Santorini is truly a beautiful island. Rick Steves says that if you can’t take a beautiful picture here, you should throw your camera away. The white buildings, the blue trim, the blue church domes, the water all around, the buildings clinging to the steep cliffs, the paths and stairs going in all directions, and the colorful plants accenting the patios, all make for beautiful shots in all directions. There is a path on the caldera side that traverses the length of the island. We walked that path from our hotel into the main city of Fira.The path was primarily downhill but had many steps and some uphill portions.These are a few examples of the patios we saw along the way.We never lacked for blue domed churches. There were five cruise ships in town which made Fira very congested when we reached it. You can see three of them in the middle photo. You also see that Susan tried to fit in with the blue theme.We visited the Prehistoric Museum which housed artifacts from 2000 to 1700 BCE that were recovered from the Akrotiri Minoan archaeological site on Santorini. The top photo is what they called a “duck pitcher”. At first I wondered what they were talking about, but then I noticed the pitcher had the profile of a duck with an eye painted at the appropriate spot. We all marveled that many of these 3700 year old pieces looked like something you might buy at a craft store today. The bottom fresco is of blue monkeys which may have been brought to the island from Egypt.Our final stop in Fira was the Orthodox Metropolitan Cathedral.
We then took a public bus to the city of Oia, which we can see in the distance from our balcony.It had an abundance of interesting architecture and views.There were the ruins of a castle at the end of town.A few buildings apparently didn’t get the memo about the all white exterior, but that just added to the interest of the town.The main Greek Orthodox Church in Oia.
On our second full day we visited the black sand beach and the Santos winery.We did a short walk on the beach, but it was rather soft and part gravel; so we spent most of our time exploring the town.There was this church in the town.And this church, all by itself, high on the cliffs over the town.We enjoyed a wine tasting at the Santos Winery. The grapes in Santorini give the wines a unique taste due to the volcanic soil in which they are grown. The winery had a beautiful view of the caldera. That is Fira on the right and Oia in the distance on the left.We took a short walk at twilight to dinner. We passed at least six brides having their pictures taken. Many were posing on the roofs of buildings. The top photographer was making the bride walk back and forth on the curving roof in high heels. Many buildings, particularly churches, have signs to keep off the roof. Now we know why.
Today we take a ferry from Santorini to Crete.