Exploring the Medieval History of Santorini

03/07/2023 | Santorini

Santorini, an island in the Aegean Sea, has a rich history that dates back to ancient times. While the island is best known for its stunning views and beautiful beaches, it also has a fascinating medieval history. From the Byzantine period to the Ottoman Empire, Santorini's medieval history is full of interesting stories and landmarks. In this article, we'll take a closer look at the medieval history of Santorini.


The Byzantine Period

The Byzantine period in Santorini began in the 4th century AD and lasted until the 13th century. During this time, the island was an important religious center, and many churches and monasteries were built. The most famous of these is the Monastery of Prophet Elias, which is located on the highest point of the island. The monastery was built in the 18th century, but it was built on the site of an older Byzantine church.

Another important Byzantine landmark is the Church of Panagia Episkopi. This church was built in the 11th century and is one of the oldest on the island. It is also one of the largest and most impressive, with beautiful frescoes and intricate mosaics.


The Venetian Period

In the 13th century, Santorini came under Venetian rule. The Venetians built many castles and fortifications on the island, including the Castle of Skaros. The castle was built on a rocky outcropping overlooking the sea and was designed to protect the island from invaders. Today, only ruins of the castle remain, but visitors can still see the impressive remains of the walls and towers.

Discover Venetian Castles


The Ottoman Period

In the 16th century, Santorini was conquered by the Ottoman Empire. During this time, the island became a center of trade and commerce, and many new buildings were constructed. One of the most interesting Ottoman landmarks on the island is the Turkish House, which is located in the village of Pyrgos. The house was built in the 18th century and is a beautiful example of Ottoman architecture.

Another important Ottoman landmark is the Mosque of Fira. The mosque was built in the 18th century and is located in the capital of the island. It was originally used as a place of worship for the island's Muslim population, but today it is used as an exhibition space.


Santorini's medieval history is a fascinating journey through time. From the Byzantine period to the Venetian and Ottoman empires, the island has seen many changes over the centuries. Today, our visitors can explore the island's rich history by booking a guided tour. They have the chance to explore many old churches, venetian castles, and other landmarks that dot the landscape. Whether you are a history buff or simply interested in learning more about this beautiful island, Santorini's medieval history is sure to captivate and inspire.

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