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Monthly Guide: Santorini’s Sea Temperatures

Santorini, a jewel in the crown of Greece, is renowned for its iconic white-washed houses, blue-domed churches, and the mesmerizing panoramas of the Aegean Sea. Beyond its visual splendor, did you know that Santorini also ranks among Europe’s premier destinations for a perfect swim? Whether your idea of heaven is basking on sun-drenched beaches, snorkeling in crystal clear waters, or venturing into the mysterious volcanic caldera, Santorini caters to every taste.

Yet, one might wonder, when is the ideal time to visit Santorini to take full advantage of its warm, alluring waters? How does the water temperature shift with the seasons? Moreover, what influences the sea’s temperature around this enchanting isle? Within this blog post, we’ll unveil the answers, escorting you through a month-by-month breakdown of sea temperatures in Santorini. You’ll discover how to tailor your voyage to suit your swimming preferences and what to anticipate from the island’s climate and sea conditions each month. So prepare to embark on a journey into the aquatic heart of Santorini!

Understanding Santorini’s Sea Temperature Cycle

The sea temperature around the enchanting island of Santorini is subject to a variety of influencing elements, including seasonal changes, local winds, and intriguing volcanic activity. This section will shed light on the dynamics of the sea temperature cycle in Santorini and offer insights into the average maximum and minimum water temperatures throughout the year.

Temperature Overview by Season

In Santorini, sea temperatures exhibit a distinct seasonal pattern. The months of July, August, and September promise the warmest waters, while January, February, and March usher in the chillier currents. Typically, the sea is warmer than the air temperature, with the exception of the summer when the air can sizzle up to 86°F / 30°C. Notably, Santorini’s average sea temperature – 61.7°F / 16.5°C in March and peaking at 77.2°F / 25.1°C in August – registers higher than Greece’s average, thanks to its southern Aegean Sea location where waters tend to be warmer.

Monthly Average Max/Min Water Temperatures

The following chart provides the monthly average extremes for water temperatures across various locales in Santorini, including Fira, Imerovigli, Kamari, Oia, and Akrotiri. Factors such as sun exposure and the winds fine-tune temperatures slightly from place to place. Eastern shores like Kamari and Akrotiri tend to experience warmer seas compared to the western parts where Fira, Imerovigli, and Oia lie. The caldera, home to Fira and Imerovigli, also generally offers warmer waters than the open sea bordering Kamari, Oia, and Akrotiri.

| Month | Fira | Imerovigli | Kamari | Oia | Akrotiri |
| —-

  • | —
  • | ———
  • | —–
  • | —
  • | ——-
  • |
    | January | 16.9°C / 62.4°F | 16.9°C / 62.4°F | 17.1°C / 62.8°F | 16.9°C / 62.4°F | 17.1°C / 62.8°F |
    | February | 16.6°C / 61.9°F | 16.6°C / 61.9°F | 16.8°C / 62.2°F | 16.6°C / 61.9°F | 16.8°C / 62.2°F |
    | March | 16.5°C / 61.7°F | 16.5°C / 61.7°F | 16.7°C / 62.1°F | 16.5°C / 61.7°F | 16.7°C / 62.1°F |
    …and so on for each month.

    Factors Influencing Sea Temperature

    The interplay of seasons, winds, and volcanic activity works in tandem to shape Santorini’s sea temperature landscape. Seasons have the most noticeable effect, driving the stark contrasts between balmy summer waters and the cool embrace of winter. The moderate sea temperatures of spring and autumn bridge the two extremes, striking a harmonious balance.

The winds play their part as well, with the meltemi—a dry, cool breeze from the north—often lowering temperatures by stirring the waters and beckoning cooler depths. In contrast, the southerly sirocco can warm the surface by creating a serene, heat-trapping marine layer.

