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Santorini: Fira and Firostefani

Fira is the capital of Santorini, whilst Firostefani is known as the "crown" of Fira. We stayed in Firostefani at Splendour Resort, which is about a fifteen minute walk from the capital.

Although we didn't have a view over the caldera at our hotel, we just had to cross the road to see it. Our hotel was great, though only because we booked a suite with a private pool - it didn't look very relaxing at all by the main pool, and I'm glad we had our own space to read and relax in the sun.

But, there is plenty of accommodation along the cliff path if you want the view as it's from this side of the island where you get the most marvellous sunsets (though Oia does seem to be the firm favourite of where to go to see the best sunset on the island).

Fira can often be very busy as the cruise ships dock at the Old Port - you can get from the Old Port up to the capital via a cable car for €5 each way, a €5 donkey ride or walking - you'll find lots of American, Japanese and Singaporean tourists exploring the island.

We headed down to the Old Port to catch our boat to Nea Kameni - via the very steep cable car - but unless you're taking a boat somewhere, there's not much to do down there.  

From walking around Fira, you'll see that there's a lot of money in the capital (what Greek depression?), and it's because of those cruise ships. You'll spot high-end boutiques as well as charming little shops as you mooch around, and plenty of restaurants and bars.

Firostefani is much quieter than Fira, though with the same lovely view. The restaurants there were much better than what was on offer in Fira, and also a bit cheaper. Fira definitely looks much more impressive though and the sprawl of white buildings are quite something against the dramatic volcanic caldera. I'll tell you all about where you should eat and drink in both places next time. x

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