Thursday, October 11, 2012

Meteora, Greece, 2007

Following my day in Delphi, I went north to the town of Kalabaka (aka Kalambaka) to see the famous Greek Orthodox monasteries of Meteora.  I was a little ambitious, and decided to try and see all six of the active monasteries, if possible.  It's difficult recalling which monasteries were which, but I'll do what I can (I apologize if there are mistakes).  Here are the photos:

The sandstone rock pillars of Meteora soar above Kalabaka (taken from my hotel).

The Holy Monastery of the Great Meteoron (aka Megalo Meteoro) is the largest of the six monasteries, and the highest (at 2,045 ft / 623 m).

Skulls of monks are preserved in the monastery ossuary, Megalo Meteoro.  This is common throughout the monastic world.

A World War II poster depicting a monstrous Nazi attacking Greece.  The Nazis actually bombed Meteora during World War II, and tried raiding it as well.  One anecdote relayed to me involved a Nazi trying to replace one of the most prominent crosses with the Nazi flag.  He fell to his death, unsuccessful.

The town of Kalabaka, below.

I believe this is the Holy Monastery of Rousanou

The Holy Monastery of Varlaam, the second largest monastery.

The Holy Monastery of Varlaam

The Holy Monastery of Varlaam

Yours truly with a buddy, Varlaam.

Holy Monastery of Varlaam.

Don't look down... Varlaam Monastery.

Moni Rousanou, in the distance.

I believe Varlaam is on the left, and Megalo Meteoro is on the right.

Moni Rousanou

Tourists admiring the view.

The Monastery of the Holy Trinity

The Holy Monastery of St. Stephen, run by wonderful monks.

The Holy Monastery of St. Stephen was raided and damaged by Nazis.

Holy Monastery of St. Stephen

Seen from the Holy Monastery of St. Stephen.

Bells at the Monastery of the Holy Trinity (Agia Triada).

Bells at the Monastery of the Holy Trinity (Agia Triada).

This man's name was Christos.  I met him earlier in the day, and he saw me walking dejectedly on the path toward Moni Rousanou.  I figured there was no way I would make it before it closed to visitors for the day, but he picked me up on his rented moped and took me there.

At Moni Rousanou.

A look over at a destroyed monastery, seen from Moni Rousanou.

The Greek flag and the Mount Athos flag, Holy Monastery of St. Nicholas Anapausas (my final monastery of the day).

Holy Monastery of St. Nicholas Anapausas.

Holy Monastery of St. Nicholas Anapausas.

I did it!  Made it to all six monasteries.  If I visit again, however, my older, wiser self would do things a little differently.  ;-)

Coming up next = Thessaloniki, and then Istanbul.  Stay tuned.

1 comment:

Ryan Taite said...

Great pics, look very similar to mine from my trip in 2010. I remember actually seeing a picture depicting the nazi falling off the cliff. Was a very humorous picture.