Surf & turf Akamas
Surf & turf Akamas
Surf & turf Akamas
Surf & turf Akamas
Surf & turf Akamas
Duration: 8 hours
Location: Akamas and Aphrodite's Birth Place
Surf & turf Akamas
Although an island, Cyprus as a country per se may be considered to be situated at the point where Europe, Africa and Asia meet. It is thus a significant place where different cultures mingle and co-exist. The Akamas Peninsula is an area of unblemished natural beauty in the North West of Cyprus. The 230 square kilometers patch of wilderness is considered the most beautiful area in the whole of Cyprus. The area gets its name from Akamas, the son of Theseus, who landed there after the Trojan War. It is said that Akamas also founded a city called Akamantis in the area, but it has never been found.
Almost all the geological features found across Cyprus can also be found in Akamas. The varied topography and micro-climates contribute to the large biodiversity and sheer natural beauty of the area. Boat trips sail from Latchi around the peninsula, offering picturesque views and the opportunity to see shipwrecks just off the coast of Akamas. You will see these in one of Aphrodite’s Tours in Cyprus.
The intermingling in Cyprus extends to flora and fauna also. Over 600 species of flora can be found on Akamas alone, and 128 of these are indigenous to Cyprus. 168 kinds of birds live there, as do 20 kinds of serpents, 12 different mammals and 16 kinds of butterflies, making the area a must see for naturalists. Lara bay is an important sanctuary and breeding ground for a vulnerable species of loggerhead turtle and the rarer endangered Green Turtle, and is a popular tourist location. Aphrodite Tours has a trip dedicated to Akamas and further. It is one of the places to see in Cyprus.
The best time to see Akamas is spring when many of the exotic flowers are in bloom and when tourists will find beautiful tulips and rare species of orchids. There are forty-five orchid species on the island including the rare Ophrys Kotschi. The autumn flowering cyclamen is also found in the area. Visitors are advised to protect and respect the environment; picking flowers is prohibited. As regards fauna, the endemic Glaucopsyche Pafos butterfly is considered the emblem of the area. If visiting in the summer, do remember to take plenty of water along and try to catch the spectacular Mediterranean sunset.
Akamas is one of only 22 areas in Europe where much of the habitat is indigenous to the area. It has remained untouched despite previous attempts to develop it and is now part of the European Commission's Mediterranean protection programme. Pine and juniper forests, maquis forests, gorges, cliffs, and sand dunes can all be found on Akamas. Nature trails criss-cross the area and are open to walkers and cyclists to explore. Only 4-wheel drive vehicles can tackle the paths in Akamas.
Surrounded by mountains, the Avgas ridge is a popular area of the park. Here, climbers can find marked trails to explore. In the North of the park lie the Androlikou Gorge and Petratis Gorge which can be seen from the village of Androlikou. In the South, the Avakas Gorge has high sheer cliffs which come together, leaving a tunnel through which a stream runs. The gorge, with its limestone walls, is a haven for wildlife, especially in spring, with over 160 different species of birds, animals and plants.
Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love, beauty, sensuality, sexual rapture and eternal youth is eternally cited as being a Cypriot at heart, and also known as Cypris, with various places claiming that she was born there. Akamas lays claim to her place of birth, considering that her baths are there. Near Palaepaphos, at the seaside of Petra tou Romiou, lies the modern mythical birthplace of Aphrodite, fully 50 km to the south of the Park. With Aphrodite considered the patron of the island, it’s hardly surprising that the most popular trails to take are the Aphrodite Trail and the trail of her lover Adonis. Both start at the Baths of Aphrodite and take approximately 3 hours.
The ‘Baths of Aphrodite’ is an area in the Akamas betweeen Polis and Cape Arnaouti which attracts many visitors. This beauty spot is situated past the fishing harbour of Latsi towards the tip of the Akamas peninsula. A natural pool grotto surrounded in greenery, the site lies at the end of a small nature trail. As its name suggests, the grotto is said to be where the Goddess of Love used to bathe in a cool but pellucid pond just before her marriage to Hephaestus, the maker of the weapons for the gods. Another version says she was married to Ares, the God of War. Whichever the version, the Baths of Aphrodite provide a magnificent view of the Bay of Polis. It is said that if you bathe in the water you will be given eternal youth or you will fall for the next person you see; unfortunately, bathing is not permitted. Aphrodites Tours combines the baths with the Akamas trip.
