Meteora Favorites

  • Kalambaka
    Kalambaka
    by Kuznetsov_Sergey
  • Meteora's Icons
    Meteora's Icons
    by Kuznetsov_Sergey
  • Meteora's Icons
    Meteora's Icons
    by Kuznetsov_Sergey

Most Recent Favorites in Meteora

  • Kuznetsov_Sergey's Profile Photo

    Kalambaka Name Origin Background

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Updated Jun 20, 2008

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    Kalambaka
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    Favorite thing: You may see the name of the town Kalambaka shown in various forms. The actual letters 'm and p', when used together in Greek, are pronounced as 'b'. Therefore the town may be called Kalabaka (phonetic spelling), Kalampaka or Kalambaka.
    There are several theories of the Kalambaka’s origin name. One of them considers that the name grows from the Turkish “kale mpak” meaning prestigious castle.
    May be that’s a reason of absence Kalambaka in the VT Greece database. I’ve written about it in my Tourist Trap tip VT-database of destinations in Greece.

    You may watch my high resolution photo of Kalambaka-Meteora on the Google Earth according to the following coordinates 39º 42' 33.96" N 21º 37' 34.78" E or on my Google Earth Panoramio Kalambaka Panorama .

    You may watch my 2 min 44 sec VIDEO-Clip Kalambaka Morning Walk out of my VT-Tube or Greece Kalambaka Morning Walk out of my YouTube with popular Greek music.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Architecture

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    Meteora Geological Background

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Jun 9, 2008

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    Meteora Rocks

    Favorite thing: Why do the Meteora rocks look the way they do? What created this rare geological phenomenon is one of the mysteries of nature and there are many theories though they remain theories and none have been proven.

    The prevailing theory is that one of the German geologist Philipson, who came to Greece in the late 19th century. According to his theory, a large river had his estuary in this area which for million of years was covered by a narrow and deep part of the sea .The river waters place matter, stones and generally several materials that were transferred by its waters at the estuary from Northern parts of primordial central Europe. From the accumulation of these materials deltaic cones were formed.
    25-30 million years ago, after some geological changes took place during the centuries; the central part of today's Europe was lifted. That's how the opening of Tempi was created, having as a result the pouring of the waters in today's Aegean Sea.

    During the tertiary period, at the time of the alpine orogenies, the solid volumes of the "rocks" were cut off from the mountain chain of Pindos that was created and as the centuries went by, the Plain of Pinios River was formed between them.
    With the continuous corrosion by the wind and the rain as well as by other geological changes, these rocks took their present form through the passing of million of years.
    At the cavities, fissures and peaks of the rocks, the people of that place found protection from the raids of several conquerors and of those who passed from the area.

    Related to:
    • Mountain Climbing

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    Meteora Historical Background

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Jun 9, 2008

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    Meteora's Icons
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    Favorite thing: The Metéora is one of the largest and most important complex of Eastern Orthodox monasteries in Kalambaka and is second only to Mount Athos.
    Now The Metéora is home to six monasteries (there were 24 monasteries in past) and is included on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

    No reference concerning these rocks exists, neither in mythology nor by some Greek or foreign historians. Historians and geologists started to be interested in the creation of these rocks about 1000 years ago.
    It is considered that as early as the XI-th century AD hermit monks lived among the caves and cutouts in the rocks. Early in the XII-th century a rudimentary monastic state had formed called the Skete of Stagoi and was centered around the church of Theotokos (mother of God), which still stands today. The hermit monks, seeking a retreat from the expanding Turkish occupation, found the inaccessible rock pillars of Meteora to be an ideal refuge.

    In 1344, Athanasios Koinovitis from Mount Athos brought a group of followers to Metéora. From 1356 to 1372, he founded the great Meteoron monastery on Broad Rock, which was perfect for the monks; they were safe from political upheaval and had complete control of the entry to the monastery. The only means of reaching it was by climbing a long ladder, which was drawn up whenever the monks felt threatened.

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    • Historical Travel
    • Religious Travel
    • Architecture

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    Meteora Climbing Historical Background

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Jun 9, 2008

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    Meteora Rocks

    Favorite thing: The first people, who climbed these rocks, were shepherds, who carried their sheep up to the top to graze to ensure their survival. Moreover, there are indications that as early as the 9th century, monks had climbed to the top of the towers and monasteries were built.

