Athens - Ancient Epidaurus - Nafplio - Mycenaes - Kalavryta - Nafpaktos - Meteora
Experience the serenity at Greece's most beautiful monasteries, breathtaking landscapes and admirably archaeological sites.
Our journey takes us from breathtaking landscapes of Nafplio and Kalavryta to wonderful archaeological sites of Ancient Epidaurus and Mycenaes, to magical monasteries all over Peloponnese and to Meteora!
Spectacularly perched atop rocky pinnacles in Thessaly, the Meteora monasteries are among the most striking sights in Greece. The name Meteora (Μετεωρα) is Greek for "suspended in the air," which perfectly describes these six remarkable Greek Orthodox monasteries. We'll visit the amazing clifftop monasteries of Meteora in central Greece. Monks and hermits have been finding refuge in this unique rock formation for more than a thousand years. Six Eastern Orthodox monasteries—some dating back to the 14th century—remain in place, still home to a small number of monks and nuns. Meteora is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and welcomes thousands of tourists every year. Beyond the religious quarters, Meteora offers more than picturesque scenery and an education in ancient history. It's developed a reputation as Greece's adventure capital. While most visitors opt for the popular driving and hiking excursions, always with a focus on visiting the monasteries, more active tourists look for alternative ways to reach for the heavens. Those dramatic sandstone peaks have helped make Meteora a thriving hub for rock climbers from around the world. The routes vary between bolted and traditional, and are suitable for absolute beginners through to professional climbers.
Our journey begins with at Corinths canal where you can admire this meajestic construction and take some wonderful pictures. The Corinth Canal is an important navigational route which once allowed ships to enter the Aegean Sea. At a pine-tree area, 3 km from Chiliomodi, is the Monastery of Faneromeni, which is dedicated to the Dormition of the Virgin Mary. Initially it was higher, approximately at a distance of 4 km from the present day monastery, at a location with excellent view of the surrounding area up to Acrocorinth. At its interior survives the elaborate old wooden-carved screen of the 17th century, which is decorated with representations from the Old and the New Testament. We continue at Epidaurus where lies one of most beautiful ancient theatres in the world, the ancient theatre of Epidaurus. Due to its excellent acoustics and condition, the ancient theater is still used today. On our route to Nafplio and our resort we meet the Monastery of Agios Dimitrios Augos. It is a three-storey monastery complex, consisting of cells and other areas adjacent to the catholicon, and are shaped to fit into the hollows of the steep natural rock that dominates the valley. The dual-nature catholicon is located on the second floor and consists of two churches: the church of Agioi Theodoroi, which is cruciform, and the church of Agios Dimitrios, which is covered by a groin vault.
After a tonic breakfast we head to the monastery of Agion Anargiron. Located near of the Argos Fortress, in a mid-mountain environment, this monastery seems surreal. Pleasant and calm, this enormous monastery deserves to stop there. We dive into history with a visit at breathtaking Mycenae. Continue through beautiful off road route at impossing monastery called Lady of the Rock. The monastery is located on the east side of the rock called Polyfeggos, in the mountain of Panagia (Our Lady), at the entrance of Nemea. The ruins of a medieval settlement are on the south part of the rock. At the same area, in the rock, lie the remains of the old church of Our Lady of the Rocks. Mural paintings of an exquisite art style that date back to the 11th or 12th century can be seen on a rock wall of the abandoned church. Among them, a depiction of the Presentation of Jesus Christ and a depiction of Saint George stand out. Drive to historic town of Kalavryta through the wonderfull lake Stymfalia and to our resort. A dreamy setting with picturesque squares, stone-paved streets and cute little houses welcomes the romantic souls. The trademark of Kalavryta is its small train, the “Odontotos”. Its 22 km journey from Kalavryta to Diakofto is one of the most spectacular rack & pinion rail trips! The narrow gauge tracks follow the Vouraikos River through tunnels, over water-falls, along cliffs and through forests of pine and oleander.
