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Pissouri

In the Pissouri no interest as such in addition to the village square and the beautiful beaches, but in the immediate vicinity of the village you can see the following places.

Pissouri Attraction

Temple of Aphrodite

Paliapaphos (Old Paphos) for many centuries was one of the most popular pilgrimage centers of ancient Greece and at one time an independent Cyprian city-kingdom. Here was built the famous temple-sanctuary of Aphrodite, the most ancient remains of which date back to the XII century BC. The temple remained a significant place of worship of Aphrodite until the III-IV century. The museum, opened in the spacious house of the Lusignan period, has an interesting exposition of archaeological finds telling about this time. And to this day excavations are continuing in the area of ​​the sanctuary, the old city and the necropolis.

The main attraction of Paleopaphos is the sanctuary of Aphrodite (about 1200 BC): the oldest known religious buildings of the Bronze Age and the most popular in the ancient world. In 77 in Cyprus, then already a Roman province, there was a strong earthquake that destroyed ancient Paphos and the temple of Aphrodite. Now we can only guess at the original appearance and richness of this cult structure. In the northern hall of the Roman sanctuary were preserved individual pieces of mosaic that adorned the floor of the room in ancient times. The Roman authorities immediately began restoration work, as a result of which the ancient temple was recreated in its original form, and next to it was erected a new church, in the traditions of Roman architecture of the time. Now the temple complex occupied a much larger area, its buildings were interconnected by special transitions, and cult worship services, ceremonies and sacrifices were now performed here with much greater scope and pomposity.

Thanks to the care of the Roman emperors of that time, the temple of Aphrodite received as it were a second life, even more famous, so that his images were even minted on Roman coins. Such a special attitude to this cult place was primarily due to the fact that the Roman emperors viewed the temple of Aphrodite as the main family sanctuary, because they led their race from the legendary Yule, whose father was the Aeneas, the Trojan, the son of the goddess Aphrodite. The appearance of the temple can now be judged from the schematic image, preserved on the Roman coin of the era of the emperor Vespasian (9 - 79 AD). Scientists believe that the temple in Old Paphos was more like a Greek type of sacred structures, but temples, traditional for the Minoan Crete and the Eastern Mediterranean. In the open space, surrounded by a parabolic wall 5 long, and a height of 2 meters, behind numerous sacrificial altars and other ceremonial religious monuments, was a small sanctuary building. The sanctuary was divided into three parts. In the central on the dais majestically dominated in space is a conical stone - a symbol of the Goddess. She herself was not portrayed, probably for fear of not getting into her artistic fantasy and thereby provoking her anger. Now this mighty sign is kept in a museum located in the ancient castle of Lusignan.

It is said that the village of Kouklia that is now in place a central part of the Old Paphos "communion" to the cult of Aphrodite, using stones from the ruins of the ancient sanctuary in the construction of their houses and streets.

Sacred objects of the Gentiles were kept for centuries, going to the life of Christians continue to live on these lands. So, in a sugar small factory, built in the XV - XVI centuries. on the ruins of the castle of Lusignan era, sugar cooked in bronze cauldrons, once belonged to the Roman temple.

In IV. Byzantine Emperor Theodosius I the Great (ruled 379-395 years.), recognizing Christianity as the official religion, forbade pagan acts in honor of the goddess. Today on the site of the famous sanctuary of Aphrodite only ruins. The excavations were carried out here in 1973-1979, 1993-1995, 1997 years.

World significance Paphos Aphrodite sanctuary, as a religious and mystical center of the Mediterranean, began to fade with the advent of Christianity. And then, the famous cult altogether ceased to exist. The temple does not come with a sacrifice, and made solemn libations, and gradually destroyed, abandoned sanctuary staid nearly a thousand years.

