Santorini is a magical island full of curiosities. among all things what to see in greece, getting to know the Cyclades must be on your list. And Santorini is one of the best greek islands! It is magical not only for its sunsets, beaches and landscapes, but also for the fun facts what’s hidding. For example, did you know that it originated from one of the wildest volcanic eruptions in history? In this post we tell you 15 curiosities of Santorini that will surprise you.
15 CURIOSITIES OF SANTORINI
1. It was born from the eruption of a volcano, one of the most impressive curiosities of Santorini
Did you know that Santorini is the remains of a large volcanic eruption? This fact annihilated the first settlers and is considered one of the largest volcanic eruptions in history. The Thera eruption, as it is known, occurred 3,600 years ago.
As a consequence of this eruption, the ancient city of Akrotiri was covered with volcanic ash. In addition, it caused a gigantic tsunami that could have even affected Cretathe largest island in the southern Aegean Sea. The traces of the force of the tsunami are still evident in the cliffs of the island.
This catastrophe left a huge caldera surrounded by volcanic ash deposits hundreds of meters below. Thus was born this dazzling island! So the entire island of Santorini is actually a volcanic rock.
2. And the volcano is still active, one of the most impressive Santorini curiosities
Believe it or not, this large volcano still active. It is even the most active sector of the southern Aegean volcanic arc. The last eruption was in 1956 and from 2011 to 2012 some tremors were felt. Scientists have found evidence of at least twelve large eruptions.
Most the boiler is submerged so you can make a boat excursion about her. You can also visit the Nea Kameni volcano. There you will walk to the top to see the crater and its moon-like shape. Or if you prefer to stay below you can enjoy the hot springs that are around. They are a sign that the volcano is still active!
3. Atlantis is possibly located on Santorini
The mythical land of Atlantis has been sought after for centuries. There are those who believe that one of the possible locations for Atlantis is Santorini. The reason is that the island was partially destroyed by a volcanic eruption that coincides with parts of Plato’s reflections on Atlantis.
On the other hand, traces of ancient civilizations have been found on Santorini such as Akrotiri, a Minoan civilization. It is one of the most mysterious Santorini curiosities!
Guide to visit Santorini:
4. The island has been the protagonist of some works
Santorini’s charm has inspired some artists from different branches. For example, they have made books and movies about her. Did you know that this was the filming location for the famous production Tomb Raider in 2003? Angelina Jolie herself was the main star. The actress was so dazzled by the island that, together with her ex-husband, Brad Pitt, they made the island their home for a few months.
In addition, other works have been made such as the film “Santorini azul”, “Amores de Verano” and the book by Louis Candlish “Since I don’t have you”. So, if he has inspired many, surely you will also fall for his charm.
5. And many weddings…
Prior to the pandemic, many couples chose Santorini as your perfect place to get married. Even before 2020 between 1,000 and 4,000 weddings took place each year on the island. Incredible! You will even come across some newlyweds having their wedding photo session among the beautiful streets of the island. And it is that Santorini is as beautiful as it is romantic!
6. Santorini has beaches of all colors!
Santorini is a paradise on earth. The beaches that it has are incomparable, especially for how they look. Due to volcanic eruptions, the island has red, black and white beaches. There is the famous Red Beach, also black and white beaches like Perissa.
7. And spectacular wines!
Santorini’s climate is dry and hot. This gives you a great advantage in getting the best quality of wine. The grapes are grown on the area of land called “blade“. Many say that Santorini wines they get the best flavor in the world thanks to their volcanic eruptions, that made their land rich in minerals.
Despite being a small wine industry, there is a great variety of grapes in Santorini to be exploited. You will be able to find white wines made from well-drained volcanic soil. So on your way through Santorini you should ask for at least one glass of local wine. You will want to repeat! On the island there are several wineries for tastings, one of the best is Santo Wines.
8. You will see the best sunsets in Greece
Every sunset on the island is magical! As the time approaches, you will notice that many tourists start looking for the ideal place to admire the colors in the sky. No matter where you see it from, in Santorini you will live unforgettable sunsets. Even if you ask any Greek where you can see the best sunsets in the country, the answer will be Santorini.
