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Hiking Fira – Oia

Fira - oia hiking
13 Mar

Hiking Fira – Oia

The Fira-Oia Hike

I recently learned from a passionate hiker that the Fira to Oia hike wasn’t just the best hike on Santorini. It is like the best hike you’d ever done in your life. Be prepared for awesome.

The Fira-Oia Hike is a highlight of visiting Santorini. It takes you along the caldera cliff and through the villages of Fira, Firostefani, Imerovigli, and Oia.

The hike takes between 2 and 5 hours depending on how fast you walk and how often you stop. If you do a side trip to Skaros Rock it will add at least an hour.

The hiking trail from Fira to Oia is just under 10.5km (6.5 miles). Part of the path is similar to a sidewalk, parts are cobblestone, and parts are a dirt path. There is a good climb in both directions.

Elevation along the route:

Oia 130 meters;

Imerovigli 350 meters (the highest point on the hike);

Fira 270 meters.

These elevations are a little deceiving.

The climb from Oia to Imerovigli is long and gradual so you don’t notice it as much. The climb from Fira to Imerovigli is short and steep.


In summer, start early. It gets hot by 11am.

Buy water the day before as there won’t be much open if you start early in the morning. There are places to buy drinks along the way but it’s much easier to begin the trip with water and not have to worry about finding an open market.\

Most 7 year-olds would have no trouble completing the walk in terms of difficulty (i.e. the quality of the path) but it is a very long walk for anyone under 10.

Do not take a baby stroller on the hike.

A very strong mountain biker could do the route on bike but it’s not meant for cyclists, there are few bike rentals on Santorini, and it would be disruptive to those on foot even if you had your own bike.

There are small shops to buy water and snacks in Firostefani and Imerovigli (assuming they’ve opened for the day).
Between Imerovigli and Oia there are two shops/cafes but they aren’t always open.

From June to September return buses between Oia and Fira will be busy in the afternoon and taxis difficult to find. A good option is to grab a taxi or take a bus in the morning (before your walk starts) and then walk back to your starting point.

If you enter “Fira to Oia” into Google Maps
and then click the walk icon, the route you get will take the most direct route that misses some of the best views. If you’re walking on the road (with cars) you’re doing it wrong. You should be on a footpath almost all of the way. The main exception is between Oia and Imerovigli when you need to walk along the road for a short stretch.

If you’re on a cruise and want to do the Fira – Oia hike:

You’ll be tendered ashore at the old port below Fira and then you’ll either walk up or cable car up to Fira.

From there you can just start walking as you’re already on the main path. When you get to Oia you can either bus or taxi back to Fira, and then back down by foot or cable car to the port to return to your ship. You’ll need at least 5 hours on shore to do the hike.

Good restaurants to stop at on the Fira to Oia walk are Avocado in Imerovigli (open lunch and dinner) and Cafe Galini in Firostefani (open breakfast, lunch, and dinner).

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