| The scenery in the forested
– or, more accurately, reafforested – mountains of Troodos
is spectacular. |
Platres, 1230m (4035ft) above sea level on the southern
slopes, is the ideal place for excursions. It lies on the approaches
to Mount Olympus, at 1952m (6404ft), the highest
peak in Cyprus, with a summit that is invariably snow-covered in
winter and has good skiing slopes and facilities.
Prodromos, the highest village on the
island, 1530m (5019ft) above sea level, is reputed to grow some
of the best apples. Pedoulas in the fertile Marathasa
Valley is famous for cherries (and in spring for cherry
blossom) and other fruits. Kalopanagiotis has orchards
also. Moutoullas is a source of mineral water bottled
and sold locally as well as exported to the Middle East.
Omodos, a restored conservation village, has the
Stavros Monastery and a small Folk Art
Museum. Foini is a centre of the local
craft pottery. On the northeastern slopes, Kakopetria,
730m (2395ft) above sea level and a touring centre like Platres,
has a traditional quarter that is being protected and restored.
Agros produces rose water, wine and mineral water.
The Commandaria Region, midway down the southern
slopes, where the grapes for the Commandaria sweet red dessert wine
are grown, has attractive villages like Zoopigi,
where almond and walnut trees grow.
Other places of interest include:
Monastery, which houses a golden icon of the Virgin Mary
Throni tis Panagias, uphill from the monastery,
where the tomb of the late Archbishop Makarios III, the first President
of Cyprus, occupies a setting that commands a magnificent view
The small but prettily situated Kaledonia Falls
The monasteries of Mesa Potamos and Trooditissa.
UNESCO has listed 9 Byzantine churches
in the mountains as World Heritage Sites for their
magnificently frescoed interiors. These are:
tis Asinou near Nikitari, one of the finest examples of
Byzantine art in the Levant
Stavros tou Agiasmati
Agios Ioannis Lampadistis
Panagia tou Araka
Agios Nikolaos tis Stegis
southwest of Kakopetria
Panagia tis Podythou
Archangelos Michaïl at
Panagia tou Moutoulla in Moutoullas
Timiou Stavrou in Pelendri.