Volcanic activity, while having a more localized impact, heats certain waters around the island, such as the caldera—a testament to Santorini’s volcanic heartbeat. Hot springs near Palea Kameni and Nea Kameni epitomize these geothermal idiosyncrasies, where warmth seeps from underwater vents, casting a subtle but distinguishable warmth in the caldera.

When to Dive In: Best Months for Swimming in Santorini

Understanding the fluctuations in Santorini’s sea temperature throughout the year helps you identify the perfect time to visit for beach activities. Whether you prioritize warm waters, budget-friendly travel, or avoiding heavy crowds, this guide will navigate you through ideal times to take the plunge based on seasonal climates, tourist presence, and off-peak opportunities.

Peak Swimming Season

The prime time for a swim in Santorini spans from June to September. With the sea temperature hovering comfortably above 20°C / 68°F and the sun consistently shining, these months are optimal for those looking to dive, snorkel, or engage in water sports. The beaches, from the black sands of Perissa and Kamari to the unique red beach of Akrotiri and the serene white beach of Vlychada, bustle with energy. This season also offers the opportunity to embark on an enchanting boat tour across the caldera, bathe in the hot springs, or voyage to the nearby islands like Thirassia and Anafi.

Off-Season Considerations

Contrastingly, the off-season, which falls between October and May, presents a cooler and at times wetter Santorini. The sea temperature dips below 20°C / 68°F, making swimming less appealing. However, this period is rich with other attractions: experience breathtaking sunsets in tranquility, delve into historical treasures, savor exquisite local flavors, and immerse yourself in authentic island culture. Additionally, you’ll benefit from reduced rates and greater availability in accommodations. Do note that during this time, some businesses may operate on limited schedules, and certain tours and activities might take a hiatus or lessen in frequency.

Sea Temperature Trends and Tourist Crowds

As you plan your trip, it’s crucial to weigh the correlation between sea temperature trends and the influx of visitors. Warmer waters typically coincide with heightened tourist activity. Santorini’s peak tourism occurs in July and August, with a notable surge around August 15th. These months come with certain drawbacks, like lengthy lines and bustling streets, alongside higher costs. Yet, they also promise an electric atmosphere filled with events and a thriving nightlife. If a more serene getaway beckons, the shoulder months of late April to early June and September to early November offer a sweet spot with milder crowds and pleasant swimming conditions, coupled with more reasonable prices. For those undeterred by a bit of chill and precipitation, late November through March might suit you; it’s a time when Santorini rests in near solitude, allowing visitors to claim the beaches and landscapes all to themselves.

Month-By-Month Breakdown of Sea Temperatures in Santorini

Explore the shifting sea temperatures in Santorini across the year, from January to December. Understand what the weather holds, the condition of the waters for swimming, and get personalized activity recommendations to suit the season.

January to March: Cool Beginnings

Expect cooler and damper conditions during the start of the year, with sea temperatures averaging 16.7°C (62.1°F) in January, dipping slightly in February to 16.6°C (61.9°F), and reaching 16.5°C (61.7°F) by March. The climate is generally mild, although it may be accompanied by clouds, rain, and at times, storms and vigorous winds. Land temperatures fluctuate, averaging from 12.2°C (54°F) in January up to 13.7°C (56.7°F) by March. January sees average rainfall reaching 115mm (4.5in), decreasing to 80mm (3.1in) in February, and 65mm (2.6in) in March, with sunlight lasting around 4.5 to 6.5 hours a day during these months.

While the waters may not be ideal for casual swimming, the bravest can still revel in aquatic pursuits like diving or sailing, donning wetsuits and keeping an eye on the forecast. Alternatively, visit the caldera’s hot springs for a more soothing dip. These months offer the perfect opportunity for exploring Santorini’s historical and natural beauty without the crowds, all amid more affordable accommodation and attractions.

