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Paphos
Πάφος (Greek) Baf (Turkish)

Seal
Paphos is located in Cyprus
Paphos
Coordinates: 34°46′N 32°25′E / 34.767°N 32.417°E / 34.767; 32.417
Country  Cyprus
District Paphos District
Government
 - Mayor Savvas Vergas
Elevation 72 m (236 ft)
Population (2001 - 2005)
 - City 47,530
 Urban 66,364
 - Demonym Paphian
Time zone EET (UTC+2)
 - Summer (DST) EST (UTC+3)
Post code 8010 - 8049
Website www.visitpafos.org.cy
Concise presentation of Paphos

Paphos (Greek: Πάφος, Páfos; Latin: Paphus, briefly Augusta; Turkish: Baf) is a coastal city in the southwest of Cyprus and the capital of Paphos District. In antiquity, two locations were called Paphos: Old Paphos[1] and New Paphos.[2] The currently inhabited city is New Paphos.

Near Palaepaphos (Old Paphos) at the seaside of Petra-tou-Romiou is the mythical birthplace of Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love and beauty and the founding myth is interwoven with the goddess at every level, so that Old Paphos became the most famous and important place for worshipping Aphrodite in the ancient world. In Greco-Roman times Paphos was the island's capital, and it is famous for the remains of the Roman governor's palace, where extensive, fine mosaics are a major tourist attraction. The apostle Paul of Tarsus visited the town during the first century. The town of Paphos is included in the official UNESCO list of cultural and natural treasures of the world's heritage.

Contents

Founding myth

In the founding myth, even the town's name is linked to the goddess, as the eponymous Paphos was the son of Pygmalion[3] and his ivory cult image of Aphrodite, which was brought to life by the Goddess as "milk-white" Galatea.

The author of Bibliotheke, the Hellenistic encyclopedia of myth long attributed to Apollodorus, gives the genealogy.[4] Pygmalion was so devoted to the cult of Aphrodite that he removed the statue to his palace and kept it on his couch. The daimon of the goddess entered into the cult image, and the living Galatea bore Pygmalion a son Paphos and a daughter Metharme. Cinyras, perhaps the son of Paphus,[5] but perhaps the successful suitor of Metharme, founded the city under the patronage of Aphrodite and built the great temple to the goddess there. According to another legend preserved by Strabo (xi. p. 505), whose text, however, varies, it was founded by the Amazons. Paul saved an important man in Paphos named saou.

Panoramic view of Paphos Port and the medieval castle in Paphos.

History

Paphos*
UNESCO World Heritage Site

House of Dionysos Mosaic, Paphos
State Party  Cyprus
Type Cultural
Criteria iii, vi
Reference 79
Region** Europe and North America
Coordinates 34°46′N 32°25′E / 34.767°N 32.417°E / 34.767; 32.417
Inscription history
Inscription 1980  (4th Session)
* Name as inscribed on World Heritage List.
** Region as classified by UNESCO.

Archaeologists report that the site of Paphos has been inhabited since the Neolithic period. It was a centre of the cult of Aphrodite and of pre-Hellenic fertility deities. Aphrodite's mythical birthplace was on this island, where her temple was erected by the Myceneans in the twelfth century BC. The remains of villas, palaces, theatres, fortresses and tombs of the Classical, Hellenistic and Roman periods mean that the site is of exceptional architectural and historic value. The mosaics of Nea Paphos are among the most beautiful in the world.

The port of Paphos was rebuilt by Nicocles, the last king of Paphos, at the time of Alexander III of Macedon. It became the capital of the island replacing Salamis during the Hellenistic era, under the successors of Alexander III of Macedon – the Ptolemies who favoured a location closer to their capital, Alexandria. The theatre dating to the end of the 4th century BC has been under excavation by the University of Sydney since 1995: it was partly excavated from its hillside setting and partly built up with earth embankments.

