The best journeys answer questions that in the beginning you don't even think to ask!
It was in Greece that the first Christian church in Europe was established and the first converts were baptized. In the Greek island of Patmos, St John had the apocalyptic visions that he imprinted in the final book of the Bible, the Book of Revelation. There are monuments associated with early Christian history and the successive East Roman Christian Empire, known as the Byzantine.
Patmos – The Island of Revelation
While the historical narrative of Bible starts with the journey of Abraham from Ur to the Promised Land of Canaan, it finishes with the apocalyptic visions of St John in Patmos. The Cave of the Apocalypse commemorates the site where Saint John composed one of the most sacred Christian works, the Revelations. The Monastery of Saint Ioannis Theologos and the Cave of the Apocalypse, together with the associated medieval settlement of Chóra, constitute an exceptional example of a traditional Greek Orthodox pilgrimage centre of outstanding architectural interest.
St Paul’s Route
Apostle Paul constitutes a remarkable personality for the Christian religion, although he never belonged to Jesus’ 12 Disciples. He spread the word of Christianity more than anybody else and for this reason he was named “Equal-to-the-Apostles” and “Apostle of the Nations”. His journey in Greece is a route that can touch not only the believers but also anyone who loves history. Neapolis (today named as Kavala) was the first place that St Paul stepped, while Philippi was the first place in Europe where Christianity was preached and the first convert (St Lydia) was baptized. St Paul passed from Amphipolis and Apollonia on his way to Thessaloniki, where he also preached. He continued to Veria, Athens and Corinth.
Meteora is the most spectacular place of Christian worship in Greece. Upon unique and enormous columns of rock, one of the largest and most precipitously complexes of Eastern Orthodox monasteries is build. It represents the great revival of the eremetic ideal in the 15th century. Their 16th-century frescoes mark a key stage in the development of post-Byzantine painting and the views are simply out of this world.
Early Christian and Byzantine History
In Greece there are plenty of places associated with early Christianity. In Philippi there are the remains of early Christian basilicas. Thessaloniki is listed in UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites for its Paleochristian and Byzantine Monuments. Hagios Lucas and Meteora are spectacular examples of Byzantine and post-Byzantine monastic architecture and art.