Santorini, or also known as Thera or Thíra in Greek, is the island volcano cuddled by the Aegean Sea, often eternalized by painters and poets, thanks to its whitewashed homes clinging to the cliffside and picture-perfect spot for amazing sunsets.
Santorini, the priceless gem of the Aegean, is actually a group of islands consisting of Thíra, Thirassiá, Asproníssi, Palea and Nea Kaméni and it is a part of the Cyclades islands in the Aegean Sea, a very popular holiday destinations, known for their colorful beaches, archeological sites, rugged landscapes and traditional blue-and-white stucco towns overlooking the sea.
The whole complex of islands that form Santorini, is a result of an intensive volcano activity, precisely twelve huge eruptions occurred, one every 20,000 years approximately, and each violent eruption caused the collapse of the volcano’s central part creating a large crater. What is very interesting is that however, the volcano managed to recreate itself over and over again. The volcano is the only one in the world whose craters are in the sea and it is still active today. Imagine that the whitewashed houses of Santorini’s 2 principals towns: Firá and Oia, cling to cliffs above one of the underwater crater.
The last big eruption occurred 3,600 years ago during the Minoan Age, when igneous material such as ash, pumice and lava stones, covered the three islands Thíra, Thirassiá and Asproníssi. Unfortunately the eruption destroyed the flourishing local prehistoric civilization, evidence of which was found during the excavations of a settlement at Akrotíri. As a result of the eruption and due to the gases emerging from the interior of the volcano, a huge “vacuum” underneath was created, provoking the collapse of the central part and the creation of an enormous “pot”, today’s Caldera, with a size of 8×4 km and a depth of up to 400m below sea level.
Most of the time nature is incredible. Even with the active volcano and with all this eruptions, today, Santorini is considered to be the most attractive place for a romantic getaway in Greece, as there are not many places in the world where you can enjoy irresistible clear waters while perched on the rim of a massive active volcano in the middle of the sea!
If you are a foodie lover, Santorini will not disappoint you either. From traditional products like cherry tomatoes, white eggplants, fava, caper and “hloró tyrí”, a special kind of fresh goat cheese found on the island, delicious Greek salads, Greek yogurt that everybody knows, to not speak about their sweets like bougatsa, halva, baklava, accompanied by exceptional wines produced from grapes grown in the volcanic soil of the island, a truly culinary paradise.
Santorini’s beaches are impressive too with white, red or black sand or volcanic pebbles, spectacular rock formations and impressive lunar landscapes, wonderful treasures from where you can enjoy the deep blue waters.
When: Best time to visit Santorini with good weather is May to early November with July and August the hottest months.
Santorini, can be reached by plane or by ship from Piraeus.
What a picturesque and charming island. I think a once-in-a-lifetime experience. A true pearl of the Aegean and definitely my lovely Greek followers can confirm it 😊
But since I’m looking for my cottage by the sea clinging to the cliffside, this may be the perfect spot 😉