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Old Paphos

Houses of Dionysos Mosaic depicting Dionysos and Iokaste, Paphos

Old Paphos, now the site of Kouklia (Turkish: Kukla or Konuklia) (Engel, Kypros, vol. i. p. 125) was seated on an eminence,[6] at the distance of about ten stadia from the sea, on which, however, it had a roadstead. It was not far distant from the Zephyrium promontory (Strabo xiv. p. 683) and the mouth of the little River Bocarus.[7]

Aphrodite at Paphos

Petra Tou Romiou, (transliteration): The rock of the Greek, Aphrodite's legendary birthplace

The Greeks agreed that Aphrodite had landed at the site of Paphos when she rose from the sea.[8] According to Pausanias (i. 14), her worship was introduced at Paphos from Syria; but it is much more probable that it was of Phoenician origin. Before archaeology commenced it was understood that the cult of Aphrodite had been established before the time of Homer (ca 700 BC), as the grove and altar of Aphrodite at Paphos are mentioned in Odyssey (viii. 362). Archaeology has established that Cypriots venerated a fertility goddess before the arrival of the Greeks, in cult that combined Aegean with Eastern mainland aspects. Female figurines and charms found in the immediate vicinity date as far back as the early third millennium. The temenos was well established before the first structures were erected in the Late Bronze Age: "There was unbroken continuity of cult from that time until 391 AD when the Roman Emperor Theodosius I outlawed all pagan religions and the sanctuary fell into the ruins in which we find it today."[9]

Here the worship of the goddess centred, not for Cyprus alone, but for the whole Aegean world. The Cinyradae, or descendants of Cinyras, Greek by name, but of Phoenician origin, were the chief priests. Their power and authority were very great; but it may be inferred from certain inscriptions that they were controlled by a senate and an assembly of the people. There was also an oracle here.[10] Few cities have ever been so much sung and glorified by the poets.[11] The remains of the vast temple of Aphrodite are still discernible, its circumference being marked by huge foundation walls. After its overthrow by an earthquake, it was rebuilt by Vespasian, on whose coins it is represented, as well as on earlier and later ones, and especially in the style on those of Septimius Severus.[12] From these representations, and from the existing remains, Gustav Friedrich Hetsch, an architect of Copenhagen, has attempted to restore the building.[13][14]

Paul in Paphos

St Paul's Pillar in Paphos

After landing at Salamis and proclaiming the Word of God in the synagogues [15], the prophets and teachers Barnabas, Black Symeon, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen and Saul of Tarsus traveled along the entire southern coast of the island of Cyprus until they reached Paphos [16]. There, Sergius Paulus, the Roman proconsul, was converted after Saul rebuked the Sorcerer Elymas[17]. It was at that point that Saul effectively became the leader. He was from then on called Paul, rather than his former name, Saul.

New Paphos

Municipality Hall, Paphos
The port of Paphos

New Paphos (Nea Paphos), the currently inhabited town, was founded on the sea, near the western end of the island, and possessed a good harbour. It lay about sixty stadia, or ca. twelve km northwest of the old city.[18] It too had a founding myth: it was said to have been founded by Agapenor, chief of the Arcadians at the siege of Troy [19], who, after the capture of that town, was driven by the storm that separated the Greek fleet, onto the coast of Cyprus. (Pausanias viii. 5. § 2.) An Agapenor was mentioned as king of the Paphians in a Greek distich preserved in the Analecta;[20] and Herodotus (vii. 90) alludes to an Arcadian "colony" in Cyprus. Like its ancient namesake, Nea Paphos was also distinguished for the worship of Aphrodite and contained several magnificent temples dedicated to her. Yet the old city seems to have always retained the preeminence in this respect, and Strabo tells that the road leading to it from Nea Paphos was annually crowded with male and female votaries resorting to the more ancient shrine, and coming not only from the latter place itself, but also from the other towns of Cyprus. When Seneca says (N. Q. vi. 26, Epistle 91) that Paphos was nearly destroyed by an earthquake, it is difficult to say to which of the towns he refers. Dio Cassius (liv. 23) relates that it was restored by Augustus, and called "Augusta" in his honour; but though this name has been preserved in inscriptions, it never supplanted the ancient one in popular use.

