The Progression of Santorini

Four massive caldera-forming eruptions and 200,000 years later, the island of Santorini takes its modern and familiar shape. The pioneers of NAU in Greece have had the opportunity to observe and research first hand the most recent of these eruptions, and possibly the most significant: the Minoan. We have scaled the caldera rim at Cape Plaka, trekked to the top of Mt. Profitias Illias, hiked the entire northern region of the island to Oia, and explored the Akrotiri ruins just to get a glimpse into the past. When the entire island of Thera had been diligently and meticulously observed, we left to Nea Kameni, the resurgent shield volcano in the center of the caldera to explore some more.

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Akrotiri: a City Frozen in Time

Buried beneath meters of thick solidified volcanic material, is an ancient city named Akrotiri. Hidden for approximately 3600 years, the ruins of an ancient Minoan civilization were found on the southern region of Thera, Santorini’s largest island. Excavation began in 1967 by a professor named Spyridon Marinatos who believed that the eruption of the volcanic complex that makes up Santorini, was the reason behind the fall of Minoan civilization.

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