Stone Aphrodite

A few miles south-east of the village of Kuklia is the legendary birthplace of Aphrodite, named Petra tu Romiou ("the Greek stone" - it was the Romanies who called themselves the Greeks in those days, emphasizing that they were heirs of the Roman Empire). According to legend, the Byzantine mythical hero Digenis Akritas threw fragments of rocks from a high cliff into the military ships of the Saracens, protecting the island from their attack. According to another version, a stone was thrown by a hero named Romios. Researchers of Cypriot folk art found confirmation that under the name of Romios, the same Digenis performed. One of these stones, Petra tu Romiou, is located exactly in the place where, according to legend, Aphrodite, the ancient Greek goddess of love and beauty, was born from the foam formed from a drop of blood sprinkled by Kronos Uranus.

A few miles south-east of the village of Kuklia is the legendary birthplace of Aphrodite, named Petra tu Romiou ("the Greek stone" - it was the Romanies who called themselves the Greeks in those days, emphasizing that they were heirs of the Roman Empire). According to legend, the Byzantine mythical hero Digenis Akritas threw fragments of rocks from a high cliff into the military ships of the Saracens, protecting the island from their attack. According to another version, a stone was thrown by a hero named Romios. Researchers of Cypriot folk art found confirmation that under the name of Romios, the same Digenis performed.

One of these stones - Petra tou Romiou - is exactly on the spot where, according to legend, from the foam formed from the fallen in the sea water drops of blood Cronus castrated Uranus, was born Aphrodite - the ancient Greek goddess of love and beauty.

The lovers believe that if one day a swim in the waves of magic that gave rise to the goddess, they never would part.

There is a belief that if the full moon at night to swim past the stone Petra tou Romiou, we can have eternal youth.

But if you eternal youth and will gain, improve the health of here exactly real. Clean sea and hot sun will provide a good mood for a long time, and if more and remember that this is where she was born Aphrodite ...

Palea Enklestra (cave church)

Near the village of Kouklia, close to Paphos, somewhere halfway to the village of Archimandrite, the left is a steep descent to the Church of St Constantine and Helena. On the contrary, in a rocky ravine, hidden from prying eyes by lush greenery, sheltered little painted cave-chapel - Palea Enklestra.

Near the village of Kouklia, close to Paphos, somewhere halfway to the village of Archimandrite, the left is a steep descent to the Church of St Constantine and Helena. On the contrary, in a rocky ravine, hidden from prying eyes by lush greenery, sheltered little painted cave-chapel - Palea Enklestra.

The interior space of a small ancient temple. On the left at the entrance - arched niche, it probably was buried the founder of this secluded home. It affects the abundance of frescoes. Their soft paint a surprisingly fresh and clean: it says that the candles were lit in it are extremely rare.

Apparently, the ascetic life in the cave ended with the death of its founder, and it was no longer used. The symbolic meaning of the paintings is rather unusual. To the left of the entrance is the long-haired nude figure of Saint Onuphrius with a long bearded gray beard. The center of the semicircle of the ceiling is filled with the story of the Holy Trinity in the triple aura (western version): God the Father, Christ, between them is the Book to which the Holy Spirit descends in the form of a dove. Around the numerous keepers: angels, archangels, seraphim and cherubim. There are also evangelists writing their messages: John with Matthew and Mark with Luke. In the lower zone there is a belt image of St. Anastasia curing from ailments and poisons, with traditional symbols: a cross and a glass bulb. And this is natural, because in the wild and secluded places the help of the healer was often so necessary.

Floral ornament, the delicacy of the execution, pastel colors, soft lines, flowing folds of clothing confirmed researchers assumption that the paintings were made in the beginning of the XV century. Unfortunately, almost all the faces in the frescoes damaged by the barbaric hand of those whose religious beliefs were not compatible with the Christian art.

Temple of Apollo Hylates

Temple of Apollo Ilatisa - this majestic sanctuary of the god of forests, is close to Curio on the opposite side of the road Limassol-Paphos. Buildings date back to II century AD. Two hundred years later the church was destroyed by earthquakes. The widespread worship of the god Apollo was, at least, from the VIII century BC. Before a small temple has a number of steps leading to the altar. Stravon historian argues that the pilgrims who touched the altar, dropping from a high cliff Curio.