Paphos is mentioned in the Acts of the Apostles (xiii. 6) as having been visited by Paul of Tarsus, when it appears to have been the residence of the Roman governor; it is said that Paul converted the governor, Sergius Paulus, to Christianity. Tacitus (Hist. ii. 2, 3) records a visit of the youthful Titus to Paphos before he acceded to the empire, who inquired with much curiosity into its history and antiquities. (Cf. Suetonius Titus c. 5.) Under this name the historian doubtless included the ancient as well as the more modern city: and among other traits of the worship of the temple he records, with something like surprise, that the only image of the goddess was a pyramidal stone – a relic, doubtless of Phoenician origin. There are still considerable ruins of New Paphos a mile or two from the sea; among which are particularly remarkable the remains of three temples which had been erected on artificial eminences.[21]

Post-Classical history

Paphos, however, was gradually losing much of its attraction as an administrative centre, especially after the founding of Nicosia. The city and its port continued to decline throughout the Middle Ages and Ottoman Rule, as Nicosia, and the port city of Larnaca was gaining in importance.

The city and district continued to lose population throughout the British colonial period and many of its inhabitants moved to Limassol, Nicosia and overseas. The city and district of Paphos remained the most underdeveloped part of the island until 1974.

Modern Paphos

After 1974, there was rapid economic activity in all fields especially in tourism in the Kato Paphos area. The government invested heavily in irrigation dams and water distribution works, road infrastructure and the building of Paphos International Airport, the second international airport in Cyprus.

In the 1980s Kato Paphos received most of the investment, 1990s Coral Bay Resort was further developed and in 2000s the Aphrodite hills resort was developed.

Today Paphos, with a population of about 47,300 (end of 2001), is a popular sea and a fast developing tourist resort, home to an attractive fishing harbour. Ktima is the main residential district, and Kato Pafos, by the sea, is built around the medieval port and contains most of the luxury hotels and the entertainment infrastructure of the city. Apostolou Pavlou Avenue (St. Paul's Ave.), the busiest road in Paphos, connects the two quarters of the city. It begins near the city centre at Kennedy Sq. and ends outside the Medieval Fort at the harbor.

Economy

The economy of Paphos depends largely on tourism and has four resorts in its district: Kato Paphos, Coral Bay, Polis Crysochous, and Aphrodite hills. The largest resort by far is Kato Pafos which employs over half of Paphos population.

Farming, especially banana, grape and tobacco plantations, also contributes significantly to Paphos economy. Paphos has a 100 km water distribution network which irrigates 5000 ha of land.

Paphos has the island's second international airport. The harbor of Paphos in terms of international trade is not important as most shipping goes via the harbour of Limassol. The marina of Paphos has cultural and historical importance and is also used for fishing.

Unemployment

Although unemployment levels are relatively low (when compared to Greece and other EU countries) they are the highest in Cyprus,and have risen in 2009 due to the global recession.

Landmarks

Paphos Castle
Underground columns at the Tombs of the Kings

At the harbour, there is the Paphos Castle, originally built as a Byzantine fort to protect the harbour and rebuilt by the Lusignans in the 13th century, then dismantled in 1570 by the Venetians, who found themselves unable to defend it against the Ottomans, who in their turn restored and strengthened it after they captured the island. Saranta Kolones, Kato Paphos, near the harbour, is a castle built in the first years of the rule of the Lusignans (beginning of the 12th century) maybe on the site of a previous Byzantine castle. It was destroyed in the earthquake of 1222.

The legacy from its remarkable history adds up to nothing less than an open museum, so much so that UNESCO simply added the whole town to its World Cultural Heritage List. Among the treasures unearthed, are the remarkable mosaics in the Houses of Dionysos, Theseus and Aion, beautifully preserved after 16 centuries under the soil. Then there are the mysterious vaults and caves, the Tombs of the Kings, the pillar to which Saint Paul was allegedly tied and whipped, the ancient Odeon Theatre and other places of interest including the Byzantine Museum and the District Archaeological Museum, with its attractive collection of Cypriot antiquities from the Paphos area, dating from the Neolithic Age to 1700 AD. Near Odeon, there are the remains of the ancient city walls, the Roman Agora and a building dedicated to Asclepius, god of medicine.

The mosaic floors of these elite villas dating from the 3rd to the 5th century are among the finest in the Eastern Mediterranean. They mainly depict scenes from Greek mythology.

The city contains many catacomb sites dating back to the early Christian period. The most famous is Saint Solomoni Church, originally a Christian catacomb retaining some of its 12th century frescoes. A sacred tree at the entrance is believed to cure the ailments of those who hang a personal offering on its branches.

