An interview with fashion blogger and bikini connoisseur Siena Schaar reveals everything you need to know about traveling the stunning island of Santorini, Greece. 

ISHINE365: What is your favorite place to stay in Santorini and why?

Siena: The best place to stay in Santorini is definitely Spitia Santorini in Oia! Cliff side villas that overlook gorgeous Amoudi Bay that are homey, simple, and beyond comfortable. The villas are owned by a friend of mine – and are picture perfect.

ISHINE365: What is your favorite restaurant and what is the best thing on the menu?

Siena: My absolute favorite restaurant on Santorini, is again located in Oia. Kandouni restaurant is located in the little side streets of the village, and is by far the most romantic restaurant i have ever been to. In summer it is open for lunch and dinner, and at night it is lit up with candles. Kandouni’s menu changes slightly every few days – but the sweet and sour pork with plums is one of my favorites.  Don’t leave without trying the fava bean and eggplant dip appetizers, and vinsanto wine – Greek staples. If you are only in Oia for a little day trip – make sure to stop by Skiza Cafe for the most gorgeous views of the ocean filled Caldera – some of my most gorgeous breakfasts have been there sipping on a fredo cappuccino and pastry (must try!).

ISHINE365: What is the most beautiful beach and the best place to go for a swim?

Siena: So difficult to choose the most gorgeous beach on Santorini but here’s the run down of my most prized swimming spots on the island: Saint Nicolas is a small cove below the cliffs of Oia and is a must-stop for cliff jumping and swimming (Don’t forget your mask and snorkel because there are gorgeous ropes that are just below the water that make this swimming spot 100 times more magical). There is a small island-looking rock just off shore that is within swimming distance – swim around it and climb up to find the Saint Nicolas fishermen’s church that is easily one of the most unique churches I have ever laid my eyes on. 

If you have enough wanderlust to island hop a little – Zante Island  is about a 45 minute plane ride from Santorini and is home to arguably the most beautiful caves in the world. I highly recommend a stop on this island, a tour of the blue caves of Zante, and a trip down to the famous Navagio Bay shipwreck, which is truly life changing! 

ISHINE365: What are some activities that you must do while in Santorini?

Siena: While in Santorini, I recommend just taking it easy! Sometimes it is so easy to get caught up in the hustle of playing tourist but i think that in Santorini it’s better to try to play local. Wake up late, have a Fredo cappuccino and scoop of gelato for breakfast from Lolita’s Gelato, go for a swim down at the bay, ride a donkey up the steps of Amoudi (like a champ), eat a souvlaki, take a nap, go out to dinner at Kandouni, and drink the night away at the town bar! One thing that must be done while on Santorini is to stop into Atlantis Books and buy a book to read while on island (the shop owners name is Craig and you will most likely see him at Kandouni drinking a gin and tonic every night of the week – sweetest man i know).

ISHINE365: What is the best place to grab a drink with friends?

Siena: The best place to grab a drink with friends in Oia is definitely MaryKay Bar, which is situated on the Caldera walking path, right across from the Atlantis Bookstore! Always a fun crowd of locals at this small town bar and not to mention the best mojitos on island (my fave!). Take your drink outside the bar, and meet all of the sweet stray dogs of Oia that hang nearby and love to be loved! (Maybe thats why i loved this bar so much!)

Follow Siena on Instagram: @honeygirl_ and check out her blog!