Fira, also known as “Thira”, is Santorini’s bustling capital. This whitewashed clifftop city overlooking the volcanic caldera serves as the cultural and historic hub of the island.
It’s no secret that the Cyclades islands are every traveler’s dream vacation. Visitors typically flock to picturesque beaches, Greek landmarks, and archaeological sites — but one thing most travelers miss out on is indulging in the local cuisine.
Fira is a perfect fusion of stunning natural beauty, vibrant social activities, and delicious Greek cuisine. Settled on the western edge of Santorini, the Aegean Sea highly influences this coastal settlement’s culture and cuisine.
This guide gives you a sneak peek into 17 of the best restaurants in Fira; their location, ambiance and most popular dishes.
Things to Book Before You Leave Home
There are few things more frustrating on vacation than missing out on that amazing hotel or tour because it is sold out. Here are our top things to book before your vacation.
🌇 Most Popular Tours in Santorini:
1. Highlights Tour with Wine Tasting and Oia Sunset -my top pick
2. Volcanic Island Cruise and Hot Springs
3. Santorini Private Caldera Sailing Trip -book to include sunset
🛏️Where to Stay in Santorini:
1. Anteliz Suites -stylish boutique hotel I stayed at in Thira
2. Mr and Mrs White Santorni -great value hotel I stayed at in Oia
Best Restaurants in Fira Santorini
Table of Contents
- Best Restaurants in Fira Santorini
- 1. Selene
- 2. Argo
- 3. Kapari Taverna
- 4. Naoussa
- 5. Ginger Sushi Lounge
- 6. Cacio e Pepe
- 7. Idol Restaurant Bar
- 8. Classico Restaurant
- 9. Aktaion Restaurant
- 10. Volkan on the Rocks
- 11. Mylos Bar Restaurant
- 12. Ouzeri
- 13. Pelican Kipos
- 14. Mama’s House
- 15. Fanari
- 16. Koukoumavlos
- 17. Galini Cafe
- Food Markets in Fira
- How to Get to Santorini
- Where to Stay in Fira
As a globally-renowned holiday destination, restaurants in Fira offer an expansive collection of local and international cuisine. You can expect many local delicacies to feature olive oil, vegetables, and fish.
But for the same reason, you’ll also find several restaurants serving international fare; some intertwined with local delicacies to create a rich blend of flavors. Wine, beer, and specialty cocktails are also on every menu, with the traditional drink “ouzo” making a special appearance now and then.
Now let’s dive into 17 of the best restaurants in Fira, Santorini.
Photo by Selene Restaurant from Facebook
Boasting a long 37-year history of fine dining and impeccable service, Selene guarantees a gastronomical experience with only local and fresh ingredients.
Located inside an old Dominican monastery, the history and architecture are reflected in the dishes’ creativity, simplicity, and ingenuity.
Led by Michelin-starred chef Ettore Botrini, some of their innovative dishes, like the red mullet drizzled with wild fennel pesto and pistachios, are not to be missed. And when in season, the sea urchin and artichoke salad is a must-try!
Selene also has a vast selection of wines, courtesy of its network of cave cellars brimming with local and international wines. Enjoy your meal in the courtyard under the iron pergola, or stop by for a cooking class or wine tasting.
Photo by Argo Restaurant from Facebook
Argo is a quintessential Fira restaurant; the two-story property boasts gorgeous views of the caldera and the sea. The expansive open-air terrace is elegantly designed with muted dark and light blue hues and offers sprawling vistas of the best Santorini sunsets.
Named after the mythical tale “Jason and the Argonauts”, the restaurant boasts a trendy and nautical decor reminiscent of Greek mythology. The upstairs seating is perfect for enjoying the fresh breeze and delicious cocktails.
Argo serves Mediterranean dishes and variations of Greek and international cuisine with a twist. Their shrimp saganaki with graviera cheese from Naxos is phenomenal, while the Santorini fava is among the menu highlights.
3. Kapari Taverna
Photo by Kapari Taverna from Facebook
Owned by a husband-wife duo, Kapari Taverna is located on Fira’s main road. While the restaurant does not have much of a view, the verdant exterior boasts aesthetically landscaped vines of colorful bougainvilleas, sunflowers, and aromatic jasmine.
The shrubbery is carried through and accompanied by handcrafted furniture made of reclaimed wood and other water materials. Dora and Costas (the owners) aim to serve guests a harmonious blend of the old and new, putting a modern spin on traditional Greek cuisine.
For instance, their pan-fried sesame seed coated feta with honey glaze is a variation of the popular saganaki. You’ll find the menu written in Greek and English, and the lovely staff will also recommend what you should try.
