Set against the backdrop of quintessential Greek architecture and the glittering azure of the sparkling sea, it’s easy to see why the Blue Church Domes of Oia in Santorini feature in pretty much every postcard from Greece. Here’s a quick guide on where to find the blue domes of Santorini (and how to get the best photos of the beautiful architecture once there!)!
Where to find the blue domes of Santorini (Anastasi Church of Oia)
Though the capital of the island of Santorini is actually Fira (a small city in the central western part of the island that’s also known as Thera/ Thira or Θήρα in Greek), the blue domes themselves are located in Oia, a magical hilltop town in Northern Santorini that’s characterised by its trailing bougainvillaea and winding narrow lanes.
Some of the best reasons to visit this area of Greece include the amazing foodie scene to be found there, the stunning architecture, and the wealth of things to do. From wine tasting to relaxing on volcanic beaches, there’s something for everyone on Santorini.
The blue domes themselves can be found in the form of the Anastasi Church on an unnamed road. This ecclesiastical building has been famous by the blue cupolas that crown the whitewashed walls and can be reached if you turn left down the pathway just before Patisserie Medevio on the road of Nik. Nomikou.
How to take photos of Oia, Greece
When it comes to taking photos of the blue domes of Santorini, you should know that despite what you may have seen on Instagram (and other travel publications), both the blue domes of Santorini, as well as the rooftops surrounding them are strictly private and off limits. Do not cross the barriers and don’t purposefully ignore the ‘private signs’!
Next, as you may well imagine, the area surrounding the blue rooftops can get pretty busy! This is especially true of peak season (i.e. May through to October), and especially so during school holidays and at weekends. The quietest time in Oia is during the winter and early on the day mid-week.
As such, if you want to capture the best of the domes without the crowds, then you should head to Oia as early in the day as possible (preferably at sunrise so as to capture your photos with the best lighting). If you really want to beat the crowds, consider staying in Oia. Check the best accommodation prices for Oia here.
Fancy photographing a blue dome of Santorini outside of Oia? Well, another of the more photographed locations on the island is that of Imerovigli in Fira. For further information about taking beautiful travel photos, check out my ultimate travel photography gear guide.
Things to do in Oia close to the blue domes
After snapping a picture of the blue domes, it’s not time to leave yet! Instead, there are a number of other things worth doing in Oia, for any kind of budget. Aside from sampling the local cuisine at the ever-so-chic Red Bicycle Restaurant, be sure to pop into the beautiful bookshop of Atlantis Books and scout out the Cycladic windmills on the edge of Oia village.
Finally, if you’re looking for a memorable experience while in Santorini, you might consider taking a sunset cruise like this Small Group Sailing Cruise on a Catamaran. Including a BBQ meal, drinks, towels, and lasting for five hours, there’s WiFi onboard and snorkelling equipment is available. Finally, this Traditional Santorini Sightseeing Bus Tour includes the opportunity to enjoy Oia at sunset.