Simply the sheer beauty of the small volcanic island of Santorini, Greece helps lend a hand to a romantic vacation. Its curved caldera, a steep cliff, was created centuries ago when the volcano a very short distance from Santorini’s shores erupted, causing part of the island to fall into the sea. Add in Santorini’s romantic accommodations, wine and scenic walking trails, and you’ve got a setting ideal for one romantic activity after another.
1. Rent a 4-wheeler or scooter
Public transportation and taxis are hard to come by, so the best way to get around the island is to rent a 4-wheeler or a scooter and snuggle up close on it while driving around the island.
2. Wander around Oia
Oia is on the northern part of Santorini facing the volcano. Its white-washed buildings are precariously built into the side of the caldera. Walking among the trails leading through the small homes and other small buildings of Oia is stunning with expansive views of the volcano, ocean and sky.
Whitewashed Santorini — Photo courtesy of Klearchos Kapoutsis
3. Go swimming at Red Beach
Visiting a beach the color of love will get you and your partner in an amorous mood. Santorini's Red Beach is accessible by a short hike over some rocks, making it a bit more secluded, with a wide cove to swim in.
4. Wine tasting
Head to the vineyards on the flatter side of the island for some romantic wine tasting and toast each other over a glass of Retsina, a white wine produced in Greece.
Wine in Santorini — Photo courtesy of Gina Douglas Tarnacki
5. Sunbathe on Black Beach
Perissa Beach in Santorini is known for its black sand – and it’s hot. Gentlemen – this is the perfect opportunity to gallantly pick up your lady to carry her across the hot sand to your towels.
6. Eat fresh seafood overlooking the volcano during sunset
Or eat anything delectable as long as it has a volcano view from the edge of the caldera. From there, watch the famous Santorini sunset over the sea.
7. Mud bath by the volcano
A short boat ride can take you to the outskirts of the volcano and its nearby hot springs where you can take a mud bath and give each other muddy massages. The mud has sulphur in it and is supposed to be good for the skin.
8. Shopping in Fira
You don’t need diamonds for romance on this island. Instead browse through the unique and pretty jewelry made from the lava rocks on the island; it's sold in stores in Fira.
9. Donkey ride
Romance can often be found in humor and watching each other hold on for dear life to a donkey heading up the steep side of the caldera is surprisingly endearing. Just watch out for donkey droppings – not so romantic.
Donkeys are a common sight in Santorini — Photo courtesy of Gina Douglas Tarnacki
10. Cave hotel
For extra romantic accommodations while staying on the island of Santorini, treat yourself to one of the cave hotels on the island, which have rooms built into caves found in the wall of the caldera and offer stunning views.