Meteora was our second destination on our three week trip to Greece with our kids.
The first thing we saw when the train pulled into the station were the huge, super steep limestone rocks jutting out of the earth.
And the two small and extremely charming towns nestled into the base.
We were immediately smitten.
The entire region is breathtakingly gorgeous.
The main draw here is the monasteries, high, high up in the rocks, built by monks in the 11th century and originally only accessible by ladders or nets and pulleys.
There is a really long, interesting history to the region.
But the geography…
The geography is amazingly stunning.
Surrounded by farm land and olive groves and super quiet and serene; it was a wicked contrast from Athens, right when we needed it.
We had tickets on the 7am train from Athens Larissa station, which is connected to, and so simple to get to via the Metro.
I had booked first class but that wasn’t necessary.
The train wasn’t luxurious, but it was fine.
My kids watched tablet (this is a theme), and I dozed.
I liked that we had space to stretch our bodies and that we could all get up and walk a little.
Much better than being in a car I think (we had considered renting).
5 hours later, we arrived in Kalambaka.
I reaaaaaalllly would have loved to stay at one of the cool looking, authentic guesthouses in either Kalambaka or Kastraki (the town right at the base of the cliffs).
But I knew the whole experience of long travel plus little else to do besides hiking and history would be a stretch for my kids.
So, I booked a hotel in the countryside, with a pool.
We grabbed a quick, but expensive, taxi to the hotel, unloaded our bags, had a quick lunch, and spent the afternoon and evening at the pool.
(we are so adventurous)
We woke up to rainy weather and some seriously epic fog settled in the valley.
It was too cool to swim so we had breakfast at the hotel and explored the hotel grounds and the olive tree farm nearby.
My kids weren’t into a hike in the rain (I can barely convince them when it’s sunny), so we played some card games in our room, which ended up being a ton of fun.
My kids are kind of funny af.
In the late afternoon we went on a sunset tour of Meteora.
My hot husband and I really enjoyed it, and for sure we got something out of it, but 4 hours of walking around monasteries, and driving to get good views of monasteries, and learning about the history of monasteries, and talking about present day monasteries, is tooooooo much for kids.
They toughed it out (and when I say toughed it out, I mean watched their tablets in the bus for half of the tour) and we got the semi-sunset shot.
I loved our time in Meteora.
I loved the Greek countryside and the small, sleepy but vibrant towns.
And I really loved that I felt like we could relax and take a bit of a breath.
(I think there is a ton of hiking, biking and even climbing going on here that would be wicked if you wanted a more active vacation).
Despite the long travel time to and from, not really ‘doing’ anything, and having to work harder to keep my kids engaged, it was definitely worth it.
Have you been to Meteora?
Would you recommend taking kids?
Next up, Oia on the island of Santorini.