Akrotiri: breath-taking ruins from the 17th century BC


I’m at the ruins of Akrotiri, which remind me of Pompeii in some fairly obvious ways – it’s a civilisation apparently destroyed by a volcano; the well-developed houses and streets have been dug out of the ground laboriously and expertly; beautiful wall-paintings were found and taken to a local museum. But there are key differences – firstly, the ruins here had been under the ground for 1,700 years by the time Vesuvius buried Pompeii; secondly, the whole site at Akrotiri is housed in a large sort of warehouse, with wooden walkways guiding the visitor around; thirdly because for some reason I found it easier to transport myself back all those years here. Perhaps it is because I’ve only ever been to Pompeii with school groups for whom I’m responsible, so that such reflection is difficult. Perhaps it is because I was almost alone here, and I have always been surrounded by enormous numbers of people in Pompeii. In any case, I hope some of these photos will give something of a sense of the breath-taking nature of the site.


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