Car, scooter and bike hire, Santorini Island
Dear Fellow travellers.
Look forward to your stay on Santorini - a true pearl.
Rental of scooter, motorbike or car is a good idea as means of getting to see a bit more of the island.
But avoid DROSSOS Car Rentall - www.drossos.gr
He (the owner) is a dishonest rental guy. We rented a scooter from him for one day in August 2007 - and he provided a substandard scooter which also ended up breaking down towards the evening.
He refused to refund anything - but offered 5 euro worth of internet time. I did not come to Santorini to surf the net - but to explore the island which is truely a great place.
Drossos has his main shop in Ia - but if you want more choice - go to Fira and get your rental vehicle there.
Enjoy Santorini !
There are hundreds of places to hire transport all over Santorini. We went to Kamari as it was the closest town to our apartments. 1pm was too late to hire a quad so we jumped on the bus to Fira where we got a quad in the 2nd place we went to. At 30 euros a day it's cheaper than getting a scooter each and it's actually more fun! I ride a moped at home in England so I can compare.
Santorini is the simplest place to get around as you can usually see where you want to be, it's just a case of choosing a road that points to it. On the quad we were able to discuss where to go without pulling over or getting too close to each other (as we would on scooters) and it was pretty slow as quads go so we had plenty of time to make decisions. It felt safe as houses: very sturdy. Must say it struggled up the many hills but local drivers are pretty patient and will wait for a safe spot to overtake, leaving a big gap. Definitely the way to travel, I wonder how much they cost in England....
you absoultely must rent a four wheeler---about half the vehicles on the road are four wheelers. it was a blast, my husband enjoyed that the most about our trip! all the tour buses, regular cars, are used to the four wheelers, so it was not scary or anything to drive one. it was only 20 euro a day. it was better than taking the bus, since they seemed to operate on hour schedules.
If you need to rent a car and you are near Vlichada beach or marina go to the top of the cliffs to Dimitri's Taverna. Dimitri himself will help coordinate a rental car. They will bring the car to you. You can also rent scooters from here. The scooter place will come pick you up and take you to get scooters or four wheelers. They give you a map of the island and show you good palce to go and draw the route you can take to get to those places. It was great!
The Smart Car. Probably very familiar to Europeans, but new to me. I couln't believe it was a real car at first, but it's great for zipping around. It's built so you can park it perpendicular in a parallel spot.
No doubts about advantages of get your own transport, for example a rented car. Fira is plenty of car rentals agencies, but we choose one in Oia . Close to the bus stop square there is "Auto Europe" agency, managed by a very kind guy, Dimitris.
Ask for him and he will solve your needs at a convenient price for your car.
While in Santorini, we rented scooters for only 10 Eu a day (regardless of having one or two riders). This turned out to just make the trip! Having the freedom to investigate all the little 'non-touristy' towns in Santorini, as well as go off shopping in Thira, or to Ammoudi for dinner at a moment's notice was great!
The wind in your face (wear sunglasses!) and the hum under your feet is really a neat feeling! Just make sure you WEAR YOUR HELMET!! Apparently they have to scrape several tourists off the road each year and send them off for hospital treatment (Athens is 9.5 hours away, once you're ON the ferry!). Just take it easy and be careful :)
First apologies for the bike lovers for what I am to say. ....Bikes seem to be very popular in the islands. I personally think they are dangerous and are little scare of them.... so this was a good option....
If like me you decide to stay at Oia it is convinient to have a car, if you add up 1euro per bus ride it can add up to a lot.
There are numerous places to rent on the island, but beware!! If you do not have a motorcycle license in your own country, then SOME places will not rent to you. As was my case. But, as I found out all along my trip, just keep asking, you'll find someone who wants money bad enough. This is that place...
Moto-Piazza in Oia (Ia). They were "OK" with me not having a moto license, as long as I was, "careful". I assured them that I would be...
By this point I had been to Rome, and therefore experienced the gangs of Vespas. But, it did not prepare me for Santorini. I'm not saying that Santorini drivers were worse than Rome's, far from it, but the sheer number compared with the islands population surprised me. It was the first time i saw little kids, who normally fix up their bicycles with crome and cool things for their wheels, etc., actually riding a fixed up motorcycle... at maybe 12 years old!! One place wouldn't even let me rent one, because I didnt ahve a motorcycle license... and I'm 26!!! Crazy.
There are frequent buses and taxis all over the islands. In summer, buses leave Fira's central station every hour for Akrotiri and every 30 min for Oia, Monolithos, Kamari and Perissa.
Buses leave Fira, Kamari and Perissa for Athinios Port 1 1/2 hours before most ferry departures.
Buses for Fira leaves from Athinios Port after every ferry arrival, even late at night.
A motorbike is a great way to see the island.
* Low season: April 1st - June 30th & October 1st - March 31st
* High season: July 1st - September 30th
Santorini is such a small island and buses always seemed to be fully packed with tourists. That's why we rented the biggest scooter we could find. Since we stayed in Kamari which is in the middle of the east coast of Santorini, it was easy to explore the island in two parts, to south and north from Kamari. Renting a scooter seems to be a popular thing to do especially among youngsters, but who says the agelimit is 25? ;)))
Prices are reasonable, but check that full insurance is included before you rent. Travel agents often co-operate with some local renting company and you may get discounts.
The best way to see Santorini is by car. It's a pretty big island, and you'll want to move around a lot. The best views are from the town of Oia, which is 1500 feet above the Sea. The beaches are scattered around the island, so a car makes it a lot easier to get around at your own pace.
Autoeurope on the way into Oia has a great deal
We hired a moped for a couple of days, which we found to be the most convenient way of getting around the island. The buses are okay but get very crowded and you're limited as to where you can go. Of course, the advantage of a moped is that you can go anywhere you choose.
There are a lot of moped hire places around Santorini. We paid about 12 euros for a day's hire.
The most easier way to travel arround Santorini is to rent a motorbike. Its cheap,fast, you can escape city's traffic and gives you the oportunity to stop wherever you like! Of course you have to know to ride, if you dont....rent a car!