    In the 14th century A.D. the Serb czar Stefanos Dussan ordered his soldiers to put a metal cross 1,80 x 0,80 cm at the top of the rock "Aghion Pnewma" (Holy Ghost). The ones who climbed to the top did a difficult ascend without any technical equipment. There is a possibility that the shape of the rock might have been different, but even this doesn't eliminate the danger of climbing. The cross was taken down by a helicopter and it is currently kept in Varlaam monastery.

    During the German invasion, soldiers climbed on Aghia to place the German flag. They probably climbed on "Kastraki Tower" as well. In April 1970, Berlin climbers Bodo Zoephel and Uwe Weinreich climbed up the tower of NE "Koumaria", "Hawk Tower" and "Shoulder of Meteora". They have never come back to Meteora again.

    In the summer of 1970, the already great climber - mountaineer Dietrich Hasse together with his friend professional photographer - mountaineer Heiz Lotar Stutte, came to Meteora. Since then, climbing has become a sport, as it is kwon today. We estimate that more than 200 climbing routes were opened and all 100 rock towers of the field were climbed from 1975 to 1985. That was a very difficult feat since these people were coming to Meteora only in summer and the Greek climbing was in its start. Hasse and Stutte are fairly considered fathers of climbing at Meteora.

    You may watch my high resolution photo of Kalambaka-Meteora on the Google Earth according to the following coordinates 39º 43' 37.17" N 21º 37' 44.36" E or on my Google Earth Panoramio Meteora - Devil's Tower .

    Related to:
    • National/State Park
    • Historical Travel

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    Meteora Name Origin Background

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Jun 9, 2008

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    Meteora

    Favorite thing: The Metéora (Greek: "suspended rocks", "suspended in the air" or "in the heavens above"). The word Meteora also means literally 'hovering in the air' and of course brings to mind the word meteor.

    In the middle of the XIV-th century the Holy Monastery of the Transfiguration of Jesus on the mount was established by Holy Athanasios, who gave to the big rock "Wide Stone" the name Meteoro and since then all the rocks have this name.
    .Since then, this name has been established, retained, generalized in the ensemble of the monasteries and rocks and has gone far beyond the borders of Greece.

    You may watch my high resolution photo of Kalambaka-Meteora on the Google Earth according to the following coordinates 39º 42' 31.34" N 21º 37' 32.31" E or on my Google Earth Panoramio Kalambaka Meteora Megali Agia .

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Religious Travel

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    Kalambaka Historical Background

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Jun 9, 2008

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    Kalambaka
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    Favorite thing: Kalambaka is known because of the famous Monasteries that built on the tops of the Meteora rocks, located around the north and east of the town.
    It is a place which is imposed, having a wonderful view, as spiritual place and cult towards god, since the ancient times till today.
    The ancient name of the town was Aeginion and it is mentioned in the Hellenic and roman period because of the importance of its location.
    The name Aeginion, witnesses a built in wall sign at the east part of the church of Saint John the Baptist. During the X-th century, the town is mentioned as Stagi, a name that is still being used as a metropolitan title.

    You may watch my high resolution photo of Kalambaka-Meteora on the Google Earth according to the following coordinates 39º 42' 33.48" N 21º 37' 34.78" E or on my Google Earth Panoramio Kalambaka Panorama .

    You may watch my 3 min 28 sec VIDEO-Clip Kalambaka out of my VT-Tube or Greece Kalambaka out of my YouTube with popular Greek music by Demis Roussos.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel

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  • Do you know how to conquer a top?

    by dimilag Written Jun 2, 2007

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    Favorite thing: The anchorites and the ascetics who lived in hermitages round the rocks of Meteora sought more and more secluded regions built at higher and higher altitudes, away from human presence. However, it was difficult for them to conquer the top of rocks. So, they tied ropes around the paws of eagles and then let them fly. The eagles reached the top and the ascetics managed to climb up with the aid of the ropes.

    The reality is a little more …prosaic: a wooden stairway was constructed on the rock and the monks used it to reach the top. Of course, the construction was an extremely difficult and strenuous process that lasted very long, since the task of carrying and fixing wood on vertical rocks involves great labour and danger.

