This much is certain: The Greek island of Santorini is what was left after a ginormous volcanic eruption, one of the largest in recorded history, about 3,600 years ago.
This much isn’t certain: Could Santorini be what is left of Atlantis? Speculation goes all the way back to the Greek philosopher Plato (429-347 BC), who said he got an ancient Egyptian report from his grandfather, who said he got the scoop from a friend of the Great Solon (640-560 BC).
The very condensed version of the story is: The people of Atlantis went bad, angering the gods, who blew the place up.
Whatever its past, today, Santorini is the gem of the Greek Isles. With its deep-water harbor (thanks to the angry gods) and panoramic views from 980-foot cliffs, the travel industry ranks Santorini “the world’s best island.”
Photograph by Gene Tobia.