Travelling from Athens to Santorini

By Direct Ferries Team
8 May 2024
Santorini Thira

Are you ready for a holiday to Santorini? Before you embark on the trip of a lifetime, here is everything that you need to know about Santorini and how to get there from Athens. Jump onboard and discover the magic of Greece. 

How to get from Athens to Santorini

Hoping to travel from Athens to Santorini, but not sure how to get there? Don’t worry, we have got you covered. You can reach Santorini from Athens by ferry or plane. Follow this travel guide and decide which option best suits your schedule. 

The fastest way to travel from Athens to Santorini is by catching a plane. The flight usually takes approximately 45 minutes. There are daily flights departing from Athens International Airport (ATH) with several airlines including Aegean Airlines, Olympic Air and Ryanair. The airport is located about 27km southeast of Athens city centre and is accessible via the Attiki Odos road. 

But why rush the experience when you can travel by ferry? Kick your feet up and enjoy the spectacular views of the Aegean Sea throughout the journey. There are currently 4 sailings per day on the Athens to Santorini ferry, each departing from Piraeus Port

santorini ferry.jpg

Is it better to fly or take a ferry from Athens to Santorini?

The best way of travelling from Athens to Santorini all depends on your budget and time constraints. A flight from Athens to Santorini can take 45 minutes whereas a ferry takes between 4 and 7 hours. 

Although flying is much quicker, the ferry is often a cheaper alternative. Plus, you get more for your money. Ferries sailing from Athens to Santorini usually have an outer deck where you can marvel at the breathtaking sea views and Santorini’s neighbouring islands.

How long is the ferry from Athens to Santorini?

The average duration for the Athens to Santorini ferry is around 6 hours and 52 minutes. However, the fastest ferry from Athens to Santorini takes approximately 4 hours and 40 minutes with SeaJets

Please be aware that ferry durations might change for various reasons including weather conditions, seasonality and the type of vessel you sail on.  

Which port should you leave from?

When it comes to ferries from Athens to Santorini, you are spoilt for choice. You can depart from either the port of Piraeus or the port of Rafina. But before you book your tickets, here is some useful information that might help your decision.

Piraeus Port is the most convenient place for a ferry to Santorini. It’s located closer to the city centre and has great public transport links including metro and bus. The first ferry typically leaves at 07:00, with ticket prices ranging from $49 to $99 for foot passengers. 

But it doesn’t end there. Alternatively, you can book a ferry from Rafina to Santorini. This is a great route if you are planning to stop in Mykonos first or if you are going straight from Athens International Airport. However, this route is only available from June to September. The ferry usually leaves at 07:20, with ticket prices ranging from $88 to $176 for foot passengers.

Can you do a day trip from Athens to Santorini?

As the ferry duration is quite long, you can’t go on a day trip from Athens to Santorini. We would recommend that you stay in Santorini at least overnight to make your trip worthwhile.

How many days do you need in Santorini?

We all want the perfect holiday. But how long do you need to get the most out of your experience? This depends on your preferences and interests as there are so many things to do in Santorini. 

If you are going for a relaxing getaway, you should stay for a week. This will give you plenty of time to unwind on its beautiful, secluded beaches and take leisurely strolls through its many picturesque towns. You can also fit in various other activities like wine tasting, sunset cruises, boat trips and water sports. 

Is Santorini expensive?

As one of the most beautiful islands in the world, Santorini doesn’t come cheap. It is widely considered to be more expensive than many other Greek islands. However, this should not deter you from going. You can still visit Santorini on a budget by following these simple tips:

  • Eat out at local tavernas and cafes where possible as opposed to upscale restaurants. 

  • Keep an eye out for happy hour deals, lunch specials and set menus to get the best value for your money.

  • Consider doing more free activities like hiking and sunbathing. 

  • Ensure that you book your ferry tickets and accommodation in advance to secure the cheapest prices. 


What to do in Santorini

Don’t be fooled by its size. Although the island isn’t as big as Naxos and Paros, there are still so many things to do in Santorini. Whether its boat trips or visiting ancient ruins, Santorini provides activities for people of all ages. If you are stuck for ideas, here is a list of attractions:


AVG Price

How to get there

Visit the Archaeological Site of Akrotiri


Akrotiri is located on the southern coast of Santorini. You can reach it by bus, taxi or rental car.

Wine Tasting Tour

Starting from €20 per person

Most wineries in Santorini provide guided tours and tastings. You can reach them by bus, taxi or an organized tour.

Relax on Perissa Beach


Catch the bus from the Fira Bus Station (30 minutes)

Watch the sunset in Oia


Accessible via bus, taxi or rental car.

Sunset Cruise 

€50-€100 per person

Varies depending on where you are staying.

See All Posts

Customer Service

Visit our customer service page to find useful information on travelling by ferry, our FAQs, and how to contact us for help with your booking