EXPLORING

Blessed with the beauty of nature’s best palette, the scenery of Cyprus unfolds across glittering coasts, rolling mountains, fragrant forests, and rugged headlands. From the warm shores of the coastline to the unspoiled and cool oasis of the Troodos Mountain range, nature lovers, artists, photographers, and explorers will all delight in meeting shy creatures and discovering rare plants that peep out amidst waterfalls, coves, woodland, winding trails and secluded sandy beaches. 

Olive Mill museum

Worth visiting this beautiful building in the village and learning about the production of Olive Oil. On weekdays the museum is usually closed and opens during the weekends, however if you are visiting the village on a weekday, then you can go to the Community Office and ask to see the museum and surely somebody will offer to open it for you.

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When approaching Lofou village, the tiled roof, and the beautiful belfries of the church, dedicated to the Annunciation of Mary, are among the first things that will catch your eye. It is built on a small hill on the west side of Lofou, overlooking the entire village.
The building of the main hall began in 1854 and was completed in 1872. For the building process, all the residents of Lofou worked as volunteers, with lots of passion. The church has a single aisle inside where one can see some visible influences from the Gothic art, especially on the temple’s roof. The artistic wooden templum on the east side of the temple and the master throne are creations of Eftichios Leptourgos from Larnaca. The interior of the church is also attributed to the work of another great artist, Othon Giavopoulos, grandfather of the former President of the Republic of Cyprus, Giorgos Vasileiou, who painted all the murals in the church between 1910 and 1919. Inside the holy area there is also a picture of Mary dated back to the 11th century, while in the temple there are also several pictures dated in the 19th century and a picture of Mary, which Robert Gunnis dated back to the 16th century.

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Caledonia Waterfalls are among the highest natural waterfalls in Cyprus. The water falls from a height of 12m. You can visit the area using the roadway towards the waterfall or following nature trail on foot. Wear good footwear as there is plenty of walking over rocks! On the route you will observe many species of the local flora. Relax and enjoy the natural sound of the wind in the trees and the sweet birds singing. It is worth noting that the name Caledonia Falls originates from the swallow birds singing during spring and summer evenings. A walk alongside thick vegetation, small ponds and the stunning view that awaits you at the end is well worth the trek.

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Located in the south-eastern region of Platres, one kilometer away from the starting point of the nature trail that leads to the Waterfall. This is a stunning waterfall that ends up in a small pond that you can swim in! The water is icy but crystal clear….so if you are brave enough, do take with you a swimsuit!

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Don’t miss visiting this lovely little gem in Platres; it is a chocolate lover’s paradise! See how Ekaterina presents all the different tastes using chocolate, with so much passion and so much love she creates these amazing hand made bites. Sample many unusual chocolates, taste warm melted chocolate in a cup… you can try, but it won’t be possible to try all these pure chocolates. Do check their facebook page prior to going for their opening hours.

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Located in a beautiful space that spreads tables in the beautiful alleys of the village, Arkatena “Fotini” bakery shop has a long history and has developed from a small house to evolve into a modern commercial brand.
Anybody who loves brunch, variety, and quantity, will love this shop. Have a traditional Cypriot brunch by choosing between the savoury platter (the healthy suggestions of Fotini) or the incredibly sweet temptation with fresh fruit! All of Fotini’s proposals have a common denominator, her identity. Arkatena and hot Arkatena bread, a traditional Cypriot hard bread, traditional handmade baked goods such as spinach pie, tahini pie, pastries all home made and served with traditional jams (that you can also buy!).

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Named after the ancient Sparta, the Adventure Park is the first of its kind in Cyprus and offers an alternative opportunity for having fun whilst exercising and connecting with nature in the pine forest of Platres. The activities, climbing ropes, zip lines, aerial wooden bridges, archery, towers and nets, offer fun and adventure suitable for everyone from young children to adults, without an age limit. Any visitor with a body weight of up to 100kg, who does not suffer from any heart problems or any physical or mental disabilities, can participate in the activities.
There are more than 100+ activities that have come straight from France. The park was named after Ancient Sparta, where such activities were often used for children’s physical and mental training.

