Villa Eleftheria Santorini | Accommodation in Santorini
Santorini or Thira is on the south side of the Aegean Sea, in the island complex of Cyclades, south of Ios and west of Anafi. It is 128 nautical miles away from Piraeus and 63 nautical miles away from Crete.
Nowadays, Santorini is one of the most popular touristic centers worldwide and it is also known for its volcanoes. The last time that the volcano was activated was in 1950 and future explosions are expected for sure.
The volcanoes of Santorini are: Nea Kameni (1707-1711 A.D.), Palaia Kameni (46-47 A.D.), the underwater Koloumpo Volcano, and Christiana Nisia. Santorini belongs to the volcanic arc of the Aegean Sea and is considered as an active volcano along with Methana, Milos and Nissiros.
Santorini as well as the islands Thirassia and Aspronissi are remains of the volcanic island of Strongyli- Strongyli was a volcanic cone. Its central part exploded along with the crater of the volcano when the Minoan Explosion took place in 1613 B.C., the result of which was the creation of what we refer to nowadays as the caldera of Santorini and the destruction of the prehistoric civilization of the island as well. In the sea gap that was shaped between Thira and Thirassia, which has a depth of 1500 meters, many were the times that volcanic cones were brought to its surface and formed the following islands: Palaia, Mikri and Nea Kameni, Kameni of Georgios A’, Kameni of Fouquet, Afrossa and Daphne. The size of these islands was getting eventually bigger and consequently they were united, apart from the island of Palaia Kameni.
The name of the island “Thira” derives from the ancient Spartan Thiras, who originating from Sparta was the first to settle in this island. As for the name “Santorini” it derives from the passing Frank Crusaders who used to stop for supply near the church of Saint Irini that existed in the island. Despite the fact that at first it was thought that this church was the chapel of the church of Saint Irini that existed in Thirassia, nowadays it is considered that the most possible case is that it is the imposing Palaiochristian three-aisled basilica church of Saint Irini that existed in Perissa, the remains of which were discovered in 1992. Before the big volcanic destruction of the prehistoric ages the island was round and had the name “Strongyli”, while later it was given the names Kallisti or Kallisto (In Ancient Greek it means “the most beautiful”), Philiteri or Philotera, Kalavria, Karisti, Tefsia, Thirameni as well as Rinia. During the period of the Turkish Occupation the Turks used to call it “Dermetzik” or “Dirmetzik” (= small windmill), most probably because of the many small windmills that one could discern even from a distance.
After the liberation of Greece the name “Thira” was officially established, but despite this fact it was stilled mentioned as “Santa-Irina” in foreign maps and this name, slightly altered by Greeks, led to the name “Santorini”.( although the correct form in Greek should be written with “eta” instead of “iota”- both vowels are pronounced in the same way).