Vatopedi Monastery

Mount Athos Attraction

The second in the hierarchy, this monastery of the north-east Athos has a long history and attracts many guests.

The monastery of Vatopedion is second in hierarchy amongst the monasteries of Agion Oros. It is built on the northeastern part of the Athos peninsula and it was founded in 972 AD by three former rich men (Nikolaos, Athanasios, Antonios) who had become monks at the time.

It was built on the spot where, according to tradition, the ship of the son of emperor Theodosius wrecked and he was miraculously saved. The monastery's name is related to the dense vegetation including the bramble that was covering the area then.

One of the characteristics of the monastery is that includes 31 small churches. 12 of them are located outside the monastery but most of them are inside the walls. The most important amongst them are the one of St Andrew and of Agia Zoni where the visitor can admire the gilded iconostasis of 1816, which is considered one of the most beautiful in the Holy Mountain.

There is a large number of icons of Saints that are considered miraculous and many faithful visit Vatopedion to worship them. In addition, they can see murals from 1312 made with the Macedonian technique while some of them are considered to be the artwork of the famous artist of that period Manouil Panselinos.

At the museum of the monastery, the visitor can find a large number of documents from the Byzantine Empire and the Patriarchate of Constantinople. The belfry of the monastery is one of the oldest of Agion Oros and the clock on it is a donation of the Duchess of Plaisance. Last but not least, the library of the monastery that hosts extremely rare books is also visitable.

Today in the monastery live over 100 monks, many of them from Cyprus and many other countries of the world. A certain number of visitors and pilgrims is also welcome but they have to contact the monastery in advance.

About Vatopedi Monastery

Last updated: 29 Dec 2020

address Moni Vatopediou, Mount Athos, 630 86, Greece
nearby transportation
  • Dafni (Mount Athos) Port ≈ 15.7km