Travel to the Monastery of Saint John on the Island of Patmos

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Patmos is one of those islands where time seems to stand still. Although it has been 2000 years since Saint John wrote his book of Revelations here, the island is still just as serene now as it was back then. Not only that, but it is the home of some of the prettiest scenery of all the Greek islands. While here, it is absolutely essential to visit the Monastery of Saint John and also the Cave of the Apocalypse, which is located nearby. Here are some details:

Making the Journey to the Monastery of Saint John

Once in the village of Chora on Patmos, it is fairly easy to find the Monastery of Saint John. Perched on a hill, this large, 11th century monastery looks a lot like a fortress, and in fact, it did serve the dual purpose of also protecting the island from pirates back when it was built.  However, to get the full impact, you’ll want to take the journey on foot. The path to the monastery can be found in the village itself.

Visiting the Cave of the Apocalypse

One reason why you’ll want to take the journey to the monastery on foot is that it will give you the chance to visit the historic Cave of the Apocalypse. It has been said that this is the very cave where Saint John lived while he wrote the book of Revelations in the Holy Bible and also where he had the visions that led to penning this historic document. Today, the cave is open to visitors and is marked by a mosaic that depicts various scenes concerning Saint John.

Arriving at the Monastery of Saint John

It is important to note that this is still a working monastery and as a result of that, only a small portion of the complex is open to visitors. The goal is to make sure that the area doesn’t get overrun by tourism and remains a quiet place of solitude for its visitors. Be sure to visit the small chapel with the beautiful, painted frescoes as well as the museum devoted to Byzantine art. You’ll also want to watch out for the signed edict that authorized the construction of the monastery in 1088 B.C.  You should also adhere to the dress code out of respect. In general, women should keep their legs covered and where a long dress, if possible. It is considered unseemly for women to bare their legs while on the premises.

In order to get the most out of your visit here, you may also want to take a guided tour. Although it can be fun to peruse the grounds at your leisure, a tour will also give you the chance to learn a bit about the history of the monastery as well as of the Cave of the Apocalypse.

While on Patmos, you won’t want to miss the chance to visit the Monastery of Saint John the Theologian as well as the historic Cave of the Apocalypse, both of which are important to the island’s history.

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This post was written by GreekBoston.com

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