Spend Time at Agios Nikolaos Orfanos Church

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Thessaloniki is the second-largest city in Greece, and as a result of this, there is plenty to see and do while here. Long seen as a cultural epicenter, there are plenty of historical and cultural landmarks to visit. One of these must-see places is the Agios Nikolaos Orfanos Church. Here’s what you should know about Agios Nikolaos Orfanos Church so that you can fully enjoy your visit:

About Agios Nikolaos Orfanos Church

Agios Nikolaos Orfanos Church is located in the Old Town of Thessaloniki. The locals refer to the Old Town as Ano Poli. The church is located at the northeast corner inside the eastern wall. It is thought that the church was first attested during the 17th and 18th centuries.

Agios Nikolaos Orfanos Church was originally part of a monastery. To the east of the church you can still see remnants of the gate of the monastery. The name of the church comes from the fact that Agios Nikolaos (Saint Nikolas) was the protector of orphaned children.

When the church was first built, it was a single-aisled church that featured a wooden gabled roof. The church would later have aisles added on three sides. Underneath there is an ambulatory where a number of graves were found. These graves, along with a marble temple and courtyard, were discovered during the 1950s and 1960s when restorations were taking place. The remained active for many centuries and during the Ottoman occupation, it remained as it was, having not been turned into a mosque.

What to See at Agios Nikolaos Orfanos Church

Agios Nikolaos Orfanos Church is dated between 1310 – 1320, so it makes an ideal historic sight to see. The church is known for its frescoes, which cover much of the interior of the church. They feature outstanding color and are an example of the Thessalonican School during the Palaiologan Renaissance. These frescoes were likely created by the same person who did the Hilandar Monastery at Mount Athos in 1314.

The frescoes of Agios Nikolaos Orfanos Church date to the 1300s and depict the life of Christ, His Crucifixion, and His Resurrection as well as the marriage in Cana, the lives of Agios Nikolaos and Agios Gerasimos Ioardanitis, as well as themes of the Akathist Hymn. During a tour of Agios Nikolaos, you can view the graves, courtyard, and marble temple.

When visiting Agios Nikolaos Orfanos Church it is recommended that you don’t wear shorts or sleeveless shirts. The church is located in a quiet area of the city, so you can enjoy a relaxing and peaceful visit to the church and surrounding area. Ano Poli itself has good food and music to enjoy after a day of sightseeing.

Agios Nikolaos Orfanos Church can be accessed by walking through a beautiful maze of paths. The church is located along Apostolou Pavlou St at Irodotou St. You can get there by walking through the beautiful narrow streets of the historic neighborhood.

While in Thessaloniki, you won’t want to miss the chance to visit Agios Nikolaos Orfanos Church.


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