Photo by Naoussa from Facebook
Naoussa is a family-style Greek eatery run by two brothers. The clifftop bar serves traditional recipes from the early 1990s with an innovative twist. While the menu is primarily seafood-based, you’ll find plenty of meat dishes prepared with locally sourced meat.
The restaurant is next to the 19th-century Orthodox Metropolitan Cathedral, surrounded by gorgeous villas and hotels. This makes Naoussa the perfect spot for traditional Greek fare for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Try some of the restaurant’s specialties; the homemade moussaka, mussels in tomato sauce and feta cheese, fresh grilled sea bass and stuffed vegetables are to die for. You can complement these dishes with a fine selection of wines from the best wineries in Santorini.
5. Ginger Sushi Lounge
Photo by Ginger Sushi Lounge from Facebook
Hailed as the first Japanese sushi lounge in Santorini, this clifftop eatery is the perfect place for sushi-lovers with a big appetite for spicy tuna rolls, hamachi, and hot sake.
Ginger Sushi is a great place to visit after sightseeing at the iconic Three Bells of Fira. Thanks to its excellent location atop the volcano’s rim, you can also see the city from a bird’s eye perspective with a fantastic view of the Santorini volcano.
The lounge boasts an ambiance that makes you feel like you’re in Japan; the Asian-inspired Avli Garden is a great place to chill and drink tasty cocktails.
Reserve a table on the open-air terrace and enjoy the stunning sunset and gorgeous backdrops of windmills and blue-domed churches. Sip on a saki cocktail as the sun sets, and the sky becomes starry.
6. Cacio e Pepe
Photo by Cacio e Pepe from Facebook
Looking for an authentic Italian experience? Let Cacio e Pepe bring Rome to Fira with its delectable homemade al dente pasta and a fine selection of top-tier Italian wines. If there’s one thing Italy is known for — it’s wine!
Cacio e Pepe proudly serves mouth-watering pizza made with ingredients imported from Rome, Italy’s capital (and one of the most beautiful cities in Italy). You’ll stumble upon this modern restaurant along your way to or from the 17th-century Megaro Gyzi Museum.
The Cacio e Pepe hall is an excellent space for a romantic night out, business dinners and other social events. With an indoor capacity of 70 and 40 on the outdoor terrace, Cacio e Pepe is often used for small weddings, birthday dinners and other celebrations.
7. Idol Restaurant Bar
Photo by Idol Restaurant Bar from Facebook
Idol is a great place to enjoy the refreshing ocean breeze and sprawling views of the caldera, all while drinking delicious wine and eating the chef’s unique dishes.
How unique? Try the squid with kimchi, raisins and chickpeas alongside a slow-cooked pork belly topped with a sweet potato puree dish and see (or should we say taste) for yourself.
Idol serves various Greek and Mediterranean cuisine, an excellent wine list, and great vegan and vegetarian options. The stylish decor and romantic ambiance make Greek mastika ice cream the perfect dessert.
The restaurant is also close to the Santorini cable car, a great transport medium from the old port to Fira. This is also an excellent way to get the best views of the stunning caldera and the sea.
8. Classico Restaurant
Photo by Classico Restaurant from Facebook
Located in the heart of Fira, along the cosmopolitan Ypapantis street avenue. Classico is a quintessential cafe-restaurant dishing out a wide range of hot and cold beverages and light meals. This is the perfect spot for a coffee break along your tour of Agios Minas Chapel.
You can also stop here for brunch. Try the cafeteria’s tasty omelets, club sandwiches, or seafood plates of shrimp, salmon, octopus and other shellfish; their fruit bowls are also a common favorite.
But the most popular coffee and peach ice tea accompanied by a fresh salad and one of their tasty homemade ice cream for dessert.
9. Aktaion Restaurant
Photo by Aktaion Restaurant from Facebook
Established in 1922, this charming taverna is third-generation run and still maintains the traditional island recipes. The tables at Aktaion spill out into the sidewalk, giving you that casual and cosy feel.
Their menu is quite expansive, featuring a wide choice of seafood, meat and vegetarian options. Try out their fava with capers, mackerel fritters, steamed greens, and mousakas while enjoying the caldera views from the atmospheric cavern or the outside terrace.
It’s worth noting that the restaurant is quaint, and the tables get filled up quickly, so if you’d like to stop by for some authentic Greek fare, do make sure to make a reservation.
10. Volkan on the Rocks
Photo by Volkan on the Rocks from Facebook
Perched on a hilltop overlooking the caldera, Volkan on the Rocks boasts an understated brewery serving Greek beers, a selection of light meals, and an outdoor cinema.
The sun-drenched and breezy terrace makes an ideal lunch stop in Santorini while embarking on your Greece itinerary.
