This blog is about my travels. At home in New Zealand, in other parts of Oceania, North, Central and South America and in Europe.
From Athens I took the train north to the small town of Kalabaka which sits at the foot of the incredible Meteora Monasteries. The monasteries are built on huge natural rock pillars and some people believe that they should be considered one of the wonders of the world.
The next morning I got a lift on the back of a motorbike to the top of the first monastery. There are quite a few of the Greek orthodox monasteries and convents, each on a different rock pinnacle. You can make a day of walking between them, and then down a winding path back to the village in time for dinner, which was my plan for the day.
Inside the monastery there were immaculately kept gardens, and store houses where the monks used to make wine. There was also a chapel of which every square inch of ceiling and the walls was painted with elaborate biblical frescoes. This is very much a feature of Greek orthodox churches as it turns out. Worshipers also kiss the icons (I remember reading about this in War and Peace), so much so that the faces of some of the figures are worn out and you can't see them anymore!
I headed off to see some of the other monasteries. It was a hot day, but because it is high up there were lovely cool breezes from the valley below. I wandered along the winding path between the monasteries, stopping to take out my packed lunch at a spot underneath a tree with a great view.
The monasteries have been there in some form for hundreds of years and one of the most amazing features are the winches that were used to winch supplies up to the monasteries.
There was also some historic footage of the winches and woven baskets used to winch up the monks themselves into the monasteries!
Although monks and nuns live in the monasteries, during visitor hours there weren't many to be seen (although there was one nun working at a little store selling souvenirs at the convent). There were some photos of the lives of the monks and nuns. It is certainly a very different way to live, but also seems to be a peaceful one. It is another glimpse at the many ways in which people live in this big world!
I headed down to the village following a winding path. I got some great views of the pinnacles, and got back in time for dinner.
I am a traveller from New Zealand. My blog is to inform friends and family about my adventures. I hope you enjoy it!