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    • Historical Travel

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  • Related Books

    by dimilag Written May 28, 2007

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    Favorite thing: Here you can find some interesting books that may help your planning to Meteora:

    # Greece: A Lonely Planet Travel Survival Kit by David Willett, Rosemary Hall, Paul Hellander and Kerry Kenihan provides excellent general travel information on Greece. They also provide food and lodging recommendations for small villages like Kastraki.

    # Roumeli: Travels in Northern Greece by Patrick Leigh Fermor is one of the best travel books written about Northern Greece. "The Monasteries of the Air" is a chapter that should be read before visiting Meteora but it is likely that you will want to read the book in its entirety.

    # Monasteries of Greece by Chris Hellier is a lavish "coffee table" book with a chapter on Meteora. It features beautiful photographs with an interesting text. It also has a wonderful chapter on Mt. Athos, the preeminent monastic community that is closed to women and allows only restricted visitation by non-Orthodox men.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel

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  • Planning Tip No 3

    by dimilag Written May 28, 2007

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    Favorite thing: Acquaint yourself with Greek Orthodoxy. It will enhance your appreciation of the Churches and Monasteries of Meteora and their valuable displays of Byzantine art. There are volunteers at the Church of the Transfiguration who will explain the rich tradition of Byzantine iconography.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel

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  • Planning Tip No 1

    by dimilag Written May 28, 2007

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    Favorite thing: Plan to spend a full day at Meteora. You will delight in the play of light on the rocks and their changing moods. On sunny mornings, the red roof tiles of the monasteries glisten in sharp contrast to the weather-stained grayness of the rocks while the late afternoon sun bathes the landscape with a golden glow. At nighttime, the rocks are dramatically illuminated by spotlights while autumnal mists shroud them in an ethereal mysteriousness that must have appealed to the hermits and monks who sought refuge from the things of the world.

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  • gale.blog.pl's Profile Photo

    Ticket

    by gale.blog.pl Updated Nov 29, 2005

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    ticket

    Favorite thing: Here's a ticket to one of the objects, Varlaam Monastry :-) Just to let you know what it looks like.

    Don't pay much attention to the price, most people pay full price and I'm a student so I pay only half of it - and I don't remember whose ticket this one was ;-)

    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Historical Travel
    • Religious Travel

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  • gale.blog.pl's Profile Photo

    Ticket

    by gale.blog.pl Updated Nov 29, 2005

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    ticket

    Favorite thing: Here's a ticket to one of the objects :-) Just to let you know what it looks like.

    Don't pay much attention to the price, most people pay full price and I'm a student so I pay only half of it - and I don't remember whose ticket this one was ;-)

    Related to:
    • Religious Travel
    • Historical Travel
    • Architecture

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  • Paul2001's Profile Photo

    The Scenery Around Meteora

    by Paul2001 Written Jul 1, 2005

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    The rocks that overlook Kalambaka

    Favorite thing: The rock formations in the mountains surrounding the monasteries are truely amazing. For many it might be worth seeing Meteora for the hiking opportunities that the mountains provide however there is one problem. For reasons the only the Greeks would know, there are very few proper hiking trails. Apparently the locals never considered walking as a fun thing to do.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Hiking and Walking
    • Arts and Culture

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  • Lilasel's Profile Photo

    Kalampaka

    by Lilasel Updated Jan 17, 2005

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    Favorite thing: Kalampaka is one of the most ancient cities of Thessaly. This town was called in ancient times - Eginio.
    In Byzantine times, during the 9th century Eginio is called Stagi as a site of the episcope Stagon.
    During the turkish domination the name changed to Kalampaka and took its name from a Byzantine family. As some people believe they took its name from the turkish "kale mpak" meaning prestigious castle.
    It is a "prestigious castle" as it is surrounded by the imposing place of Meteora...

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  • Lilasel's Profile Photo

    Best time to go

    by Lilasel Written Jan 8, 2005

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    Favorite thing: The Monasteries of Meteora may be visited year round but the weather is wet and cool from December to March. Crowds and high season rates are guaranteed from July 1st to October 15th . May and June are the best months for comfortable weather, low season rates and the opportunity to leisurely explore the area.

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