Santorini's landforms have been shaped by the activity of its volcano, which is now dormant. Some of its beaches are therefore pebbly, while others are covered in black sand. As the west coast of the island drops sharply into the sea, Santorini's beaches are to be found along its east coast. Do not expect tropical beaches, as Santorini's coastline offers nothing of the kind. This does not detract from the beauty of the landscape, however.
Kamari beach is located some 6 mi from Fira. It is a black sandy beach stretching about 3 mi along the coast, with a short promenade running the length of the coastline. The fairly peaceful Monolithos beach, just up the coast, offers a similar landscape to that found at Kamari. The black sandy beach of Perissa is 9 mi south east of Fira and covers more than 4 mi of coastline. It is particularly lively in the summer due to its many shops, bars and restaurants. If you want to do something different, head for the red beach. It is also a black sandy beach, but its clear water is surrounded by towering red cliffs. This beach, which is close to Akrotiri, is one of the most famous and beautiful on Santorini and can only be reached on foot or by caïque. Vlychada is in the Perivolos region and is often the least busy of the island's beaches. Finally, there are two pretty beaches in the north that are usually frequented by tourists staying in Oia. Ammoudi beach is located directly below Oia, on the north west tip of the island, while Armeni beach is is bit further up.