The settlement of Fira is located in the center of the caldera. Its name, according to one version, is a corruption of the island’s name, Thira, and, according to another version, comes from the Greek word πυρ (meaning fire). The present capital of the island, it is perched on the caldera with white Cycladic houses, churches and narrow paved streets. In the central path of the caldera and the smaller narrow streets you can find most of the commercial shops, galleries and, of course, the night life of the island. Walking towards the left on the caldera, the view to the New and Old Kameni is revealed, and it is worthwhile to continue walking, through the caved houses to the church of Saint Minas (the characteristic church with the white dome) at the edge of the cliff. If you follow the path to the right you will pass through beautiful neighborhoods. You will find Fragkomachalas, a district where the mansions of the rich Venetians, merchants and captains were located, while if you ascend, you can reach Firostefani, with a magnificent view to your left the whole way. It is worth spending part of your time in the Museum of Prehistoric Thira, the Archaeological Museum, as well as in the two most significant churches of Fira, the Orthodox and the Catholic Cathedral. During the rest of your time on the island you can enjoy the view from one of the cafes, restaurants and bars in the area and wander around discovering the beautiful corners of the settlement. The more active of you can descend the stairs of the path to Yialos, the old port, a route that brings you closer to the atmosphere of Santorini before the construction of the cable car. The rest of you can use the cable car, or another nice choice - the donkeys. All the banks and services are located in Fira, and it is also the main bus terminal for all the areas of the island. Fira has experienced the most touristic development in Santorini, a development which sometimes affects the picturesqueness of the place. It is a settlement that receives many visitors during the day for the view and which moves to the rhythm of music during the night.
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