Samos Monastery posted: 2012-11-05 07:54:00
The monastery at Samos is best known for being on one of the many pilgrim's routes (the "Way of St. James") to Santiago de Compostela cathedral. It is a very impressive and massive structure in its own right. Still active, the monastery additionally offers lodgings for those on religious retreats or connected with the pilgrimage. Our "Ride the Camino" tour includes overnight in the Hostelry of the Monastery.
Samos town's history is closely linked to that of the monastery. The peacefulness of the area made it the perfect location for prayer and retreat. Originally the site of a community of hermits, Samos Monastery was built in the 6th century and started the promotion of the monastic lifestyle in Galicia. It has been Benedictine since the 12th century.
But things were never easy for the monks. In the 8th century they were persecuted during the Muslim invasion and during the French occupation, the monastery was plundered. Expulsions, occupations and fires were common. These fires wreaked havoc in 1533 and more recently in 1951. The monastery was almost burnt to the ground during the more recent fire. But fortunately it was rebuilt and visitors can still stroll through the cloisters.
The monastery is constructed of large light coloured granite stone, precisely cut by masons from another age. It is a combination of Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance and baroque structures. Also, in the area, you will find several churches, chapels and Galician country houses to visit.
If you like this, then you can take a look at our article on the Royal Palace or Castle of Olite here
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