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hiking Meteora, Greece – Travel Photo Mondays

hiking Meteora, Greece - Travel Photo Mondays

hiking Meteora, Greece – Travel Photo Mondays

Hiking fun and vistas at Meteora, Greece

 

I love to hike around natural landscapes and when you combine them with Unesco World Heritage Sites, it becomes an even better personal experience. When George Kourelis, the president of Travel Meteora offered to take us on an off the beaten path hike through a lesser known area of Meteora, I was excited to visit a less trafficked area, especially during the off-season which is perfect for the type of travel experience I love to do visiting a new location.

 

Early morning hike through the western edge of Meteora

Early morning hike through the western edge of Meteora

It was a beautiful morning and we started just a little past sunrise, the morning frost on the ground would eventually clear up and considering our uphill trek, it was good to start early before it gets hotter in the higher elevation. We walked through a relatively easy path through a canyon area to a clearing less than half a mile with a view of a sheer mountain and our first monastery, mostly ruined with just some stone walls remaining in a shallow cave that was now overrun with tall shrubs and weeds.

 

 

A ruined monastery up in a shallow cave in Meteora

A ruined monastery up in a shallow cave in Mete

 

 

Continuing on uphill we hike for a few hundred yards to another clearing and immediately see an intact monastery in another hill with sheer walls and the monastery looks like it is still in use or at least in better condition than the previous monastery. This particular monastery is a little more contemporary and had a pulley system to enable provisions to be easily hauled up to the landing without extra effort.  The images below show more details of the real facades of the monastery with a seasonal fall to the right of it in black outline.

 

A monastery tucked into a cliff with a seasonal waterfall to the right

A monastery tucked into a cliff with a seasonal waterfall to the right

A close up detail of the façade

 

 

Details of the monasterywith its ornate brick façade in Meteora

Details of the monasterywith its ornate brick façade in Meteora

 

 

Along our hike uphill we see a few more ruined buildings, this one was set up more as a fortress which had seen some battles from a siege and was eventually overtaken and eventually ruined. Continuing upwards and around the canyon, you get a different perspective of these monasteries from above with the images below.

 

Views of mountains and monasteries of Meteora

Views of mountains and monasteries of Meteora

 

 

Another view looking out into the valley at Meteora

 

Views of the valley floor at Meteora

Views of the valley floor at Meteora

 

Just a few more hundred yards and we finally make it up to the grassy peak and clearing and the panoramic views of the area are simply magnificent. Just beyond in the distance you can see snow-capped mountains which received a dusting of snow just the night before. It’s amazing to have stunning views like this considering the day before, the area was socked in with thick clouds, so we were treated to a spectacular show of the entire area.

 

Views of the valley floor and snow capped mountains in Meteora, Greece

Views of the valley floor and snow capped mountains in Meteora, Greece

 The views in another direction of the valley

 

Fascinating cliffs and mountains at Meteora

Fascinating cliffs and mountains at Meteora

 

 

At the top of the plateau George points out a small altar with a cross that a family friend had made in the early 1930’s and it is still intact with candles and small icons located inside the brick cavity, he tells us more about finding a lot of these small altar tributes dotting the mountains for families to come and bring offerings and enjoy a family excursion to the area.

 

A family altar at the peak of the western rim at Meteora

A family altar at the peak of the western rim at Meteora

 

 

We start our descent to the valley and enter this forest of very thin scraggly trees, some filled with layers of moss which I’m sure on wet days keeps this forest nice and damp. After the gorgeous views from the peak, this forested grove felt very mysterious and a little eerie to come across on the way to the valley floor.

 

A forest of thin scraggly trees in Meteora, Greece

A forest of thin scraggly trees in Meteora, Greece

 

The area around this wooded grove was filled with these strange and fantasy like mushrooms, making the area feel a little more surreal in its landscape.

 

Mushrooms at Meteora, Greece

Mushrooms at Meteora, Greece

 

Finally we are at one more clearing before we make it to our van, it was a fun 4 mile hike around the western rim of Meteora, Greece and we get this last view of the valley and village below, beautiful, don’t you think?

 

Views of the village of Kastraki, Meteora

Views of the village of Kastraki, Meteora

 

Thanks for joining me hiking Meteora, Greece, hope it was a fun tour for you. Please do visit the other travel bloggers participating for Travel Photo Mondays below. Thanks to Visit Meteora Travel for the tour and participating in some of their fantastic hikes and photo tours. All opinions and thoughts are my own and they are a fantastic outfit to work with.

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33 Responses to hiking Meteora, Greece – Travel Photo Mondays

  1. www.torreprima-holidays.it July 1, 2015 at 11:55 pm #

    Hi
    Last year I made a trip to Tuscany with my boyfriend. We are nature lovers and Tuscany is the ideal destination for this. We made many excursions in the medieval villages and cities of art. We stayed in a farmhouse near St. Gimigano really nice; It called Torre Prima.

  2. Jessica @ Green Global Travel April 10, 2015 at 2:55 pm #

    Wow, this definitely seems like a rewarding hike! The area looks absolutely breathtaking; I love the unique mix of rocky cliffs and lush forest. Amazing photos of a beautiful area!

