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Travel info for Santorini
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Welcome to Santorini!

ATTRACTIONS


- Caldera - Fira. The entire west part of the island, where caldera was shaped, is basically an attraction itself. The capital of Santorini, Fira, is nested on the edge of the caldera, boasting the distinctive Cycladic architecture and capturing the eye even before someone gets off the boat. Going up and down the volcanic cliffs with the cable car is an unforgettable experience.
- Imerovigli - Skaros. Imerovigli is situated just 2 kilometers north of Fira, but due to the development of the capital they are now unified. It’s much more quiet and has an amazing view since it’s built on a small natural extension of the volcanic rocks. Exactly in front of Imerovigli, visitors will get the chance to see on the west side the famous Skaros: a rock formation that looks like it’s floating. This massive rock remained almost cut off from Caldera after the major explosion of the volcano on 1650 BC. Remnants of the Venetian castle of the 13th century are still visible atop this rock.
- Oia. Words cannot even begin to describe the emotions someone feels while in Oia; this dramatically beautiful traditional settlement, situated about 12 kilometers north of Fira. Oia cannot be compared to any other place in Greece, as its ambiance and flair are totally unique. Its vague white and okra architectural forms look perfectly blended. The cave houses (about half way carved on the soft volcanic rock), the blue church domes and the colorful windows hug the northern edges of Caldera. The fame of Oia’s sunset has surpassed the boundaries of Greece. Millions of people gather every afternoon to the best spot, on the remnants of the Venetian castle, to watch it.
- Akrotiri. The prehistoric settlement of Akrotiri is situated on the southernmost point of Caldera, about 14 kilometers from Fira. The once booming Minoan city, which was deserted by its inhabitants few days after the 1650 BC gigantic volcano explosion, was entirely covered by ash. So, whatever was left from the explosion was preserved intact. The findings from the excavations are truly amazing and spread in an area of about 200 acres (residences, public buildings, warship places, manufactures, artifacts, clay pots etc.)
- The Museum of Prehistoric Thira. A remarkable museum with impressive exhibits from the excavations in Akrotiri and from other places on the island operates in Fira. There is also a designated hall, which brings visitors closer to the island’s geology; the basic parameter that defines its unique beauty.
- Nea and Palaia Kammeni. The almost entirely black little island in the middle of caldera, between Thirasia and Thira, can be visited for hiking or for an exotic swimming experience in Nea Kammeni, with the muddy hot waters. It was created by various lava streams from the medium size explosions that took place within the last 440 years. The last ones occurred after the smaller volcano explosion of 1950. The smaller, lighter colored island next to it is Palaia Kammeni, which was created by older lavas and ashes about 2066 years old!

ROUTES

Imerovigli - Oia: Ten amazing kilometers through steep cliffs and barren areas with black, okra, reddish, white and orange stones in various formations and combinations. A magnificent route of major geological interest. We would suggest you enjoy it in the light of day and not just in the afternoon, when you are heading for the ever famous sunset.

Pyrgos – Profitis Ilias: From the village of Pyrgos with the medieval ambiance (6 kilometers south of Fira), a 4 kilometer ascending route brings us to the highest point of the island, on the peak of Mount Profitis Ilias (altitude 597 meters), the only limestone piece of land in Thira. With the appropriate weather and light conditions, visitors will be able to see all the way to Crete, Anafi, Sikinos, Folegandros and the eternal Aegean blue!

Akrotiri: This is a dirt road route which requires 4x4 vehicles and careful drivers. From the modern settlement of Akrotiri starts a dirt road of about 5 kilometers, which reaches the westernmost part of the south side of Caldera, offering unique views of the entire bay, as well as of Nea and Palaia Kammeni. Pay attention at the intersections. For the first 3 kilometers we follow the coastline.

ROAD TIPS 

• Nine out of twelve months there is no special recommendation for the peculiarities or the difficulties someone might experience while driving on the island. From mid-June until mid-September however, the traffic is too heavy for the road network of Santorini. We need to be extra careful of the unpredictable drivers with the rented or private scooters and cars. Overtaking is prohibited almost everywhere.
• No cars or other vehicles are allowed in Oia.
• Fira face a big traffic and parking problem during the summer months.
• The drive to and from the port is extremely dangerous, with many abrupt turns and steep cliffs.
• Due to many reasons (intense use, worn out, weather etc.) the road network of Santorini is slippery. Finally, the visibility at night, as well as the road signs are not adequate. 


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