The village of Akrotiri (Akrotiri) and its archaeological site

More than 3.000 years ago, a violent volcanic eruption took the people of Santorini ahead, but the remains of their homes reveal fascinating facts about their daily lives.

The village of Akrotiri is located next to the famous Red Beach and is most important archaeological site from Santorini. It was originally a Minoan settlement. The city looks a lot like the relics found on the island of Crete, covered with mural paintings of flowers, dolphins, fishing, boxing and other scenes of ancient daily life. We can also find ceramics painted with natural landscapes, animals or human beings. The city has two impressive three-story buildings.

The entire city has been very well maintained and preserved by the volcanic earth of the area. The city in Akrotiri must have been destroyed by the terrible eruption of the Santorini volcano around 1500 BC The beautiful Akrotiri frescoes can only be seen at the National Archaeological Museum of Athens. In the area there are many hotels and taverns, some of them built in the traditional way, inside an alcove.

Location of Akrotiri

What can be seen in the village of Akrotini (Akrotiri)?

The Akrotiri lighthouse

It is one of the oldest existing in Greece, as it was built in 1892. and has always been powered by oil (except for a suspension of service during World War II) until 1983, when it began to be powered by electricity and then be fully automated in 1988.

Today the lighthouse flashes white light every 20 seconds and the sunset seen from the stone wall surrounding the main courtyard is one of the most beautiful on the island with stunning views of the Caldera and the Aegean Sea.

The Minoan city of Akrotiri

Santorini - Ruins of AkrotiriSantorini - Ruins of Akrotiri - (c) Can Stock Photo

It is one of the most important historical places in Santorini. It is located on the south side of the island and the city was discovered almost intact, covered by layers of ash. Scientists believe that this city was destroyed by the volcanic eruption of Santorini in around 1.650 BC.

It is a ancient city underground I stay buried after the eruption of the volcano of Santorini. In fact, the state of conservation in which it is found is due to the solidified volcanic ash that covered it - it has been related to the legend of the Lost City of Atlantis, and is also known as the "Pompeya Minoica" -.

Moment only 40 buildings have been unearthed, which represents a tiny part of what the city was; the rest continues under the solidified lava, but excavations are still being carried out, so that There is much to discover.

If you like Akrotiri, we advise you not to miss the Prehistoric Museum of Thera , where you can see part of the frescoes found in the old city. The most important ones are found in the National Archaeological Museum of Athens.

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The Venetian castle (kasteli) of Akrotiri

Located at the highest point in Akrotiri, it is actually the center of the village. It was built in medieval times by the Venetians to protect the island from invasions, in fact the building is of the same class as the fortified settlements of Pyrgos and Emporio.

The castle was called The Ponta and it began to rise around a goulas or pre-existing tower, which survived in good condition until the 1956 earthquake. The construction of goulas It was directly related to the social organization of the island. Thus, powerful masters distinguished themselves from the rest of the local aristocracy, through the construction of imposing towers, such as goulades.

At present the few remains of Akrotiri's Kasteli are found surrounded by some old traditional houses and ancient churches like the one of Aghia Triada, Ypapanti and Aghia Teodosia, protector of the castles and that is near the entrance to the Venetian fortress.

What happened to the inhabitants of Akrotiri?

It is thought that the unfortunate inhabitants they had time to escape from the citytherefore, unlike those that happened in Pompeii, no human remains or too many valuables have been found in the site.

It is known that at the time of the eruption winds were blowing from the west that carried the ash and gases towards the east, so it is It was foreseeable that people would head towards the west side of the island in order to protect themselves, and they could be buried there under the volcanic material.