The cliff settlement

1618499_10152223780107915_637859921_nPHOTOGRAPH  I  YENNY WONGSO

Yenny Wongso is a bachelor of Chinese Language in Beijing who now pursues another degree in English Education. In her recent tour to Western Europe and Italy, she captured many remarkable pictures. She now works and studies in Jakarta.

The article first appeared in the international edition of think archipelago magazine, Volume 9, May 2015.


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The celebrity islands of Santorini, a group of small archipelago 200 kilometers off Greek mainland, displays a unique view of its capital cliff city, Fira, whose name derives from the ancient Greek name of the island, Thira.

The ubiquitous white-washed structures emanates the city’s charm in color uniformity. Not only it offers indulging caldera view to visitors, the city makes a presentation about the socio-historical aspect of an existing two-millenia-old human settlement.

The centuries-held local wisdom ensures the survival of this ancient civilization to this day. The white, cubic-shaped structures that were virtually built at a very close distance, similar to multi-storey public housings today, is an adaptation of the less than twenty thousand population to their surrounding nature which poses high wind currents during winter and heat during summer.

Winter sees low activity in its main industry, tourism. Eateries closes in 6PM. Meanwhile summer tourists often outnumber the local population, as cruises make this island a regular destination.

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