Ancient Kourion and Governor’s Beach

 

Had a lovely day today: the perfect mix of some historical culture and beach indolence.  We set off for the ruins of ancient Kourion after breakfast.  Its about 45 minutes drive from here, past Limassol, near Akrotiri.

The site is perched on spectacular limestone cliffs overlooking the blue sea.  It could scarcely be more dramatic.  There have been settlements here since Neolithic times (5500 BC).  In the Bronze age it passed between Greek, Egyptian and Assyrian settlers becoming an important town.  The Romans arrived in 58 BC and Curium as it was known to them continued in importance with evidence of the Imperial Cult.  Most of the existing ruins date from this period 1stC – 4thC.  There is a ruined amphitheatre, a large house, smaller houses, the Agora, temples, peristyled shopping arcades, baths, a nymphaeum, an early Christian church and various impressive mosaic pavements.  Some famously depict gladiators, there is one showing Achilles meeting Odysseus dressed as a woman, beautiful mosaics……  It’s a large site and we wandered around rather dazzled by the spectacle of the white marbled ruins against the blue sea and white cliffs.  Well worth a visit if you are in the Limassol area.

We headed back to Governor’s Beach which is near Kalavasos.  We went swimming there quite a lot when we stayed here a few years ago.  There are several little coves rather than one big beach.  But first: we were hungry for lunch, so we ate at the restaurant Kalymnos which is perched on the cliffs.  A beautiful setting.  Bob and I had fish sandwiches.  They were ok.

We then spent the afternoon in one of the coves, lying on loungers reading and enjoying swims in the warm, utterly clear waters.  It was absolutely lovely and just what I needed.  We are so lucky to be swimming in the sea in mid October.  The weather is still great, still about 29C.

Packed up about 430 and came back to the cottage and showered off the salt and sand.

Later John and Sue came down and we sat by the pool and had nibbles and a bottle of red wine that the cottage resort had given us.  I must say that I have enjoyed staying here at CHaralambos

We hadn’t booked here as I’ve explained but actually if/when we come back again I would much rather stay here than at the Library Hotel where we were originally booked.  Really nice place with so many thoughtful extras and it’s peaceful, well equipped and with a lovely pool and garden.  Tonight the owner brought me a farewell present of two pieces of local lace and a bar of olive soap.  Lovely.

We walked down to the square for dinner and ate at the third taverna.  Amazing value again.  I had lamb chops (about 5), chips and salad; Bob had an enormous portion of pasta bake with meat and tomato and béchamel with salad.  Truly enormous, he couldn’t begin to finish it.  John had chicken kebab with salad and pita bread and Sue had lamb chops, just with salad.  We had a litre of white wine, a bottle of water and coffees.  Together with service, it came to 11 euro each.  The best value yet here in the village.

Have very much enjoyed our sojourn down here.  Still very much prefer the north, we would never have bought a place down here, but we like to come down for a change every now and then.  Kalavasos is just so picturesque and well situated.  I have no doubt we’ll be back again.

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