It was called Thera, but then it was attacked by the Venetians and they named the island for Saint Irene, Santorini. Fabulously located on the remains of a caldera left after the massive explosion in the 17th Century BC. Abandoned, perhaps unlivable for centuries, the first inhabitants were Minoans.

Now it is a sought after spot for weddings (?) and honeymoons – not certain why except that it is gorgeous. I guess that is reason enough. Today we came over by tender that was operated by the local maritime union in a much larger tender than the ship has.

When I saw the huge Princess liner in port I was dismayed – crowded as in summer I thought, just what I had hoped to miss by traveling in Spring. Our guide decided to go to the northern most town of Oie rather than stop at the major city of Thera. Good decision because there are fewer folks here. I am in a cafe where there is WiFi to send this. I have about 5 other “chapters” waiting to send, but will do so when I have a stronger connection.

Houses here are newly built, most since 1950. They cling to the upper levels of the caldera and most are white with some pastels. The classical blue of the Aegean Sea is used as an accent. The cathedral is a terrific building on the Marion square.PhotoThe buildings

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