Men only and a view of Southern Cyprus
Stavrovouni Monastery Travel Blog› entry 6 of 26 › view all entries
I returned to the highway and headed for the mountains just west of Larnaca. It took me only 45 minutes traverse
The mountains, now to the east (my right) are an interesting mix of brown and almost greenish white. It’s a strange contrast. I can see in the distance the monastery that I seek. It’s on the tallest mountain in the region at (688 meters (2460 ft). It looks much higher from this distance.
I find the marker and turn down a narrow road.
From there it was all up hill, really it was. The road became even narrower and truly had many hairpin turns. Had I been in a sporty car, this might have been fun……in a left had drive car, not so much!
The view of the surroundings became more and more amazing as I drove higher and higher. I could see so much now, how would it be at the top???
I finally reach a brick gate and an Icon on one side….I am there. I had reached the Stavrovouni Monastery. In earlier times this mountain had been known as
It is the earliest documented monastery on the island and has been an important religious center since the 4th century.
From this height, the views are panoramic and as far as the eye can see. I can see all of the surrounding mountains. Some of them have strange tree growth patterns….take a look. Then there are the limestone mountains and their white glow.
Just outside the monastery gates is a little chapel filled with fantastic frescoes telling of great religious stories
Ok, so now I go up to the BIG gate to the monastery. The gate is closed and there is a sign.
Inside the gate the stone stairs wound their way up the mountain. I had to stop ever few minutes to take in the view. With no camera, I really wanted to try to cement it in my brain. It was only a 10 minute hike….steep and strenuous but, not difficult. The pay off was tremendous. The monastery was massive and imposing. There was a large courtyard with viewing terrace. The view was an unobstructed western view…..the sun setting. It was fantastic.
I walked into the main building and up the stairs (a sign pointed that way). I could see out the doors and into the next building was the church.
I walked inside the church was instantly in awe. I make my way to the main altar and view the many icons but, am first asked to remove my hands from my pockets. I had forgotten that it is a sign of disrespect. I will show the proper respect when visiting any religious place.
The richness of the color of the frescos, the many stories being shared, the icons (the originals), this is a place of great significance. There was a light fixture with icons placed between the lights and hanging from the fixture were many colorful beaded eggs. There was the special piece. The cross that houses pieces of the “True Cross”. It is a creative use of design as a vessel to hold something so sacred.
I took my time piecing together the many frescos stories and enjoying the design details. I can see many spectacular interior designs coming from this one room as inspiration. I hope I get the opportunity, someday.
It’s time to go, the sun in going down, fast. I’ve two more stops to make.