Nico Manessis plans out the perfect way to spend 24 hours in Santorini...
24 hours in Santorini
After breakfast, visit the Pompeii of the Aegean, Akrotiri and wonder at the well-preserved remains of an advanced ancient city-state culture, under an equally advanced 21st-century hangar. In Fira you can visit the Museum of Prehistoric Thirato admire the Akrotiri frescoes and recently discovered figurines. Then off to the Santorini Arts Factory or visit the castle’s La Ponta watchtower. And what could be better after all this than an energising swim at Vlychada Beach?
Eat at To Psaraki, perched over Vlychada fishermen’s port, or at the flower-filled Metaxy Mas terrace at Exo Gonia, which serves delicious Cretan food in a less-visited part of the island. It’s near the Monastery of Prophet Elias on Santorini’s highest point (550m) with Anafi island in the distance.
Café Brusco (+30 2286 030944) overlooks the village square at Pyrgos and offers organic local produce. Enjoy one of the island’s best fava purées or pickled red peppers stuffed with goat cheese. To drink, try the fragrant organic Hatzidakis Aidani or an unfiltered beer from the island’s Donkey microbrewery. If you’re driving, there’s an fine range of herbal teas
Drinks and classical music at Franco’s (+30 2286 033957) at the top of the Casteli at Pyrgos: simply unforgettable atmosphere, with a commanding view. Stay at nearby Voreina Gallery Suites and wake up to captivating vistas of the island and the islet of Thirassia. It’s only a three-minute drive to Santo Wines, a progressive co-op with caldera-view tasting terraces: the limitededition Organic Assyrtiko is worth trying. From there, a five-minute drive to the Venetsanos Winery whose late 1940s post-industrial design was ahead of its time. The Mandilaria is a rising star.