1952 – Discovering the old path to the Lavra harbour

The Lavra monastery has a very nice harbour, worthwhile to visit. Imagine, this was for centuries the place where all visits to the monastery began.  Untill the 1970ties there was only a long path for pilgrims and mules from Karyes to the monastery but that took several hours. This blogpost will point out the old track/monopati from monastery to harbour, the red line on the picture above. It is better to avoid the obvious but boring dirtroad, also clearly to be seen on the photo, which my brother Wim shot when he flew with a Cessna over the peninsula in 2017.At the main entrance turn left and follow the monastery walls,  keeping left. Go to the right when the long wall makes a left turn. You enter an olive grove. The path is not very visible and if you encounter a fenced area with beehives you have to go back to find the path again.Walk the path allongside the olive trees till you stumble on the regular dirtroad. Cross the dirtroad and look for the old path again. There are no signs and there is some vegetation but the path is easy to continue.Here the path is still nicely paved with stones lying there for centuries. Many pilgrims have walked here but now you will be on your own.Flowers and plants are growing on the cobbled path. The tower of the arsanas is sometimes visible between the dense vegetation. Then suddenly the path ends, the last part is destroyed by the construction of the dirt road.
100 years ago, in 1917, a small chamber was still attached to the tower but most of the buildings are looking still  the same. (photo by Millet)Still some woodwork is seen on the place where the small chamber used to be.
It is nice to walk around the arsanas where the boathouses are in ruins but still in use.  Then you have to climb back to the monastery taking the same path as you came.

Herman Voogd

This entry was posted in 01 Lavra, arsanas, trip 2017, walking and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply