The Athos trip always starts at the Pilgrims Office at Ouranopolis: and every time it is a satisfying feeling to hold your permit (Diamoniterion) in your hands. Only then you get this feeling: This is it, our journey can begin !
After passing the border with its buildings the first Athos-settlement is called Thibais. It is Russian and inhabited again, after being deserted for a couple of years. I wonder if they ever get visitors, being so close to the border and yet so difficult to reach for pligrims?
Thibais – 27/9/2009
Then you will see some small houses, which are quite interesting, because one of the houses must be the harbour of the Ag. Nikolaou/Monoxylites winery. Nowadays you can find a Monoxylites shop in Ouranopolis, not only selling their wines, but also honey, books and various things to bring home (for your wife). I was lucky to get a gift from my friends, so I will give you a full report about the wines of Monoxylites later. It is very difficult to get information about the wines from the internet, except for this (out dated) site. The wines are – by the way – not cheap: about â‚¬ 10 – 12 for the “normal” red and white and â‚¬ 25,00 (!!) for the red Tria Adelphia – The Three Brothers.
A (bad) picture of the houses you see after passing Thibais.
To make the situation more clear I took this shot from Google Earth:
Wim Voogd, 1/11/09