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Holy Monastery of Kipouria

On the west coast of Lixouri, in one of the most majestic landscapes of Kefalonia, is the renowned Kipouria Monastery. It’s situated 15km from Lixouri, on the route that leads to Havriata (the balcony of the Ionian).

Its founding goes back to the 17th century and its name derives from the numerous gardens which the monks maintained in order to make a living. It’s built on a vertical rock over the sea. The monastery church was built in 1759 by the Archimandrite Chrisanthos Petropoulos from Paxoi and was dedicated to the Virgin Mary’s.

Annunciation. A men’s communal was soon developed. A French destroyer bombed the monastery in 1915, because the smoke coming from the chimney in the fog was thought to be an enemy ship. The disastrous earthquakes of 1953 devastate the monastery even more.

Only the church was rebuilt in 1964, while the other buildings are constructed during the 90’s, with much personal work of the only monk who resides in the monastery today.

You can worship the miraculous icon of the Virgin Mary’s Annunciation in the monastery, as well as the skulls of the holy founders of the monastery, Chrisanthos, Konstantinos and Efrosinos. There is also a piece of Holy Wood which was donated to the Monastery by the Russian Prince Vladimir Dolgouroukis in the year 1862. Myr from Saint Dimitrios the Myrovlitos from the 7th century can also be found in an elegant glass phial. What’s more, you can pay your respects to the remains of various saints and the miraculous icon of Saint Paraskevi, the only relic left from the destroyed Tafiou Monastery. Today only the ruins are saved and it is believed to be conjoined with the Kipouria Monastery. Don’t forget to admire the monastery’s wood-carved chancel.

Years ago, there were quite a few monks at the monastery, who cultivated its property. Nowadays, only one monk, Efsevios, resides there and welcomes visitors on March 25th and September 14th, when the monastery celebrates. But even if you pass by any other day, you will receive his warm hospitality and will enjoy spending time with him, gazing at the sea.

You can also admire the unique sunset, fading into the deep blue waters of the Ionian from the monastery’s courtyard. The majestic scenery which harmoniously combines the untrodden mountain with the inaccessible sea, reminds you a lot of Karoulia at Aghio Oros. Along with its spiritual treasures, the monastery is an attraction for visitors. Caution! For those of you who love wild landscapes, this is the ideal place for you.