This is Day 6 of my 2014 trip to Europe. If you want to read the other posts about my trip go here.
Today was our last full down in Santorini. It was another full day but a little bit more relaxed than the day before. The day before we learned about the geology of the island and saw how it was all formed. Then today we went and visited an Archeological site called Akrotiri. The Greeks are very smart in terms of their tourism dollars. The actual archeological site is near the red beach and an area of the island that has a low population and is somewhat in the middle of nowhere. When they excavated the site they took out all the artifacts and created a museum that they built in Fira (the capital of the island); therefore forcing people to visit both areas of the island and then in Fira spending more money as that is where all the shops and restaurants are. Fira reminded me of visiting China Town in NYC with all the little shops with people trying to sell their wares.
This was my first time ever visiting an archeological site and it was very interesting. As I walked around the site and looked at the placards I could picture in my mind what this city once looked like many years ago. I can remember in the 6th grade learning about similar civilizations with similar buildings. I loved how you could see in the different sections what were once ladders, steps, water wells, doors, mailboxes, and houses.
After visiting the archeological site we took a public bus that was actually a huge charter bus back to Fira (way different from public transit in the states and even other countries) to visit the museum of Prehistoric Thera. I really enjoyed seeing this museum AFTER we saw the archeological site. It really connected things together. In this museum we were able to see the different tools and objects they had in their civilization. The amount of details in the objects I saw was incredible. The most fascinating thing were the Fresco paintings. You can tell that they have deteriorated and been restored over time. They had special lights pointing at them and it was in a darker area of the museum. I love looking at paintings so these were really neat to look at. I thought the museum had a lot of good details and explanations, which allowed me to understand everything I was looking at. For example, below is a photo of balance weights with the description that was below it. Notice it also tells you the years these were from.
After the museum we had free time to do any shopping before heading back to our hotel for an early dinner.
The funniest thing happenned this afternoon to one of my classmates. He wasn’t feeling good and went to the pharmacy to get some cold medicine and they were asking him all sorts of questions about what kind of cough it was wet/dry, sore throat, etc. Then they asked him if he had any testicles….and my friend just dies laughing. The lady says she thinks something got lost in translation…we think they meant tonsils. But it sure made a good story.
It was nice to have a more relaxing dinner and evening in the hotel. This was our last night in Santorini and I felt by this point we had really bonded as a group. I was sad to have to leave the beautiful island of Santorini but knew we had more things to look forward to in the coming days.