Is it your first time visiting the Greek islands, specifically Santorini? I know it can be difficult to decide exactly what to take. So in this post, I’m going to help you with what to wear in Santorini.
Santorini’s a wonderful honeymoon destination and a photographer’s dream. As a tourist destination, the famous island of Santorini (along with Mykonos) is considered to be a little more upmarket than some of the other islands.
The good news is that you’re not planning a trip to Paris or Italy. You can relax a bit more about your outfits on a Greek vacation.
I’m definitely a comfort-over-style gal, but with a little bit of forethought, your Santorini outfits can be both. So let’s get into it.
(By the way, outfit images here are from shops in Santorini.)
For more Santorini tips check out these posts:
- Kayaking Trip In Santorini: A Brilliant Experience
- 7 Best Santorini Boat Tours For An Unforgettable Experience
- Fira To Oia Hike – Walk The Santorini Caldera For Outstanding Views
- Flying Dress Photos In Santorini: Everything You Need To Know For A Dream Photoshoot
What to Wear in Santorini in the Summer Season
Oh, and I’m assuming that you’re visiting in the summer. The tourist season runs between late spring and early autumn/ early fall.
I love a summer dress in the peak season. It’s the easiest thing to throw on when it’s hot. And maxi dresses make the perfect Santorini outfit that you can dress up or down for day and night.
If you’re wearing a skirt or a summer dress consider taking some anti-chafing shorts. Alternatively use some kind of specific product/cream.
I’ve learnt the hard way that these are must-haves. You’ll do a lot of walking in Santorini but the comfiest shoes in the world won’t help you if your skin’s on fire.
I live in these and they’re always a wardrobe staple for me. I usually buy a 2 or 3-pack in coordinated solid colors from Marks and Spencers (yes we have M&S in Greece!)
They’re handy because you can wear them as a base layer on cooler days either side of peak summer. In the summer they easily go with shorts, skirts and cropped trousers.
Skirts / Shorts / Cropped trousers
These are all suitable to wear in Santorini’s heat. I’d definitely aim to be smarter in Oia than if you’re heading to the sea.
But you want to bring things that are appropriate whether you’re visiting the Red beach and Black beach on a sea taxi or hopping in and out of a mini-bus tour.
Take a bikini/swimsuit or two so that if you go to the seaside you can have a splash in the sea. Plus lots of hotels have private pools or jacuzzis.
I always have at least one pair of gym leggings/shorts and a technical t-shirt since I love hiking and exploring.
Santorini has the outstanding 10km volcanic caldera hike between Oia and Thira that I highly recommend. And it’s nicer to do it in sweat-wicking fabric than cotton.
Get yourself a stylish hat to keep covered up while you’re out and about.
A really important thing to stress is how essential good walking shoes or sandals are to your visit. No matter where on Santorini island you stay you’ll spend a good portion of your time walking. There are just so many beautiful places to discover.
And if you’re in a lovely caldera hotel in Oia you’ll be climbing a load of stairs daily too.
I really wouldn’t bother with any high heels. Cocktails, ancient cobbled streets and high heels don’t mix well (or probably just any combination of those two!).
Take some pretty sandals for your romantic dinner and something like Tivas to wear around during the day. If you want to buy some on your trip you’ll find plenty of stores to buy a pair of handmade Greek sandals.
These are just handy to wear in your hotel room or at the pool. They don’t cost much money if it’s easiest for you to pick up a pair when you arrive.
Water shoes are great to take on your trip to Santorini. Because the sand is tiny pieces of black volcanic rock it gets very hot. Water shoes will protect your feet from that.
Also, some of the Santorini beaches have rocks close to the water’s edge. They can be uncomfortable on your feet so water shoes help.
Photo Shoot Outfit
I may have mentioned before that Santorini is a photographer’s dream. Booking a private or small group photoshoot is a popular activity on this beautiful island.
So you might want a stylish outfit or two picked out for that.
Even if you just choose to take your own Instagram photos it’s a great idea to wear bright colors. They’ll stand out against all the white walls and blue domes. But that’s up to you and you can decide for yourself what the best color is.
