10/2007 - Greece, Santorini

7-day trip to Greece – Island of Santorini (Cyclades) – visiting the Caldera, Fira (or Thira) Island, Nea Kamani, Pyrgos, Perivolas, Oia, Port of Ammaudi, Koloumbos, Pori, Imerovigli, Vourvoulos, Athinios Port, Kamari, ancient Thera, Kamari, Perissa, Akrotiri, Emborio, Analipsi.

I want to represent the island of Santorini through Caldera, the impressive and spectacular natural amphitheatre of this island, which belongs to the Cyclades archipelago. The volcano’s cone is located on the island Nea Kamani; the sea bathes the high cliff (its high varies from 100 to 300 meters) originated with the split of the island caused by an earthquake.

The town Firá is swamped by tourist shops , some with interesting craft objects.
We started the tour of the island from its most significant town: Firá (also called Thira). We can see it in the photo-gallery with a shot taken from the village Pyrgos . Over the town of Firá there is the one of Imerovigli, another characteristic village. Santorini harbour can be reached on foot or by mule and, recently, also with a modern cable way .

In Thira there are the notable churches of Agios Ioannis and Agios Minas .

We stayed in Perivolas , a suburb of the town of Oia, the second largest town of Santorini. The homonymous village , degrading on the Caldera, is characterized by well- furnished accommodations carved in the rocky slope.

Canaves Village was close to our village. It deserves to be mentioned.

Oia is a very interesting town from a photographic point of view, both for the landscapes and for its characteristic views .

The sunset viewing in Oia is spectacular. So, there are several tourists who get there just to see it because of the wonderful panorama with its typical windmills and the underlying characteristic Ammoudi Cove .

In the particular Harbour of Ammoudi , reachable through a very long flight of steps or by car, there are several restaurants. We went back to eat to the Taverna Katina . It is excellent its quality-price ratio. We began the visit of the island starting right from the beach of Ammoudi . We drove along the outer road that runs along the sea. We met the small beach of Koloumbos and the nearby harbour of Pori. A few kilometres further, going up the steep road that leads to the 336-meter high town of Imerovigli, we crossed the small town of Vourvoulos in which the Church Agios Artemios stands. It was the day of the Annual Festival (October 20th ) and the town was decorated for the festivity as illustrated in the photo-gallery.

From the Imerovigli Village, located in the central and highest point of the Caldera, we could enjoy a wonderful panorama .
The houses, built on the edge of a precipice , seem almost to be “suspended in space” . So I hope I have been able to describe it fully.

We left the town of Firá and we continued towards Pyrgos . With its 350-meter altitude it is the village located on the highest position of all Santorini islands. The houses are close to each other and narrow labyrinthine streets lead up to the top of the hill where there is the ” Kasteli ” .

Following the road towards Kamari we met the Church Agios Charalambos . Soon after, always on the right side of the road, the pretty little church of Exo Gonia , surrounded by a small cemetery. Downstream, in an isolated position at the foot of Profitis Ilias , the highest mountain of Santorini, we visited the Church Panagia Episkopi , a Byzantine building which is considered the most beautiful and important of the island.

On the outskirts of Kamari, a narrow porphyry road climbs , with an endless series of switchbacks , up to the 263 meters of the Sellada mountain pass . Up there, on the rocky peak Mesa Vounó , it was founded in 900 BC the city of Ancient Thera . At its foot , near the sea , there is the town of Kamari, with its beautiful waterfront and a wide volcanic sandy beach .
We came back to the road that follows the Caldera and visited Megalochori. It is a small picturesque village with two large pyramidal bell towers that cross the main road; there are many beautiful views .

Perissa , whose picture was taken from the top of the Ancient Thera in Sellada, is the second largest sea resort of the island. It has three beautiful beaches that follow one another : Perissa, Perivolos and Agios Georgios.
Returning to the village of Akrotiri we met Emborio .
On the ridge of the mountain Gravilos we found eight old windmills much more impressive than those of the modern Analipsi . With great surprise we found the archaeological site of Akrotiri closed for ….repairs. Then , we visited the Church of Agios Nikolaos Mavrorachidi positioned in front of the sea and carved into the red rock; beyond the church, along a path that follows the coast , we reached the beach Kokkini Paralia ( Red Beach ). Proceeding further, it is possible to visit the Aspri Paralia ( white beach ) accessible only by sea.

In Firá do not miss a visit to the archaeological museums the new and the Old one.
The New Archaeological Museum is dedicated to Akrotiri whereas the Old Museum to Ancient Thera.
During our visit it was also open an exhibition of three-dimensional photographic reproductions of the frescoes of Akrotiri.
– New Archaeological Museum with remains of Akrotiri which date back to seventeenth century BC
– Photographic exhibition of the frescoes of Akrotiri with three-dimensional photos

– Old Archaeological Museum with remains of Ancient Thera which date back to eleventh century BC
– Museum of Gyzis Palace with remains of Akrotiri which date back to seventeenth century BC

I conclude my trip to the Island of Santorini presenting a gallery in which I collected photos of the many small and typical churches of the island.


The photos of this trip can be seen in the musical slideshow through the following link:  www.viaggiaresempre.it – Isola di Santorini