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Hiking Skaros in Santorini's Caldera

By Edited Sep 26, 2016 0 0

Skaros is one of the most memorable sites on Santorini's caldera in Greece. The conical shaped rock formation juts out from the edge of Santorini's caldera, offering a 360 degree view of the caldera with Imerovigli behind you, Thira and Akrotiri to your left and Oia to your right. Directly in front of you, once you've hiked to the end of the Skaros trail, is the entrance to the caldera as well as the remnants of the volcano that destroyed Santorini thousands of years ago.

While Skaros looks like a plain-old rock formation from afar, it is actually an important historical site. For hundreds of years the Venetians ruled the Aegean and built a fortress on Skaros (long destroyed) to protect the caldera and Santorini from the marauding pirates of the Aegean Sea. After a series of attacks and earthquakes, the sea reclaimed these impressive fortifications and all the remains are some foundations and bricks from this era. After the Venetian fortresses, the island's administrative buildings were headquartered on Imerovigli and situated on Skaros as well as the land bridge that connects Skaros from Imerovigli. However, in the 1950s, a massive earthquake destroyed these buildings, once again sending the man-made buildings crashing to the ground.

What remains now on Skaros is the Theoskepasti church, which sits tranquil, alone on Skaros.

To get to the Theoskepasti church on Skaros, take the island bus or drive your car or scooter to Imerovigli. You'll know where to stop on the road once you've reached the car and scooter rents which are on your right side when coming from Oia and left side when coming from Thira. Park your car and walk towards the caldera and you'll see the walk paths that make Imerovigli famous.

From the walk paths, it's about a 0.64-kilometer hike to Theoskepasti church, which should take you 30 minutes. The hike contains over 300 stairs and going to the church you're mostly climbing these stairs down so make sure to save your energy because you're going to be climbing up the same amount of stairs on your way back to Imerovigli.

It is recommended to hike Skaros on the Santorini caldera either early in the morning, before it gets too hot, or late in the afternoon, to catch the famous Santorini sunset. Regardless of when you go, Skaros promises some of the most breathtaking view's of Santorini anywhere on the island.

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