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The Trooditissa Holy Monastery, dedicated to the Virgin Mary, stands out for the natural beauty of its surroundings, as well as its antiquities and the exquisite collection of art that it hosts. The monastery is built on a mountain peak, between Platres and Prodromos villages in the middle of the pine forest of Troodos, from which its name originates. The monastery was founded in the area where there was once just a cave. This cave acted as a refuge for a monk carrying the picture of Virgin Mary, during the difficult iconoclastic period
Legend has it that in 990 A.D., a shepherd from the area came across a mysterious glow emanating from the cave. After some exploration, he discovered a flame burning in the entrance of the cave, in front of the icon of the Virgin. The monastery was thus founded near this cave.

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The monastery of Saint (Honest or Holy) cross or the monastery of Timios Stavros (Timios Stavros Monastery, a Greek name Μοναστήρι του Τιμίου Σταυρού) – stone monastery, considered one of the oldest and most historic monasteries on the island of Cyprus.

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Ayios Nikolaos (Sunken church)-ANASSA VILLAGE

The sunken church of Agios Nikolaos in Alassa village, appears only when the water level of Kourris dam drops. According to historical testimonies, the village of Alassa had been inhabited since the 17th century BC. It was then abandoned and around 1880 AD a settlement was created in the area. The dam of Kouris was constructed in 1985 and it is the biggest dam on the island. Alassa village was relocated to its current location due to the construction of the dam.

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Located in the mountainous region of Marathasa Valley, the Monastery of Kykkos is the wealthiest and most lavish on the island. It stands on a mountain peak at an altitude of 1.318 metres. Dedicated to Panagia (the Virgin Mary), the monastery possesses one of three icons attributed to Agios Loukas (Apostle Luke) the Evangelist. The icon – covered in silver gilt – is in a shrine made of tortoiseshell and mother-of-pearl that stands in front of the iconostasis.
The monastery was burned down several times and nothing remains of the original structure. Today, the monastery produces Zivania spirit and other alcoholic drinks, and holds religious fairs on September 8th (Birth of the Virgin) and August 15th (Dormition of the Virgin). There is also a museum on the grounds, whilst it is noteworthy for being the monastery that the first President of Cyprus, Archbishop Makarios III served at as a novice. Nearby you can visit Throni, Makarios final resting place.

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Omodos Centre for the preservation of Narrow-knit lacing is located at Omodos village. This centre contains part of a remarkable collection of lace specimens and aims to preserve traditional folklore art /craft, the making of lace, Cyprus’s cultural & historical heritage and to promote to the young -especially the young women – the contribution of Omodos’s women to the development of this type of home-made handicraft. It is housed in the north wing of the monastery of Timios Stavros previously used as a monk cell. Its operation offers locals and tourists the opportunity to visit and admire the narrow knit lacing.

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The sulphur springs can be found at the banks of river Setrachos next to the Venetian bridge. The healing properties of the waters were known since antiquity. The whole area was part of the ancient Kingdom of Soli, whose kings used the area as their wellness resort combining it with their hunting outings. It is said that a temple dedicated to Aesclipious, to the ancient god of healing, was situated on the same spot where the Lampadistis Monastery stands today. The spa waters have been used throughout the ages to this day for their healing properties. The visitor can benefit from the thermal baths of sulphurous waters, the spa, massage and swimming. The Kalopanayiotis thermal waters are located near the banks of Setrachou river, next to the Kalopanayiotis Venetian bridge
UNESCO heritage Medieval Lampadistis Monastery-KALOPANAYIOTIS VILLAGE
A taste of the island’s past at its best! Standing proud as one of the ten island churches and monasteries on the UNESCO world heritage list, this magnificent church is dedicated to a young monk named John Lampadistis who is buried on the grounds. Legend has it that a man suffering from epilepsy once touched the grave and was miraculously cured. A complex of three churches – Ioannis Lampadistis, Agios Irakleidios and a Latin chapel – all under a single, enormous timber roof. The Latin Chapel contains the most complete series of Italo-Byzantine paintings in Cyprus. Sit for a moment in the courtyard of the complex to take in all the history, while the interior of the monastery itself is rather awe inspiring with its well preserved colourful and intricate frescoes and icons.
16th century Venetian Bridge & pre-industrial watermill-KALOPANAYIOTIS VILLAGE
Put your best foot forward and head out on a short walk through the signposted Kykkos Watermill nature trail and prepare to set your sights on an old mill dating back to the 17th century. But before you get there, the journey towards this place is half the fun; you’ll be making your way through beautiful surroundings in an untouched, natural environment. Once you’ve taken a few photos, cross over the gurgling Setrachos River and follow a shady path that leads to a 16th century Venetian bridge; another of Kalopanayiotis’ treasured ancient sites.

