Ecclectic tales from an independent wanderer…

Kalabaka

In the Shadow of Saints

 
From an outdoor terrace, the sun is setting over the spine of snowcapped Pindus mountains and a lush sunbathed valley, enfurls below you.   

Hard not to relax in this environment, clean mountain air fills your body with each passing breath as you sink deeper into the atmosphere all around you. More than the natural beauty, something nearly electric in the air captivates every fiber of your being.  

You are sitting in the shadow of saints.

In the heart of Greece, there is a magical place. A holy place for many believers and non-believers alike.

This, is Metéora – The final stop on our off-pavement pilgrimage through this land of myth & mystery. 

  
Rising from the once oceanic valley floor, gigantic sandstone pillars reach ever closer to the heavens. Atop many of these towers, handbuilt monestaries & convents that have stoicly stood here for centuries. Inside, faitful residents pray to cherished icons and keeping a watchful eye over mankind below. 
The word Metéora itself, translates to “middle of the sky”, “suspended in the air” or “in the heavens above” and although the desire to be “closer to God,” has been evident across clutures & throughout centuries, the monastaries of Metéora carry with them a unique dedication to the spiritual pursuits that many other sites simply do not posses. 

Active today, the six  structures make up the largest and most important collection of Monastaries in Greece to the Greek Orthodox Church. Words can be dificult to find here.

Aesthetically rising out of the stone spires themselves, each structure has been delicately constructed, piece by piece over the course of centuries. Simple pully systems  were errected to  delviver supplies of all nature from the ground below.

Inside eleborate chapels are adorned with Icons of the savior & saints, relics that managed to survive the Spanish Inquisition & even the Crusades. Bones line walls of ossuaries, holy thombs for the devotees that helped to create these holy buildings.

   
   
From places near & far, believers flock with their families to enter these holy buildings paying homage to the patron saints, asking for blessings or seeking forgiveness. Places of reverence, it is hard note to be moved by the devotion expressed by those around you.