In the capital, a Byzantine and post-Byzantine Monastery, the Monastery of Kaisariani, is a true jewel and a monument of our cultural heritage.
The first buildings of the Monastery of Kaisariani, which lies at the foot of Mt. Hymettus, east of the city of Athens, were built in the 6th and the 10th century and according to excavations were basilicas. The monastery which exists to our days was built in the 11th century and is dedicated to the Assumption of the Virgin Mary.
It was active throughout the Turkish occupation, and was restored and took its present form in 1952 with the contribution of the Athens Society of Friends of the Trees. The buildings of the monastery are surrounded by a high stone wall with two gates, one on the west and one on the east side. At the south side of the surrounding wall are located buildings which include a bathhouse with a dome. During the Turkish occupation, it was used as an oil-press, while during the Byzantine period the monastery revenues came from the systematic cultivation of beekeeping and the production of high-quality honey from Mt. Hymettus.
The nave of the monastery is a cross-in-square, four-column church with a dome, while the chapel laying to its north which is devoted to Saint Antonios, was added in the 16th century. The interior of the church has frescoes dating before 1700 and are signed by John Hypatos, while their restoration was carried out with great success by TassosMargaritof at the beginning of the 20th century. Holy services are conducted at the monastery during the Assumption of the Theotokos (November 21) and Good Friday with the procession of the Epitaph.