St Nicholas’s Church, Mesopotami

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Things to do


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October, 2019

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After our experience with day trippers from Corfu to Albania at “Blue Eye Springs”:, we were slightly hesitant when our driver then suggested calling at “St Nicholas’s Church,”:, Mesopotami. However, unlike at Blue Eye, on arrival there was only a couple of cars parked up. These probably belonged to the builders who were working on the restoration of the bell tower: a sign indicated this was being funded by the European Union and National Funds of Greece and Albania.

Having paid 100 Lek/75p each, the church, literally in the middle of nowhere and surrounded by fields and cypresses, was opened for us.

The beautiful church was built in the 11th century on the site of an earlier one. Some of the blocks in the rear of the outer wall had carvings, said to pre-date Christianity. Our guidebook referred to an eagle, lion, dragon and a mythical creature appearing to strangle itself with its own tail and we found them all.

The church is unique in that as it served people of two different faiths, Orthodox Christians and Catholics, there are two apses.

Inside the frescoes were not particularly well persevered and the walls had a pale blue whitewash to the walls and central pillar: possibly the result of communist desecration.

This was not necessarily a highlight on our trip but after Blue Eye, it offered peace and tranquillity.

Helen Jackson

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