A highlight of your stay in Greece will be a visit to the Meteora Monasteries.
Meteora is a geological miracle, which one should see for himself in order to believe. The meteors are a group of high and cliffy boulders whose peaks are crowned by monasteries and hermitages. Their grottos are acting since 11th century as cells for the orthodox monks.
The Meteors are situated 300 m upon the valley close to Kalambaka by the river Pinios. The river rises northerly in the Pindos Mountains and leads to the Pindos gorges.
Originally the monks lived in grottos or in small cells. They assembled once per week to attend divine service together in Kyriakon (House of God, common church) in Doubiani. As a consequence of the increasing numbers of monks they settled down the hermitage of Stagoi.
Already in 12th century a methodical organization of the hermitage started which was set in charge of the diocese Staoi.
In the 14th century Serbian princes who governed Thessalia at this time liberated the hermitage from the diocese Stagoi and charged a primus of the monastery Doubiani with the guidance.
Around the middle of 14th century the monk Athanasios founded the first monastery on the rock of Meteora. Platylithos (hugh stone) was his name. This unearthly appearing rock mass 613 m upon sea level and 413 m upon Kalambaka overlaps the whole countryside. Upon this Athanasios built up his monastery. He named the rock Meteoron which means “hover between sky and earth”. From this time on all rocks with their monasteries were called Meteora.
Nowadays, only six monasteries are well preserved and four of them are still inhabited. Each monastery owns a vast richness of frescoes and icons.
After your drive from your Hotels reaching Meteora you will visit two of these fabulous monasteries, built high upon the steep rocks. Afterwards there is a lunch break and then we return to the place of accommodation.
IMPORTANT NOTICE: For entering the monasteries of Meteora, appropriate clothing is required. Ladies must not wear shorts, skirts or trousers and must have long sleeves. Men are not allowed to wear shorts and must have long sleeves as well.