A few miles outside the city, the rock of Aphrodite (Petra tou Romiou, "Stone of the Greek") emerges from the sea. According to legend, Aphrodite rose from the waves in this strikingly beautiful spot. The Greek name, Petra tou Romiou is associated with the legendary frontier-guard of Byzantine times, Digenis Acritas, who kept the marauding Saracens at bay. It is said in one such fight he heaved a large rock (Petra), at his enemy. The site has recently seen development of Aphrodite Hills, a multi-award winning resort in Cyprus. The resort features a five-star deluxe InterContinental Resort Hotel, an 18-hole standard championship golf course, competition tennis courts, fitness facilities, holiday villas, apartments and townhouses and the Retreat Spa. Aphrodite Hills recently appeared in the highly prestigious Forbes Magazine commissioned top five resorts list where it was voted the world's most desirable new resort.[22]

Skyline from the Tomb of Kings.

Near Petra tou Romiou, there is Palaepaphos, Old Paphos, one of the most celebrated places of pilgrimage of the ancient Greek world, and once an ancient city kingdom of Cyprus. Here are the ruins of the famous Temple of Aphrodite, the most ancient remains, go back to the 12th century BC. The temple was one of the most important places of cult and pilgrimage of the ancient world, till the 3rd-4th century A.D. The museum, housed in the Lusignan Manor, is small but impressive with many finds from the area.

Ayia Paraskevi Church in Yeroskipou

Yeroskipou with its remarkable five-domed Byzantine church of Ayia Paraskevi and its Folk Art Museum is a town in Paphos metropolitan area known for many years now for its special delight `loukoumi'.

Northeast of Paphos lies Ayios Neophytos Monastery, famous for its `Encleistra', Enclosure, carved out of the mountain by the hermit himself, which boasts some of the finest Byzantine frescoes of the 12th and 15th centuries. Near by too is the painted village church of Emba (Empa).

Four kilometres north of Paphos is the village of Lemba (Lempa), which has become home to numerous artists, many of whom have open studio shops, the sculpture known as the Great Wall of Lempa, by the Cypriot artist Stass Paraskos and the Cyprus College of Art.

Just off the coast of Paphos is the wreck of M/V Demetrios II which ran aground on 23 March 1998 in heavy seas, during a voyage from Greece to Syria with a cargo of timber.

Climate

Castle and sea

Paphos enjoys a typical Mediterranean climate, with the greatest amounts of precipitation mainly occurring from mid-November to March. It practically never rains in the summer, (with an average of 0.1) . In July and August humidity measurements can go up to 85%.

Snowfall occurs rarely, approximately every 10 years, although this does not normally lead to any significant disruption. Snowfall does occur in the hills of Tsada, 6 km north, almost annually. The last significant snowfall in the city centre occurred in Winter 2001[citation needed].

Heat waves in July and August are a relatively common occurrence , where hot air masses from the Sahara desert drift over to cyprus causing temperatures to rise. Cyprus has experienced drought-like conditions and the current trend of global warming is expected to increase the severity of these conditions.[23]. In the summer of 2008, Cyprus had to ship water overseas in tankers from Greece to meet the demand for drinking water on the island [24]

Climate data for Paphos
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 17.0
(63)
16.9
(62)
18.5
(65)
21.3
(70)
24.4
(76)
27.7
(82)
29.9
(86)
30.4
(87)
28.8
(84)
26.6
(80)
22.4
(72)
18.6
(65)
23.6
(74)
Daily mean °C (°F) 12.5
(55)
12.3
(54)
13.6
(56)
16.3
(61)
19.5
(67)
22.8
(73)
25.2
(77)
25.7
(78)
23.8
(75)
21.5
(71)
17.5
(64)
14.2
(58)
18.7
(66)
Average low °C (°F) 8.0
(46)
7.6
(46)
8.7
(48)
11.3
(52)
14.5
(58)
17.8
(64)
20.4
(69)
21.0
(70)
18.8
(66)
16.4
(62)
12.6
(55)
9.7
(49)
13.9
(57)
Precipitation cm (inches) 8.02
(3.2)
6.42
(2.5)
3.43
(1.4)
1.87
(0.7)
0.53
(0.2)
0.16
(0.1)
0.03
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.38
(0.1)
1.80
(0.7)
6.64
(2.6)
9.39
(3.7)
38.67
(15.2)
Source: Meteorological Service (Cyprus)[25]

Transport

A6 Motorway towards Paphos

Paphos used to be the only traffic-free town in Cyprus. However, things changed after the urbanisation and rise of the population in less than 10 years. The problem is mainly in the town centre, where the roads of a small colonial village cannot do what they are made to do anymore. The problems mainly exist because some planned road links remain on paper. These include:

  • 2nd part of the northern ring road
  • Western ring road
  • Airport road
  • Paphos - Coral Bay road upgrade.

