Florence Arizona is about 75 miles NE of Tucson on Highway 79. Saint Anthony's Greek Orthodox Monastery is on the way from Tucson to Florence. We had wanted to visit this monastery for years, but each time we were at or near Florence, we did not have the proper attire. St. Anthony's is a VERY conservative place with a strict dress code.
On this excursion to Florence, I was joined by Ms. Rosemary and Neighbor Roy. Prior to driving 9 miles south of Florence to the Monastery, we first stopped at the Visitor Center in the Historic District. Very worthwhile. Be sure to check out the interesting items made by prisoners living the dream at Florence State Prison. Also, the Visitor Center has an exhibit about the WWII prisoners-of-war who were housed at Florence.
At this point we were all hungry. Barbara at the Visitor Center told us Mt. Athos Greek Restaurant is good and only a few blocks away. Actually, she understated just how good it is. Definitely a 4-Saguaro dining experience at least.
After an excellent lunch, we could not resist stopping at the newly restored Pinal County Courthouse. Inside is an album of photographs showing this old building in serious disrepair just a few years ago. As restorations go, they did a fine job saving this historic building.
When we arrived at the Monastery, we were immediately directed to the ramada next to the bookstore. A monk gave us a brochure and map of the grounds for a self-guided tour. I knew the rule here: No photos of the monks without their expressed permission. I asked, but permission was politely, but firmly declined. So off we went to enjoy their many gardens and and chapels.