Try a delicious spread of their hot and cold mezes made with local ingredients, accompanied by a pint of Volkan craft beer and an evening open-air movie screening.
Volkan on the Rocks is ideally located just minutes from the Cathedral of Saint John the Baptist — a great spot for snapping photos and learning about Greece’s religious roots.
The eatery is a cafe and restaurant; caffeine lovers will appreciate the tasty frappes and expresso. And if you have a sweet tooth, then whet your taste buds in their delicious parfait, yogurt, and pancakes.
11. Mylos Bar Restaurant
Photo by Mylos Bar Restaurant from Facebook
Featuring a towering converted windmill, Mylos boasts an upscale vibe with breathtaking ocean views and plush decor with muted pink and lilac accents. The bar serves various Greek and Asian food, a distinctive wine list and uninterrupted views of the caldera.
The glass walls give you that al fresco feel sans the (sometimes) scorching sun. But if you’d like to enjoy the fresh breeze, Mylos also has an expansive outdoor terrace to enjoy their beautifully presented dishes, like the crispy fish covered with sea snow.
While this eatery may require (somewhat) deeper pockets, the elegant decor, stunning views and mouth-watering fare make it worthwhile.
Guests typically choose to host private parties like weddings and birthdays here — but a cup of coffee and breakfast on a comfy sofa overlooking the sea is a great start to the day.
Photo by Ouzeri from Facebook
The Ouzeri terrace is a popular wedding venue for couples. And between the tavern’s surprisingly reasonably-priced food and outdoor dining options, it’s easy to see why.
On top of the stunning views, the restaurant serves ouzo (a Greek anise-flavored aperitif), mezes, and traditional dishes with a twist like the sesame seed-coated Manouri Ouzeri served with sweet cherry sauce.
Ouzeri is also centrally located (just off the main walkway), a short walk away from Santorini Bus Stop 10 and the Museum of Prehistoric Thera. While there is no indoor seating, the plexiglass windows create a serene indoor feel, complete with views of the Aegean.
13. Pelican Kipos
Photo by Pelican Kipos from Facebook
Enjoy a delightful lunch or dinner at Pelican Kipos’ stunning lush-filled garden. Boasting varieties of flowers, palm trees, and pergolas, Pelican Kipos is a true hidden gem.
The eatery is better known as a cafe and wine restaurant thanks to its selection of hot beverages and underground cellar.
Upon request, you can experience a classic Santorini wine-tasting tour which takes you 10 metres down to a 400-year-old cave holding more than 480 of Santorini’s best wines. The tasting is coupled with a plate of local Cycladic cheeses.
The food here is exquisite, with varieties of homemade Greek fare, international cuisine and classic Santorini dishes featuring the day’s freshest catch.
Their fried cod fish with scordalia (garlic dip) or tourlou in a ceramic pot (roasted white aubergine with tomato sauce, garlic, and feta cheese) are worth a try.
14. Mama’s House
Photo by Mama’s House from Facebook
Look no further than Mama’s House if you’re in the mood for wholesome Greek fare. This casual family-owned eatery prides itself on serving homemade food that keeps you returning.
Located right next to Bus Stop 10, Mama’s House is a great place to stop for a mega breakfast while on the way to an excursion. You can also stop by for lunch or dinner, as the budget-friendly fare is nothing short of a feast.
Their blueberry pancakes with maple syrup are pretty popular among locals and tourists. The French toast, omelet and bacon and eggs are also worth a try. Hearty dishes are also available; the chicken soup with lemon and souvlaki will leave you wanting more.
When you step into Mama’s House, you immediately feel at home. Mama (a chatty and humorous host) runs the business with her husband and brother. Their creative dishes are reasonably priced and pack a huge hearty and flavourful punch.
And their fluffy companion (Jesse II) welcomes guests with excitement and gestures that make you feel right at home.
Photo by Fanari from Facebook
Fanari is a cliffside restaurant with spectacular views of the Santorini caldera; the eatery serves authentic Greek specialties made from locally sourced ingredients. The menu has various seafood, vegetables and fruits acclimating to the volcanic ecosystem.
Reserve a table on the expansive terrace and enjoy a mixed seafood platter and a delicious glass of Greek wine (retsina). Then to end on a high note, try any of these popular desserts, traditional baklava, meletinia, or Santorini pudding.
Other popular dishes on the menu include white eggplant with cheese and basil, Greek salad, tomato balls, soutzoukakia with rice and fried potatoes and chicken lemonato. While all these dishes are rooted in Greek fare, they all have a modern twist acceptable to every palate.
Photo by Nikos Pouliasis from Facebook
Elegant decor, exquisite cuisine, and breathtaking views — that’s Koukoumavlos. This hilltop eatery is one of the fine dining establishments in Fira. Koukoumavlos is where you go for a contemporary gastronomic adventure boasting award-winning Aegean fare and a casual romantic setting.
