On the 22th of September 2015 it was our intention to hike to Daniiléon and to sleep there for one night. We did not make a reservation and if we failed to get hospitality, we would return to Nea Skiti, where the friendly fathers of the community of father Nikon kindly promised us a place to sleep.
As you can see on the map above, we took a wrong turn at the yellow flag. Instead of turning to the right we took the higher path and turned left, which took us to Katounákia. Note: the text “skiti Ag. Vasiliou” is from Google maps is NOT correct, this settlement lies a few kilometers more to the East.The place where we took the wrong path: we should have taken the right turn to go to Daniiléon, not the left one. It is by the way a good place for a lunch, as you can see. Near the stone arrow, made from pebbles, I scratched the word Daniiléon in the stone, for pilgrims who do not want to get lost. And by the way, I forgot the bring the knife that I used, so if somebody finds it ….. If you look down from this spot you will see this buildingKatounákia and Daniileon on Google Earththis small chapel along the path.While continuing the wrong path, we climbed over a ridge and the (few) houses of Katounákia appeared.More Katounákia houses on the lower slopes.After asking the way to a friendly monk, we soon found our way back to Daniiléon.
Walking the paths of Katounákia.Close to Daniiléon: a signpost to Agia Anna and Kerasiá and the top (koryfi) of Athos.And then, finally, the roof of Daniiléon, comes in sight. The garden of Daniiléon; under the thick pine tree – on the right – is the entrance.After entering the gate: a Greek pilgrim wipes the floor with many calabashes hanging above him.Looking back at the gate and the garden.Water and tsipourou: a warm welcome!Daniiléon: the courtyardThe courtyard,bseen from the other side. Later we will visit the small church above.The main buildingAgain the main building, seen from the other side.Main buildingA little higher we found a fine small chapel and these two bellsThe little chapel or Kyriakon, which proved to be totally new!The entranceSeen from the backInside the chapel: the iconostasisA look behind the iconostasisThe dome with a Pantocrator painting in it: all paintings were also new and of a high quality.Archangel Michael and Agia Skepi + detailJohn the Baptist and Ag. AthanasiosThe Dormation of the TheotokosUnfortunately the fathers of Daniiléon did not have room for three pilgrims, so it was time to go back to Nea Skiti. But I know for sure that I will go back here and try to get a reservation, it is such a beautifull and peacefull place! But first we’ll have to pass Mikra Ag. Anna and Ag. Anna:Wim Voogd, 7/3 (thanks to Jitze for his photo’s)