Red Beach; the most famous beach of Santorini

Santorini’s most unusual, exotic, and picturesque beach, Red Beach, is arguably one of the most well-known attractions of the island. It is a rather scenic and beautiful beach, which is worth a visit considering that it is a rare sight, where red is the dominant color. Majestic landscapes have given Red Beach the glory of Santorini’s most photogenic beach. Located in Akrotiri village, many people visit it not because of beach holidays but mostly for unique photos of Martian landscapes.

The beach earns its name from the steep red hills, the sedimentary, iron-rich rocks in the cliff face, as well as the reddish pebbles and sand. By standing on the top, you can admire a truly captivating and wild scenery, probably unique in the whole world. The impressive palette of contrasting colors and the enormous volcanic red rocks will mesmerize the most demanding nature lovers curious to witness all the natural marvels the volcano created.

How to get to Red Beach?

You can access the beach either by car or by local bus. In both cases, you have to walk a few minutes on a downhill path. The nearest parking lot to the beach is approximately a five-minute walk. Alternatively, you can access the beach by water taxi from Akrotiri port, Kamari, or Perissa Beach. Last but not least, you can visit Red Beach while sailing on an organized sailing tour which makes a stop at this side of the island.

Description of the beach

At the beach, you will find only a few sunbeds and umbrellas. Keep in mind there are no facilities such as cafes or restaurants on the beach, that is why it is better for you to purchase water and refreshments or snacks from the canteens right before the beginning of the trail, by the parking area. There might not be any facilities, but snorkeling at the Red Beach is a rather popular activity, due to the rich marine life and the unique rock formations. Similarly, there is no yet entertainment infrastructure by the beach thus make sure to get your own snorkeling equipment with you. Finally, jet ski tours take place and give the chance to more adventurous visitors to explore Red Beach and the volcano.

Red Beach is narrow and shelves steeply into the sea. The reddish vertical mountains create a natural shelter that protects the beach from the winds, so it gets rather hot during the warm summer days.

Red Beach, Santorini – Photo by White Pearl Villas©

White Beach is Red Beach’s neighbor

Water taxis are available for transferring visitors to White Beach, which is only accessible by boat from Red Beach. White Beach has also beautiful views to offer and a privileged diving environment to explore. Have in mind that White Beach is even wilder without any infrastructure at all.

Useful Tips

  • Be extra careful, the area is prone to landslides, thus there is no access to the shore.
  • The small size of the beach and its popularity often lead the beach to be rather crowded. A lot of visitors choose not to make it all the way down to the beach and instead admire and photoshoot the rare landscape from above. Others, prefer to enjoy the views of the Red Beach on board and swim on the crystal waters around the catamaran approaching the beach on an organized sailing cruise.
  • The coastline is quite long but not very wide. Its widest parts can only accommodate two rows of sun loungers. The waves often hit the front row, so you can also find a sunbathing shelter for yourselves on one of the stone “islands” near the beach.
  • The surface of the seafloor depends on where you step. The depth along most of the shoreline is sudden and steep and starts roughly two meters from the shore.
  • The sand is so saturated in some parts of the shoreline that it looks bloody red, which, combined with black and red pebbles and small stones, looks breathtaking.
  • The water is so clear thus the sand near the shore changes rapidly color as it is reflected in the azure waters.
  • High waves are often during the low season. This makes swimming challenging especially for those not used to swim in wavy waters. During the high season, the number of visitors might be overwhelming so maybe you should choose to visit Red Beach early in the morning if you are not keen on crowds.
  • The beach is particularly popular among young people and couples, but tourists of all ages can be found here.
Photo by Carolina Sánchez on Unsplash

Let’s face it! Red Beach might be far from the best beach in terms of swimming and sunbathing. However, it appeals the visitors with its photogenic sites and azure waters. We wish you to enjoy the experience!

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