There was a huge eruption about 3,500 years ago, during the Minoan times. Some people linked that eruption to the Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt - the eruption supposedly caused some of the 10 plagues, and one big tsunami that consequently caused the ebbing of the Reed Sea / Red Sea that allowed Moses and the Israelites to cross. Believe it or not.
Much of the inner side of the island, facing the volcano caldera, consists of sheer cliffs 300 meters high. The buses followed a road which zig-zag up the face of the cliff.
Looking out of the window of the bus, overlooking the winding road, was vertigo-inducing, at least for me.
There are other ways to go up. You can walk. Or you can ride a donkey. You have to have strong legs to walk up. And you need strong faith in the donkey to ride it.
Once we got up there, it was surely worth it. There are tremendous views everywhere you go. I wonder how much white paint is needed to paint the whole town white. And how often they have to do it. The result is truly impressive. And I am sure they feel it is worth it.
Coming down in the cable car was another experience. The cruise ship seemed so close, and yet so far
One treat was to look at the donkey path from another angle. It sure was pretty. I would love to walk up, and down, if there was time.
Departing from the island, we got another look at the shear walls of the cliff. White houses perched on top. The cable car line running up and down. The winding donkey path. It was fun.
It is worth coming back for more.