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“Fantastc!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Sumela Monastery

Sumela Monastery
Altindere National Park, Trabzon, Turkey
4642500333
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Ranked #1 of 25 things to do in Trabzon
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Activities: Group tours/walking tour
Attraction details
Perth, Australia
Senior Contributor
45 reviews 45 reviews
22 attraction reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
“Fantastc!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 1, 2013

It is a beautiful monastery perched high on a mountain with several outbuildings including a chapel covered with colourful frescoes.
Make sure you walk down the path leading from the monastery for a spectacular view of it.

Visited November 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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311 reviews from our community

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Seattle, Washington
Top Contributor
81 reviews 81 reviews
47 attraction reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“Just a short hike”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2013

This is a place not to miss! The easy hike is short and improved we were told. There was no danger on the hike although there are some roots. However, it is definitely a place to go! It is both unique and beautiful.

Visited September 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Solihull
Top Contributor
231 reviews 231 reviews
73 attraction reviews
Reviews in 127 cities Reviews in 127 cities
166 helpful votes 166 helpful votes
“Staggering array of wall paintings: worth the walk up”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 21, 2013

We visited as part of a tour.

Our large tour bus followed the winding road up along the valley, with rocky promontories, gushing streams and waterfalls, to a tourist centre, with typical shops and cafés. There we changed to a small shuttle bus, which took us, with a stop for a panoramic view to photo, to the foot of the pedestrian way to the monastery.

First of all, the monastery is a "must" to see. Highly interesting group of buildings fitted into the side of the mountain, with a staggering array of wall paintings. Apart from the church built into a cave, there are many different buildings which formed the basis of life of the monastery, bakery, priest's room, student room, many with staggering views of the wooded valley.

Getting there from the bus: there is a rocky path with steps, tree roots to navigate, which you have to pass over, to reach the ticket office for the monastery. In wet weather, this could be very slippery to negotiate. Good shoes are necessary. However, a number of people with sticks and mobility problems made it perfectly well and we found it an enjoyable walk with wonderful views.

Having reached the ticket office, there is a flight of steps to the entrance of the monastery, from which you have a great view of main monastery buildings, but then walk down another flight of steps to the various buildings: but it is all well worth the effort.

Visited September 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ottawa, Canada
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Great View”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2013

I traveled to Trabzon specifically to visit Sumela Monastery and was not disappointed. Many of the frescoes are in good condition, mostly those on the ceilings. The rock church is an amazing sight. The view from the road on the way up is spectacular. Ask your driver to stop on the way up or walk back down the road part way for a fantastic photo opportunity. One con is that it is not much of a hike (you drive up most of the way now).

Visited September 2013
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Brisbane, Australia
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
30 attraction reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
“Extraordinary site and mountain views in the rain”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 5, 2013 via mobile

The misty alpine forest / mountain surrounds the monastery offers wonderful views. The frescos in the main cave is not as damaged as other people said.
The 5-10 mins rocky forest path walking up the monastery and the 20 mins rocky forest path walking down is very scenic and is not that difficult and unsafe although it may not suitable for young children and the elderly. Mind you, it's a natural pathway in a very dense and pretty forest instead of an urgly concrete stairway!
All mini buses from Trabzon leave at 10am (arrive around 11.15am) and return at 2pm. Orginally we thought it's too short but it turned out to be a perfect length. It gives you sufficient time to explore the monastery, enjoy the fantastic views and leisurely walked down. In fact the 'good' weather lasted so short and the weather changes very fast. The sky was ok when we explored the monastery but soon after 12.30pm it suddenly became very misty and started to half snow half rain!
It's cold even in early Oct and is wet so bring warmer waterproof clothes is essential.

Visited October 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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