Meteora Greece monasteries is a major complex of Eastern Orthodox monasteries situated in the region of Thessaly in Central Greece. The complex consists of six monasteries which are built on top of an inaccessible high column of sandstone which rise starkly over 400 m above the Peneas valley and the small town of Kalambaka on the Thessalian plain. The six monasteries are: The Holy Monastery of the Great Meteoro, the Varlaam Monastery, the Saint Stephen Monastery, the Holy Trinity Monastery, the Saint Nicolas Anapafsas Monastery and the Roussano Monastery. Some of the monasteries of Meteora still house religious communities and therefore inhabited by monks and nuns. Another example of an important site for Orthodox pilgrimage is the Cathedral of Saint Sava in Belgrade the largest Orthodox church in the world.
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Meteora Greece monasteries
Monks have been settled in Meteora monastery since the 11th century and the tradition of Orthodoxy has continued uninterrupted onwards. The earliest settlers was probably Hermits and ascetics who found protection and shelter at these rocks. The settlers were seeking mental calmness and took refuge in Christianity.
The complex of Meteora monasteries was built under impossible conditions, with no practical roads and through centuries the way up to the monastery was much impassable. That way it is known as the inaccessible Meteora Monastery. Probably many monks and pilgrims had lost their lives in attempt to reach the top. In the 1920s, there was an improvement in the access to the complex. Steps were cut into the rock, making the Meteora Greece monasteries accessible via a bridge from the nearby plateau.
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Visit Meteora monasteries
Meteora monastery is both a historical and geological interesting destination. Geologists and historians have been studied the formation of these cliffs for one millennium.
Geological studies suggest that the rocks were formed about 60 million years ago during the Paleogene Period. Through back, weathering and tectonic movements then shaped them into their present shape. Earthquakes have forced the seabed upwards, creating a high plateau and causing many fault lines to appear in the thick layer of sandstone. Thus, Meteora in Greece is a very interesting site for geologists.
The steep cliffs at Meteora Greece monasteries are ideal for hiking and climbing and attracts many tourist all year around. Due to its stunning beauty and its incredible site on top of the vertical cliffs, Meteora is a popular travel destination and a very photographed motive (see photos below).
The monasteries of Meteora reflects the artistic and architectural interaction between nature and human. The monasteries are one of the most powerful examples of how a spiritual site fits into its natural surroundings. The Metéora is declared a UNESCO World Heritage site since it clearly satisfies a series of criteria.
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