|The Greek islands||Kameni Islands HOME||Santorini|
|The Kameni islands in Greece|
The islands Nea (new) Kameni and Palea (old) Kameni are two small islands in the center of the caldera of Santorini Island in the Cylades. They are the youngest volcanic islands in Greece. Palea Kameni was born in 196 BC and is approximately 2200 years old. Nea Kameni is about 425 years old and was first seen in 1711. Both Palea Kameni and Nea Kameni consist almost entirely of vulcanic stone but on the older Palea Kameni there is also some soil where plants can grow. At Palea Kameni some goats graze and rabbits run around. The highest point of this island is almost 100 meters.
The larger island of Nea Kameni is 127 meters high and has less land on which plants can grow. There is only a little grass and in spring flowers bloom on the island. Besides some rabbits and lizards there is not much animal life. At Nea Kameni there is one fige tree that people lovingly call "Erinia" after the ancient Greek word for wild fig, erineos. The port of the island is also named after the fig tree and called Erinia. In the 19th century, the present Nea Kameni consisted of two separate islands. In those days there were a lot of wild fig trees on the most northern island and it wa called was Sykia (fig tree). After the eruptions of 1925 and 1926 the two islands were joined together.
Excursion boats go from the capital Fira and the village of Oia on Santorini to the two islands. At Nea Kamani you can stroll from Erinia to the crater, which is about 20 minutes away on foot. There is an unpleasant smell of sulfur fumes. At the older Palea Kameni you can swim in the hot springs.