Meteora: Essential Guide for Your Greek Adventure

Discover Meteora - your gateway to Greek adventure. Explore historic monasteries, stunning landscapes, & rich culture!

Meteora: Essential Guide for Your Greek Adventure


Meteora, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is a rock formation located in central Greece and hosts one of the largest and most precipitously built complexes of Eastern Orthodox monasteries. The six intact monasteries are a destination for tourists, historians, and spiritual seekers worldwide.

Historical Context

The Meteora monasteries date back to the 14th century and were built by monks seeking solitude and spiritual connection. The name 'Meteora' itself means 'suspended in the air,' which aptly defines the location of these monasteries atop sandstone megaliths.

Cultural Practices

The monastic life at Meteora, revolving around prayer and manual work, still adheres to age-old traditions. The monks and nuns residing in the monasteries maintain gardens, restoration works, praying routines and welcome pilgrims and visitors.


Key religious festivals such as Easter and the Feast of the Assumption are celebrated in Meteora with great fervor. Visitors during these times can witness liturgical rites, processions, and local traditions.

Local Anecdotes

Legend has it that the first monk to inhabit Meteora, Saint Barnabas, was brought to the location by an eagle.

Interesting Facts

Meteora has featured in popular culture, including in the James Bond film 'For Your Eyes Only' and in the animations 'Game of Thrones' and 'Tintin'. Additionally, the monasteries used to be accessed by windlass systems, which are still in place but not in common use.

Monasteries to Visit

  • Great Meteoron: Constructed in the mid-14th century, it's the largest monastery with an impressive museum.
  • Varlaam: Houses an interesting collection of post-Byzantine icons and relics.
  • Rousanou: It offers outstanding panoramic views due to its distinctive location.
  • St. Nicholas Anapausas: One of the smallest monasteries with notable frescoes by a famous Cretan painter, Theophanis Strelitzas.

Travel Tips

Comfortable footwear is essential due to the substantial amount of walking and stair-climbing involved in visiting the monasteries. Modest dress (covered shoulders and knees) is required for entrance to the monasteries. Also, keep in mind that each monastery observes a siesta-like midday closing, so plan your visit accordingly.


Below are the GPS coordinates for Meteora. You can input these into your GPS device or mapping software to get directions.

Latitude: 39.721704, Longitude: 21.630589