The Old Castle and the marina in Paphos
Trip Start Mar 03, 2010
145Trip End Feb 06, 2011
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I am up early for my breakfast at the porch with several other German ladies who happen to be at the hotel. I got acquainted with two ladies and we had dinner together the previous night at this same porch overlooking the beautiful sunset late in the afternoon over a dish of grilled fresh fish and some nice white wine and fruit.
Of course this is a new day and although I will skip the beach at least in the morning, the day seems promising! I hate waiting at bus stops so I decide to walk towards Latchi and stop the bus anytime I see it coming. I walk fast…this I can tell you for sure, and by the time I see the bus coming I am 3 stops before the village. What a good exercise and nice way to start your day!
When I come to the main bus station in Paphos called Karavella, I get the bus for the port
I take a stroll down the port with the yachts and sailing boats. I stop for some pictures and climb up the stairs to a nice café overlooking the port. The view is stunning that I decide to have a break here and ask for a glass of water and some Greek coffee. I get a nice seat and wait to be served. A few minutes later I find myself talking with the owner telling him about my trips in Cyprus. My Greek coffee arrives along with some nice fruity ice cream and later on when I ask to pay I am told that everything is offered from the café because the owner insists that with my words about the countries I visited I traveled him and it was a treat from the shop as a thank you!
Ok, I thank the gentleman, and I am out again, this time walking towards the pier where there are many yachts and sailing boats. There are different kiosks promoting daily sailing trips including lunch, dinner and beautiful sunsets. Prices vary depending on the length of stay on the boat. There are both half day and whole day trips along the west cost of Paphos and the rugged coastline. A daily cruise may start from 57 euro for an adult, a mid day cruise costs about 20 euro allowing time for some diving, and so on
It is not long before I find myself standing very close to the old castle. It was originally built as a Byzantine fort to protect the city from invaders, then it was destroyed by the Venetians and the 13th century the castle was rebuilt again by the Ottomans when they captured Cyprus the 16th century. So many invaders in this poor little island, suffering and torture. The people of the island constantly for centuries suffered great hardships. Even today the island is divided in two parts. The northern part of Cyprus is not Turkey at all, and just a handful of other countries officially recognize the northern part as belonging to Turkey - the majority does not, so don’t imagine you visited Turkey when you cross the borders!!
Now back to the outstanding castle I was telling you about which is indeed a stunning example of stone architecture. As I approach the entrance I have second thoughts as to whether I get in or remain outside since I have been inside several times in the past and there is not much to see other than the breathtaking view of the marina, and the coast and at the very back the city of Paphos as it extends all over. I decide not to enter since I have already had a similar view from the café minutes back
The castle is connected to the harbor through an arched battle way bridge. The castle itself was used not only as a fort, but also as a prison cell, and not only! It was used to store salt when the island was a British colony. It is listed in the UNESCO list of world heritage sites, and it was declared an ancient monument in 1935.
Anyway I leave the castle behind and I believe it is one of the hallmarks in Paphos not to be missed. I walk pass the touristy restaurants that seem to be quite busy with many tourists and locals right now busy ordering their menu, and there is the smell of fresh grilled fish in the air. I am heading towards the Paphos Castle Square to get a bus. On this specific square different events take place every September. It is about the international opera or the "Aphrodite Opera" as it is called, with performers and artists coming to the island to participate in this special event.
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