Meteora, monasteries reaching towards the sky
Visit Meteora, one of the sacred places in Greece. Meteora is a stunning high rock formation and home to one of the largest Eastern Orthodox monastic complexes.
Meteora is the perfect destination for travellers who seek to explore grandeur nature, marvelous historic attractions, unique architecture, and a connection to the divine. Meteora is a vast complex of stunning unique rock formations. They are giant rock pillars with monasteries perched on top of the sandstone cliffs. The scenery of the Meteora is truly majestic.
UNESCO World Heritage Site
Today, Meteora is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, and it is, in fact, the largest archaeological site in Greece due to the vast space it covers.
Because of the site’s unique landscape in the past, it was considered wild and untamed. But for this simple reason, it was the perfect place for hermit monks who wished to practice spiritual ascension to make Meteora their home. The first monks who arrived at Meteora came between the 9th and 10th centuries seeking a quiet place to isolate themselves.
In the beginning, they were scattered across the many caves found on the cliffs. They lived in isolation for centuries, and coil only survived thanks to the help of the local people who saw them as holy men.
a monastic community
Meteora was morphed into a monastic community in the 12th century with the development of the organized skete of Doupiani. Nowadays, you can visit the chapel Doupiani which was the beginning of the Meteora we know and marvel at today. The first monastery was established in the 14th century by a monk named Athanasios. The monastery is called the Great Meteoron, and it is on the second-highest rock of Meteora. Until today, the monk Athanasios is regarded as one of the most influential figures in the long history of Meteora’s monasticism as the founder of the second most important monastic community of the Orthodox Church.
By the 16th century, there were 24 monasteries. However, nowadays, only the six remain active, with 4 of them having male monks and the other two nuns.
The monasteries you can visit are:
- The monastery of Great Meteoron
- The monastery of Varlaam
- The monastery of Roussanou
- The monastery of St Stephen
- The monastery of Holy Trinity
- The monastery of St Nicholas
Anyone can visit the monasteries. However, it is essential to read through any rules you might need to follow before going to the monasteries.
Meteora is truly a must-visit destination for everyone in Greece. The beauty of the lush green trees, the stunning and tall cliffs, and the unique and marvelous monasteries are worth the trip.
Meteora is 3 hours 45 min away from Agnantio Hotel – Spa by car.