Curio Museum

In 14 km west of Limassol in the village of Episkopi is a museum dedicated to the ancient city of Kourion. A unique collection of finds of archaeological excavations conducted in the surrounding area, presented in a beautiful old house.

Curio (ancient city-state)

Ancient Curio - is perhaps the most famous archaeological site in Cyprus. The ancient city, lying on the shores of the vast bay, was killed in the IV century by a strong earthquake. About Kourion mentioned another Greek historian Herodotus. It is believed that a settlement for Curio 1200 BC founded participated in the Trojan war, Greek warriors. Curio was one of the many city-states of ancient Cyprus.

Temple of Apollo Ilatisa located in 2, 5 km from the ancient city of Kourion, is one of the most important religious centers of Cyprus where Apollo also glorified as Ilatis, which means the god of forests.

This well-preserved complex is a typical Cypriot pagan temple. Here you can clearly identify 3 construction period. Archaic sanctuaries refer to 7 in BC, while the Ptolemaic sanctuaries refer to 3's. BC. e. and, finally, the Romanesque sanctuaries date back to 1's. AD In the temple of Apollo Ilatis, the ancient Archaic sanctuary contains another, built much later. The latter is dated to the middle - the end of the 1 century AD. e. The complex includes a palaestra, a stoa or a covered colonnade, a treasury, an archaic temenos (sacred place), a rounded monument, an inner courtyard and the temple of Apollo.

In the vast expanse spread colonnade interspersed with dilapidated walls of buildings and fences. The sanctuary is the most significant surviving in Cyprus, appeared in VIII century BC. e. The sacred land of archaic time consisted of a courtyard surrounded by a fence and a small room. Later this place was created a vast sanctuary, the main monuments which are already in the Roman time.

Two roads lead to the sanctuary - from the west, from Paphos, and from the east, from the ancient city of Kourion, located two kilometers away. Through the western gate now enter the sanctuary visitors, Only the bases of the columns that once flanked them were preserved from the gates themselves. The gate leads into a vast, irregularly shaped paved courtyard, surrounded by various cult rooms. To the left of the gate a wide, partially restored staircase rises to the so-called north-west building, which stood on a high platform; it is poorly preserved, but its internal structure can be traced: the building is divided along the axis into two long rooms, each of which has platforms along the walls framed by a colonnade. On these platforms, it is believed, housed the vaudevilles sculptures brought to the god.

Along the whole southern side of the courtyard stretches the monumental Doric portico, which closes the facade of the so-called southern building. It consists of five identical isolated interior spaces. In each of them along the walls are arranged low platforms, made of stone and framed by Doric colonnades. The resemblance with the "north-western building" suggests that these premises served as a place for storing votive gifts. At the entrance to one of them there is an inscription announcing that two rooms were built by Emperor Trajan in 101 year n. e. The "southern building" was partially restored, the Doric colonnade consisting of slender smoothbore columns crowned with small capitals was restored.

God Apollo enjoyed a special veneration among the Cypriots, and throughout the centuries in his sanctuary a huge amount of offerings accumulated. According to the custom that existed throughout the ancient world, the priests purged the treasuries from time to time to make room for new gifts. Since the offerings to the deity were considered sacred and they could not simply be thrown out, they were buried in special pits - bowshros - in the sanctuary. In the sanctuary of Apollo there is also such a pit, located near the eastern gate. In it were found many terracotta and vases - from the V century BC. e. before the Roman time.

Near Botros, against the "Southern Building" begins a narrow street, paved with stone slabs, leading to the very temple of Apollo. Left it protects the low wall on the right is "House of priests." Small rooms of the building adjacent to the square yard facing the street; on the other side of the courtyard are the treasury of the temple premises; the walls of these buildings remained at a considerable height.

