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This gravity-defying hanging monastery clings to the side of Mt Huashan in China and is only accessible via steep and dangerous paths
Rather than clinging to it, this temple was carved into the rock in the region of Cappadocia in Turkey. Frescoes can be seen around the entrance
 The ruins of the Sigiriya, or Lion's Rock, in the central Matale District of Sri Lanka, which was used as a monastery from around the 5th Century BC

 Visitors ascend the stairway to the ancient structure, which contains caves prepared by devotees of the Buddhist Sangha
 The legs and paws of a lion still remain either side of the entrance to the fortress, but the head fell down years ago

 A visitor navigates the stone stairs leading up to the temple and fortress of Sigiriya, but this path is by no means the most perilous compared to those approaching other monasteries
Idyllic: The rock, pictured here at dawn, upon which the temple and monastery were built is a 'magma plug'

The Taktshang Tiger's Nest monastery clings to a cliff 2,300ft above the Paro Valley floor in Bhutan at such a height it looks down on the clouds

According to legend, the Tiger's Nest takes its name from the 'second Buddha', Precious Guru Padmasambhava, who travelled to the site on a tiger

Between a rock and a hard place: The Holy Trinity is part of the Meteora - which translates as 'suspended in the air' - complex of monasteries in Greece, one of the largest collections of such buildings in the country   

The monastery of St Stephen, part of the Meteora complex in Greece, was built in the middle of 16th and decorated in or around 1545

 Visitors survey the incredible buildings of the Sumela monastery which was built, on southern shore of the Black Sea, during the reign of Emporer Theodosius I

Sigiriya is framed by symmetrical water gardens which extend to the foot of the rock. It is one of the eight World Heritage Sites of Sri Lanka
The monasteries of Agios Nikolaos Anapafsas (left) and Agia Roussanou (right) in Greece, which form part of the Meteora complex of precariously placed buildings

Head for heights: French mountain climber Catherine Destivelle during her ascension of the Rocher Saint Esprit, in the Meteora, with the Monastery of Roussanou located on a parallel summit (right)
Path to enlightenment: A stunning scene showing the Monastery of Roussanou in what must one of the most serene places in the world
Balancing act: The monastery of Roussanou at the base of a stone tower in Meteora, Greece in a picture taken in 1985  
The Holy Holy Monastery of Saint Nicholas Anapausas in Meteora, Greece, which was built in the 16th Century and decorated by the Cretan painter Theophanis Strelitzas in 1527

The monastery of St Stephen, part of the Meteora complex in Greece, was built in the middle of 16th and decorated in or around 1545

via dailymail.co.uk

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