Its meaning is “hovering in the air” and when you see these spectacular views you will see that it is aptly named. There are many places on earth with magnificent geological formations, but what sets these apart are the buildings which are built atop them. Originally settled by monks in the 11th century who lived in the caves of the formations, lawlessness as a result of the Turkish occupation forced them higher and higher up the rocks until they settled on the very tops. The first monasteries were built by bringing materials and people up to the top using ladders and baskets. By the early part of the 20th century, a series of roads and stairs made the tops accessible in a slightly less dangerous and dramatic way!
A UNESCO World Heritage site, the Greek Orthodox monasteries have been continually functioning for centuries. Today there are still 6 active monasteries. Just look at these beautiful places!
The Holy Monastery of Rousenau The Holy Monastery of St. Nicholas Anapafsas
The Holy Monastery of St. Stephen The Holy Monastery of Varlaam
The Holy Monastery of Holy Trinity The Holy Monastery of Great Meteoron
Ventresca Travel offers many options for traveling to Greece – 7 to 12 day escorted tours, or we can custom design the trip of your dreams. Whatever style of travel suits you, you should definitely plan on a 1 to 2 day add on to visit these remarkable monasteries, so that you too can spend the day “hovering in the air!”
Strasbourg, the capital city of Alsace, offers flavors of both France and Germany because of its borderline location. It’s historic city center, the Grande Ile (Grand Island), was classified a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1988, the first time such an honour was placed on an entire city center. Strasbourg is immersed in Franco-German culture, and although violently disputed througout history has been a cultural bridge between France and Germany for centures, especially through the University of Strasbourg and the coexistence of Catholic and Protestant culture. It is also home to the largest Islamic place of worship in France, the Strasbourg Grande Mosque.
Strasbourg is one of the grand old cities situated along the Rhine, one of Europe’s most beautiful rivers. Rhine river cruises can take you to other picturesque sites such as the Black Forest, Cologne, Heidelberg, and Rudesheim. Watch the video below to catch a glimpse of this remarkabel experience.