Moving farther north along the street leading to the temple, the visitor had to pass the fence of the ancient, archaic sanctuary; During the excavation of it, many vases and watery terracottas of the VIII-V centuries BC were found. e. The street leads directly to the foot of the temple of Apollo, whose miniature dimensions oddly disharmonize with the impressive complex of the entire sanctuary. This, of course, affects the ancient Cypriot tradition, according to which the center of the sanctuary was not a temple, but an outdoor altar around which all religious ceremonies were performed. This altar also existed in the sanctuary of Apollo, but its traces did not survive. We only know that this altar was highly esteemed by the Cypriots. Greek writer 1 century n. e. Strabo says that the sacrilegious, who dared to insult the altar, even with a simple touch to it, awaited a terrible execution: he was thrown into the sea from the high cliffs that encircle the shore in the area of ​​the sanctuary.

The temple of Apollo was built on the model of Roman temples. He stood on the highest podium, which led to the sweeping staircase. Small Celle preceded by four-column portico. Now, the building remained only the bases.

The complex of the sanctuary of Apollo Gilat is completed by two monuments, located already outside the surrounding sacred fence, but closely associated with it. At the eastern, Curio, gate of the sanctuary, closely adjoining the monumental staircase leading to the gate, the strange twin, seemingly merged columns, marking the corner of the vast rectangular courtyard of the palaestra - buildings for gymnastic exercises, rise. Gymnastic games in honor of the deity - a characteristic and widespread in the ancient religion of the custom. The palesters existed at all the large sanctuaries of Ancient Greece. The shrine of the sanctuary of Apollo is built according to the usual plan for such buildings: its center is an extensive open area of ​​rectangular shape, surrounded on all four sides by a Doric colonnade. From the majority of columns only the lower parts were preserved; They are similar to the columns of the sanctuary - smoothbore, small, fairly flat capitals.

A unique feature of this building is the already mentioned double corner columns. Their drums are carved from one block of stone, from the inside the trunks are clearly separated from each other, with the outside they merge, forming a rounded corner. On both sides of the palestra, the rooms for rest and disguise of athletes are framed. They survived quite badly: only in places the walls built of small stones rise; especially carefully, of well-hewn stone slabs are the lintels of the doors and windows that penetrate them. In the western wall there is a niche in which there was a statue of an athlete playing a ball - apparently, this particular game was especially popular here. This statue, found during excavation, is now kept in the museum, and its place was taken by a plaster cast.

In the northwest corner of the palestra, at the foot of the double columns, is a huge stone vessel water Valium forms, only half survived. Probably, it was used for washing the athletes after exercise. However, they could wash and more thoroughly in the baths, the building of which was against the palestra, on the other side of the road that led to the sanctuary of Apollo Curio.

The building of baths, consisting of a number of small rooms, from which, like from other buildings of the sanctuary, only the foundations are preserved, is remarkable for its carefully planned layout. Entering the entrance hall to the waiting room, the visitor of the thermal bath then went to the undressing room, followed by a frigidarium with a mosaic-tiled pool for cold water; only passing through it, you could get into the room of a warm bath - a tepidarium, which occupied two rooms, and, finally, a hot bath in the Caldarium. To her directly adjoined the room with an oven, from where warm air spread through the building under the floors and through pipes laid in the walls.

The whole complex of the Sanctuary of Apollo took its final form during the reign of Emperor Trajan, about 100 years BC. e., according to the preserved inscriptions. The sanctuary was destroyed during the strong earthquake in 364 / 365 AD and then it settled the ancient herdsmen. Some of the destroyed buildings have been restored.

Address: Kourion, Limassol
Hours of operationDaily: 08: 00 - 17: 00 (November - March), 08: 00 - 18: 00 (April - mo0y), (September - October), 08: 00 - 19: 30 (June - August).
Work period: all year round
Entrance fee: 1,71 euros

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