Village Akrotiri Santorini Island Greece
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Santorini Villages / Cape Akrotiri

Akrotiri Village : Land of the Excavations, the Fortress & the Lighthouse

The Lighthouse on Cape Akrotiri
The Village of Akrotiri
Views from Akrotiri

Welcome to Akrotiri
In Medieval times, Akrotiri was one of the 5 fortified settlements on the island. Akrotiri is a village of great interest on the south west coast of Santorini. Apart from having some of the best views on the island which reach as far as Oia, magnificent sunsets, wonderful fish taverns, quiet undeveloped beaches, and tiny churches, it is also home to two of Santorini's jewels, the Akrotiri Excavations and Akrotiri Castle.

The Indian. Rock Formation with Human Profile near Lighthouse
Photo : Klearchos Kapoutsis

The Lighthouse of Akrotiri
Akrotiri lies exactly on the axis of the shipping lane from Piraeus to Alexandria. The lighthouse is one of the best in Greece. It can be found 18 kilometers from Fira at an altitude of 58 meters. The geographical coordinates are: Latitude 36° 21' 05" N. and Longitude 25° 21' 05" E.

The Lighthouse at Akrotiri

The History of the Lighthouse

The lighthouse was built during the Ottoman Rule in 1892 by the French company 'La Société Collas et Michel'. Initially it operated on oil, and its beams reached a distance of 23 nautical miles. In 1925 it was renovated. During the Second World War the lighthouse stopped operating and started up again in 1945. By this time the lighthouse was manned by four persons and it had a beam visibility that reached a full 25 nautical miles, with a rotary flash every 30 seconds.

In 1983 electricity was installed and in 1988 the lighthouse became fully automated.

Archaeological Discoveries :
Akrotiri is one of the most important prehistoric settlements of the Aegean. The first habitation at the site dates from the Late Neolithic times (from 4th millennium BC). The Exhibition of the Wall Paintings of Thera is on display at the Nomikos Conference Center in Fira.

Distances Fira town : 15 kilometers
History Akrotiri excavations, Akrotiri Castle & Tower
Services Restaurants, fish taverns, small shops
Buses Buses from Fira depart for both Akrotiri village and Akrotiri beach

See more : Akrotiri Hotels
See More : Akrotiri Excavations
See more : Akrotiri Castle & Tower
See more : The Wall Paintings of Thera Exhibition
See more : Beaches on the South West Coast

Chapel of Agios Nikolaos next to Balos Cove
Photo : Klearchos Kapoutsis

Balos Cove
Balos is a small cove north west of Akrotiri village. According to tradition, it was called that because 'there the girls dance the Balos'. In the 19th century it was used as a small commercial harbour that serviced the needs of the community in the area. Today, getting down to the cove is rather difficult since the steps have fallen into a state of disrepair. However, one can approach the cave Chapel of Eisodion Theotokou, otherwise known as Panagia of Balos via a cement paved path. In older times, nuns used to live in caves on the Caldera cliffs, the main cave being a shrine of Agia Triada. According to local history, the caves have tunneled passage ways, and were used by the nuns as refuge or to escape from raids on the island.


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