5 November 2008


After Chania in Crete we traveled by early morning speed ferry (not good after a night of Ouzo...lets just say I spent a bit of time admiring the toilet on the ferry) to the stunning Santorini.

This Island is probably one of the most photographed places in Greece and has the classic white-washed walls and blue-domed roofs that you see in the Greek travel guides. We stayed in Fira (or Thira) and were a walk away from the winding streets of the town. It really is very stunning and looks amazing from pretty much any angle. It is built on top of a caldera (basically the large ocean-filled hole that remained after a volcanic eruption formed Santorini into a group of islands rather than just the one large island) so that views out over the ocean and to the volcanic islands looks all the more spectacular. Fira had many excellent restaurants and lovely shops full of jewellery, sponges, art work, ceramics and clothing. It was great getting dressed up in the evening and wandering around the streets.

In Fira we went on a ferry trip over to Nea Kameni the volcano island and climbed it to see the craters and steam-vents. The landscape on the island was bizarre and the trek was very hot. We also went swimming in the hot springs (really just a muddy bog hole!) of Paleia Kameni. From the port where we caught the ferry you can take a donkey to the top of the caldera. They were whipped by millions of donkey keepers and seemed to go very slowly. I loved all the donkeys in Greece and can’t wait to have my own. They wear beaded headbands and necklaces and there were heaps of them.

We hired a quad-bike in Santorini which allowed us to hoon around the island and we visited every corner we could get to. In the north of the main island is Oia (’ee-ah’). It is known for its fantastic sunrises. Ben and I loved it here and would have preferred to stay up here than in Fira. It was so cute and picturesque...the maiu problem being fighting our way through hordes of cruise-ship passengers who all seem to turn up at the same time and are all generally fairly annoying (old people clinging to each other and stumbling up and down stairs while buying everything that they can lay their hands on and yelling out loudly about the stairs/food/views....etc!). We also went swimming at beaches on the west, south and north.


View out over Fira with the caldera wall on the right


On a wall in Oia, looking out over the gorgeous blue ocean. I’m holding a helmet for our quad bike


Ben in Oia


Oia with some classic windmills in the background.




Donkeys on the walk from the harbour up the caldera to Fira.


View from the volcano island (Nea Kameni) across to Fira on top of the Caldera. You can see one of the many cruise-ships that stopped at Santorini in the middle.


Ben on the quad bike...lots of fun!!



Auntyjan said...

Once again beautiful photos. I am quite green with envy. Don't bag the oldies too much - sounds like Dad and me. xxx

Nise said...

WOw it looks so beautiful! You look nice and tanned as well:)
We forgot to buy mud masks in Rotorua but we did go to the polynesian spa which was so nice and relaxing. We went in the evening. It was so nice with the stean rising everywhere and the sun setting.