Cyprus

Mountain monasteries and churches

Unique monuments inscribed on the UNESCO list

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Mountain monasteries and churches
Inserted: 01.01.2022
Author: Martin Javorský © gigaplaces.com
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In the Troodos Mountains, which is the largest and highest mountain range in Cyprus, there are real gems – 10 mountain churches and monasteries built between the 11th and 15th centuries, which have been inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 1985 for their extraordinary architecture and especially unique multicolored Wall paintings. Christians have been pushed to remote places in the mountains for their faith, and even today it is necessary to drive along somewhat wild mountain roads if we want to see these unique orthodox monuments.

Mountain constructions

The local mountains are relatively high (the highest mountain is 1,952 m above sea level) and there is often a lot of snow in winter. The architecture of the churches is adapted to this, they have a massive roof that protects the building from snowstorms, and the bell tower often hides under it.

Mountain constructions
Author: Martin Javorský © gigaplaces.com
Wall paintings
Author: Martin Javorský © gigaplaces.com

Wall paintings

Inside the churches and monasteries, the walls are richly decorated with murals. These are actually galleries that served to explain religious scenes and stories to believers.

Church of Archangelo Michail

The church is tucked away in the narrow streets of the village of Pedoulas and at first glance looks more like a mountain barn.

Church of Archangelo Michail
Author: Martin Javorský © gigaplaces.com

Stunning interior

As soon as we enter the darkened interior, we are amazed. We have long admired frescoes depicting scenes from the Old and New Testaments, which paint the entire interior.

Stunning interior
Author: Martin Javorský © gigaplaces.com

New church

In the village there is also a new exhibition church of the Holy Cross (Timios Stavros), which was built between 1933 and 1935.

New church
Author: Martin Javorský © gigaplaces.com

The church of Panagia tou Moutoula

Above the village of Moutollas, this small church rises alone on a hill above the village.

The church of Panagia tou Moutoula
Author: Martin Javorský © gigaplaces.com

Agios Ioannis Lambaditis Monastery

To the monastery of St. Jan Lampadista's path leads through the winding streets of the village of Kalopanayiotis, culminating in the crossing of a narrow Venetian bridge and a steep climb. It is a relatively large complex containing three complex churches, gradually built since the 11th century, a museum of Byzantine monuments and facilities for monks.

Agios Ioannis Lambaditis Monastery
Author: Martin Javorský © gigaplaces.com

Preserved monastery complex

It is a medieval monastery that has retained its appearance in architecture and artistic heritage. There is only one such monastery on the island. And there are only a few such places in the world. The first mention of the monastery comes from the 11th century.

Preserved monastery complex
Author: Martin Javorský © gigaplaces.com
Rich interior decoration
Author: Martin Javorský © gigaplaces.com

Rich interior decoration

We are absolutely blown away by the rich decoration. The murals represent the true pinnacle of painting.

Religious education

There is also a living and teaching area for monks in the area.

Religious education
Author: Martin Javorský © gigaplaces.com

Church of Agios Nikolaos tis Stegis

The church is quite accessible because it is located near the main village of Kakopetria. It is probably the most common destination for tourists, who also have a large parking lot. The interior decoration is again stunning, the Virgin Mary nursing Santa Claus, the Crucifixion, the Nativity and the Myrrh Carrier are especially noteworthy.

Church of Agios Nikolaos tis Stegis
Author: Martin Javorský © gigaplaces.com

Massive roof

This church is relatively large by local conditions and its massive roof certainly provides good protection from winter snowstorms.

Massive roof
Author: Martin Javorský © gigaplaces.com

Churches Panagia tis Podythou and Panagia Theotokou

These two churches are relatively accessible because they lie on one of the main roads, but are abandoned just outside the village of Galata.

Churches Panagia tis Podythou and Panagia Theotokou
Author: Martin Javorský © gigaplaces.com

Panagia Theotokou

This church is the smallest of the UNESCO churches. The inside is quite dark and without a lamp it is not possible to appreciate the beautiful decoration.

Panagia Theotokou
Author: Martin Javorský © gigaplaces.com
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