Public transport

Public transport in Paphos is currently served only by buses. The bus company operating in the city is called Astika Leoforia Pafou - Paphos Urban Buses - (ALEPA Ltd.). Bus routes and timetable can be found here:[1]

Motorways

Paphos did not have a motorway link until 2001. It is now accessed through the A6 which connects Paphos with Limassol. It is expected that by 2013 the new A7 towards Polis will be completed so that the suburbs will get a traffic breath.[2]

Airport

Paphos Airport check-in desks

Since 1982, air traffic of Paphos is served by Paphos International Airport located 10 km southeast of the city, near Timi. It serves approximately 1.75 million people every year. A new Terminal opened in late 2008 adjacent to the old one.

Port

The port (or limanaki λιμανάκι - small port) today serves as a small Marina and a fisherman shelter and has a capacity of 300 boats. It is probably the top tourist destination of the city with plenty of restaurants and cafés. The castle's square hosts Aphrodite festival every September since 1998. Cargo and cruise ships use the Limassol Port 60 km away. A marina is planned to be constructed 10 km north, next to Coral Bay in Kissonerga. The new Marina will serve up to 1000 boats.[3]

Hospitals and medical centres

Paphos has only one general hospital, located at Anavargos, 3 km northeast of the city centre. It was built to replace the old hospital, which was an old dangerous building that was demolished shortly after being abandoned. Now it is a modern medical centre. Thoughts are made to be turned into a university hospital, when Neapolis University will open. There are also several private clinics spread all over the urban area.

Sports

Paphos has a long history into sports, with several football, basketball, volleyball teams. The Pafian gymnastic club is called Korivos, and it owns (via the Cyprus Athletic Organisation) the local stadium which is called Pafiako and the arena for volley and basket venues called Aphroditi. The most successful team of Paphos is the volley ball club, Pafiakos, who have been Champions of Cyprus three times (the last in 2006). Dionysos, a volley ball team from Stroumpi (a village of Paphos), plays in the First Division as well. Both teams use the indoor Aphrodite arena. The football club in Paphos is called AEP Paphos. The team was founded in 2000 and is currently in the Cypriot First Division. The team plays in Pafiako Stadium, while they train in other grounds located in Yeroskipou. In 2006 the second Commonwealth Tenpin Bowling Championships were held in Paphos.

Probably the most successful Paphian athlete of recent times was Stylianos Kyriakides (1910 – 1987) (Greek: Στυλιανός Κυριακίδης), a marathon runner. Born in Statos, Paphos, he won the 1946 Boston Marathon. According to a newspaper report, he was running with John Kelley near the end, when an old man shouted from the crowd, "For Greece, for your children!" inspiring him to pull away and win the race.

Notable people

Twinnings

See Also

Kouklia

Aphrodite

Akamas

Akamas (2006 film)

