Meteora ; Pumping monasteries in the center of Greece
On the way to Kalambaku, in the distance on the horizon you can see a huge cliff. If you go from the east, she will stand all the time before your eyes. After tritial, the road becomes absolutely straight and in somewhere there in the end rests on this rock.
Top Promotional Roller Region
Greetly speaking in Greek: Meteor – with an emphasis on the second "E". Means this – "soar in the air".
Of course, monasteries do not soar, but stand on huge rocky protrusions.
We arrived here by car from Athens. Removed the room B Castra. This is neighboring Camambacco Village. Booked in advance through Airbnb.
You need to come to meteors for two days minimum, better more.
The main entertainment in meteors is a visit to small monasteries on the vertices of separately standing rocks. Monasteries on the rocks look very beautiful and unusual.
Landscape here extraordinary. There are several points to observe the sunset.
We visited three monasteries:
- Grand Meteora
- St. Nikolas
- St. Stefanos
Grand Meteora – The biggest, with him a very beautiful view of the monastery of Varlaam on a nearby rock.
Meteor on the map
The map shows monasteries and viewing platforms.
How to get there
Nearest city for monasteries – Kalambaka (or Kalabaka). Near him is very small Kastraki.
All routes in the area are starting from Kalambaki: Automotive, Hiking or Cycling. Kalambaca is a basic camp for climbing monasteries.
In the monasteries you need to get into two stages: first come to Kalambach and already from there to climb the monasteries.
How to come to Kalambach
There is a railway station in Kalambak. From Athens and Thessalonik here every day walks a direct train.
The train goes around 5 hours.
The ticket costs 20-25 Euro.
From Athens, except for a direct train, there is an option to go with a transfer to Paleophersalos. This option is longer and more expensive – 35-40 Euro for a ticket.
Schedule and tickets on this site.
Buses go to Kalambaki from Athens.
They are sent Daily OT KTEL BUS STATION TERMINAL B. Schedule here.
Tickets can be bought at the station or on this site. There is a table with prices. Please note that the ticket back is much cheaper than one way.
From Salonik Buses also go (look for them on the same site).
We took in Athens a car for rent.
With us there was a one-year-old child, so we did not like the train with trains. Moreover, it is more convenient to drive to the monasteries by car. Although the car or motorcycle can be rented and there.
About PDD Greece and Driving Features, read here
How to get to Monasteries from Kalambaki
- Buses and bus tours
- Machine or motorcycle
- Walk or cycling
In the center of Kalambaki is easy to find bus tours to monasteries. There are many different: there are sightseeing excursions, there is an evening at sunset.
Do not want to go by bus – take a taxi. Taxi drivers a lot, but this option is more expensive.
It is convenient to rent a car or motorcycle (scooter, bike). In Kalambak there is a firm with an office on the central street. They have all kinds of transport.
It will not be easy to bike.
Right from the canambca road begins to rise. To see monasteries will have to turn the pedals all the time. In addition, it is hard, it is also long. It is necessary to adequately evaluate its own forces before going to the bike monasteries. Maybe it is better to sit on something, what is the engine?
Go to the local Travel Center, there will help to navigate and prompt how to see monasteries. He is marked on the map.
Where to eat
There are many restaurants, but you must be visited in one ; Restaurant "Meteor".
He is in the very center of Kalambaki, opposite the fountain. In the Greek Dishes menu, waiters speak English. They have everything just, but high quality, and the feeling is that the news the restaurant is working for you. At the same time, prices like everywhere. Restaurant is working Since 1925.
In addition to two dishes that we ordered, we brought one more for a child and dessert – for free.
Other institutions for your choice – there are many of them there.
Good plan for the day: in the morning to go to see one or two monastery, then go down to a restaurant in Kalambak, and to the sunset climb the viewing sites to spend the outgoing day.
To inspect everything in meteor, you need two weeks. To quickly get acquainted – at least two full days. The path here is not free, so you should not go without overnight stay.
Meteor is a monastic community of several monasteries. First, the monks simply climbed the rocks for prayers (so that no one interfered), then there were skates in the caves. Monasteries have grown from caves and beds. The first skete in these cliffs appeared at the end of the 10th century.
Now there are 6 monasteries on the rocks, sometime there were 24 or 25. Traces of destroyed monasteries and beds are still visible.
