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Sometime during the 15th century, hermits came to the area seeking isolation from the world. Over time, monasteries were built on these formations, literally clinging to the edges with a dizzying view.
This particular monastery, named after Saint Nicholas Anapafsas, is one of the smaller ones, but is no less impressive. Built on several levels, this porch area looks out over the Meteora landscape, with the town of Kastraki in the near distance.
Ironically, while the initial draw to the area was to escape into solitude, now, thousands of tourists are drawn to the area to see not only the spectacular rock formations but also the monasteries. However, these same tourists help the monasteries survive financially, so it is more of a symbiotic relationship rather than a parasitic one.