Photos: Meteora, Greece

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Cliff-top monasteries float magically over the clouds in the otherworldly landscape of Meteora, Greece. There was once 20 of these seemeingly-unreachable complexes perched upon sandstone pillars, but today only six remain.

The monasteries were built in such precarious locations to function as safe havens from nearby conflict and were reached via removable ladders or ropes, nets, and baskets. Now, in friendlier times, visitors to this World Heritage site can use winding stairways hewn from the rocks to access the tranquil Greek Orthodox buildings.

Clouds roll past the cliff-top Monastery of Rousanou in Meteora, Greece.

01. Clouds roll past the cliff-top Monastery of Rousanou in Meteora, Greece.

 

The Monastery of Rousanou is shrouded in mist and clouds at dawn in Meteora, Greece.

02. The Monastery of Rousanou is shrouded in mist and clouds at dawn in Meteora, Greece.

 

The Monastery of Rousanou looks out onto the enormous sandstone pillars of the Meteora area of Greece.

03. The Monastery of Rousanou looks out onto the enormous sandstone pillars of the Meteora area of Greece.

 

The sandstone pillars of Meteora tower over the village of Kastraki before sunrise.

04. The sandstone pillars of Meteora tower over the village of Kastraki before sunrise. (Click for a larger image.)

 

Clouds rolls past the Great Meteoron Monastery in Meteora, Greece.

05. Clouds rolls past the Great Meteoron Monastery in Meteora, Greece. (Click for a larger image.)

 

The panoramic view from the Great Meteoron Monastery takes in the Monastery of Varlaam on the left and the village of Kastraki on the right.

06. The panoramic view from the Great Meteoron Monastery takes in the Monastery of Varlaam on the left and the village of Kastraki on the right. (Click for a larger image.)

 

Sunbeams break through the clouds behind the sandstone pillars of Meteora, Greece.

07. Sunbeams break through the clouds behind the sandstone pillars of Meteora, Greece.

 

The monasteries of Rousanou and St. Nicholas Anapausas.

08. The monasteries of Rousanou (right) and St. Nicholas Anapausas (left).

 

A panoramic view of the holy Monastery of Rousanou in Meteora, Greece.

09. A panoramic view of the holy Monastery of Rousanou in Meteora, Greece. (Click for a larger image.)

 

Clouds envelop the Monastery of Varlaam and the Monastery of Rousanou.

10. Clouds envelop the Monastery of Varlaam (left) and the Monastery of Rousanou (right).

 

A panoramic view of the monasteries and rock pillars or Meteora Greece.

11. A panoramic view of the monasteries and rock pillars of Meteora Greece. Four of the region’s six monasteries are visible in this photo. (Click for a larger image.)

 

The Monastery of St. Nicholas Anapausas in Meteora, Greece.

12. The Monastery of St. Nicholas Anapausas in Meteora, Greece.

 

A panoramic view of the Monastery of Rousanou looking out onto the enormous sandstone pillars of the Meteora area of Greece.

13. A panoramic view of the Monastery of Rousanou looking out onto the enormous sandstone pillars of the Meteora area of Greece. (Click for a larger image.)

 

The Monastery of Rousanou in Meteora, Greece.

14. The Monastery of Rousanou in Meteora, Greece.

 

A panoramic view of the stone pillars of Meteora Greece.

15. A panoramic view of the stone pillars of Meteora Greece. (Click for a larger image.)

 

The Monastery of Rousanou looks out onto the enormous sandstone pillars of the Meteora area of Greece.

16. The Monastery of Rousanou looks out onto the enormous sandstone pillars of the Meteora area of Greece.

 

The Monastery of Varlaam in Meteora, Greece.

17. The Monastery of Varlaam in Meteora, Greece.

 

A panoramic view of the  Monastery of Rousanou in Meteora, Greece.

18. A panoramic view of the Monastery of Rousanou in Meteora, Greece. (click for a larger image.)

 

The  Monastery of Rousanou in the clouds in Meteora, Greece.

19. The Monastery of Rousanou in the clouds in Meteora, Greece.

 

A panoramic photo of the Monastery of Varlaam above the clouds in Meteora, Greece.

20. A panoramic photo of the Monastery of Varlaam above the clouds in Meteora, Greece.

 

Keywords: photos of meteora, images of meteora, pictures of meteora, landscape photography, greece, travel photography, fine art prints, stock photography, greek, pilgrimage, kastraki, kalambaka, greek orthodox, plain of thessaly, central greece, unesco world heritage site.

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