The story of Atlantis was relayed by Plato in his dialogues around 360 B.C. According to his dialogues, the city of Atlantis was an island located in the Atlantic Ocean. Atlantis was a highly successful and utopian civilisation, with great military power and a colossal capital city. Due to increasing greed and the immorality of the people, the island supposedly sunk into the sea. Although it is widely accepted that Atlantis is fictional, some researchers and writers have come up with a variety of theories regarding the actual location of Atlantis. One of the most common theories is that Atlantis is the Greek island of Santorini, formerly known as the Island of Thera.
The island of Santorini is located in the Aegean Sea, just off the coast of mainland Greece. Around 3,600 years ago, a devastating volcanic eruption destroyed the island and the Minoan Civilisation that lived on it. The Minoans were a Bronze Age society in the Aegean Islands, frequently claimed to be the first advanced civilisation in Europe. The destruction of Santorini and the disappearance of the Minoans has led some researchers to theorise that Santorini is the lost island civilisation that Plato refers to in his writings. Santorini was originally known as the Island of Thera, and together with the Island of Crete, was the setting for the Minoan civilisation, named after the great mythical King Minos. Amongst other achievements, the Minoans constructed luxurious palaces, roads, and had a written language. The Minoans disappeared mysteriously from history, and the sudden disappearance of this powerful nation has caused some to believe that Thera (Santorini) is the legendary Atlantis. Scientists and Historians believe that around 1600 B.C., 'a massive earthquake shook the volcanic island of Thera, triggering an eruption that spewed 10 million tons of rock, ash and gas into the atmosphere. Tsunamis that followed the eruption were large enough to wipe out Minoan cities throughout the region, devastation that may have made the Minoans vulnerable to invaders from the Greek mainland.'  Robert Ballard, the explorer who discovered the wreck of the Titanic, believes that the legend of Atlantis is a 'logical' one, due to the high earthquake and flooding activity that has permeated history. The destruction of the Minoan Civilisation on Santorini may be the real historical and geographical disaster that Plato has based his Atlantis myth on.
Robert Ballard doesn't believe that Santorini was Atlantis, 'because the time of the eruption on that island doesn't coincide with when Plato said Atlantis was destroyed'.  Santorini is also in the wrong geographical location to be Atlantis. According to Plato, Atlantis lies beyond the Pillars of Hercules. These pillars are believed to be the Straits of Gibraltar. Following this evidence, Santorini is not in the correct area.