Sarongs make good cover-ups in the day. And they’re an extra layer to drape around your shoulders if it gets a bit chilly in the evening waiting for the sunset.
Plus, if you take a tour that includes a visit to the monastery you need to observe their strict dress code. You’ll need to cover your shoulders and wear a skirt. Wrapping a sarong over your trousers and shorts is usually enough.
So pop it in your bag. That way you’ll get to enjoy the religious buildings as well as the panoramic views of the ocean outside.
Light Cover Up
Last year I don’t think I wore long sleeves at all during the summer months. Except on the ferry that is. But it’s a good idea to take something like a light cardigan or jumper.
The weather in late April/May and then from mid- September and October can be a bit cooler in the evening.
Plus the aircon on the ferry can be a bit intense. And if you do a boat trip in Santorini the wind can sometimes make you wish for an extra layer.
If you’re on a long flight / international flights it can get cool on the plane too.
The best part is if you wear the bulky things to travel you’ll have more space in your suitcase.
Also if you spend an evening at the open-air cinema your arms might be grateful for the mosquito protection.
For a versatile and stylish option take a white shirt. You can use it as a cover-up in the daytime. If you’re having some beachy days you’ll not want to expose your skin the whole day.
I’m awful for leaving sunglasses all over the place. But even I make a special effort not to leave mine anywhere when I’m in Santorini. The glare from the water and the crisp white buildings make them essential wear.
I think most have some level of UV protection these days but check how much you get. If you’re looking for something suave then you’ll find plenty of eye boutiques in Santorini.
You’ll want something to cart your personal items about in and to take to the beach. The word on the street about the latest fashion tips is that a straw bag is a suitable accessory!
Otherwise, get a handbag or backpack/day bag that’s comfortable to wear while you’re walking around for hours.
I like ones with plenty of pockets. With those, you can put your credit cards in a different place to your cash and have your phone somewhere handy.
If your accommodation doesn’t provide beach towels the tourist shops sell Turkish towels. They’re really thin and lightweight so they’re easy to carry and dry quickly.
Most tap water in Greece is actually safe to drink because it comes from the mains and has to adhere to EU safety regs. So take a water bottle to avoid buying little plastic ones where you’re out.
Some bottles will keep your water cool for up to 24 hours which is useful when you’re out and about. Others actually filter your water in the bottle (although I’m not sure if the filters are recyclable).
General Tips on What to Wear in Santorini
- Overall, light fabrics are best in the warm weather. For that reason, forget your jeans unless you’re visiting in the shoulder months or winter.
- There aren’t many laundrettes or laundries on Santorini. So if you’re not staying somewhere with a washing machine then I’d try and bring enough outfits and underwear for the duration of your stay.
- I hear the Ancient Greeks were partial to a linen outfit. And I have a couple of linen dresses myself. I love how cool and flowy they are but they’re a nightmare for creasing the second I move. So bear that in mind.
- If you visit Santorini in the winter or shoulder season do take a rain jacket, jumper and heavier clothes like jeans.
The off-season is the best time to beat the crowds. And there can be plenty of sunny days but it can be very mixed too. And at that time of the year often the north wind makes it feel cooler than it is.
Now You Know What to Pack for Santorini Greece
Hopefully, you’ll have a better idea now of what to wear in Santorini when you visit.
Overall, don’t worry too much about wearing the “right things” in Santorini. At the end of the day, you’re in Greece to enjoy the atmosphere and beautiful scenery.
Don’t spend all your time on this beautiful Greek island feeling like you need to look like part of a fashion show.
Make sure you have a great time whatever you decide to pack. If you’re going in the high season there will be plenty of shops open so remember you can treat yourself to a new outfit in Santorini too.
Doing Some Greek Island Hopping?
Check out these posts about other islands close to Santorini:
- Best Things to Do in Paros: Trips, Tours & Tastings
- 25 Best Things to do in Mykonos Besides Party
- Thirasia Greece -The Hidden Gem Next To Santorini
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