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City: Meteora / Country: Greece / World Region: Europe

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      30.09.2012 23:55

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      This part of our tour will stay with me forever, the views and people.

      I've seen pictures of the monasteries at Meteora and thought that maybe one day we will have to go and see them for ourselves.
      So this year we booked to go as part of a 3 week tour of Greece.
      I researched for good hotels and picked one in Kastraki which is at the foot of Meteora. Not the easiest place to find, if you haven't been before, but WOW when we got there it was truly amazing.
      Breathtaking scenery both when looking up at the monasteries and looking down when we went up to them.
      Now you would expect, when being in such a wonderful place that you would pay for the privilege, but on the contrary. The hotel was the cheapest of the 6 we stayed in on our tour, but was certainly a brilliant place to stay. We had our cheapest meal of the whole 3 weeks in Kastraki and having paid anything from 3.50 to 5.00 euros for beer in Athens and Patras, I was overjoyed to pay 2 euro for a half litre of beer in Kastraki.
      There are 6 monasteries, 2 of which are inhabited by nuns rather than monks and these are St Stephen and Rousanou. All 6 can be visited but they close on various days to the public. The owner of our hotel told us the opening times, so we weren't wasting our time. We chose to just go in one. They were all busy and I think you lose the serenity when these places are packed. Yes you will have to pay to go in and please be aware to dress respectably if you would like to enter. Shorts are not allowed for either sex and ladies will have to cover their shoulders.

      Meteora can be found on the plains of Thessaly near to the city of Kalambaka and is a pretty straight forward drive from Athens or Patras from the south or from Thessaloniki in the north or Igoumenitsa on the west coast, which is a short ferry journey from Corfu.

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