Mode of operation of monasteries
From April 1 to October 31:
- St. Stephen Monastery: 9:00 – 13:30 and 15:30 – 17:30 (closed on Mondays);
- Grand Meteoron Monastery: 9:00 – 17:00 (closed on Tuesdays);
- Roussanou Monastery: 9:00 – 17:00 (closed on Wednesdays);
- Holy Trinity Monastery: 9:00 – 17:00 (closed on Thursdays);
- Varlaam Monastery: 9:00 – 16:00 (closed on Fridays);
- St. Nikolaos Anapafsas Monastery: 8:00 – 17:00 (closed on Fridays).
Entrance to each monastery – 3 Euro.
The largest monastery. He megala Meteor, he is the Preobrazhensky monastery.
If you plan to visit only one monastery, it is better to choose it.
Parked near the monastery is very difficult. On the site at the end of the road to leave the car, you have to look for a place on the rise. People here are always full. I planted my passengers on the site at the monastery, then leaving to look for a place where to push the car.
This monastery is based at the beginning of the 14th century. From the road to the museum you need to overcome 154 steps. On the territory of the monastery there is a small exhibition of the items of the monastic life, the garden, the observation deck and, naturally, temples.
From the road and from the monastery a very beautiful view of the nearby Varlaam.
Monastery Rusana – Female. It was built in 1545. There is some kind of legend that the first monastery appeared here in 1388, and then for some reason he stopped existence. Exactly about it is unknown.
The main temple here – the Cathedral of St. Varvara. His dome rises a little over the roofs of the rest of the buildings that merge into one.
Neighboring with Grand Meteor. It can be added to the program for one day.
Founded at the beginning of the 16th century on the site of more ancient monastery. The main temple – the cathedral of all saints, was built in 1541.
Monastery of St. Nicholas
This is the second monastery in which it is worth visiting after Grand Meteor.
Monastery of St. Nicholas Anapaavsas is located closer to Castra. When it was founded, no one knows exactly. It is known that the main temple was built in the 16th century.
It is interesting to rise here: first on foot along the path, then on the stairs to the rock to the monastery. Some balconies in the monastery hang over the abyss and it adds sharp sensations.
Monastery of St. Stephan
From the monastery of St. Stephen is the most beautiful view of Kalambach.
It is founded in the 14th century. There is a small museum in the monastery.
Monastery of St. Trinity
When the monastery is based, unknown. About him there is a mention in the chronicles of the mid-14th century. But it is just known when the cathedral was built here. 1476 year ; so written on the southern facade.
Where to look at the sunset
Viewing platforms marked on the map. Near each there is a place where to put the car.
Viewing platforms are just rocky ledges at a huge height. They are not fenced, there are no room lines and there is nothing at all. So be very careful here.
It is best to accompany the outgoing day from the site, which is marked on the map red. From here you can see most of the valley, rocks. Monastery Rusana will be on the background of sunset.
You need to come a little in advance to take the best places in the "visual hall". Those who want to see this presentation will be a lot. The spectacle is worth climbing here in the evening.
From Kamambaki there are bus photos in monasteries, including at sunset.
Where to stay
If you arrived by car, not fundamentally, where to spend the night – in Kalambak or in Castra. Without a car, it is more convenient to stay in Kalambak. Local tourism center and the whole infrastructure is here.
In Castra, Potache and closer to go to the monasteries. There are campgrounds.
We stayed at Olive Grove Guest House. This is a private guest house in Castra. The place is very pleasant. You will be set in one of the rooms in a two-story house. Near olive garden and beautiful view in all directions. The house has a kitchen, in the rooms – shower. There is a place where to put the car.
- Meteor has an official website for tourists: Visitmeteora.Travel
- Come to at least two days.
- From Athens and Thessalonika can be reached by train or bus. Need to go to the city of Kalambak.
- Be sure to rise to monasteries at sunset.
- In the center of Kalambaki, opposite the fountain, there is a good restaurant "Meteor".
Useful tips and tricks in travel
To save on airline tickets:
Find a cheap flight using Aviasales. He is looking for tickets from airlines around the world.
Instructions how to buy tickets to the Internet Read here
How to save at the hotel:
Book a hotel, hostel or apartment on Booking.Com – This is the most convenient and popular tool. We have on our site selections of interesting housing.
And here – Instructions for airbnb
Do not forget insurance:
Travel insurance is needed in case of disease, injuries, and theft. Authors of the DOROGI-NE-DOROGI site.Ru never travel without insurance. To search for insurance companies, we use the service Cherehapa.Ru
Optical guide and an interesting excursion:
Use Tripter – They have the largest selection of unusual excursions worldwide.