I’m pretty sure that most of you are already familiar with the the existence of this stunning and naturally MAGIC monastery in Greece, called Meteora. If not…then at least you somehow, (even accidentally) have listened to Linkin Park’s amazing album of 2003 called METEORA and wondered about the name, decided to google it and those pictures appeared in front of you !…(that’s a top class album btw). In any case, even if you’re not a religious person or you’ve never heard of Linkin Park, Meteora is a place that will instantly steal your heart and leave you wondering about the laws of nature & physics! So keep reading and you’ll understand!
Meteora is among the most impressive regions in Greece, with huge rocks in the middle of a valley. Located on the northern side of the country, the rocks of Meteora are actually miracles of nature. Studies suggest that these rocks were formed 60 million years ago, when weathering and earthquakes gave them their present shape. What created this rare geological phenomenon is one of the mysteries of nature and there are many theories about it, that unfortunately have never been proven. But as amazing a marvel of nature is, just as miraculous and spectacular the view is from the top! On top of these impressive pinnacles, many monasteries were constructed in the Byzantine times.
Meteora is a truly inspiring and sensational setting of overwhelming rock formations, but one must also be prepared to expect that this trip is much more than merely visiting an exquisite landscape. It is a pilgrimage to a holy place for all Christians around the world. Meteora has become a preservation ark for the 2000-year-old Christian Orthodox creed.
The monasteries themselves, besides prividing an incredible view are full of religious treasures, wall paintings, icons and libraries rich in old manuscripts. Most of them were built in the 1500's and then added to over the centuries.
There is a 3 euro fee to enter each of the monasteries and proper dressing style is required. As you can imagine, the dressing rules are kinda strict since it’s a religious place where monks and people connect with God. Women must wear skirts below the knees, though in some monasteries these are provided for women in shorts or slacks. Men's arms must be covered and they must wear long pants. Monasteries are closed between one and three every day.
The closest and most picturesque village worth-visiting around Meteora is Kalambaka. People visiting Meteora tend to stay in this graphic small village, since there is a plethora of restaurants and traditional taverns. At the same time there are numerous hotels, restaurants, bars, and gift shops.
Kalambaka is a settlement with prosperous history and significant monuments, with the most grand of all being the Holy Church of the Assumption of the Virgin. The most fascinating characteristic of the town however is the spectacular setting of the precipitous Meteora rocks that border the northern part of the skyline.
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