, [32]. Family-owned hotel in a quiet district 7 minutes from the centre. Clean rooms with sea views.  edit

Contact[edit]

  • Easy internet cafe with 20PC minimum charge 1€. Next to the taxi station. A nice and calm greek internet cafe to see your e-mail, web surf, chat. They also have Wi-Fi with a 2Mbps band with. You will find it in the orange color.

Get out[edit]


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