The Balkans, often referred to as the Balkan Peninsula, and recently also as "Southeast Europe", although none of the three are exactly coterminous, is a geopolitical and cultural region of southeastern Europe. Many linguistic families meet in the region, including the Slavic, Romance, Hellenic, Albanian, and Turkic language families. The main religion is Orthodox Christianity, followed by Catholic Christianity and Sunni Islam.
This part of Europe is divided culturally and linguistically. At their core, the "Balkans" are states that have been shaped by their membership in the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires.
The Balkans are highly mountainous. Mount Musala (2,925 metres (9,596 ft)) in the Rila mountain in Bulgaria is the highest point in the Balkans.
The Metéora (Greek: Μετέωρα, pronounced [mɛˈtɛoɾɐ], lit. "middle of the sky", "suspended in the air" or "in the heavens above" — etymologically related to "Meteorite") is one of the largest and most important complexes of Eastern Orthodoxmonasteries in Greece, second only to Mount Athos. The six monasteries are built on natural sandstone rock pillars, at the northwestern edge of the Plain of Thessaly near the Pineios river and Pindus Mountains, in central Greece. The nearest town is Kalambaka. The Metéora is included on the UNESCOWorld Heritage List under criteria I, II, IV, V and VII.