Polis Chrysochous

Aphrodite hills

Aphrodites rock

References

  1. ^ Old Paphos, in Ancient Greek: Πάφος παλαιά, Ptol. v. 14. § 1; or, in one word, Παλαίπαφος, Strabo xiv. p. 683; Palaepaphos, Plin. v. 31. s. 35)
  2. ^ New Paphos in Ancient Greek (Πάφος Νέα, Ptol. l. c.; Nea Paphos, Plin. l. c.. The name of Paphos, without any adjunct, is used by poets and by writers of prose to denote both Old and New Paphos, but with this distinction, that in ancient prose writers it commonly means New Paphos, whilst in the ancient poets, on the contrary, for whom the name of Palaepaphos would have been unwieldy, it generally signifies Old Paphos, the more particular seat of the cult of the Greek goddess Aphrodite. In inscriptions, also, both towns are called Πάφος. This indiscriminate use is sometimes productive of ambiguity, especially in the Latin prose authors.
  3. ^ Pygmalion's father was Belus, simply "lord"l.
  4. ^ Bibliotheke, iii.14.3.
  5. ^ According to the Roman Hyginus, Fabula 142, Cinyras was a son of Paphus, thus legitimate in the patrineal manner, but Bibliotheke makes Cinyras an interloper, arriving with some of his people from Cilicia on the nearest coast of Asia Minor, and thus a suitor from outside, in the matrilineal manner. The conflict is instructive.
  6. ^ The hill is celsa Paphos in Aeneid x. 51
  7. ^ Hesychius, under Βώκαρος
  8. ^ Tac. Hist. ii. 3; Mela, ii. 7; Lucan viii.456
  9. ^ Ashmolean Museum website
  10. ^ Engel, i.p. 483.
  11. ^ For example, Aeschylus Suppliants 525; Virgil Aeneid i. 415; Horace Odes i. 19, 30, iii. 26; Status Silvius i. 2. 101; Aristophanes Lysistrata 833, etc.
  12. ^ Engel, vol. i. p. 130.
  13. ^ Müller's Archäol. § 239, p. 261; Eckhel, vol. iii. p. 86.
  14. ^ Münter, Friedrich Christian Carl Hinrich; Hetsch, Gustav Friedrich (1824) (in German). Der Tempel der himmlischen Göttin zu Paphos: zweite Beilage zur Religion der Karthager. Schubothe. OCLC 13923976. 
  15. ^ Acts 13:5
  16. ^ Acts 13:6
  17. ^ Acts 13:6-12
  18. ^ Strabo xiv. p. 683.
  19. ^ Iliad. ii.609
  20. ^ p. 181, Brunk
  21. ^ Engel, Kypros, 2 vols. Berlin, 1841.
  22. ^ http://www.golflink.com/list_32556_top-hotels-world.html
  23. ^ Climate Change Threatens Cyprus with Drought/
  24. ^ Greek Cyprus Water Shipment Suffers More Setbacks
  25. ^ "Meteorological Service - Climatological and Meteorological Reports". http://www.moa.gov.cy/moa/MS/MS.nsf/DMLclimet_reports_en/DMLclimet_reports_en?OpenDocument&Start=1&Count=1000&Expand=1. 

External links

Coordinates: 34°46′N 32°25′E / 34.767°N 32.417°E / 34.767; 32.417


Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

The Odeon
The Odeon

Paphos (Πάφος, also Pafos) is a town at the southwestern tip of Cyprus, between the coast and the Troodos Mountains.

Understand

Paphos is renowned as the birthplace of Greek goddess Aphrodite. Modern-day Paphos is divided in two, with the upper section up the hill being the commercial center, and lower Kato Paphos containing the main archaeological points of interest, as well as most hotels and tavernas.

The local government seem to be ploughing a lot of money into improving the the lower Kato Paphos area which combines hotels, bars and restaurants along a coastal strip a few km long. Most of the work is now finished as of November 2008. There is a newly built front leading round to the marina and a long coastal path with amazing views - perfect for a morning or evening stroll.

Get in

The small Paphos International Airport (PFO) serves mostly charter flights. Flights to Paphos are widely available from charter flight companies from many of the UK's regional airports, from Exeter in the Southwest to Glasgow in the North. Many tour operators including First Choice, Thomson and Monarch fly regularly. Flights to Paphos are also available using the scheduled services from British Airways and Cyprus Airways. This can be one busy airport, particularly departures on Wednesdays. The airport is relatively small and can have 6 or 7 flights taking off around the same time, it can be murder!! Once you have managed to check in and make your way into the departure lounge, you will need to keep your eyes and ears open to listen to the rather 'muted' announcements. If the thought of a busy Paphos airport puts you off then why not head off to Larnaca - and have the same problems on a bigger scale - really though the problems appear no worse than any other airport in the world on a busy day! A highway connects to Limassol (68 km) and from there onward to the rest of Cyprus, and shared taxis (€5-10) run reasonably often.