An experience on another level will be watching the sunset from a Santorini boat tour. You will not regret!
9. Why are all the houses white? One of the curiosities of Santorini that you cannot miss
Probably the image of the white houses and blue domes are the symbol of the Cyclades. Why do landscapes look like this? There are many reasons!
In addition to the fact that white repels heat, this trend is said to have arisen during a cholera outbreak in 1938. The lime used to paint the houses contained limestone. This component is a powerful disinfectant and at the time there were not many options on the market. So the citizens Greeks whitewashed their houses to sanitize them and reduce the spread of cholera.
Also, there are those who argue that the colors of the houses were mandatory during the military dictatorship in 1967. Authorities believed that the colors, based on the flag, would inspire patriotism and reflect Greek nationalism. However, in 1974 a law was passed that required houses to be painted in those colors. No matter the reason, today the combination of these colors completely steals the show in Santorini!
10. And among all these houses there are 450 churches, one of the most interesting curiosities of Santorini
Greece is a country very religious with strong roots in the orthodox faith. The number of churches that exist on an island as small as Santorini already says it! In just 90 square kilometers you can visit 450 iglesias. It’s crazy! Some are in the heart of the towns, but there are others that are hidden in cliffs, on the shores of beaches or submerged in the forest, some are even private. Churches everywhere!
These buildings form the perfect landscape on the island. You will see the beautiful photos that you will take in each corner!
11. The island has had more than one name
Today the island is known as Santorini, but arriving at this name was not an easy task. It is said that during the Stone age and before the volcanic eruption it was known as Strongoliwhich comes from the word storgilli that means round island.
But that is not all! In centuries past, the island used the name of Darlings. Today the official name is Thera although, it is also known as Santorini. The latter arose during the 13th century from the Venetians. Make reference to “Santa Irini”. Many believe that Saint Irene comes from a local church, as part of the island’s religious roots. One of the curiosities of Santorini that you should know!
12. Many know it as the island of donkeys, one of the saddest curiosities of Santorini
In Santorini you will see donkeys everywhere. It is even believed that there are more donkeys than people! But the sad thing is that they are used to transport people and heavy cargo up the highest slopes of the island. And it’s unfortunate because the conditions in which these animals live are not adequate.
Us we completely avoid using this type of transfers. So we recommend that you do the same. The best thing is that you do the walks yourself and if you think that later you will not be able to climb, better not go. You will enjoy every step and you will prevent these animals from suffering.
13. Santorini had no electricity until 1960
The island until recently was not as we know it today. The bars, restaurants, beautiful pools and luxurious hotels are practically new. Actually, Santorini was able to develop thanks to the wave of tourists that began to receive.
Prior to 1960 and the arrival of electricity, the inhabitants they worked humbly as fishermen, they barely had donkeys and mules to move around. But looking at the island today it is impossible to imagine that it was like that. It is one of the most impressive Santorini curiosities!
14. The humble caves are now a luxury for tourists, the most surprising among the curiosities of Santorini
Did you know the first houses in Santorini were built in caves? Although it is hard to believe, these were made cutting the rocks left by the volcano. Amazing! These cave houses still exist and are very present. Today they have been converted into lodgings or luxury residences with infinity pools that offer a magical landscape. Canaves Oia It is one of the most spectacular accommodations to enjoy this experience.
15. You’ll have to queue for the prettiest photos!
And to finish with the Santorini curiosities, pay close attention to this one. We already know that it is one of the most beautiful Greek islands. But you should also keep in mind that, to take photos at the most emblematic sites, you will have to stand in a long line! Peak time is before, during and after sunset. And is not for less! If Santorini is already beautiful because of its white houses and blue domes, the landscape becomes luxurious at that time.
If you want to avoid that endless queue in the intense heatWe recommend you get up early, just before dawn. Even at that time there are already people taking photos, but fewer than in the afternoon. So you’ll have to get up early for your perfect photo in Santorini. The one who wants light blue, that costs him, never better said!