Santorini, one of the best-known of Cyclades, differs from the other islands in the group thanks to its geological morphology, the result of action by a volcano now dormant. The landscape on the western side of the island, where towering cliffs crowned by tiny and blindingly-white houses plunge straight into the depths of the sea. East side of the island hemmed with vast beaches.
The capital of Santorini, Fira, is reachable from landing place, Skala, on foot or on donkey-back. For those who wish to avoid the hundreds of steps, there is a funicular railway. Fira is very attractive, with winding narrow streets, arcades and breathtaking view to the Kamenes, the two volcanic islets of black stone.
Ancient Thira is a site of great archaeological interest which was occupied by Phoenicians, Dorians, Romans and Byzantines. Down the centre of the city runs the Sacred way. The buildings include groups of houses, theatres, market places, baths, the residence of Ptolemy Euergetes, tombs of the Archaic and Classical periods and Early Christian remains.
The site of Akrotiri has yielded the remains of Minoan city destroyed around 1500 BC by an eruption of the volcano on Thira. The old-world village of Ia, 11 km to the north of Fira, is a place of transcendent beauty. The irresistible appeal of Ia lies in its little houses hewn out of the soft rock, its neoclassical mansions, narrow paved alleys and gorgeous view out to sea.
The striking landscape, the peculiarities of the natural environment, the unusual architecture, outstanding monuments and luxury hotels and resorts of Santorini attract very large numbers of visitors in the summer - so many, in fact, that the excellent tourist amenities of the island can only just cope with them.
Luxury hotels: 1
A Vedema Resort