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About Meteora

The Meteora monasteries are built on rocky pinnacles, which tower 400m over the Peneas valley on the Thessalian plain. The small town of Kalambaka is located on one side and the village of Kastraki on the other with small roads and paths taking visitors up and around the monasteries, some still-inhabited, some now abandoned.

'Suspended in the air' (the meaning of Meteora in Greek), these monasteries represent a unique artistic and engineering achievement - to turn this inhospitable area into a place of retreat, meditation and prayer. The first hermits arrived in the 11th century and built the Skiti (hermitage) of Doupiani. Over the next 600 years twenty-four monasteries in total were built. There were no passable roads and pilgrims (as well as food and supplies) had to be hoisted up the cliff in a net to reach the monasteries.

Today, only four monasteries - Aghios Stephanos, Aghia Triadas, Varlaam and Megalo Meteoron - still house religious communities.

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