Things to Know
The settlement of Kalambaka sits on the foothills of the soaring cliffs of Meteora whose monastic complex is regarded as one of the most important religious sanctuaries of Greece. The geological origins of the Meteora cliffs as well as the identities of the area’s first inhabitants remain shrouded in mystery, though evidence discovered inside the nearby prehistoric cave of Theopetra shows signs of human habitation that stretch some 50,000 years into the past. The site that most captivates visitors to the region are the precariously built monasteries that crown the pillars of Meteora. At its peak, there were 30 monasteries in the area but only 7 survive to this day and the entire location has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The settlement of Kalambaka is modern with well-developed tourism infrastructure, making it an ideal jumping off point to begin exploring the wonders of this part of Greece.
Things to See
The Holy Monastery of Great Meteoron
The largest one of the Meteora monasteries erected during the 14th century AD. It hosts the main museum for tourists, as well as the Catholicon church, consecrated in honor of the Transfiguration of Jesus.
The Holy Monastery of Varlaam
The 2nd largest monastery of Meteora was built in 1541. It is home to a beautiful church of Athonite type, an old refectory that is nowadays used as a museum, and the chapel of the “Three Bishops” that was built in 1627.
Holy Monastery of Rousanon
The origins of this monastery’s name remain a mystery to this day. Founded during the 16th century AD following Agioretan architectural patterns and decorated in Cretan style, the Holy Monastery of Rousanon is known to have offered shelter to persecuted Christians during the Ottoman occupation.
Holy Monastery of St. Nicholas Anapausas
Built during the 16th century AD, this monastery houses a small church that was decorated by well-respected artist Theofanis Strelitzas back in 1527.
Monastery of Agia Triada
Standing atop one of the most impressive rock formations in Meteora, this historic monastery was erected in the 13th century AD. Climb the 140 steep steps to reach the monastery and be rewarded with remarkably well-preserved frescoes and a magnificent view.
Doupiani Rock is the largest rock formation in the area and also a popular tourist attraction. The view of never ending green trees, shrubbery and mountains is simply breathtaking.
Things to Do
Discover The Monasteries
Hike up to the astonishing rock formations of Meteora and visit the breathtaking monasteries that will transport you back in time to the 14th century when these inaccessible cliffs became the homes of the first hermits and monks. Regardless of your religious inclinations, the raw natural beauty and striking man-made structures of the site will leave you awe-struck.
Explore Kalambaka Town
Kalambaka is one of the most beautiful, serene and naturally striking areas in Greece and the town of Kalambaka that sits on the foot of the Meteora rock formations has been influenced greatly by the Byzantine and Greek Orthodox culture and traditions that flourished in the area. In the town you will find a great variety of Byzantine temples, as well as excellent samples of Byzantine art & iconography. Having maintained its traditional architectural identity, Kalambaka assembles a colorful mosaic made up of red-tiled rooftops that perfectly complement the grandiose Meteora rocks. Throughout the town’s alleys, you will find several traditional taverns, bars & restaurants, where local specialties based on wild game are served.
Day Trip to Kastraki Town
Kastraki is a picturesque, authentic local town near Meteora. Enjoy the proximity to nature and find peace of mind in this traditional beautiful village. Walk through its streets; admire the charming stone built houses with their characteristic clay tile roofs and be sure not to miss the wonderful local cuisine.