meteora Photos

METEORA is a UNESCO world heritage site.

Meteora is one of the most important monastic Orthodox complexes in Greece, second only to Mt Athos. It consists of several monasteries that seem suspended in the air, as they are built on top of tall narrow rocks that look like pillars. It used to be a completely isolated and inaccessible place.

The first monastery, the Great Monastery Meteoron, was founded between 1356 and 1372, by St Athanasios, who came here from Mt Athos in 1344. He is said to have been carried by an eagle to the rock onto which the monastery was built.

Access of people and supplies was intentionally extremely difficult and dangerous. Ropes and large baskets were used, which were replaced only after God had willed them to break. Consequently, each interaction with the outside world presented a great risk. The steps that now facilitate access were dug into the mountain’s rock only in 1920.

Over twenty monasteries were built here. Only six of them are still in use, each inhabited by less than ten persons.