Back down on the ground, after the visit of the Meteora Monastery (Read my post), the path continues on an old footpath to the even more secluded monastery of Ypapantis, hidden behind the rock towers. If you haven't had enough of men of God, icons, Orthodox prayers and pious chants, you will find the nunnery of Agios Stefanos with its interesting churches and museums nearby. Follow me to Greece, into the Olympos National Park.
The women settled down here, a little more comfortably than the men, because the Agiou Stefanou monastery stands at the southeast end of the rock group of Meteora just above Kalambaka and is the only monastery that you can visit without climbing stairs. It is reachable via a small one Bridge can be reached. From up here the view of the nearby town of Kalambaka, the valley of the Pinios and the mighty backdrop of the Pindos Mountains opens up.
It is only a short drive from the landscape with the steep cliffs of the Meteora monastery complex to Litochoro, a small place on the Aegean coast from which all hikes into the mighty Olympus massif start. The Enipeas (Greek Ενιπέας), after which the gorge was named, in which it rises inexorably, is a brook that flows out of the mountain range and flows into the Aegean Sea at Gritsa (Greek Γρίτσα), the port of Litochoro.
The Enipeas Gorge is a well-known hiking area and attracts many tourists with its untouched, wild beauty. Lush green is to the right and left of the paths, down here there is still nothing to see of the bare rocks that continue to shape the picture above. It's raining, but what comes from the sky is warm and humid like the air that blows over from the sea.
The first stage of our summit storm leads through the enchanting Enipea gorge through Europe's perhaps most unknown mountain giants on a good mountain path up to Prionia. It's already 1,100 meters high, not a hill anymore, but a mountain, at least if you have climbed it on foot from the very bottom of everything to here. The path follows the course of the crystal-clear mountain stream, which is fed by the meltwater from Mount Olympus. Holm oaks, pines and beeches line the path, the rock walls repeatedly reveal the view of the snow-covered peaks of Mount Olympus.
Mules are crossing our path. They`re the trucks of the mountains, everything you need at the top is transported on their backs above, because Greece has no sherpas. Again and again the path changes the side of the stream; At first there is a constant short up and down, later more and more steadily uphill.
It takes around four hours to reach the monastery of Agios Dionysios, which is surrounded by a thick pine forest. Would it still be there. But in the Second World War it was blown up by German troops, so today only a few ruins can be seen with difficulty.
From here it is only a short distance to Prionia, the base camp for all summiteers. The place is also famous for some natural pools of water Enipeas washed out here. Their water temperature is only slightly above freezing point in every season, because the meltwater has only just flowed down from the heights. Nevertheless, these pools are among the most popular bathing opportunities in the region - at least when the weather is good. We don't try it.
If it is bad, it is better to remember the bloody days of history, which these rocks have already seen here, with comforting horror. It is said that the singer Orpheus was torn apart by maenads in the Enipea ravine while Leto was bathing in his waters. But a real fact is that Gaius Iulius Caesar was here at the Battle of Pharsalus on August 9, 48 BC. BC defeated his enemy Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus, who had moved up with twice as many legionaries. Pompeus fled and was later murdered in Egypt. Caesar became the Roman emperor from Greece...
A few more pictures for you: