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Village Selection

Village Selection

Village Selection

Village Selection

Village Selection

Village Selection

Village Selection

Village Selection

Duration: 8 hours

Location: St.Thekla Monastery, Maheras Monastery

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Village Selection


Aphrodites Tours has an excursion in Cyprus to the area around Paralimni, dotted with villages known collectively as the Kokkinochoria (singular Kokkinohorio), or ‘Red Villages’, which get their name from the rich red soil which surrounds them. Three of the notable villages in the area include Sotira, Frenaros and Xilofagou, which are clumps of indolent cottage residences, the owners of which do not look beyond agriculture. This is market gardening country and is sprinkled with plastic greenhouses and the tall shapes of wind pumps which traditionally raised water from underground sources to irrigate the fields. They are a pretty sight to see; they even have a museum–the Avgorou Ethnographical Museum– which charges an entry fee of €1.70 and which offers an interesting, if patchy, picture of the past life of the village. The two villages that have much more on offer are Dheryneia and Pyla, which are tourist attractions in Cyprus.

Dheryneia is a large village at the east side of the island, 2 km (1 mi) south of the city of Famagusta. The population of the village is close to 6,000 and it consists of a municipality since 1994. A portion of Cyprus affected by the Turkish invasion of 1974, around 75% of the village terrain is occupied by the Turkish army. The village is 12 kilometers from the famous active resort of Ayia Napa. The 'Ghost Town' within Famagusta, Varosha, is clearly visible from the roof of the Cultural Centre, as are the craters from shells fired during the invasion in the fields opposite. About 1,000 refugees live in a refugee settlement in Dheryneia and another 3,000 refugees inhabit occupied ‘Kato’, or ‘Lower Dheryneia.

Mainly an agricultural village, potatoes are widely grown but Dheryneia is famous for its strawberries. Dheryneia traditionally leads the field in strawberry production, accounting for 60% of national production. Strawberry production is given great importance and holds a biennial 'Strawberry Festival' at the football ground of Anagennisis Dherynia on the Dherynia to Sotira road in mid-May, and the Pancyprian Strawberry Festival, which attracts thousands of visitors, both locals and foreigners organised enjoys great success − the last was on Friday 30th May 2014. Residents of the city who eachew farming are employed in the tourism industry of Agia Napa and Protaras. Most tours around Cyprus visit this interesting site.

Pyla is among the oldest villages in Cyprus. The village was first inhabited during the Middle Ages. It is seen on several old maps named Pila or Pilla. It is one of only four villages located within the United Nations Buffer Zone, the other three being Athienou, Troulloi and Deneia. The village is special in the respect that it is the only settlement in Cyprus still inhabited by both its original Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot inhabitants. 850 of the inhabitants are Greek Cypriots and 500 odd are Turkish Cypriots. The village has three churches and one mosque. It hosts one dig; Pyla-Kokkinokremos is an archaeological site.

Cape Greco, also known as Cavo Greco, is a headland in the southeastern part of the island of Cyprus. It is at the southern end of Famagusta Bay. From the high points on the cliff at the cape one can view amazing sights out towards the sea. It was designated as a National Forest Park in 1993. It is a relatively unspoilt area with great natural beauty which changes and offers something different each season. It is an oasis of tranquility nestled midway between the busy resorts of Ayia Napa and Protaras. It is frequently visited by many tourists for its natural beauty and is a protected nature park. Vegetation is dominated by coastal shrubs, and there are about 300 plant species in the park, which is spread over an area of 385 hectares. The uniqueness of the area is not only due to its natural beauty but also to the fact that it offers a wide range of interests such as swimming, diving, towed parachute, fishing, rowing, cycling, riding, climbing, airsports and hiking. This is one of the places to see in Cyprus.

The Cultural Centre of Occupied Ammohostos is on the roadblock of Dheryneia, where all the demonstrations against the occupation of Famagusta since 1974 are hosted. An observatory functions on the second floor of the Cultural Centre, where every day visitors use binoculars to see almost all the land occupied by the Turks. The history of this attack is distributed to all in the form of pamphlets, and sometimes, an impassioned speech. You are also discreetly reminded that Enkomi; Salamis; statues and mosaics; the basilicas of Kampanopetra and Ayios Epiphanios; the whole city of Famagusta and its walls; the Archaeological Museum; the private collections of Hadjiprodromou, Marangos and Louizos; the countless churches in the district of Famagusta, Apostle Barnabus, Kanakaria... are some of the magnificent monuments lost to the Turkish military forces. The Cultural Centre meets all specs of what to see in Cyprus.

The Bridge Of Love that you cross while walking from Capo Greco to Ayia Napa is a scenic spot that takes you back to memories of dangerous romances, with a large sign of ‘Danger’ to prompt you, is well worth the trek. This is a natural outcrop of limestone with the farther pillar embedded in the sea and is not to be mistaken for another Bridge of Love, a wooden bridge near Atlantis Hotel. During the trek you will come across many caves lining the coastline, one of which is supposedly the haunt of the Cyclops of Ayia Napa. This monster is supposedly sighted around Cape Greco. It is known by the local fishermen as ‘To Filiko Teras’, the ‘The Friendly Monster’. There have been no reports of it causing any harm, although it has been reported at times to rip and drag away fishing nets.

There have been countless sightings of the ‘Creature from the Depths’, with some local newspapers calling the mystery the ‘Cyprus Loch Ness’. It has been speculated to be something like a crocodile or serpent. There is no evidence that the monster actually exists, except in folklore and through various sightings by tourists and locals alike. Many believers of the myth of the Ayia Napa Sea Monster like to link it with the common mythical sea monster of Greek mythology called Scylla, the partner of Charybdis, which is depicted in the mosaics that remain in the House of Dionysus, a Roman villa from the 2nd century AD in Paphos. The monster is a major tourist attraction in Cyprus.

Sightseeing in Cyprus invariably includes Ammokhostos, an adjunct of Famagusta, and a trade centre in the food-processing and textile industries. Ammokhostos has a number of architectural monuments, for example, the city walls and citadel (14th and 15th centuries). The Gothic Cathedral of St. Nicholas (early 14th century) and the Gothic Church of St. Peter and St. Paul (14th century) are now both mosques. The city also has two Renaissance structures by G. Sanmicheli—a palace (1552–54) and the Martinengo Bastion (1558–62). There is a museum of the archaeological artifacts of Cyprus. The village of Enkomi, with remains of a settlement of the Mycenaean age, and the ancient city of Salamis, with ruins of Hellenistic structures, are located north of Ammokhostos. This Aphrodite Tours sojourn around Southeastern Cyprus is one of the leisurely paced tours in Cyprus.

Note: Since we will be exposed a lot to direct sunlight, please carry your sun protection gear with you.

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Excellent Bus Tour. My husband and I booked seats on Aphrodite Tours to go on the Famagusta Day Trip as we have always been interested in what happened after the Turkish Invasion. This was like a dream come true. The nearest we got previously was seeing Famagusta from a boat. This trip was simply amazing. The guide was a walking encyclopedia. He told us things we never knew and showed us things we didn't think we would ever see. Highly recommended.

Katherine Nichipurenko
Red Bus Tour

My hubby and I had read a recommendation of Aphrodite Tours special jeep trip called the Grand Tour− Jeep Safari, touching Lefkara, Laneia, a drive through the Troodos mountain range with wine tasting, Kykkos Monastery, Astromeritis, Larnaca, Ayia Napa and Protaras. We took up Aphrodite Tours offer and had a high speed ball, with the different wines stimulating our appetite for more. A really Grand Show! We second the recommendation.

Abbe Johnson
Pepper Bar Lounge

I chose the Larnaca-Nicosia & St. Thekla Monastery trip offered by Aphrodite Tours. A practising Christian, I was amazed to hear about and see the resurrection of Lazarus as related with a personal touch by the guide. The Church of St. Lazarus was marvellous; part of the sacred relics of the Saint were discovered just forty odd years ago! Stavrovouni was breathtaking as was the small village of Meniko, where the remnants of the tomb of St.Thekla were kept. The story of Church Panagia Chrysospiliotissa in a natural cave consecrated in honour of Virgin Chrysospiliotissa was very moving. I’m glad I took this tour and I am grateful to Aphrodite Tours for this edifying trip.

Alexandra Chichikova
Larnaca- Nicosia-St. Thekla Monastery Tour