Through the pages of the book "a legendary island" Publisher «Yianel», 2007 - 316 with.
Tens of millions of years ago, Cyprus was a small piece of a deep ocean floor. The appearance of his birth occurred somewhere at the end of the Cretaceous era, when two tectonic plates, terrestrial and oceanic, collided on the site of the future island. Contrary to usual, the first did not crush under the second, but as it were wedging it, pushing the top edge over. Then, above the surface of the sea, the Troodos mountain range rose, the highest point of which - Mount Olympus - reaches today 1952 meters above sea level. Here, according to geologists, the encyclopedic sequence presents the entire stone annals of the Earth.
The fertile soils of Troodos, combined with a unique microclimate and an abundance of sediments, have created a great variety of plant life. In the mountains of Troodos, everything is thoroughly: a gloomy pine forest, thick thickets of rhododendrons and prickly juniper, murmuring streams, dark green moss and hundreds of splashing waterfalls. Under the crowns of a black pine flashes a leaved, bright crimson orchid. Alpine, cedar and eastern platans are huddled in mountain valleys. Extensive areas of steep slopes captured an endemic golden oak. In the most humid places stretch strawberry trees with yellowish-pink fruits and glossy shiny trunks, stone roses and myrtle tree. The lowlands are buried in pink-purple blossoms of peonies, the eastern slopes wreathed with the scent of wild lavender. In the cold areas of Troodos, the cherry and plum ripens, and on the gentle slopes of the mountains olive groves and lush vineyards are adorned.
The rich animal world is also Troodos. Here a motley dance of colorful butterflies, many endemic lizards, lizards and chameleons, hedgehogs and snakes, foxes and hares and a sea of discordant birds. In the mountain streams there are freshwater crabs and frogs that almost disappeared during the years of struggle against malaria. But the pride of these places is rightfully considered to be the Cyprian moufflon, which has been inhabiting the region since the Neolithic times. The image of an elegant artiodactyl, like a wind rushing through the mountains, and entered today in the Red Book, Cyprus Airlines elected its emblem, and the winged symbol of Cyprus - the moufflon - proudly flaunts on furrowing heavenly space liners.
Along a narrow mountain path, slowly, lagging a little donkey with a large armful of firewood on his back and two full baskets accompanied affable villager. Impossible to imagine a more colorful picture so clearly characterizes the traditional way of local village life. "Gayduraki" - so called in Greek this cute long-eared animal, with sad eyes and long eyelashes, which is reputed favorite of kids and still serves as an indispensable assistant veteran mountain of Cyprus, and therefore a kind of symbol of the island.
Long before the Trojan War, Cyprus became the main copper-bearing center of the Mediterranean. The ore extracted in its bowels turned into the only then strategic metal from which everything was done: weapons for battles and combat armor, tools and ornaments, ritual lamps and sacrificial vessels. Cyprian copper served the artisans of the Sumer state, archers of Babylon, stonemasons of Upper and Lower Egypt, engineers of Crete, seafarers Mycenaeus, the horsemen of Alexander the Great, the Athenian aristocrats and the Roman plebs. And also the Achaeans and Phoenicians, Assyrians and Persians, Byzantines and Arabs. The copper deposits were so significant, and the reserves are so large that the development of ore bodies continued until the middle of the 20th century. In other words, about five thousand years! There were no such analogies in history and no.
In all corners of Toodosa scattered picturesque mountain villages where white houses with red tile molded one above the other. Next to them are buried in lush greenery, flowering scented roses, luxury villas. Among the numerous villages, whose age is estimated at times centuries, the most fascinating in its beauty is considered high-Platres, lying on the southern slopes of the Troodos Mountains in 45 kilometers from Nicosia.
In the first half of the 20th century this wonderful resort was a great success. In those days, its regulars were the British administration, sultans and sheikhs, successful entrepreneurs and millionaires from Alexandria and Egypt, Israel and Lebanon. His impressions of the beauty of the mountain landscape reflected in his works the Greek poet and Nobel laureate Yorgos Seferis. It was in Platras that the English novelist Daphne Du Maurier wrote her famous novel "Rebecca", and the famous French poet Arthur Rimbaud, rejected by society, in the mountains of Cyprus took refuge to his tormented soul. Today, the cozy Platres hotels, located far from the city noise and summer heat, give all people an amazing coolness and pacification.
In July and August, when cicadas are singing monotonously, and the sizzling heat covers the low hills of the plains with gray-yellow colors, the streams of silvery waterfalls are caressed in Platras, the streams of which are scattered into millions of splashes sparkling in the sun, framed by lush greenery lined with vines and ivy . In the mountain range of the Troodos mountains there are many: Caledonia, Hantara, Millomeris, Mesopotamos, the waterfalls of Adonis and the Green Valley and others. One of the most picturesque is the Caledonia waterfall, located in the national forest park on the Krios Potamos River, which means "Cold River". His name he received in the late XIX century. One of the Scots, the waterfall reminded the children from the childhood of Caledonia. History did not retain the name of the traveler, but the name caught on. There is a waterfall at an altitude of 1330 meters above sea level to the north of the village of Pano Platres.
Its streams of water falling from a height 13-meters.
Waterfall Millomeris, overthrows their water 20-meter height, is located near the village of Kato Platres. He is considered the highest in Cyprus. According to one version, the name comes from the combination of two Greek words: "millos" and "Marys", which means - raw place to another, from the word mill (millos), which was once in its vicinity. Among high waterfall and also include Green Valley, located near the village of Trimiklini.
Waterfall Mesopotamos (Mesopotamia) is perched on the river Arkolahanias northwest of the village near the ancient Saitas monastery consecrated name of John the Baptist. Water, overcoming rocky rapids, falls from E 7-meter height first one boulder, then another, so it is often referred to as a double.
The noisiest waterfall Troodos Hunter Mountains (translated as "the sound of water"), located north of the village on the river Feeney, often called Trooditissa, also known as Diplo and Potamos, in the Russian version - "double the river." The waterfall is not more than eight meters.
Adonis waterfall found refuge near the village of Kamares. It flows swiftly flee to the deepest lake in the vicinity of which, according to legend, she met her beloved goddess of love and beauty, Aphrodite.
In Cyprus, ancient bridges are scattered everywhere. Many of them are still used, others connect already abandoned roads, the third - just arches on anything and lead to nowhere. Some cross small streams or long dry channels, reminding that when they were built, the rivers were much more full of water. The most ancient bridges - the Lusignansky - today more than 500 years. These include the picturesque ruins of the ancient bridge in Kitty, a bridge to the west of Malounda on the old Nicosia-Mitscero road, which is still in use, Skarphos, built on the Lusignan road between Polis and Pafas. Today, the riverbed, over which this bridge was erected, went to the side.
Venetian bridges on the island is much more, and they look quite romantic. Created them to move entire camel caravans that are delivered from Troodos to Paphos copper ore. Three of them are on the southern edge of Paphos Forest on a bumpy dirt road. This bridge Elealeh west of Fini and Kelafos Rudias where cool water flows all year round. Preserved three-arch bridge Ana Peristerona Nicosia and under a small bridge in Kalopanayotis nestled above the dam, and many others.
During the winter months the top of the Troodos mountains covered with snow, causing indescribable delight all island residents, young and old, and especially fans of mountain-skiing. After downhill skiing, sledding or snowboard fans thrills throughout the forty minutes can move to the quiet sea beaches to swim in the warm waters of the Mediterranean. After the water temperature off the coast of Cyprus never drops below 17 degrees Celsius.