Meteora – Where The Hills Are Fragrant All Year Round
My desire to visit Meteora has been long and lasting, yet it was only this past September of 2020 that I managed to visit the area.
It was on a rainy afternoon ,with the clouds almost resting on top of the stony rounded cliffs,giving me the impression of being in limbo between the earth and the sky.
My soul felt troubled with its mundane anxieties and the constant pursuit of unreachable happiness, but at the same time, also longing for the rush and excitement achieved by the exploration of the unknown,and the joy of new discoveries. A joy that feels almost like salvation at times.
My experience,both spiritual and magicaly mysterious, can be identified in the writings of my lost dear friend , Theocharis Provatakis in his book
On the way to Meteora
“Leaving the picturesque area of “kastraki”(i.e little castle),you climb the road uphill, to reach the rocky hilltops where the monasteries are situated. The road resembles a giant serpent that crawls between streams,climbs over the few cultivated hills, and winds around bare rocky cliffs painted with hues of green and yellow, to reach “Meteora”.
As you climb upwards,the hills are fragrant all year round.Everything around you is calm and serene,while a light breeze follows your thoughts.On both sides of the road, tall and bare rocks are looming over you,making their presence unmistakably known.The beauty of nature around you is an amalgam of light curved lines and jagged northern edges, creating an ecstasy in your soul.
Combined with this unique scenery,are the voices of the lingering monastic world,filling the atmosphere with sweet tones.”
Reaching The Monasteries
“After this magical route,you reach the calm heights where you can clearly see a forest of colossal rocks, on top of which there are monasteries,giving the impression that they are in perfect symphony with the landscape. Up there,silence and isolation are the rule.
Wherever you gaze, your eyes will meet unparalleled calm and serenity,just like gazing at the autumn night sky, filled with its quiet ecstasy.
The View From The Balconies of Meteora
Your heart beats strangely. “The view of the gargantuan rocky hills with the green carpet surrounding them,create fear and awe,joy and ecstasy,because it is exactly up there where man feels his weakness before god’s creation. At the same time,one can also get the feeling of something higher and beautiful.”
The View Of The Sky
Once you turn your eyes up towards the sky,another feeling hits you.”A strong feeling that is amplified by the vast open horizon, situated underneath the silent dome of the high blue sky.
Your soul begins to wander towards the sky above and the vastness of the quiet fields below,while a myriad of emotions siege your heart. Through this contrast of emotions of awe and admiration,flows the ecstasy which is transformed into fear if it so happens that a storm breaks out.”
Meteora: Like A Canvas Painting
“Seeing a whole forest of ash and green colored monoliths and the seemingly small monasteries resting on their peaks,with their slopping roofs,hanging wooden corridors and balconies, all lingering on the edge of the abyss,you don’t know what to marvel at.
Their magnificence surprises you and draws you in,and you have to let yourself free to live those unforgettable moments.
Ioanna Gallou – General Manager Kedros Travel.
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