© Simonopetra Monastery, © 10th Ephorate of Byzantine Antiquities
General view of the monastery
The seven-stored monastery of Simonopetra is the most bold construction of the peninsula, and is dedicated to the birth of Christ. The name comes from the founder of the monastery, Hosios Simon, who lived in Athos in the mid 14th c.The Katholicon was built after the last fire and has no frescoes. The monastery has 15 chapels and 5 Kellia in Karyes.

At the end of 16th c. the monastery is burnt down, rebuilt and reburnt in the beginning of the 17th c. This long period of decline is interrupted by shorts periods of prosperity. At the end of the last century, the monastery is one more time burnt, and rebuilt with funds from Russia.

Among the monastery's heirlooms, the most important is a piece of Saviour's Cross, holy reliquaries and others. The library, after the last fire, possesses only a few modern manuscripts and books.

The monastery is inhabited by a brotherhood of 60 monks.
Éoannis Tavlakis, archaeologist