Vacation 2013 - Egypt & Greece, Day 10 "Meteora Monasteries"

Friday, May 3, 2013 – Day 10

We started the day with a demonstration and shopping stop.  At two of the shops we visited on this tour, you were entered into a little raffle if you purchased something.  I was lucky enough to win both times.  The first time I won a little blue amulet to protect against the evil eye, and here I won a piece of Byzantine art.
We headed upwards to Meteora, which is a place of just jaw-dropping scenery.  Here, perched on top of huge rocks and cliffs, there are these peaceful monasteries. 

The city below
As part of the dress code to enter the monasteries, men were required to wear long pants and women were required to wear skirts. 
I know this post is very photo-heavy; it was just such a beautiful place to see.

This was apparently the original entrance where individuals were pulled up via a net to gain access to the monastery.  They have since built staircases. :)
Some of our group was interviewed for TV.

Here you can see the staircase that's been built into the rock for easier access.

 On the left is the original piece of Byzantine art; on the right is a restoration. 
Looking down...

As we drove back, we could see that there were people scaling the steep rocks.
Lunch was a plate full of hearty food. We had some time to walk around the village, and then it was back on the bus for the trip back to Athens. 

Dinner wasn't quite as tasty as it was pretty late by the time we got checked into our room. We had a bit of an issue with check-in at Crystal City, which was to be our last hotel. We had already reserved our room, but they hadn't actually ran our credit card until a couple days before we were scheduled to arrive. And our card number wasn't working. And then it wasn't working when we handed it over in person. We literally did not have enough Euros on us to cover the full cost of the room. We had other credit cards, but we were hoping to use this specific one that we had gotten for foreign travel - no foreign transaction fees or currency conversion fees.  They were nice enough to just let us check in for the night and have us try again in the morning, so we just ended up running to a little store down the street and grabbing a giant doughnut and a cheese sandwich for dinner.
In the morning, we tried again and our preferred card still wouldn't work. We ended up paying with our other credit card and eating the additional fees. :-P When we got back to the States, there were several Pending transactions sitting on my account that needed to be cleared. I don't know what the deal with this hotel was, but boy, it was annoying!


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