Whether you are coming from Athens or Thessaloniki, taking a trip to Meteora is a must-do on your Greek holiday. Six epic monasteries perched on top of stone pillars can be discovered here – from the Holy Monastery of Great Meteoron to the Holy Monastery of Saint Nicholas Anapafsas. Each one is worth checking out for the combination of amazing views, incredible architecture and intense spirituality. To make the most of your visit, you should consider booking one of the tours offered by Meteora Thrones – a fantastic company that lives and breathes this UNESCO site!
While of course it’s possible to check out Meteora independently, having an expert guide lead you around elevates the entire experience. This is because the professional guides can share facts and stories about the holy places, and introduce you to hidden gems off-the-beaten-track, in addition to organizing all of the transportation logistics. With this in mind, ticking the monasteries off your bucket-list with the popular tour operator Meteora Thrones is an absolute no-brainer! They run all sorts of activities in the area at extremely competitive prices, catering to every type of traveler.
Best Tours of Meteora
1-Day Private Tour of Meteora from Athens by Mini Bus
The private day tour of Meteora from Athens by mini bus is a great option for couples, friends or families who want to immerse themselves in the monasteries and mountains on their own. Groups as small as two and as large as 18 can be accommodated in the comfort of a mini bus. The excursion kicks off at 08:00 am with a hotel pick-up in Athens before cruising up the gorgeous Greek countryside. Arrival time at Kalabaka is at 12:00 pm with your first stop being for coffee at a point that overlooks Meteora. Once the caffeine has hit, you will be ready to commence the tour!
The friendly and knowledgeable guide with Meteora Thrones takes you to see all six monasteries and gives you the chance to enter two or three of the most beautiful ones. On top of that, you will be provided with historical context and shown panoramic photo spots that hardly any tourists know about. After four hours of exploration, you would have built up an appetite – so a late lunch consisting of traditional Greek dishes is then enjoyed at the villages of Kalabaka or Kastraki. Once satisfied, you make your way back to Athens in the mini bus at approximately 18:30 pm.
2-Day Small Group Tour of Meteora from Athens by Train
Two days, as opposed to one, gives you the opportunity to partake in a couple of highly rated tours with Meteora Thrones and have that extra time to relax between activities. This is a superb choice for anyone looking to make new friends in a small group setting! The train leaves from Athens Station at 07:52 am and arrives in Kalabaka in just over four hours at 12:05 pm. A mini bus will be waiting for you at Kalabaka Train Station to transfer you to the hotel for the night, which is a nice 3-star hotel (4-stars can be booked upon request) that provides you with a free breakfast.
On the first day, you set off on the Majestic Sunset Tour. The highlight of this journey is hiking up to a viewpoint on the rocks to watch the sunset over the rugged stone pillars and monasteries that dot the landscape. Your transport from and back to the hotel is included in the price as well, so there is no need to worry about logistical arrangements. The next morning sees you join either the Panoramic Morning Tour or the Authentic Hiking Tour – whichever one suits you best. After a second fun-filled day, you depart from Kalabaka at 18:35 pm and arrive in Athens at 22:46 pm.
1-Day Private Tour of Meteora from Thessaloniki by Train
The second largest Greek city (Thessaloniki) is home to a rich history, delicious food and wonderful sea views – making it an obligatory visit for every traveler who aims to explore Greece in depth. If you are in town already and want to tackle your next adventure, then contemplate the private day tour of Meteora from Thessaloniki by train! It starts by catching the train at 08:56 am and reaching Kalabaka at 12:05 pm. The mini bus will be waiting to collect you upon arrival, and after your tour leader transports you to a world of monasteries and mountains on the Panoramic Tour.
This is the only five hour panoramic tour in the area, with a level of detail offered by Meteora Thrones that is unparalleled. You will be able to see all six monasteries, pop inside three, learn about the religious significance of each, take plenty of photos and venture to secret spots only known about by locals. At the end of the tour, you get transferred back to Kalabaka for a late lunch and/or coffee and then dropped off at the train station at 18:22 pm for your ride back to Thessaloniki (arriving at 22:20 pm). Groups of up to seven are welcome on this once in a lifetime experience.
