Santorini Island is visually quite an interesting place. It is the rim of a volcano, the land is long and thin and curves around the crater or caldera. It stands up from the water perhaps 700 ft and thus the first view of the island from the ferry are massive volcanic, multi-colored, cliffs. Much of the habitation is right on the top of the crater rim and the buildings are almost exclusively white with blue trim. So in addition the spectacular cliffs are topped with regions of white that look from a distance like some form of white growth, or snow, covering the cliff top.

Santorini is also historically interesting. The volcano exploded in 1650 BC in massive explosion that is believed to be the largest in recorded history. Interestingly the inhabitants of the island anticipated the explosion and had abandoned the island before the eruption. In addition the resulting tsunami is widely believed to have caused the demise of Cretes Minoan culture.

We spent today touring the island. The red beach, the black beach, the old city of Thira. It is clearly the "off season" many many of the tourist facilities are closed. For example along the "black beach", a 2 km section of beautiful black sand beach the entire length of the beach is faced by ramshackle bars and restaurants but none of them were open.

At the end of the day the weather turned to heavy rain and so we retreated to our "cave" apartment.

The donkeys; traditionally the way goods and people were transported from the harbor dock to the cliff tops was on donkeys. As you can see from one of the photos donkeys are stil being used for transporting goods up and down the steep streets of the towns.