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Transfer Options from Santorini Old Port to Fira

Arriving on Santorini, one of the most famous Greek islands, known for its stunning sunsets and scenery, white, red and black sand beaches, impressive traditional houses, balconies with views on the volcano and busy nightlife can be quite overwhelming. It is important to know your options when arriving on the island, as to make the most of your trip. If you wish to visit the town of Fira, the capital of Santorini and the biggest and most cosmopolitan settlement of the island, you have two transfer options; you can either take a cable car or a donkey ride. The most traditional, and more controversial option, is to take a donkey ride up to the top of the mountain. It will take around 35 minutes and costs €5. The more modern option is to take the cable car. The cable car takes only 13 minutes and also costs €5.

Welcome Pickups offers meet and greet services and a friendly introduction to Santorini at the same price as a regular taxi. Click here to see the cost.

Comparison of the options

Cable Car €10 13min 06:30–23:00
Donkeys €10 35min 07:00–22:00

How to get from Santorini Old Port to Fira by cable car?

The safest and most comfortable way to reach the town of Fira from Santorini’s Old Port is by cable car. Tickets cost €5 per person, and the cable cars leave every 20 minutes. The cable cars run all day from 06:00 to 21:00.
Taking a cable car up to Fira is a great way to admire the amazing view of the Caldera cliffs, the island’s turquoise sea and the volcano from an altitude of 220 metres. Also, arriving in only 13 minutes, gives you more time to explore the beautiful town and make the most of the small shops the town has to offer.

It is important to know that on very windy days, the cable cars close for safety reasons.

How much is a cable car from Santorini Old Port to Fira?

An adult one-way trip to Fira on the cable car costs €5, €2.50 for children under the age of 5 and €2.50 if you are carrying large luggage.



Trip Duration

13 minutes

The average waiting time is 20 minutes.


Cable cars run from 06:30 to 23:00 from Santorini's Old Port

Where do I get it from?

When you exit the ferry on the cruise ships dock at the Old Port, you will need to follow the road and turn left towards the Santozeum. After a few metres you will see the cable car station in front of you.


Taking a cable car from Santorini Old Port to Fira is definitely the most convenient option. The journey is quick and the cable cars run fairly frequently. However, during the high season in summer, the waiting time can be very long because of the extremely long queues.

Editor’s Note

The views from the cable cars are spectacular. It is an excellent way to start your Santorini holiday.

Useful Tips

The last cable car trip during the summer months is at 22:40.
All the revenues from the cable car go to Santorini's municipality.
During high season, there can be a very long queue for the cable cars to Fira, due to the many cruise ship passengers.
The cable cars run less frequently during the winter months.

How to get from Santorini Old Port to Fira by donkey

Taking a donkey ride from Santorini’s Old Port to the town of Fira is definitely the most controversial and the least comfortable option, although it used to be the most traditional way to travel. A donkey ride takes around 35 minutes for the donkeys to climb the 586 steps to Fira, and tickets cost €5.

How much is a donkey ride from Santorini's Old Port to Fira?

Donkeys are able to take one person at a time, or your luggage, if you wish to walk along side the donkey. A one-way donkey ride costs €5 (per donkey).



Trip Duration

35 minutes

There is an average waiting time of 10 minutes.


Donkeys are available from 07:00 to 22:00 at Santorini's Old Port

Where do I get it from?

After you disembark the ferry, head to your left and you will see the line of donkeys with their ‘drivers’ at the foot of the mountain.


Taking a donkey from Santorini’s Old Port to the town of Fira is dangerous, slow and uncomfortable. They also do not have the nicest smell, especially under the Greek summer heat and donkey rides definitely raise a few animal rights issues. However, it is a method that has been used by locals for over 50 years.

Editor’s Note

If you don't wish to actually ride the donkey, and fancy a walk up the mountain, you can let the donkey carry your luggage up for you whilst you walk alongside it.

Useful Tips

You can pay the donkey 'driver' directly in cash.
During peak season, it is common to have five cruise ships dock at the old port the same morning, this makes waiting for a donkey ride very long.
The mountain is very steep and the ride up may be scary for some, it is also not recommended for children, as it is quite dangerous.

Welcome Pickups transfer

Welcome Pickups

Book a trained, English-speaking taxi driver to pick you up at the same price as a regular cab from the line

If you feel more relaxed knowing that somebody is waiting for you, you may as well book a Welcome Pickups transfer. As soon as you arrive at the airport you will be greeted by your driver. He will be waiting for you at the terminal of your arrival with a sign that has your name on it. Your driver will help you out with your luggage and together you will make your way to the vehicle. While he is driving you to your accommodation, the driver can give you some tips and recommendations on what to do during your holidays in Santorini. Our drivers are hand-picked and speak fluent English. No need to worry about miscommunication issues that you may face with the local taxi drivers regarding your destination. Relax and enjoy your ride.

Best drivers

Hand-picked english-speaking drivers

Flight monitoring

Drivers are always on time

Quality support

24/7 email & phone support

Cancel up to 24h before and get a refund

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Welcome Pickups has a Net Safety Score of 99 of 100

We’ve introduced a metric indicating how safe travellers feel when using our services during the COVID-19 pandemic. After every ride, we ask each traveller to leave a review.

  • 20 minute gap between transfers

  • Regular Car Sanitisation

  • Contactless ride

  • Sanitiser in every car

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