When I was planning my trip to Greece, I made a vow, I will not leave Greece without seeing the blue domes and whitewash houses in Santorini, my land tour includes a visit to two monasteries. I did not do much reading on it. We travelled from Delphi to Kalambaka and overnite in Kalambaka, in the morning we travelled to the Meteora Rock, what a sheer beauty, I was awe by sheer height, and wonder how can someone survived in a hole or a cave in the rocks. To me, it was like a mountain range. As you travelling, you cannot get enough of the scenery. We upon a Grand Metereon monastery, you look around thinking how on earth can they designed something on a rock. This one had a cable car, going back and forth. We did not get in, it was Sunday and so there was mass, we left and went to St. Barbara, it was quite a hike to get up to the monastery, but the stairs was an easy to walk up but take your breath away, especially if you are not fit. One thing to note, you have to cover your arms, shoulders, no split between a woman legs (sound funny). Women have to wear a long skirt etc, they are very strict, if you did not pack a long skirt, they are all well prepared, they have wrap skirt for all size to wear over your garment. On top of St. Barbara, you get to see the valley, and how beautiful it was. We did a tour in the small chapel, inside every wall and ceiling was painted with the story of the bible. It was mind blowing, beside the Vatican City and St. Peter's Basilica, I would say this was also amazing. On Sundays, beside the locals who comes to pray, also busloads of tourist, so it was quite pack and congested. But it worth the visit. This monastery has a gift shop, selling many items, from Mir to honey. These monasteries are self-sufficient. You will see bee keeping boxes, vegetable gardens etc. Please note, you are not allow to take pictures inside the chapels and the nuns, they are very strict. After that, we travelled to St. Stephen, this was much easier to walk too, the same, cover yourself, no pics in the chapel or the nuns. This also had a small interesting museum. I truly enjoyed the monasteries and its history. This was one of the best highlight of my tour. So if you are going to Greece, make sure you visit the Meteora monasteries or the area, for sheer beauty.
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