Steeped in history, the island of the Apocalypse is a beautiful area, and one of its gems is the Holy Monastery of Patmos, founded in 1088 by Holy Christodoulos. Perched on top of the mountain, the monastery not only dominates the main town on the island but also the island itself. The site was home to an Early Christian church where an ancient temple dedicated to Goddess Artemis used to stand.
Monastery of Agios Ioannis Theologos, Patmos, Greece, +30 2247 031223
The little chapel of Agia Anna is built on a rock by the sea, near the monastery of Hozoviotissa, also featured on this list. Located on Agia Anna Beach, a small rocky beach, the chapel is known for its simple traditional style.
Next on the list is the Monastery of Panagia Hozoviotissa, one of the most important Byzantine monuments in the Aegean. The impressive yet unusual 11th-century structure is built into the face of a cliff, 300 meters above the sea, where a miraculous icon of the Virgin, patron saint of the island, was found, and it attracts thousands of pilgrims who visit the place of worship for prayer and devotion. Because of its narrow architecture (the width of the building is only five meters), the locals dubbed it the ‘single-wall monastery.’ Even if you’re not religious, you are bound to be amazed at the beautiful scenic location.
Monastery of Hozoviotissa, Amorgos, Greece, +30 2285 071274
In the northern portion of picturesque Chios, near Sykiada, lies the magnificent little chapel of Agios Isidoros. Set on a bay with a small pebbly beach, it is without a doubt one of the most photographed places on the island. The chapel was built on the ruins of an Early Christian temple, and the interior is just as stunning as the location. The mosaic floors represent three different construction phases, and various sculpted architectural elements are still standing today. The chapel hides a crypt where the holy relics of Agios Isidoros and Agia Meropi are kept.
On a little peninsula in the middle of the man-made Lake Doxa, in the Corinthia Region, stands the charming church of Agios Fanourios. In the past, the Monastery of Agios Georgios stood there, before it was relocated to higher grounds. From some angles, it appears as though the humble temple is floating on the lake, and though it is smaller in stature, the little church undoubtedly has that je-ne-sais-quoi, making her one of the most beautiful churches in the country.
The unassuming church of Agios Ioannis enjoys a majestic and quiet location in Skopelos. And even though the movie Mamma Mia helped put it on the map, the small church has always been a top attraction on the island. Perched atop a cliff near the village of Glossa, the intimate structure is not easy to access. Visitors have to climb 106 steps to reach it, but they are always rewarded for their efforts; the impressive vistas from the church is worth every single step.