According to mythology, Aphrodite was bathing, partially covered by a small waterfall and by her attendants. She saw the reflection of the strikingly handsome Adonis at about the same time when he lifted his head from its bowed position while drinking water. He had stopped off for a drink while hunting, to quench his thirst. Adonis fell in love instantly and managed to seduce Aphrodite, who had reciprocated his love. Since she had committed adultery, her lover, a mere mortal was to die. He was killed by a wild boar which he was hunting. Places abounding with a mythical past are tourist attractions in Cyprus, as what to see in the country.
Actually, the myth of Aphrodite and Adonis is one of the most popular Greek myths, since it is directly associated with love and Eros. Not even Gods and deities could escape the powerful arrows of God Eros and those who fell in love with mortals met with catastrophic results. In that perspective, Aphrodite and Adonis is a classic myth about lust and rejection, enhanced with spicy details about the Goddess of Love and Lust and the beautiful mortal Adonis. They make great destinations for excursions in Cyprus.
Adonis is the personification of masculine beauty to which he owed his fate according to the Greek myths. There are actually two known myths about Adonis and Aphrodite. The first myth refers to Adonis’ early years, and the second to his death and Aphrodite’s role in it.
The first myth of Aphrodite and Adonis involves the man’s parents and is a story about beauty, love and jealousy. Adonis’ mother was the beautiful Myrrha or Smyrna and his father, King Cinyrus of Cyprus, who was actually the father of Myrrha. This strange parentage of Adonis came about because Goddess Aphrodite was jealous of Myrrha’s beauty and caused the girl to sleep with her own father. When Cinyrus found out that he had been tricked, he chased Myrrha with a sword, intending to kill both her and her unborn child. Aphrodite, repenting of her deed, quickly turned the girl into a myrrh tree.
Aphrodite hid the newborn child, Adonis, in a chest, which she gave in charge to Persephone, queen of the nether world. But when Persephone opened the chest, she was smitten by the beauty of the baby, so she refused to give him back to Aphrodite, although the goddess of love went down herself to the Underworld to ransom the baby Adonis from the power of the dead.
The dispute between the two Goddesses of love and death was settled by Zeus, who decreed that Adonis should abide with Persephone in the underworld for one part of the year, and with Aphrodite in the upper world for another part. When he stayed in the underworld, it was autumn and winter. When he returned, the Earth blossomed into spring and summer. In this form of the myth, the contest between Aphrodite and Persephone for the possession of Adonis clearly reflects the struggle between love and death, a common subject in Greek Mythology.
The decision of Zeus that Adonis was to spend one part of the year underground and another part above ground is merely a Greek myth about the notion of the annual disappearance and reappearance, which refers to spring and autumn, the precursors of summer and winter.
In some versions of the myth of Aphrodite and Adonis, Ares, the God of War and Aphrodite’s husband, heard that Aphrodite loved the youth Adonis, got really jealous and decided to take revenge. Aphrodite was chasing Adonis to mate with him, but Adonis was more interested in hunting. Aphrodite begged Adonis to give up the dangerous sports he enjoyed because she could not bear to lose him, knowing that the young man would die a terrible death. Adonis ignored her advice and was killed while hunting by a wild boar that was actually God Ares.
When Adonis died, Aphrodite heard his cries and hastened to his side in her swan-drawn chariot. She cursed the fates and Ares who had ordained his death. With Adonis still in her arms, Aphrodite turned the blood drops that fell from his wounds onto the soil into windflowers (the short-lived anemone) as a memorial to their love. Anemones sprung from the blood of Adonis and his spirit returned to the underworld. Such are the tales that enhance sightseeing in Cyprus.
Cypriots prefer the simple version that Adonis fell in love with Aphrodite at the grotto, even though she knew that the mortal Adonis would die a tragic death. They rejoice in the fact that while they were together, they enjoyed a passionate love affair. They are happy that this Goddess is the patron of Cyprus. Tourists are happy to visit a magnificent site in Cyprus and trekkers enjoy walking the trails of Aphrodite and Adonis. Aphrodite’s Tours obliges them in such tours around Cyprus.
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.
Excellent traditional food! We were introduced to this pub by Aphrodite Tours on a stopover during a daylong trip in December 2012. Had a great experience! This time too, we chose Aphrodite Tours for our excursions in Cyprus and fortunately, we were lucky to find this pub unchanged. The food was amazing, the place was great; it is also a non smoking zone inside. Cozy table next to the fire place. Fair prices, value for money, traditional home made wine; my husband went for delicious steaks but I recommend the traditional cuisine. The service was excellent both times. We must thank Aphrodite Tours for this trip.
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.