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A freak of nature, Santorini is a place of terrible beauty. The flooded caldera was created by a volcanic explosion three millennia ago, which blew the heart out of the island. A crescent of black and red cliffs plunges down to the submerged volcano, with two smoldering craters marooned in the deep blue sea. Whitewashed villages are honeycombed out of the cliff face. This vista has turned Santorini into one of the world’s most recognizable destinations. For seven months a year, a deluge of cruise ships and catamarans, newlyweds and bucket-listers, descend on this arid little island. Beyond the drama of the caldera, vineyards and villages, ancient ruins and incredible frescoes, challenging hikes and mystical chapels, offer glimpses of a calmer, slower way of life. Saturated in selfies and clichés, Santorini still has the power to awe and surprise, if you know how to avoid the crowds.

The Best Things to Do in Santorini by Condé Nast Traveler

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