By: Emma Reed
Today we left the bustling city of Athens and headed north to the small town of Kalambaka. We loaded up the bus and were on the road by 8am. We watched as the light industry of Athens gave way to the snow covered olive trees and vineyards of the Grecian countryside. Eventually, the snow picked up and many of us were reminded of winters at home. Many of us were excited to listen to the stories our guide told us about the Persian wars and the myth behind marathons. Others of us were excited to catch up on sleep.
After an adventurous drive through the snow and a stop at a cute restaurant, we finally arrived at our hotel, the looming rocks of Meteora in the skyline. We waited as our driver took off to check out the mountain before we made the trek ourselves. After having declared it safe, our group started our journey into the beautiful peaks. I found the history behind the peaks particularly intriguing. The monks began to climb these peaks over 1300 years ago. They sought a place to be closer to god and found that unclimbable mountains did the trick. It was beautiful to see these lovely churches and houses, precariously perched on the high peaks. As the bus climbed further and further up the high rocks, we stopped at the convent of St. Stephen. As the wind whistled around us we trekked into the larger of the monasteries.
Eventually we came down these hills to the small town of Kalambaka. After a warm dinner, many of us ventured out into the cold to a small bakery down the street while others of us perused the small souvenir shops along the main drag. All in all it was a great day full of beautiful views, tasty treats, and enriching stories.