Fira in Santorini

santorini fira

Apart from the impressive panoramas that offers Fira (the capital of Santorini), its uniqueness stands at first glance from its name: FIRA.

It is believed that the word ‘’Fira” comes from the ancient “pyrros” which means burning, or reddish, and is connected with the existing volcano from which the city sprang out. The word “pyrros” may also be associated with the pirates that had raided the town two centuries ago.

Located on the western part of the island, over a precipitous rock of 260 m, Fira became the capital of Santorini early in the 19th century, when the capital moved from Pyrgos to Fira. The town suffered a tremendous disaster in 1956 when an earthquake devastated it, damaging most of its regions.

Its houses with vaults and arches, which are painted all in white and gleam in the sunlight, its pebbled and cobbled descents, steps, or streets, the simple buildings painted in light blue and white, the breathtaking sceneries which can be admired at sunset, the cool, transparent, blue waters of the Aegean Sea, all in all, create for the visitors of Fira, the illusion of the lost paradise.

Absorbed by the panoramas, the visitors may stop from time to time to have a drink in the cafes, to glance at the shops lined on the small pebbled streets, or choose to visit (by boat) the volcano of Nea and Palia Kameni.

Fira also hosts: an archaeological museum which offers exhibitions from the excavations on the island, the cathedral of Christ, the cathedral of Hypapandi, a series of beautiful churches and monasteries like that of Agios Minas, the monastery of Panagia ton Dominikanidon and the church of Panagia tou Rodariou. The latter offers an important collection of ecclesiastical gems, maps, documents and paintings.

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