  3. Arti March 21, 2015 at 6:19 pm #

    This is just exotic! The verdant hills and the crisp mountain air and what about that monastery tucked away carefully in the stones!
    This is definitely my kind of place, I am a mountain girl by heart, love the post! Thanks Noel 🙂

  4. Will Hatton March 21, 2015 at 5:40 pm #

    Amazing Rock Formations! Nice shots! I think It is very nice to go there and for a person like me who easily gets exhausted, I think I won’t get tired because of the beautiful views I see.

  5. Suze The Luxury Columnist March 17, 2015 at 12:11 am #

    What a beautiful landscape and I love the shots of the monastery

  6. Jesh StG March 16, 2015 at 11:07 am #

    Beautiful views and cool to literally live up in the mountains! Greece has such a versatile landscape. Were there once for 9 days – too short!
    Question: a few times (like this one) I have come here on Monday afternoon (2 pm) and the linky is already closed. On which hours do you open and close your link for Travel Monday exactly? Thanks for letting me know!

  7. A Cook Not Mad (Nat) February 27, 2015 at 12:32 pm #

    What a beautiful hike that would be. Thanks for sharing your great photos.

  8. Rahman @ Iran Travel Blog February 27, 2015 at 4:03 am #

    The monastery next to the seasonal waterfall is particularly interesting. Whenever I think about how people could make such structures in the past, I can do nothing but to appreciate their determination.

  9. Leigh February 25, 2015 at 11:42 am #

    Hiking looks absolutely superb Noel. I love the crazy rock formations and could easily see myself exploring here for days on end.

  10. Carole Terwilliger Meyers February 24, 2015 at 5:34 pm #

    I’ve been enjoying your hike/photo tours of Meteora. Did you ever get to go up into one of the cliff-hanging monasteries?

    • Noel February 25, 2015 at 7:10 am #

      Yes I was able to enter the larger monasteries but you are not allow to take any pictures of the interiors only the outside views

  11. Donna Janke February 24, 2015 at 7:27 am #

    Beautiful scenery. I love the monastery tucked into the cliff. Is it possible to visit that monastery?

    • Noel February 24, 2015 at 7:56 am #

      This one is not open to the public, but the larger ones are open for self tours and are amazing to visit and see the interiors

  12. Anita @ No Particular Place To Go February 24, 2015 at 1:09 am #

    The idea of living in a monastery or any type of abode perched on the side of a cliff is definitely something I’d never sign up for. However, I can see that the view would be spectacular! I love the rock formations, cliffs and gorgeous photos of the mountains.

  13. budget jan February 23, 2015 at 8:11 pm #

    What a beautiful area Noel. That mushroom looks like it has tiny shells stuck all over the cap (limpets I believe). You have captured the frost evaporating beautifully.

  14. Elaine J. Masters February 23, 2015 at 6:34 pm #

    Breathtaking, Noel. My imagined trip through Greece keeps getting longer with every picture you share.

  15. Suzanne Stavert February 23, 2015 at 3:20 pm #

    It looks like a fairy land. Even the mushrooms don’t look real! Spectacular photos! I must get to Greece!

  16. Paula McInerney February 23, 2015 at 1:32 pm #

    You have such a beautiful eye for picking out beautiful details, light and shade. Oh and the words were pretty good too.

  17. Betsy Wuebker | PassingThru February 23, 2015 at 12:18 pm #

    You must have felt you were in heaven with these soaring vistas and little worlds carved out of rock. Beautiful photos.

  18. Paul (@luxury__travel) February 23, 2015 at 10:40 am #

    I remember you mentioning this area before, Noel… I’d never realised there was such a spectacular spot to be found on the mainland of Greece. My travels have mostly been to the islands which seem to get most of the publicity, bu I really would like to explore and learn about and explore the mainland more. It seems to be highly underrated the more I discover.

  19. Kathryn Burrington February 23, 2015 at 10:09 am #

    What an absolutely amazing place and your photos are wonderful! I’ve never seen anything quite like this in Greece and would love to visit one day. Magical!

  20. anna parker February 23, 2015 at 9:39 am #

    These photos are driving me to distraction, in a good way! I just ordered a Greece travel guide to start plotting my next trip! Most people seem to pop up here for such a short time but it looks like you really took the time to see the place that is top of my bucket list!

  21. Shelley February 23, 2015 at 8:08 am #

    I love seeing your photos of Meteora as it brings back memories of our visit last fall. It’s truly a magical place. I love the detail on the facade of the monastery.

  22. zof February 23, 2015 at 12:08 am #

    Your posts on Meteora made me want to go there at this very moment…

  23. Amila February 22, 2015 at 11:40 pm #

    Amazing pictures! This place is wonderful for any traveler.I am amazed with the views of monastery.It is a wonderful creation over the hills.

  24. facile et beau - Gusta February 22, 2015 at 9:04 pm #

    A very beautiful place. I wish I could see it one time. Great photos!

  25. Vanessa February 22, 2015 at 12:13 pm #

    Its always a pleasure to look at your photos. Always amazing! Very beautiful place.

  26. Corinne February 22, 2015 at 9:49 am #

    What a gorgeous place, Noel, and your photos are amazing!

  27. Escape Hunter February 22, 2015 at 8:51 am #

    Meteora is a beautiful place. I visited it in 2009 and did some hiking myself… The weather was very hot (Greek summer, as it usually is there).

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