A number of cultural events and festivals are staged by the islanders especially during the summer season. Many religious events are continued or have been revived also as attractions for the tourists who visit Santorini.
Greek Easter does not always fall on the same date as that in most countries, as the Greek Orthodox Church uses the ancient Julian calendar, rather than the Gregorian calendar. It is the holiest of Greek holidays and it also a celebration of spring. During Easter in Greece, people leave the cities to spend the holiday in the countryside, usually in their ancestral villages and islands. Santorini is one of the very popular destinations for Greeks to spend a traditional Easter, with plenty of good food and wine.
The Santorini Ifaisteia festival takes place in August and includes various cultural events, concerts, traditional dance performances and a "volcanic" firework display.
The International Music Festival is held in early September (2 weeks). Famous artists from all over the world perform at the Nomikos Conference Centre in Fira. Another music festival is the Jazz Festival in Kamari, some 10 km from Fira, which lasts for three days in July and includes performances by both Greek and international musicians.
Other festivals tend to be of a more religious nature. Of these particular events, the most notable fall in September and are held in Oia (8th), Perissa (14th) and then in Fira (17th).
Each of the many different churches spread around the island of Santorini have their very own celebrations relating to their patron saints, and if you are around on one of these day, expect to find market stalls, Greek dancing and music, and plenty of food and wine to go around. These festivals include the Profitis Ilias, which takes place annuals on July 20 in Fira, the Feast of the Saviour"s Metamorphosis in Akrotiri on the 6th of August and the Feast of the Virgin Mary on the 15th of August.