If your idea of a perfect day entails pottering around an impossibly quaint foreign town, soaking up the sun and drinking in the views, then Thira will not disappoint. There are plenty of good restaurants serving typically Greek food – well you have to try a Greek salad and some local houmous since you’re here! – as well as plenty of bars, where a glass of the excellent local wine (more of which later) will only enhance the views.
Start your Greek Odyssey With A Cable Car Ride!
If you’re feeling adventurous and hungry for spectacular views then the cable car ride to or from Thira affords an amazing panorama back across the caldera over the cruise ships and the other islands of the archipelago. This may be one of the Aegean’s most vertiginous rides, but it is also one of the most beautiful too. If you’re headed downhill you can be in the delightful Old Harbour in minutes and you’re close to the beaches too. And don’t let the black sand put you off, the beaches aren’t dirty they’re simply made of volcanic sand that happens to be black! A dip in the Aegean is the perfect way to work up an appetite for a snack in one of many beachside tavernas.
Visit Akrotiri, Santorini’s Very Own Pompeii
On a Greek island the ancient past is seldom far behind you and Santorini is no exception. If you want to discover how the ancient islanders lived then an excursion to Akrotiri is a must. In the middle of the second millennium BC this thriving Minoan settlement was buried in a catastrophic eruption. Like Pompeii, the lava and ash that buried the Bronze Age town also preserved it. Today’s visitors can marvel at elaborate frescoes, pottery, furniture and even some of the buildings that have been gradually been uncovered.
If you’re simply headed for Thira, you can still get a flavour of ancient Akrotiri in the archaeological museum that holds many interesting artefacts from the dig.
Santorini Wine – A Gift From The Volcanic Soil!
Santorini’s volcanic legacy has its beneficent side too, and it’s hard to imagine anywhere in the world that has such a unique terroir as this little island in the Cyclades. Wine has been made on the islands for centuries by the ancient Greeks and the Romans but a real step change occurred in the Middle Ages. These days the wines of Santorini are highly sought after for their unique lemony, mineral quality. With simple, grilled fish – something you’ll find plenty of - Santorini’s white wines are unsurpassed.
So Beautiful, So Scenic And So Very Santorini
Visiting Santorini is a rather special experience. If you can, pay a visit by cruise ship as this will allow you to properly view the island in situ, nestling in the midst of the caldera with its neighbours. Now, whether you give much credence to the myth that Santorini holds the key to the fabled city of Atlantis is probably neither here nor there; when all’s said and done, this is a stunningly lovely place. Finally, if you’re contemplating Greek island cruises without a stop in Santorini, then perhaps you should think again?