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Surrounded by a few remaining hotels of the area, the square has recently been renovated yet kept its traditional mountain look, as pebbly streets make up a great deal of it. In the heart of the square is a playground area where kids can run around and play on the swings and wooden creations, whilst adults relax by the benches. Children can also go on a guided short horse or donkey ride in the streets just off the square, under the trees.
At the square you will find shops and markets selling traditional Cypriot products such as soutzoukos, commandaria wine, Cypriot rusks and different varieties of honey-coated nuts which are highly popular of Troodos.

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The walking trails of the Troodos area are of immense beauty and pace. You can breathe in the unpolluted and clean air, immerse yourself in the beauty of the forest, in waterfalls and places where you can become at one with nature. A complete network of amazing walking trails such as Artemis, Psilodentro and Atalanda are waiting for you to explore!

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The “A.G. Leventis” Troodos Botanical Garden was constructed to preserve and exhibit the distinctive types of flora found in Troodos, a mountain range which boasts rare botanical treasures. This is because it was once submerged in the depths of the sea and since its emergence millions of years ago, it still preserves many signs of its initial underwater life.
Take a stroll through the gardens and learn about the precious endemic plant species in the mountains. The garden is split into four sections: endemic plants, riverine plants, the arboretum, and traditional garden plants. Along with a stroll through the beautifully laid out gardens, you will be able to view a gallery of the plants, interact with an electronic database of Cypriot flora and see a documentary about the area including the history of the old mine located there.Visitors can also study fresh and dry plants in detail through the use of stereoscopes.

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The formation of the island of Cyprus is directly linked to the creation of the Troodos Mountain range, as a result of a series of unique and complex geological processes which have made Cyprus a geological model for researchers from around the world, contributing to a better understanding of the development of the oceans and of the planet in general.
Neither the residents of Cyprus nor the island’s foreign visitors would ever suspect that the wooded peak of Troodos is the deepest layer of a section of oceanic crust and the Earth’s upper mantle. In other words, an ophiolite complex that was formed 90 million years ago, 8,000 metres below sea level.
The Troodos Geopark is in the central part of Cyprus and its area is approximately 137,000 hectares (1,370 sq.m.), covering 45% of the total area of the Troodos range and 15% of the total area of Cyprus.

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Limassol city, the second largest in Cyprus is considered as one of the most
attractive cities of the island. It is known for the centuries-old Limassol castle,
home to the Cyprus Medieval Museum and its collection of pottery and tombstones.
It is just 21.36 Km away from Lofou which makes it a must-visit since it is a must day trip to do whilst you stay with us. Limassol important historical sites such as The Curium Ancient theatre, The Kolossi medieval castle, The Limassol promenade, The Limassol Marina and The Old Port to name just a few.

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There are dozens of beaches by the city or in the countryside of Limassol, some with sandy shores and some covered in pebbles, some with modern amenities and facilities, some more in line with the natural environment of the surrounding area. Many have been awarded the Blue Flag and welcome visitors to these blue waters practically all year round. Find your favourite beach, whether you are seeking a quiet remote corner or prefer the liveliness of the beach bars, and the delicious offerings of the restaurants and fish taverns.

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