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Hosios Loukas, Greece

Hosios Loukas is a historic walled monastery situated near the town of Distomo in Greece. It is one of the most important monuments of Middle Byzantine architecture and art, and has been listed on UNESCO's World Heritage Sites.



The Hosios Loukas monastery was founded in the early 10th century AD by the hermit, Luke of Steiris (in Greek: Lukas), whose relics are kept in the monastery to this day. A hermit is a person who lives in seclusion from society, usually for religious reasons.

Saint Luke (he should not to be confused with the Evangelist author of the Gospel of Saint Luke) died on 7 February 953. He is famous for having predicted the conquest of Crete by Emperor Romanos. The Crete island was actually reconquered by Nicephorus Phocas under Romanos II.

Saint Luke was believed to have been a miraculous healer, levitator, miraculous feeder and prophesier during his lifetime; after his death, all of the miracles associated with him involved the healing power of his tomb.

The main shrine of the monastery is the tomb of Saint Luke, originally situated in the vault, but later placed at the juncture of the two churches. The monastery derived its wealth (including funds required for construction) from the fact that the relics of Saint Luke were said to have exuded myron, a sort of perfumed oil which produced healing miracles. Pilgrims hoping for miraculous help were encouraged to sleep by the side of the tomb in order to be healed by incubation. The mosaics around the tomb represent not only Saint Luke himself, but also hegumen Philotheos offering a likeness of the newly built church to the saint.

The Hosios Loukas, the oldest in the complex, is the only church known with certainty to have been built in the tenth century in its site in mainland Greece. This centralized parallelogram-shaped building is the oldest example of the cross-in-square type in the country; its plan closely follows that of Lips Monastery in Constantinople. The walls are built from mix of bricks, stones, and pieces of marble and display curious patterns.

The Hosios Loukas adjoins a larger cathedral church, or Katholikon, tentatively dated to 1011-12. The Katholikon is the earliest extant domed-octagon church, with eight piers arranged around the perimeter of the nave.

Hosios Loukas is the largest of three monasteries surviving from the Middle Byzantine period in Greece. It differs from the Daphnion and Nea Moni in that it is dedicated to a single military saint. Saint Lukes' prophecy about the reconquest of Crete is commemorated by the image of Joshua on the exterior wall of the Panagia church: Joshua was considered a model "warrior of the faith", whose help was especially effective in the wars waged against the Arabs. The Katholikon contains the best preserved complex of mosaics from the period of the Macedonian Renaissance.

There is evidence that the monastery was reputed all over Byzantium for its lavish decoration, liberally applied to all surfaces. Apart from revetment, carving, gold and silver plate, murals, and mosaics (especially imposing on curving surfaces), the interior featured a choice assortment of icons, chandeliers, silk curtains, and altar cloths.


How to visit Hosios Loukas

We at Monterrasol Travel welcome you to see Hosios Loukas during multiday private car tour. Contact us if you would like to customize your tour to Hosios Loukas.

We have developed several tours that visiting this beautiful place. But, if you have a special conditions or any from these tours fit you, please do not hesitate to contact us, we can organize a tour exactly as you would like. And remember, we have no problems to take you from almost any place where you stay, hotel or private accommodation.


Greece cultural tour 12 days from Athens. Visit main Greece mainland UNESCO and tentative list places.

tour start in: Athens, Greece

tour finish in: Athens, Greece

tour duration: 12 days (11 nights)

tour countries: Greece

tour destinations: Antirrio, Argos, Corinth, Delphi, Epidaurus, Hosios Loukas, Kalamata, Livadeia, Messene, Methoni, Monemvasia, Mycenae, Mystras, Nafpaktos, Nafplio, Olympia, Patras, Pylos, Sparta

This off-season balanced tour is aimed for people who interesting in the history of Greece, to walk that ancient historical places where are roots of culture of our civilization. During this tour we will visit 6 places that are on the list of UNESCO. Many other we going to visit places now expecting to be on UNESCO list; such places are prepared, available for public for fraction of cost, and are on so called UNESCO tentative list.

 

12 days

Price from € 1,828

 



Greece off-season UNESCO places tour 19 days from Athens. Visit most of Greece mainland UNESCO and tentative list places.

tour start in: Athens, Greece

tour finish in: Athens, Greece

tour duration: 19 days (18 nights)

tour countries: Greece

tour destinations: Antirrio, Argos, Arta, Chalkida, Corinth, Delphi, Dodoni, Epidaurus, Hosios Loukas, Ioannina, Kalamata, Koroni, Lamia, Larissa, Livadeia, Mesolongi, Messene, Meteora, Methoni, Metsovo, Monemvasia, Mycenae, Mystras, Nafpaktos, Nafplio, Olympia, Palace of Nestor, Patras, Porto Kagio, Pylos, Sparta, Trikala

This off-season tour is focused on people who would like to get to know deeply the history of Greece and walk that ancient historical places where are roots of culture of our civilization. Around the world such places are on the list of UNESCO. And many other places now expecting to be on UNESCO list; such places are prepared, available for public for fraction of cost, and are on so called UNESCO tentative list. During this tour we going to visit most of UNESCO places and UNESCO tentative list places, located in Greece mainland. Greece is so rich with history that visit all UNESCO places in one tour will take very long time. Because of that we, Monterrasol Travel, created this tour to be able to visit the most of UNESCO places in one tour.

 

19 days

Price from € 2,926

 





Last updated on: 31 October 2019

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From 28 April 2019 we added a new tour that cover in 15 days south part of Greece mainland, so called Peloponnese. We will visit all main attraction of Peloponnese peninsula and see castles, ancient places, beaches. Some of the towns we going to visit: Corinth, Epidaurus, Kalamata, Methoni, Monemvasia, Mycenae, Mystras, Nafplio, Sparta. A few of places are UNESCO. Ask us now to set a schedule, especially at September and October, where is not so hot there! Here is the page of this tour with more details: Greek Peloponnese round tour in 15 days. Visit all main attraction of Peloponnese peninsula and see castles, ancient places, beaches. This is Peloponnese where located Sparta, Corinth, Mycenae, Epidaurus, Monemvasia.




From 1 Feb 2019 we load on our site the description of new place: Monemvasia, Greece. We have visited this beautiful place few times and we definitely like to be there, and we are welcome you to have a trip there with us!

Monemvasia is a town and a municipality in Laconia, Greece. The town is located on a small island off the east coast of the Peloponnese. The island is linked to the mainland by a short causeway 200m in length. Its area consists mostly of a large plateau some 100 meters above sea level, up to 300 m wide and 1 km long, the site of a powerful medieval fortress. The town walls and many Byzantine churches remain from the medieval period.






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