Get around

Paphos town is small enough to navigate on foot however the travelling around the region of Paphos will require motorised assistance ! Local bus services are available however hiring a vehicle (bike/quad/car) is common place and allows for going off the beaten track to find small villages in the hills. It gets hot and humid in summer (33 deg C and 90% Humidity) between late June through to early September. Rest of the year is relatively mild but with colder spells in January & February. Official website of Paphos Cyprus region.

  • Paphos Archaeological Park houses a number of attractions, including the House of Dionysos and the House of Theseus, both ruins of large Roman villas famous for their mosaics.
  • The Tombs of the Kings, whilst not actually the burial place of ancient royalty, is worthy of the name none the less. Within this vast expanse of land, instead of the kings, would have instead been other high officials and rich citizens. Although all of the tombs have been plundered, what is left is still a very impressive impression of life (after-life?), back in the fourth century. The larger tombs in this "complex" are awesome, carved out of solid rock and with a view for the inhabitants that would make anyone among the living jealous!
  • Paphos Fort, at the tip of the marina, is a squat box with a colourful history as a fort and prison under many administrators. The present incarnation was built by the Turks in 1586 and was last actively used by the British. Open daily to 6 PM (in summer), entry €1.70.
  • Paphos Bird Park, [1]. A large animal park located north of Paphos. Tickets are 15.50 €/adult and 8.50 €/child  edit
  • The Odeon, a classic Greek amphitheatre within the archaeological park, occasionally holds plays and musical performances.
  • The Paphos Aphrodite Water Park is a large, impressive, and very nicely themed, water park. Plenty of slides to keep all ages amused, as well as lazy river rides, wave machines, and everything else you've come to expect from the best water parks

Buy

Leather goods, Lace, Yeroskipou delights, Beware of stores selling copy DVDs these appear a bargain but are often poor quality and a waste of money. Also check the store's 'returns policy'. Some do not offer refunds or exchanges on faulty goods! Overall shopping in Paphos is a pleasurable experience, with its shops spread out from the numerous quality furniture stores on the road to Polis to the small independent tourist shops on the harbourside. There are 4 main supermarket companies in Paphos:- Orphanides, Papantoniou, Chris Cash & Carry (now Carrefour); Debenhams (rather like UK House of Fraser)

Eat

Paphos offers a wealth of choices to eat from world known Western KFC & McDonalds to 5 Star dining at iL Classico, Colosseum etc and at many of the hotel restaurants. There are limitless choices from Chinese to Mexican and from traditional Cypriot meze to Pizza/Pasta. You must try a traditional Cypriot meze but if at all possible venture out a little into one of the villages surrounding Paphos town for not just authentic food but great atmosphere, either NE towards the mountains or should you want to travel a little further West call into Kathikas village where there are a multitude of traditional tavernas.

Zaffron restaurant [2] - a very good restaurant with Italian, Greek menu. Situated near Venus beach hotel. The average bill for supper - 40 euros for 2 people with glass of wine.

Drink

Accompany any traditional cyprus dish with wine from the Nelion Winery, Vasilias Nikoklis inn offers a variety of local wines starting from Cyprus apperitif zivania, the Refreshing roze, the dry white wine the medium sweet white and red, the ofthalmo and the shiraz.

  • The Akamas Peninsula located in the far west of Cyprus. Paphos is the closest major city to this area of outstanding natural beauty. A day may not be enough to explore the deep gorges the wild landscape and the sandy bays. This is an area of great biodiversity and ecological significance. Home to 530 plant species, a third of the total for Cyprus, 126 of which are endemic to the island Cyprus. It remains largely unspoilt to date mainly thanks to its inaccessibility.

The Diarizos river valley an unspoiled paradise for birdwatchers and nature lovers. Drive through Nikoklia village towards Troodos mountains and enjoy the views.Scenic little villages, family runed inns and wineries.