2-Day Small Group Tour of Meteora from Thessaloniki by Train
Getting underway at Thessaloniki Station at 08:56 am, the 2-day small group tour of Meteora is a thrill from start to finish. Along the way to Kalabaka, the stunning Greek landscape unfolds before your eyes and becomes progressively more dramatic the closer you get to Meteora. Upon arrival at 12:05 pm, a mini bus delivers you to the hotel for check-in where you will have free time to relax and soak up the surroundings. At 16:30, the Majestic Sunset Tour commences and lasts for four hours. The views and myriad of sunset colors afforded from the rocks will take your breath away!
Make sure you get a good night’s sleep as the next day is action-packed! You can choose from the Panoramic Morning Tour or the Authentic Hiking Tour, both of which begin at 09:00 am. For those eager to hike, be prepared to walk the paths of the first monks and witness the geological structures from unique angles. The views throughout the Meteora Valley, Kalabaka and Kastraki are nothing short of breathtaking. You will also be able to enter a monastery which is the icing on the cake! From 13:15 pm – 17:15 pm you get time to chill before jumping on the train back to Thessaloniki.
4-Hour Small Group Panoramic Morning Tour of Meteora
If you decide to base yourself in Meteora on an independent trip but would still like to join a tour for the morning, then this is perfect! Beginning with a hotel pick-up at 09:00 am in Kalabaka or Kastraki, you head off on a four hour mission with the highly educated team at Meteora Thrones to admire the gigantic rock formations and monastic communities. The guide then helps you visualize how the monks managed to establish the monasteries on top of such jaw-dropping pieces of nature. Needless to say, you will get the chance to see all six monasteries and peek inside three.
There is no need to lose precious time hiking long distances when Meteora Thrones can transport you in their luxury air-conditioned mini bus. That being said, you will still get the opportunity to stretch your legs with short walks to the best viewpoints. As the name suggests, the theme of this tour is “panoramic” – you will be shooting photos in places more awe-inspiring than your wildest imagination. Since the tour is open to the public (i.e. not private), up to 20 people can join – ideal for solo travelers or small groups who don’t mind mingling with others.
4-Hour Small Group Majestic Sunset on Meteora Rocks Tour
No trip to Meteora is complete without watching the sunset and this tour allows you to enhance that experience to the max! After hotel pick-up, you begin uncovering the hidden gems of Meteora that the guides spent years locating. All six monasteries come into focus in some way, shape or form – and there will also be time to visit the interior of one in particular. Another feature of the itinerary is swinging by the Holy Church of the Dormition of the Virgin Mary, situated in the old district of Kalabaka, to admire the Byzantine frescoes and ancient marble decorations.
However, the end of the tour is when feelings get heightened. Sitting on the rocks and absorbing the rose gold hues of sunset, with mountains and valleys in the background, is life-changing. Regardless of your skill level as a photographer, and whether you use a professional camera or an iPhone, you will leave with endless stunning images. Once the light fades, you hop back on the mini bus to return to your hotel. Since this tour starts in the afternoon, you can easily combine it with the Panoramic Morning Tour or (if you want) the Authentic Hiking Tour for the ultimate Meteora journey!
4-Hour Small Group Authentic Hiking Tour of Meteora
Meteora is a hikers paradise, and on this four hour tour you will be immersed in both nature and spirituality. Around each corner is a new perspective of the monasteries and mountains waiting to be discovered. Not only are the views extraordinary but the history, as you think about the first monks who walked these paths, is also mind-blowing. Your eyes will be glued to views of Kalabaka, Kastraki and the Meteora valley throughout – in addition to gazing intently inside a monastery of your choice (the Holy Monastery of Great Meteoron or the Holy Monastery of Varlaam).
The hiking guide with Meteora Thrones is by your side for the full duration, ensuring you remain informed and happy. Transport is only required to get you to the starting point and back to your hotel from the end point, by means of a luxury mini bus. Again, this tour is effortlessly combined with other adventures such as the Majestic Sunset Tour. Imagine heading out for a vigorous hike in the morning, relaxing at the hotel or in town during the day and then venturing back to the rocks to see the colors at dusk. With Meteora Thrones, your visit to this jewel of Greece is seriously boosted!