'Tip of the Month'
courtesy of My Destination Cyprus
Cyprus, the island of Goddess Aphrodite...
Cyprus has been called many times as the island of Aphrodite this is because, the mythical goddess of love and beauty, Aphrodite was born from the foam of the sea and fell in love in the area of Pafos. With romance in the air, especially this time of year, it is worth exploring the island and discover the places that are entwined with the interesting stories of goddess Aphrodite.
- For a start, you can visit the dramatic coastal rock “Petra tou Romiou” which is situated halfway between Limassol and Pafos. According to the myth, Aphrodite emerged from the sea, as portrayed in the famous painting of Sandro Botticelli, a famous Italian painter from the Renaissance era. According to this legend, whoever swims out to the furthest rock and make three rounds of this rock in a counter clockwise direction and you will be blessed with eternal beauty.
- The fig-shrouded Baths of Aphrodite (north-west of Latchi) is the place where Adonis saw Aphrodite while she was bathing and fell in love with her. According to folklore legend, any foreign lady who washes her face in the cool clear waters from the Baths of Aphrodite will fall in love with a Cypriot man and stay on the island forever.
- Take a walk in the rugged countryside landscape of the Akamas peninsula where numerous Cyprus red tulips (Tulipa cypria) blossom, usually in April and May. A legend says that Adonis was killed by a wild boar while he was out hunting and that the drops of his blood fell on the ground and they were turned into beautiful miniature tulips. Aphrodite was heartbroken when she heard of her lover’s death and her tears became anemones as they fell on the ground. Anemone (Anemone Coronaria) is the candy-coloured flower that blossom mingled with the tulips.
- Adonis and Aphrodite were worshipped in a magnificent temple which can be found just east of Limassol in the archaeological site of the Ancient city of Amathous. The city is one of the ten ancient kingdoms of Cyprus. Aphrodite was also worshiped in a temple at Kouklia (on the outskirts of Pafos) at which site, there are still archaeological ruins displayed. Thousands of pilgrims used to travel there and would walk from Pafos harbour through Yeroskipou (Geroskipou) where there were beautiful sacred gardens dedicated to the goddess. In these gardens there were countless pomegranate trees – that have long been the symbol of Aphrodite.
- Lastly, do not miss out on visiting the most famous statue of Aphrodite, which is estimated to be created during the 1st Century B.C. The statue which was discovered in thearea of Soloi, is now on display at the Archaeological Museum in Nicosia.