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Monastery of St. Stephen | Meteora | A Timeless Exploration of a Byzantine-Gothic Treasure

Updated: Mar 14

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George P. Papadellis | SG Head

with some good tips from AI


The Monastery of St. Stephen is a beautiful and historic landmark of the Meteora UNESCO World Heritage Site, one of the most popular tourist destinations in the country. This monastery has a rich history, dating back to the 14th century, and has survived many trials and tribulations over the years, after it got abandoned and in 1961 it was given to nuns. In this article, we explore the fascinating history of the Monastery of St. Stephen in Meteora, its unique architecture, and what makes it such a special place to visit.


Monastery of St. Stephen Meteora

Photo by: iStock.com | Tao_Shen


History of St Stephen Meteora

The Monastery of St. Stephen Meteora was founded in the 14th century by St. Athanasios Meteorites. It was built on a rocky outcrop, and was initially inhabited by hermit monks. The monastery quickly became a spiritual center for the Orthodox Christian faith, and attracted many pilgrims over the years. The monastery suffered damage during the Ottoman occupation of Greece, but was later restored in the 16th century. During World War II, the monastery was bombed by German forces, and many of its treasures were lost. However, it was later restored once again, and is now a popular tourist destination.


Architecture of the Monastery

The Monastery of St. Stephen Meteora is known for its unique architecture, which is a combination of Byzantine and Gothic styles. The monastery was built on a rocky outcrop, which required the monks to build a bridge to access it. The main church of the monastery is a small, but beautiful, structure, which is adorned with frescoes and icons. The monastery also contains a number of smaller chapels, as well as a museum, which houses a collection of artifacts and relics.


Monastery of Saint Stephen Meteora

Monastery of Saint Stephen Meteora | Photo by: Chris Kar, Moni Agiou Stefanou Meteoron 2, CC BY-SA 4.0


Visiting the Monastery

Visiting the Monastery of St. Stephen Meteora is a unique experience. Visitors must first climb a steep set of stairs to reach the entrance of the monastery, which is located on the bridge. Once inside, visitors can explore the various buildings and chapels of the monastery, and admire the beautiful frescoes and icons. Visitors can also learn about the history of the monastery and the Orthodox Christian faith by visiting the museum. The monastery is open to visitors every day, except for certain holidays.


Agiou Stefanou Monastery Meteora | Shiny Greece

Agiou Stefanou Monastery Meteora | Photo by: Ava Babili, Meteora St. Stephen Monastery 2, CC BY-SA 4.0


The Landmark

The Monastery of St. Stephen Meteora is a fascinating and beautiful landmark, with a rich history and unique architecture. Its location on a rocky outcrop, and its combination of Byzantine and Gothic styles, make it a truly special place to visit. Whether you are interested in history, architecture, or religion, the Monastery of St. Stephen Meteora is definitely worth a visit. So, the next time you find yourself in central Greece, make sure to add it to your itinerary.


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