April to June: Warming Seas

As spring and early summer roll in, Santorini becomes even more inviting. Sea temperatures warm to a comfortable 17.5°C (63.5°F) in April, hitting 20.5°C (68.9°F) in May and climbing to a pleasant 23.7°C (74.7°F) by June. Expect warm, sunny days with scant rainfall and only moderate winds. Air temperatures increase from a mild 16.1°C (61°F) in April to a sunny 24.3°C (75.7°F) coming June, while rainfall and humidity drop significantly, giving way to clear skies and lengthy sunshine hours—up to 12.5 hours a day in June.

With the waters warming up, enjoy swimming, snorkeling, and other water sports in peace. Favourable weather conditions make this period ideal for exploring both the island’s rich cultural heritage and its stunning natural landscape, with blooming nature and mild temperatures that create a perfect setting for outdoor adventures.

July to September: Summertime Peak

The height of summer sees Santorini at its warmest, with sea temperatures at a cozy 25.8°C (78.4°F) in July, peaking at 26.1°C (79°F) in August, and settling at 24.7°C (76.5°F) in September. The weather is at its sultriest, bathed in sunshine and marked by virtually no rainfall though coupled with some bracing winds. Air temperatures vary from 26.6°C (79.8°F) in the height of July to a slightly cooler 23.8°C (74.9°F) by September, with sunshine reigning supreme for up to 13.5 hours daily.

This time is quintessential for swimming and water activities, with the sea remaining warm and welcoming. The island vibrates with energy, offering vibrant nightlife and colourful festivals, amidst packed beaches and bustling streets. These months are Santorini’s busiest, so be prepared for longer waits and premium prices, but the lively atmosphere is truly something to experience.

October to December: Gradual Cooling

In the final quarter of the year, Santorini begins to cool once more, with the sea temperature averaging 22.8°C (73°F) in October, decreasing to 19.9°C (67.8°F) in November and reaching a cooler 17.4°C (63.3°F) in December. These months bring a cooler, cloudier climate with increased rainfall and potential for storms and stronger winds. The air chills as well, dropping from 20.3°C (68.5°F) in October to 13.6°C (56.6°F) in December, with daylight hours shortening to 4.5 to 7.5 hours.

Swimming may now be less appealing, but those looking for adventure can still engage in water sports with appropriate gear. Alternatively, enjoy the caldera’s hot springs for a comfortable escape. Take advantage of the off-peak season to discover the island’s cultural and historical sites, like Akrotiri or Ancient Thera, and enjoy the architecture, wineries, and panoramic views without the crowds and at a more leisurely pace.


Throughout this blog post, we’ve provided a detailed guide on the sea temperatures in Santorini and their seasonal variations. Moreover, we’ve shared useful tips and recommendations on the optimal times to visit this enchanting island for those looking to bask in its splendid beaches and partake in exhilarating water activities, tailored to your individual preferences and desires. We’re confident that this information will assist you in meticulously planning your Santorini getaway to fully savor your aquatic adventures.

Renowned for its diverse attractions, Santorini dazzles visitors all year round. Whether your aim is to plunge into the crystal-clear, balmy waters, unwind on the breathtaking beaches, traverse the awe-inspiring volcanic caldera, or immerse yourself in the island’s profound culture and history, Santorini promises an unforgettable experience. So, why delay? Secure your tickets today and prepare to be captivated by the wonders of Santorini!


What months can you swim in Santorini?

The swimming season in Santorini typically starts in late May and lasts until October, providing a wide window for those looking to enjoy the island’s beautiful waters.

How warm is the water in Santorini?

The water temperature in Santorini varies throughout the year, but during the summer months, it can average a comfortable 25°C (77°F), perfect for swimming and aquatic activities.

How warm is the water in Santorini in July?

In July, Santorini’s water is particularly inviting, usually hovering around 26°C (79°F), making it an ideal time for swimming and snorkeling.

Is it warm enough to swim in Santorini in October?

October is often the tail end of the swimming season in Santorini, with water temperatures beginning to cool. However, you can still find days where the water is warm enough for a pleasant swim, typically around 23°C (73°F).

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