In order to get the most out of last day in Santorini, we opted to rent a car to zip around the island. Maria arranged for the rental to be delivered to the hotel and they even agreed to let us drop it off the following day at the port, with no additional charge. We decided to head south to the beach cities. Red Beach was our first destination, it’s the most famous due to its unique red rock formations. The parking lot at Akrotiri Bay housed a little church with several vendors to grab some refreshments for your trek to the beach. A short hike up the dirt trail with beautiful views and then we quickly made our descent down. The sheer red cliffs were pretty massive and impressive. There was a rope sectioning off half of the beach and forcing us to walk closer to the water where dried seagrass lined the entire area. It was a very rocky beach and really not the safest place to swim, but there were some brave sunbathers fighting the waves and working their way out into the water. Make sure you view the YouTube video below to see the awesome drone footage filmed with our DJI Mavic Pro.
Onward to Akrotiri lighthouse, which was constructed in 1892 and is the oldest on the island. Very popular spot to take in the panoramic views, snap some great photos and also catch a sunset. There was limited parking but we quickly discovered that there are really no parking rules, if it fits then you’re good! Truly a beautiful experience driving around Akrotiri. The rich volcanic soil makes it an ideal place for growing grapes, which explains bountiful number of vineyards. We stopped for lunch at lone restaurant on the main road coming back from the lighthouse. The Good Heart is a family owned establishment offering traditional greek foods and is highly recommended on several travel sites and blogs, so it must be good right? I must say, we were not that impressed with the food. The greek salad was bland, and our pork souvlaki was a bit tough and dry, but their sun dried tomato spread was really tasty. Finishing out our day trip around Santorini, we visited Perissa and Kamari beach, Monastery of Profitis Elias, and several wineries, with Artemis Karamolegos Winery being one of our favorites.