This morning we drive to famous monastery of Mega Spileo. According to a lot of people, it is the oldest Monastery of Greece and one of the most impressive Christian Orthodox pilgrimages. It is built on the slopes of a steep side of a rocky hill, at a height of 120m, providing great views from its balcony. The Monastery of Mega Spileon was originally built in 362 AD by two brothers, Symeon and Theodore, when a shepherd girl, after a dream, found an icon of the Virgin Mary inside a cave. The Monastery of Mega Spileon is a very imposing construction and has a 17th century church with remarkable frescoes, mosaic floors and a bronze door with relief decoration. The Monastery also hosts a museum that displays carved wooden crosses, antique manuscripts and Holy Gospels. Next stop the Makelaria Monastery, a 6th-century Eastern Orthodox monastery. It lies on a big rock near the villages of Lapanagoi, at a distance of 30 km from the town of Kalavryta. The monastery, one of the oldest in Greece, was founded in 532 AD and is dedicated to the Dormition of the Theotokos Serene. Continue our journey Nafpaktos and to our resort. Nafpaktos is among the most picturesque places in mainland Greece. The port is the most picturesque spot of the town. On the hill above the town, there is a strong Venetian Castle with great view to the sea and the opposite coasts of Peloponnese.
Its time to visit the legendary Meteora and the famous monasteries. We drive through a wonderful off road tour to our destination. Serene, spiritual, magical, mystical, extraordinary, breathtaking, immense, inspiring, impressive. These are only some of the words people very often use in an effort to describe the Meteora phenomenon. A trip to Meteora offers the unique experience of nature’s grandeur in conjunction with history, architecture and man’s everlasting desire to connect with the Divine. Today, the tradition of Orthodoxy is continued uninterrupted for over 600 years by the Holy Monastery of the Great Meteoro (or the Transfiguration of Jesus), the Varlaam Monastery, the Saint Stephen Monastery, the Holy Trinity Monastery, the Saint Nicholas Anapafsas Monastery and the Rousanou Monastery. All these monasteries are on the top of Meteora rocks.
After a good breakfast and a tour at beautiful Meteora village we continue our spiritual journey to Meteora monasteries. The monasteries remain till present day the memorials of a glorious past, a long forgotten empire that defended the Eastern Christian world for over 1000 years. The monasteries of Meteora and the monks are today the living history of Byzantium. Humble men lived suspended for centuries between the heavens and earth, perched on the edge of sharp cliffs, glorifying God for He made the earth and heavens by His power. They have left their homes, the riches and pleasures of this world in order to grow old in these nests and caves of this earth, to suffer from cold and hunger, pain and death, perhaps to honor their God in this way. We continue to breathtaking Metsovo for a walk and a traditional lunch. Metsovo is full of life throughout the year generously offering you its natural surrounding beauties. Half hidden in the fog or wrapped in a snow blanket as winter sets in; Metsovo practically looks like a painting. A village where you can see art and culture introducing you to an ongoing tradition, quench your thirst at one out of many stone-built drinking fountains and savour famous local dishes, revive your senses by hiking in the mountains and crossing the rivers.
The climate in Greece is predominately Mediterranean with mild and rainy winters and warm and dry summers
The monetary unit for Greece is the euro whose sign is €. The euro banknotes exist in seven denominations: 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, and 500. The circulated euro coins exist in denominations of 1 euro and 2 euro, and the cents are in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, and 50.
To ensure your wardrobe allows you to blend in with the locals, remember that Athens is known to be a city that is smart-casual. This means that the men are dressed impeccably and the woman are unashamed of their bodies.
It is acceptable to wear jeans around the city, providing you dress them up with a smart blazer or blouse. Be sure you get a pair of comfortable shoes for walking, hiking. Also do not forget your sunglasses.
In Greece the power plugs and sockets are of type C and F. The standard voltage is 230 V and the standard frequency is 50 Hz.