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Online Jigsaw Puzzle: Santorini

 63 pieces. size 1.67Mb - Beautiful churches in Santorini, Greece.
view highscores: [daily ] [weekly] [alltime] This game has been played: 14650 times.

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Interesting Fact About The Motive:

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Santorini

Santorini is a small, circular archipelago of volcanic islands located in the southern Aegean Sea, about 200 km south-east from Greece's mainland. It is also known as Thera (or Thira), forming the southernmost member of the Cyclades group of islands, with an area of approximately 73 km² (28 mi²) and a 2001 census population of 13,670. It is comprised of the Municipality of Thíra (pop. 12,440) and the Community of Oía (pop. 1,230, which includes 268 inhabitants resident on the offshore island of Therasia, lying to the west). They have a total land area of 90.623 km², which also includes the uninhabited islands of Nea Kameni, Palaia Kameni, Aspronisi, and Christiani (all part of the Municipality of Thira).

Santorini is essentially what remains of an enormous volcanic explosion, destroying the earliest settlements on what was formerly a single island, and leading to the creation of the current geological caldera. Its spectacular physical beauty, along with a dynamic nightlife, have made the island one of Europe's tourist hot spots.

A giant central lagoon, more or less rectangular, and measuring about 12 km by 7 km (8 mi by 4 mi), is surrounded by 300 m (984 ft) high steep cliffs on three sides. The island slopes downward from the cliffs to the surrounding Aegean Sea. On the fourth side, the lagoon is separated from the sea by another much smaller island called Therasia; the lagoon merges with the sea in two places, in the northwest and southwest. The water in the centre of the lagoon is nearly 400 m (1300 ft) deep, thus making it a safe harbour for all kinds of shipping. The island's harbours are all in the lagoon and there are no ports on the outer perimeter of the island, and the capital, Fira, clings to the top of the cliff looking down on the lagoon.

Modern Santorini
Santorini was united with Greece in 1912. Its major settlements include Fira (Phira), Oia, Emporio, Kamari, Imerovigli, Pyrgos, and Therasia, and Akrotiri is a major archaeological site with ruins from the Minoan era. The island has no rivers and water is scarce; until the early 1990s locals filled water cisterns from the rain that fell on roofs and courts, from small springs, and with imported assistance from other areas of Greece. In recent years a desalination plant has provided running, yet non-potable, water to most houses. The island's pumice quarries have been closed since 1986, in order to preserve the caldera, while it remains the home of a small, but flourishing, wine industry, based on the indigenous grape variety, Assyrtiko; vines of the Assyrtiko variety are extremely old and prove resistant to phylloxera, attributed by local wine makers to the well drained volcanic soil and its chemistry, and the soil needed no replacement during the great phylloxera epidemic of the early 20th century. In their adaption to their habitat, such vines are planted far apart, as their principal source of moisture is dew, and they often are trained in the shape of low spiralling baskets, with the grapes hanging inside to protect them from the winds. Also unique to the island is the red, sweet, and extremely strong Vinsanto; white wines from the island are extremely dry with a strong, citrus scent, and the ashy volcanic soil gives the white wines a slightly sulphurous flavour much like Vinsanto. It is not easy to be a wine grower in Santorini; the hot and dry climatological conditions give the soil a low productivity. The yield per acre is only 10 to 20% of the yields that are common in France and California. The island's primary industry is tourism, particularly in the summer months.

In 1707 an undersea volcano breached the sea surface, forming the current centre of activity at Nea Kameni, and eruptions centred on it continue — the twentieth century saw three such, the last in 1950. At some time in the future, it almost certainly will erupt violently again. Santorini also was struck by a devastating earthquake in 1956. Although the volcano is at rest at the present time, at the current active crater (there are several former craters on Nea Kameni) steam and sulphur are given off.