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1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

PAPHOS, an ancient city and sanctuary on the west coast of Cyprus. The sanctuary and older town (Palaepaphos) lie at Kouklia, about 20 m. west of Limasol, about a mile inland on the left bank of the Diorizo River (anc. Bocarus), the mouth of which formed its harbour. New Paphos (Papho or Baffo), which had already superseded Old Paphos in Roman times, lies to m. farther west, and m. south of modern Ktima, at the other end of a fertile coast-plain. Paphos was believed to have been founded either by the Arcadian Agapenor, returning from the Trojan War (c. 1180 B.C.), or by his reputed contemporary Cinyras, whose clan retained royal privileges down to the Ptolemaic conquest of Cyprus in 295 B.C., and held the Paphian priesthood till the Roman occupation in 58 B.C. The town certainly dates back to the close of the Mycenaean Bronze age, and had a king Eteandros among the allies of Assur-bani-pal of Assyria in 668 B.C.' A later king of the same name is commemorated by two inscribed bracelets of gold now in the Metropolitan Museum of New York. In Hellenic times the kingdom of Paphos was only second to Salamis in extent and influence, and bordered on those of Soli and Curium.

Paphos owes its ancient fame to the cult of the "Paphian goddess" llacNaFavavaa, or 7) IIacaia, in inscriptions, or simply n 8ea), a nature-worship of the same type as the cults of Phoenician Astarte, maintained by a college of orgiastic ministers, practising sensual excess and self-mutilation.' The Greeks identified both this and a similar cult at Ascalon with their own worship of Aphrodite, 3 and localized at Paphos the legend of her birth from the sea foam, which is in fact accumulated here, on certain winds, in masses more than a foot deep. 4 Her grave also was 1 E. Schrader, Abh. k. Preuss. Ak. Wiss. (1879), pp. 31-36; Sitzb. k. Preuss. Ak. Wiss. (1890), pp. 337-344.

z Athan. c. graecos, 10. On all these cults see J. G. Frazer, Adonis, Attis, Osiris (London, 1906).

a Herod. i. 105; see further Astarte, Aphrodite.

4 Oberhummer, Die Insel Cypern (Munich, 1903), pp. 108-110.

shown in this city. She was worshipped, under the form of a conical stone, in an open-air sanctuary of the usual Cypriote type (not unlike those of Mycenaean Greece), the general form of which is known from representations on late gems, and on Roman imperial coins;' its ground plan was discovered by excavations in 1888.2 It suffered repeatedly from earthquakes, and was rebuilt more than once; in Roman times it consisted of an open court, irregularly quadrangular, with porticos and chambers on three sides, and a gateway through them on the east. The position of the sacred stone, and the interpretation of many details shown on the gems and coins, remain uncertain. South of the main court lie the remains of what may be either an earlier temple, or the traditional tomb of Cinyras, almost wholly destroyed except its west wall of gigantic stone slabs.

After the foundation of New Paphos and the extinction of the Cinyrad and Ptolemaic dynasties, the importance of the Old Town declined rapidly. Though restored by Augustus and renamed Sebaste, after the great earthquake of 15 B.C., and visited in state by Titus before his Jewish War in 79 B.C., it was ruinous and desolate by Jerome's time 3; but the prestige of its priest-kings partly lingers in the exceptional privileges of the patriarch of the Cypriote Church (see Cyprus, Church Of).

New Paphos became the administrative capital of the whole island in Ptolemaic and Roman days, as well as the head of one of the four Roman districts; it was also a flourishing commercial city in the time of Strabo, and famous for its oil, and for "diamonds" of medicinal power. There was a festal procession thence annually to the ancient temple. In A.D. 960 it was attacked and destroyed by the Saracens. The site shows a Roman theatre, amphitheatre, temple and other ruins, with part of the city wall, and the moles of the Roman harbour, with a ruined Greek cathedral and other medieval buildings. Outside the walls lies another columnar building. Some rock tombs hard by may be of earlier than Roman date.

See W. H. Engel, Kypros (Berlin, 1841) (classical allusions); M. R. James and others, Journ. Hellenic Studies, ix. 147 sqq. (history and archaeology); G. F. Hill, Brit. Mus. Cat. Coins of Cyprus (London, 1904) (coins); art. "Aphrodite" in Roscher's Lexicon der gr. u. rom. Mythologie; also works cited in footnotes, and article Cyprus.

(J. L. M.)


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Bible wiki

Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From BibleWiki


the capital of the island of Cyprus, and therefore the residence of the Roman governor. It was visited by Paul and Barnabas on their first missionary tour (Acts 13:6). It is new Paphos which is here meant. It lay on the west coast of the island, about 8 miles north of old Paphos. Its modern name is Baffa.

This entry includes text from Easton's Bible Dictionary, 1897.

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