Situated in the Maroni valley, about 6 km from the southern coast of the island, the site of Choirokoitia lies in a hilly landscape in the foothills of the Troodos massif. It constitutes the most impressive example of the initial establishment of sedentary communities on the island and the development of an original civilisation: the Cypriot Aceramic Neolithic. These communities originated from the neighbouring mainland and settled in Cyprus at the end of the 7th millennium B.C. bringing with them plants and animals unknown until then to Cyprus. The site of Choirokoitia, which was founded and inhabited during the 5th[More...]
The archaeological site of Kalavasos lies in a dominant position to the west of the Vasilikos river valley, about 38 km southwest of Larnaka and 45 km south of Lefkosia. It can be seen from the highway. According to local tradition the name goes back to 327 A.D. when St. Helen, the mother of Constantine the Great stayed in a tent (Cyp: tenta) in this location during her visit to the island following the discovery of the Cross of the Crucifixion in Jerusalem.
The site of Kalavasos-Tenta was initially excavated in 1947 by P. Dikaios for the Department of Antiquities. Research[More...]
The archaeological area of Kition consists of two sites: Kathari and Pampoula. It is located within the limits of the modern city of Larnaka. Various finds came to light between the 18th and the 19th century, during excavation work conducted by foreign travelers and tomb looters. One such find is the famous Assyrian stele of king Sargon II, now in Berlin. A plaster cast of the stele is exhibited in the Larnaka Museum. The first systematic excavations began in 1929 by the Swedish Cyprus Archaeological Expedition, under the direction of Einar Gjestard. In 1959, the Department of Antiquities, under the[More...]
The mount of Kourion, on which the ancient city-kingdom developed, occupies a dominant position on the coast 4 km southwest of the village of Episkopi in the Lemesos district. The earliest evidence of settlement in the broader area of Kourion dates to the Neolithic period (4500-3900 B.C.), whilst the most ancient remains in the area of the ancient city itself are connected with settlements and tombs of the Middle and Late Bronze Age. According to tradition Kourion was founded by Argives in the 13th century BC, during the first wave of the Mycenaean expansion and others followed the Argives in[More...]
The archaeological site of Maa-Paliokastro is situated on a small peninsula north of the town of Pafos. A small-scale excavation was conducted in 1952 by Porphyrios Dikaios followed by systematic excavations from 1979 to 1985 under the direction of the then director of the Department of Antiquities, Dr Vassos. Karageorghis.
The site is related to the settlement of Aegean refugees in Cyprus and the process of the island’s hellenisation around 1200 B.C. On the site where the settlers established themselves, the excavators brought to light an earlier occupation of the Early Chalcolithic period consisting of houses formed from cavities in the[More...]
Nea Pafos is situated on a small promontory on the southwest coast of the island. According to written sources, the town was founded at the end of the 4th century by Nicocles, the last king of Palaipafos. In the beginning of the 3rd century B.C. when Cyprus became part of the Ptolemaic kingdom, which had its capital in Alexandria, Nea Pafos became the center of Ptolemaic administration on the island. Until the end of the 2nd century B.C., Nea Pafos acquired such an important role as a political and economical centre of the region that the Ptolemies made it the[More...]
Tamasos is located about 21 km southwest of Lefkosia (Nicosia), on the left bank of the river Pediaios. The larger part of the ancient town lies under the modern villages of Politiko, Pera and Episkopio. We do not know when and by whom the town was established. It seems that Tamasos was founded around the 8th century B.C., in an area which was already inhabited from the Late Bronze Age, and until the first half of the 7th century it had developed into an important city-kingdom of Cyprus. From its foundation until the Roman period the town prospered greatly due[More...]
The ‘Tombs of the Kings’ is the impressive necropolis that is located just outside the walls, to the north and east of Pafos town. It was built during the Hellenistic period (3rd century B.C.) to satisfy the needs of the newly founded Nea Paphos. Its name is not connected with the burial of kings, as the royal institution was abolished in 312 B.C., but rather with the impressive character of its burial monuments. The ‘Tombs of the Kings’ was the place where the higher administrative officers and distinguished Ptolemaic personalities as well as the members of their families were buried.[More...]
The ancient town of Palaipafos is located within the limits of the modern village of Kouklia, situated close to the mouth of Diarizos river, 16 kilometres east of the modern town of Pafos. The site of Palaipafos and its surrounding area are linked to an ancient cult associated with the “Great Goddess”, the goddess of fertility, who was worshiped in Cyprus since the Neolithic period. The Myceneans, who settled on the island at the beginning of the 12th century, adopted the local goddess of fertility and erected a sanctuary in her honour. According to tradition, Kinyras, the local legendary king,[More...]