Kykkos Monastery

We were still exploring the coast, spending a day at the remote Lara Beach, but finally had enough of the heat and drove into the mountains, hoping for at least cool nights.

A relic of British colonial rule

We came past the shipwreck of Edro III. In 2011, the Sierra Leone-flagged ship ran aground during heavy seas, while on a voyage from Limassol to Rhodes, with a cargo of plasterboard. The crew had to be rescued and airlifted by a local British Military helicopter.

Edro III
Oleander are in fool bloom everywhere

On our way through the mountains on very winding roads, we enjoyed the pines and the nice smell of their needles. We came past the Cedar Valley, where numerous endemic Cedar trees can be found, which are a close relative of the famous cedars of Lebanon.

Cedar valley
Throni church

In the middle of the Troodos mountains, above the Kykkos Monastery, lies the church of Throni with the tomb of Makarios III, who was not only a Greek Cypriot archbishop, but also the first President of Cyprus between 1960 and 1977. He is widely regarded as the founding father of the Republic of Cyprus, leading its transition from British colonial rule to independence. He was once a novice at Kykkos Monastery and wanted to be buried there.

View of Mount Olympos – 1,952 metres above the sea
Endless Troodos mountains
Kykkos Monastery

The Holy Monastery of the Virgin of Kykkos was founded around the end of the 11th century by the Byzantine emperor Alexios I Komnenos (1081–1118). The monastery lies at an altitude of 1318 meters. There are no remains of the original monastery, as it was burned down many times. It was interesting to visit this modern and important monastery, which seems to be very wealthy. It houses a museum of mostly religious art, which is outstanding.

Archbishop Makarios III.

We had spent a night not far from the monastery, with the temperatures dropping nicely in the evening. We had great views to the coast in the north and the pine forest around us. Our plan is to stay another night up here in the mountains to enjoy that nice temperatures.

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