travel zone

Tour to the Santorini Volcano Islands

We start at the little harbor of Kato Fira (you may hear the locals refer to it as Yalo). The first lavas that we come to on our way to Nea Kameni are the fronts of the fiery rivers of 1925, which today are a mass of black, glassy rock: the Daphne lavas.

We leave the boat at the Erinia cove, stepping out onto the Daphne lava. We follow a path that crosses this lave for only a few meters and then we begin climbing the slopes of the dome of Mikri Kameni, the oldest lava on the island. The path that leads to the top of this dome is traced out over volcanic sand and lava fragments from the 1570 eruption, while on both sides of it there are volcanic bombs, fragments of lava that were ejected in a molten state and cooled very rapidly as they traveled through the air.

santorini tours - Volcanic bomb eruption
Volcanic bomb from the 1939 eruption

The path reaches the summit of the Mikri Kameni dome and passes to the right of its central crater. Shortly before it begins its descent to the point where its lavas meet the lavas of the Daphne crater, it forks and follows the rim of it. The left-hand branch almost touches the Niki lavas from 1941, while the right-hand branch (most popular with tourists) strikes sharply upwards and follows the western rim of the crater.

Take a look at the rivers of lava seemingly frozen in mid-stream as they spilled out the Daphne vent before you continue your ascent to the Fouqué, Reck and Smith domes, whose slopes are littered with volcanic bombs. At this point you can take a detour off the beaten path to the summit of the Fouqué and Reck domes, where the views to their craters and Palea Kameni are spectacular.

santorini volcano tours - reck dome crater
The Reck Dome crater

santorini volcano tours - nea kameni crater

The path soon reaches the upper areas of the island and we come to the two large 1940 craters that were formed on top of the Georgios lava of 1866. The eastern rims and cliffs of these craters are dotted with vents. The 1940 Niki dome rears its head to the east. From the summit, the right-hand path leads to the highest point on Santorini, from where you have a breathtaking view across to Palea Kameni.

The Reck dome crater

And that's where the usual tour of the island ends. The return journey follows the same route in reverse. If you think you can manage without a guide though, you can follow the path towards the south, where you will find the southeast slopes of the Georgios dome. You will also find the Ormos ton Taxiarhon (Archangelos Cove), past the darker and rougher 1940 Niki lavas. You should be careful on the last part of the path though, because there are sections where rock falls of unstable block lavas are easily triggered.

santorini tours - santorini volcano tour
santorini volcano tour

I should say that you shouldn't be disappointed that there are no other paths around Nea Kameni. A boat trip around the island will make up for it. You will be able to admire the lava fronts in comfort and security.

santorini tours - nea kameni tour
Santorini Nea Kameni tour

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