There Is Nowhere in the World as Captivating as Greece, Writes MICHAEL VIRTANEN; the Senses on Greece's Santorini Island

The Northern Star (Lismore, Australia), August 21, 2010 | Go to article overview

There Is Nowhere in the World as Captivating as Greece, Writes MICHAEL VIRTANEN; the Senses on Greece's Santorini Island


The afternoon crowd a speaking at least half a dozen languages a flows down among the shops, cafes and picture-postcard lookouts on the Greek island of Santorini.

It spreads along the clifftop village of Oia's cobblestone walkways, drifting into shops or up the stairs to open-air restaurants, eddying to photograph scenes of white buildings with blue doors and blue-domed churches.

The crowd thins to little more than a trickle down the 214 broad steps to Ammoudi Bay. There, seaside tavernas grill the day's catch of fish and octopus.

People lingered at outdoor tables, while a dozen small pleasure and fishing boats rocked gently on the Aegean. A cliffside pathway wound beyond to a cove, where you can lie in the sunshine amid the black volcanic rocks and swim in the sapphire sea.

"What is Santorini? It is an island of black rock," says Nicos Plevrakis, manager of the Hotel Belvedere, where my wife and I are staying. "It attracts sunbeams."

This a[approximately]island of black rock' owes its unique, dramatic landscape to volcanic eruptions. A volcano, still active, stands at the centre of a ring of islands, Santorini the longest.

In between them is a vast, deep caldera, filled with water, surrounded by the islands' cliffs, volcanic rock, and black and red sand beaches.

Geologists say an early blast created a tsunami that washed over Crete 96km away, wiped out Minoan civilisation and reshaped this landscape.

The Belvedere, a clifftop boutique hotel in the main city of Fira, overlooks the caldera, a huge basin of dark blue water 152 metres below.

You can even visit what's left of the still-smouldering volcano. Today it is an uninhabited island at the centre of the caldera, reachable by boat.

Santorini is about a 45-minute flight from Athens. While tourism is down in Greece this year partly due to the financial crisis that has led to protests and strikes, the disruptions have had little impact on areas outside Athens.

Fira, with narrow cobblestoned alleys lined with storefronts selling clothing and jewellery, perches high at the heart of crescent-shaped Santorini.

The island is about 48km long, with Oia and Ammoudi Bay at its northern tip, Akrotiri and a red sand beach at the southern end, and miles of black sand beaches along its southeastern shore.

The sea was startlingly blue up close.

We ride to Oia on a public bus packed with day-tripping cruise passengers. But down at the seaside it was much quieter, and the sea is so clear you can see the small fish. Diving underwater it's the same, entirely blue and translucent, with dark blue minnows darting by.

Temperatures on the island are around 26 degrees in July and August and 21 in September.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

There Is Nowhere in the World as Captivating as Greece, Writes MICHAEL VIRTANEN; the Senses on Greece's Santorini Island
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.