St. Stephen Monastery

Kalabaka, Greece

The Monastery of St. Stephen was founded by St. Antoninus Cantacuzene, who is thought to be a son of the Serb ruler Nicephorus II of Epirus, in c. 1400.

This monastery rests on the plain rather than on a cliff. It was shelled by the Nazis during World War II who believed it was harboring insurgents and was abandoned. The monastery was given over to nuns in 1961 and they have reconstructed it into a flourishing nunnery, with 28 nuns in residence in 2015.

The old katholikon (main church), which was rebuilt in 1545 and frescoed shortly thereafter, still stands. The new katholikon was built in 1798 and is currently being frescoed by a modern artist. It is dedicated to the martyred St. Charalambos, whose head it contains.

The refectory (15th century) has a surviving fresco of the Virgin in the apse. The monastery contains a small museum of vestments and other religious objects and the nuns sell handmade embroideries and other trinkets.

Monasteries of Meteora are included on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

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Address

Meteora, Kalabaka, Greece
See all sites in Kalabaka

Details

Founded: c. 1400
Category: Religious sites in Greece

Rating

4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Rachael Vonada (18 months ago)
This was very beautiful. I recommend taking a tour of all the monasteries at Meteora. It is €3 to go into each one ~6. Dress in long pants and a shirt with short/long sleeves.
Tina Sobol (18 months ago)
Loved our experience!!! all Orthodox Christians should visit this Amazing Monastery. The Sisters were all so kind ❤
Sergey Poleff (19 months ago)
The must. Easy to reach by car. Last 5-10 minutes before closing are the best time to enjoy the tranquility and peacefulness of the place because all tourists groups already leave at this time.
David Tsani (19 months ago)
A must visit once in a lifetime. The view is breathtaking!!
K. Honan (20 months ago)
Bring long trousers and shirt if male, cover your shoulders and use one of their sarong skirts if female. If you’re a guy and wearing shorts the nuns don’t like you trying to use one of the sarong skirts to cover your shorts. It costs around €3 to enter and there is a small museum and a shop which feels a little... strange to have in a holy place. Moneylenders, anyone? The view is nice, but can easily be obtained standing anywhere on the range, the real appeal is seeing inside a monastery that was abandoned by the monks and then taken over by nuns.
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