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Monastery in the clouds Tsambika - island of Rhodes

Monastery in the clouds Tsambika

The Monastery of Virgin Mary of Tsambika is located on a high cliff at the east coast of the Greek island of Rhodes, about 25 km south of the capital city of Rhodes. The monastery offers a magnificent view of the surrounding area and has an interesting legend that explains why even today children on the island of Rhodes are named Tsambika and Tsambikos.

Rhodos, Monastery in the clouds Tsambika on the map Google maps

The monastery dedicated to Virgin Mary of Tsambika (also known as Moni Tsambika Monastery or Panagia Tsambika) is a beautiful white church, of which the exact age is unknown, but we know that it was rebuilt in 1770 by local monks. And to this day the monastery is said to be permanently inhabited by one monk. Visitors will be particularly interested in the church courtyard, which is decorated with various pebbles and shells.

The Moni Tsambika Monastery is known as a pilgrimage site for women praying for the birth of a child, as there is an impressive legend attached to its history about a couple who had long wished for a child but were not granted one. One evening, the man saw a dazzling glow on the mountain (the word Tsambika means "fiery glow" in Greek), he headed in that direction and discovered an icon of the Mother of God by the fire. He then swore by this icon that if his wife was blessed with a child, he would build a monastery for the Mother of God on the mountain. Upon returning home, he did indeed hear the happy news from his wife. The newborn baby girl was named Tsambika and the man kept his promise and built a church on the mountain. The story of this miracle quickly spread among the people and women who were unable to conceive wandered barefoot up the mountain and prayed at the icon of the Mother of God. If their prayers were answered, the born sons were named Tsambikos and the daughters were named Tsambika. Incidentally, on the island of Rhodes, these are still traditional names that are passed on in families from generation to generation.

The Moni Tsambika Monastery stands on the rocky peak of the same name between the resorts of Kolymbia and Archangelos at an altitude of about 230 metres above sea level, which also earned it the nickname "the monastery in the clouds". From the monastery grounds, you have a truly beautiful view in all directions - to the north you can see the popular tourist resort of Kolymbia and to the south you can see the picturesque "white town" of Lindos with good visibility. And directly below the monastery is one of the most beautiful beaches on Rhodes - the golden, sandy beach of Tsambika. The beach is on land belonging to the church, but is open to the public.

The rock can be reached by turning from the main road that goes from Colymbia to the south, following the direction of Tsambika Beach. Tsambika Monastery is then located just before you drive to the beach itself. By car you will reach approximately two thirds of the way up the hill where the parking place is located. From here, you then have to walk up a paved stone walkway of about 300 steps to the white walls of Tsambika Monastery. Here you can also visit a small museum.

More touristic destinations of Rhodes

Tips for trips on Crete: Lindos White Town, Rhodes Capital, Kalithea Spa, Symi Island and Panormitis Monastery, Seven Springs (Eptá Pigés), Valley of the Butterflies (Petaloudes), Faliraki Water Park

Resorts, beaches, sights or trips - clearly listed on the map of Rhodes.

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