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SANTORINI YOU IN SANTORINI Oia at Sunset

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Villages perched along the rim of the island have maintained an extraordinary aesthetic appeal.

The cave hotels in the crater wall are a wonderful adaptation of traditional housing, modified for tourism. Santorini must be protected. Rampant illegal construction in its countryside will change the island ecosystem. Low-quality architectural imitations of traditional buildings create a fake built environment. Huge buses transporting cruise boat passengers make it dangerous and annoying for pedestrians.

Big emphasis on shopping and dining, but the well-presented archaeology, relaxed outer villages, local cuisine, and dramatic geological story—so visible as a backdrop—are highlights. Over-active cruise ship tourism threatens all fronts, requiring monitoring by local tourism officials. Greek National Tourism will not do it!

Stunning visually—and this can disguise environmental issues. Greek society evolved to deal with the dry climate in the absence of hundreds of thousands of visitors now placing additional demands on natural resources.

Photo and caption by shun-yang so for National Geographic Traveller Photo Contest 2011



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