The restaurant’s renowned chef is all about serving delectable gourmet dishes and a delightful atmosphere, going as far as picking the daily playlist himself.
Koukoumavlos offers a degustation menu with daring pairings like sea bass with passionfruit and Jerusalem artichoke; the tiramisu with white Santorini eggplant is also worth a try.
In addition to these excellent dishes, you’ll also have a fine selection of local and international wines to pair with your meal.
17. Galini Cafe
Photo by Galini Cafe from Facebook
Start your day right with a tasty and nutritious breakfast at Galini Cafe. This quaint eatery sits comfortably on the lip of the caldera, where the cliff plunges into the sea.
Due to it being in the elegant Galini Hotel, the cafe makes a great effort to offer an extensive breakfast list, from aromatic tea and coffee to omelets, local bread, and fresh fruits.
But that’s not all — Galini Cafe’s extensive menu offers creative dishes like lobster souvlaki, eggs cooked a dozen ways, tasty crêpes, and specialty cocktails.
Galini is the perfect spot for a fine dining experience, with stunning sunrise and sunset views with plenty of indoor and outdoor seating. Galini’s elegant and minimalist decor adds to the laid-back atmosphere.
Check out my article on best things to do in Oia Santorini.
Food Markets in Fira
Although many markets in Fira primarily sell antiques, crafts, and ceramics, the city is also home to some of Santorini’s best fish, fruit and vegetable markets. The farmers market is located just after the main square; here, you’ll find the daily catch and vegetables on sale.
The Oia fruit market lies along the shore. Here you can buy various freshly picked fruits from different parts of the island. The air is filled with sweet aromas, and you can hear the sounds of waves crashing against the dock — what’s there not to love?
How to Get to Santorini
From Athens, it will take you about a 45-minute flight to Santorini. Another way you could travel to the island is via ferry or cruise ship. If you choose to fly to Santorini Airport, you can rent a car or take a bus or taxi to Fira.
Santorini has a fantastic new airport with loads of room and places to eat, nice souvenirs etc. If you visited Santorini pre 2020 you may well remember that the airport was terrible. I am pleased to tell you that is no longer the case!
If you’re arriving in Santorini via ferry or cruise ship, you can also take a bus or taxi to Fira, which will take about 18 minutes.
Where to Stay in Fira
I stayed at the Anteliz Suites and absolutely loved it. This charming Santorini boutique hotel is perched on the top of Fira.
As such, it has the most amazing views of the Santorini sunset. And a large deck area designed to help you to enjoy that view.
And the staff – Wow – they were so so lovely. I had a personalised check-in sitting outside with a view of the ocean.
I had a few things I needed to be sorted out – like a shattered iPhone and a need for a new bathing suit – and the hotel staff provided excellent and helpful advice. And they were just so nice and friendly.
I had dinner and breakfast at the Anteliz and loved it. Dinner was a nice light greek menu with some good local Santorini wine.
I enjoyed delicious tzatziki with fresh pita bread and a tasty chicken salad. I really couldn’t be bothered moving so it was perfect to be able to relax at the hotel and still appreciate the sunset.
My breakfast was just wonderful. Guests are offered the choice of breakfast on the terrace overlooking the sea or just outside their room (every room has its own outdoor seating area).
Choices are pre-ordered the evening before. I enjoyed a delicious mix of local fruits with jaw-dropping greek yoghurt resembling mozzarella balls.
My room at Anteliz Suite Santorini was beautiful. It was a nice size and simply decorated in blue and white. The furniture and fixtures of this Santorini boutique hotel were of high quality.
The air conditioning was wonderfully powerful and the room had everything I could possibly need including excellent wifi. The bed at this hotel in Santorini was extremely comfortable.
A highlight was my cave shower which was very cute. And the shower had a nice big head with strong water pressure.
Just outside my room was the lovely little stylish pool. The pool isn’t big enough for laps for there is certainly enough room to cool off – and it is very instagram friendly.
I virtually didn’t leave this lovely hotel whilst I was there so this is a strong recommendation.
Ypapantis (or Ipapantis) street has several hotels, villas, monuments and many eateries. If you’re looking for luxury and breathtaking views, check out Astro Palace Hotel & Suites — but Aria Suites & Villas has better views.
Or try the trendy Cosmopolitan Suites, along the main street and steps away from Fira’s nightlife, for a more romantic setting.
I covered all of the costs involved in writing this post on the best restaurants in Fira Santorini. However, this article does contain affiliate links. That means if you click through on some of the links in the article and end up making a purchase I may receive a small commission.