2200 – Tourism to the Holy Mountain?

Athos is closed for tourists. It has always been, as far as I’m informed. Due to Covid-19 Athos is now closed for pilgrims as well. It must be really quiet and peaceful now. The monks can fully concentrate on their tasks. But for pilgrims seeking consolation and advice it will be difficult not to be able to travel.

poster

Seeing this tourist poster was a big surprise for me. The poster is part of a series. There is another one promoting the Greek island of Mykonos. So It seems to advocate travelling and promote tourism to the Holy Mountain. I found out that it was created in 1949 by artist M. Pechlivanidis & Company. I wonder if there was any tourism allowed, shortly after the Second World War. 

We see the well-known rock on which the monastery of Simonos Petras lies as a crow’s nest. The perspective of the picture is from the road to Dafni. We visited this spot as pilgrims in 2019. The ferry is just arriving, more than 300 meters below.

In these days you don’t see posters of Mount Athos advertising for travels. But I was amazed to find in the site called “wikitravel” a possibility to book a hotel on the holy Mountain. We know of only one hotel in Karyes, above the bar in the main street.

One of the older pictures of this spot is this one, taken between 1910 – 1915.

Even older pictures, from 1853 was posted earlier (post 1864). This is the one with the same perspective.

2019

Let’s hope that the vaccination on the Holy Mountain will be completed soon so that the Holy Mountain can be reopened for pilgrimages.

Bas Kamps

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