In Greece, religious tourism stems from pilgrimage-related activities, well-rooted in begone ages. Since deep antiquity, pilgrimage has been a strong incentive for travelling and people journeyed all over Greece to visit religious sites. Furthermore, the cultural aspect of religion is closely related to tourism, making it a special kind of tourist activity based on different cultural backgrounds and traditions.
Greeks have always expressed their religiousness, their profound faith and devotion to God for two thousand years, keeping to Orthodox principles.
Foreign and Greek visitors alike, stand in awe before the thousands of Byzantine churches, the innumerable chapels, the monasteries and their dependencies, the convents, the holy pilgrimage sites and the countless other awe-inspiring religious places. The other face of Greece Orthodox practice has been associated in many areas with constructions and onuments of worship of various religions, and this unveils the special historical and cultural value of Greece. Whether on a trip for religious purposes or just for sight-seeing, visitors can’t help admiring the wonderful spots on the islands or the mainland, in places of worship such as monasteries and churches. Thousands of tourists each year visit the Byzantine and post-Byzantine places of art, the mosaics, murals and icons as well as other religious sites, and this shows their interest in traditions and the abiding connection between Art and Religion.
Among the most significant religious sites in the country are the Autonomous Monastic State of Mount Athos (aka “the Holy Mountain”), the impressive monasteries of Meteora, Patmos, the Island of the Apocalypse of John the Apostle, the areas where Paul the Apostle travelled to, the monastic centre on Papikion mountain in Thrace (Rodopi), the sacred places dedicated to the Virgin Mary such as the Churches of Panagia (Virgin Mary) on Tinos island, of Panagia Soumela, of Panagia Ekatontapyliani etc. One feels that the splendid Greek nature is blessed by God himself. Every mountain and island, every rock and cobblestone pavement can be a path towards spiritual exaltation. The journey to experience this face of Greece reveals the devoutness of the Greeks over the centuries, it is a trip through time.
Make the most of it!
Santorini, Mykonos, Chania, Heraklion, Elounda, Rhodes, Corfu, Chalkidiki, Pilos, Thessaloniki, Athens, Nafplion
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