Some people love exploring temples and cathedrals when they travel.

I am not that person. Walking into a church usually fills me with the overwhelming urge to lay down and take a nap.

So when I saw the Hanging Monasteries of Meteora on my cruise itinerary, I presumed I would be crippled with fatigue that day. Imagine my surprise when it turned out to be one of the most powerful travel experiences of my life.

I had no idea about this world heritage site, so in case you’re an ignorant putz like me, I’ll go ahead and explain:

Between the 14th and 16th century the monks of the Greek Orthodox Church built 20 monasteries, precariously perched on rock pillars in the centre of Greece. The aim was to get as high up as possible, so they could be isolated from the world below, and get closer to god. Boy oh boy, those monks really brought their A-game. Building them on rock pillars 400 metres above the ground was a seriously treacherous task: To transport themselves and their materials up the cliff face they hoisted themselves up in baskets tied to ropes.