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If there's a place on Earth that I could really call "heaven", it's definitely Santorini Island. It is... There are no such words, that could describe the feeling, the views, the smell and of course the beauty of this island(s). Firstly, Santorini is the name of several islands in the Aegean Sea, 200 km from Greece (mainland).

If there’s a place on Earth that I could really call “heaven”, it’s definitely Santorini Island. It is… There are no such words, that could describe the feeling, the views, the smell and of course the beauty of this island(s). Firstly, Santorini is the name of several islands in the Aegean Sea, 200 km from Greece (mainland).

There were times when Santorini was one round-shape island, which was even called something like “roundy” or “circuly”, but once the volcano (which is still alive right in the heart of the island) erupted and the center of the island fell deep down into the sea. Now we can see only the “young-moon” shaped island and some little pieces of land just near the Thera (the biggest part of island, which has left after the eruption). Scientists say, that the eruption was so huge and strong, that it was heard even in Scandinavia, while the whole Minoan civilization in far away Crete Island (first in Europe) was killed by something like a huge tornado made of Santorini’s volcanic dust.

Let’s leave history and speak about today’s Santorini. As you can see, the island has got two beautiful towns: Oia and Fira, the capital. Both towns are situated on the top of the cliffs, looking down on the lagoon. The towns are unbelievable – I was shocked, when I saw millions of little white and blue houses just on the cliffs. If you climb up the ladder, you will get onto the roof of other building, which is also the balcony of the upper building, which has got two stairs to the upper building and so on… One second, did I mention that the houses are painted in blue and white colors? That’s because there were days when Turkey had occupied this island, and people could not show their anger.

They just painted their houses in the Greek way (check out the Greece flag’s colors) and felt stronger with that. OK, there is another interesting saying about this island: "the place, where there are more churches than houses, more donkeys than men and more wine than water. Sounds funny, right? But that’s true! There are about 400 churches in that small island, and all of them are open only one day per year (maybe not all of them…), so you still can find one church, which is open during one of the year’s 365 days. Donkeys? There are millions of them – now they are used like “taxis” for 5 euros for those crazy tourists. Donkeys can lift you and take you to the other place of the town and so on. Why there are more donkeys than men? During the war, men had to go to fight for their land, so women were left alone… they just needed help, so donkeys were the best option.

Funny fact – today donkeys are certified as transportation “vehicles”. I was laughing when I thought about donkeys taking crazy number-plates like “st00pid4ever” and others . Ok, and the last fact about water. It is true – the island has got NO fresh drinkable water. All the water you can find there (even while washing hands in restaurant’s WC) is from the rain in winter and autumn, and of course from the mainland, transported here with the ships. And for the conclusion… Have you ever heard about the mystical town, called Atlantis, that has disappeared? People and even scientists think, that Santorini is the exact place, where the city of Atlantis was situated, but the damn volcano killed everything… but not our fantasies, right?

Map (what’s left of the oval shaped island, volcano still alive in the center of the island): http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/14/Santorini_Landsat.jpg

Some info:
www.santorini.net
http://www.santorini.com/
Live view of the island: http://www.santorini.net/caldera.html

written by jogintas

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