The Greek island of Santorini is simply stunning – here’s why

The island of Santorini, Greece, is the result of one of the largest volcanic eruptions in recorded history…

santorini sunset

I left the van in Athens and took an 8-hour boat ride with my family to check it out…

This island is well known for it’s spectacular sunsets, fascinating geological history and stupidly expensive cups of tea. This is definitely a tourist island, but for a good reason!

Santorini Facts:

  • It is the remains of a huge volcanic eruption that wiped out the earliest settlements on what was a single island
  • The water at the black beach is warmer due to the heat absorbing black lava rock
  • There’s also red beach and white beach
  • One of the largest volcanic eruptions in recorded history (7 on the VEI scale out of 8!) – 4 times the power of Krakatoa!
  • Probably led to the collapse of the Minoan civilization on the island of Crete (110km south), through the massive tsunami created after the eruption
  • One of only two locations in Europe which has a hot dessert climate
  • Thought to be the site of Plato’s legend of Atlantis – the ancient civilisation, which submerged over 9500 years ago
  • The volcanic ash soil makes for some really tasty Tomatoes and other extra-ordinary produce

There’s loads of stuff interesting stuff about Santorini. If you’re interested, watch the video: National Geographic video: ‘Santorini The Doomsday Volcano

Exploring the island of Santorini in 9 photographs:

Santorini Donkey trail to the old port
This is the Donkey trail, leading 300m down the cliff from the main town, Fira, to the old port.
Old port, Santorini
Old port. Got the boat ride from here, 5km across the caldera (volcanic cauldron) to the island of Nea Kameni
Nea Kameni island
Nea Kameni – the small uninhabited island, formed from volcanic lava and ash. The cliff of Santorini in the background
volcanic island of Nea Kameni
The still-active volcanic island of Nea Kameni has an area of only 3.4km. It is closely monitored and protected scientific site. This island has many sulphur vents and is made from boulders of lava rock. The last small eruption was in 1950
The Byzantine Castle Ruins in the village of Oia, Santorini
Best place to be at sunset – The Byzantine Castle Ruins in the village of Oia (Northern tip of the island)
Pink sunset Santorini
The sky goes this deep pink colour every night!
Black beach Santorini
The black beach on a cloudy day. The water is warmer here due to the colour – even in December
The cliff top town of Oia in Santorini
The town of Oia – 1 of 4 towns perched on the caldera cliff top
The highest point of Santorini
The highest point of Santorini, in the south, looking north. You can see the full 18km stretch of the island. The narrowest point is just 1km
Old windmill at sunset in Santorini
There are some really fascinating cloud formations here at sunset. A totally different show every day

If you get the chance to go here, you should! it’s a beautiful, fascinating and slightly surreal island.

According to Wikipedia, Santorini was ranked the worlds top island from the BBC and Travel+leisure+magazine. Yeah it is good, but I haven’t seen the others yet.

Have you been? is it the worlds top island?

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