Nisyros' Volcano 

Get to know Polyvotis

The volcano on the island of Nisyros is the youngest one in Greece. It is an active volcano as are the ones at Methana, on Milos Island and on Santorini Island. The oldest rock formations found around the entire island date back 160,000 years, while the youngest ones (prehistoric) 15,000 years. Most of Nisyros is mountainous, volcanic and very fertile. The island is composed of volcanic rock formations that were formed by previous volcanic activity.

The various rock formations (e.g. basalt) have been used as construction material in various buildings such as the Palaiokastro and the bell tower of the Church of Agios Ioannis Theologos located near Nikia. The island has been formed by lava. The rocks are covered by pyroclastic deposits and volcanic mud. Two possible eruptions occurred several millennia ago, estimated around 25,000 years back.

It is believed that the volcano erupted in 1442. In 1872 an eruption occured accompanied by several earthquakes, the volcano backfired emitting red and yellow flames and ashes covered the ground of Rammos. During the eruption of 1873, a 6 to 7 meters crater was formed and ash and mud spewed out. The ground of Lakkoi and Rammos were covered with hot salty water that came out of the crater. The most recent eruption was in 1888 which formed a cylindrical aqueduct of volcanic elements with a minimum diameter of 25 meters.

The largest crater of the volcano, named Polivotis, has a diameter of 260 m and 30 m depth. There are another 5 younger craters in the region, the largest of which is Stefanos with a diameter of 30 m and a 30 m depth. The valley that surrounds the volcano is 2,400 m long and 950 m wide.
During your stay on Nisyros Island, and before or after you meet Polyvotis, Stefanos and the other craters, visit the Volcanological Museum and the permanent Volcanological Observatory. The first is in Nikia and the other in Emporios, they are a first-class opportunity for a little extra learning, in addition to rest, since the active volcano of Nisyros "is a unique geological attraction, not found anywhere else in Greece!