I knew Cyprus as the birthplace of Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love and Passion. I am sure when Cyprus comes up in the conversation, you guys also talk about Aphrodite too.
So is Aphrodite the only thing Cyprus famous for? Of course not. There are a lot of other things Cyprus is best known for.
Today, in this article we will discuss 10 things that are famous all over the world as “things” from Cyprus.
The Cypriot Halloumi
If you don’t know what Halloumi is then you are missing a lot of good things in your life.
Halloumi is a traditional Cypriot cheese that is semi-hard in state and is made up of a mixture of Goat’s and Sheep’s milk. Sometimes Cow’s milk is also used in making Halloumi.
Cyprus’ famous Halloumi cheese is the most internationally renowned export. Only in 2018, Cyprus exported 29,000 tons of halloumi all over the world.
Not only that, the name ‘Halloumi’ is now registered in the European Union as a Community Collective Trade Mark (CCTM), meaning that no other product can be marketed within European Union borders under this name.
It is also registered as a Certification Trade Mark in the UK, US, and Jordan, and will soon be registered in other Middle Eastern countries too.
There is too much to know and learn about halloumi. If I write about all of it here, this article will turn into a book.
I happen to have another article where I have written in detail about the Cypriot halloumi.
Aphrodite is a Greek Goddess associated with love, pleasure, passion, and procreation. It is said that she had emerged from the sea at her birth in Paphos, Cyprus. Hence, Cyprus is famous all over the world as the birthplace of Aphrodite.
Let’s learn something more about Aphrodite, shall we?
How was Aphrodite born?
According to Greek myth, Uranus and Gaia had a son named Cronus. The parents fought and Gaia created a stone sickle, which she gave to Cronus to attack his father. Cronus castrated Uranus and threw his father’s testicles into the sea. They caused the sea to foam and out of that white foam rose Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty.
What were Aphrodite’s Symbols?
- Scallop Shell
What is Aphrodite Rock?
Petra Tou Romiou also called the Aphrodite rock is the site of the birthplace of Aphrodite. The sea in this region is generally rough, persuading tourists not to swim there. It is not permitted to climb the rock.
You can click here to learn more about Aphrodite in detail.
The Cypriot wine industry ranks 50th in the world in terms of total production quantity.
The wine industry is a significant contributor to the Cypriot economy through cultivation, production, employment, export, and tourism.
Vine-growing and Wine-producing in Cyprus date back to 6000 years.
Are you a wine lover? If you are then you must have heard the name “Commandaria” quite often.
For those of you who don’t know what Commandaria is, it is an amber-colored sweet dessert wine made in the Commandaria region of Cyprus on the foothills of the Troodos mountains.
What’s so special about Commandaria, you might ask?
The wine Commandaria has a very long history. It was very popular during the festivals in Ancient Greek.
Historically, Commandaria was served to the Kings and people with Higher Status. Hence, today in the modern era Commandaria was world-famous as, “the wine of kings and the king of wines“.
That’s just amazing, isn’t it? Cypriot wine “Commandaria” is internationally recognized as the kings of the Wines.
Cypriots are really proud of having Commandaria with them.
Tombs of the Kings
The Tombs of the Kings is situated in Paphos, Cyprus. It has a significant historical value and it is also a cultural heritage site.
An interesting fact about this is, no king has ever been buried in there but the aristocrats and high officials were buried even though it’s called the Tombs of the Kings.
The majority of the Tombs date back to the 4th Century BC and they are carved out of solid rocks.
It is so immense that 19th-century travelers believed it was the remains of an ancient castle or city.
The tombs contain a variety of forms and sizes. Some of the Tombs are created only to bury one person, whereas some of them can hold 20 people.
Some of the tombs are simple in design and some of them are majorly elaborated.
When a traveler visited Cyprus in 1806, he described the Tombs of Kings as, “Some of these buildings give the impression of palaces, with courtyards, corridors, columns, pilasters, and all imaginable kinds of architectural features, all carved out of the natural rock. The observer can have only praise for the creators of such a work.”
You can watch this video to see how Tombs of the Kings look like.
It is reported that much of the information related to the tombs was lost over time.
It is believed that many of the tombs were rich in expensive grave goods, despite that very few of such goods were found by the official archaeological missions, and thus it is believed that the grave robbers of the past were responsible.
We are all familiar with the element named “Copper”, right?
But did you know, the name Copper whose Latin name is “Cuprum” and also called “Cyprum” literally means “From the Island of Cyprus”?
Yes, you read that right. The Cooper name came from Cyprus.
I knew this when I was in high school, a long long time ago. It was in my textbook. Well, it was the first time when I had heard the name “Cyprus”. Not only me, but the majority of my classmates had heard the name Cyprus for the very first time.
Cyprus is widely famous for its richness in Copper. Copper has a very long history associated with Cyprus.
The Goddess Aphrodite has also represented copper in mythology and alchemy because of its lustrous beauty and its ancient use in producing mirrors.
Cypriots first worked copper in the fourth millennium B.C., fashioning tools from native deposits of pure copper, which at that time could still be found in places on the surface of the earth.
If you look at the Cypriot flag, you will see the copper-orange map of the island symbolizes Cyprus and its large deposits of copper ore.
The Wish-Fulfiling Tree
Can that happen? Can a tree fulfill your wish?
Well, I have never tried, so I don’t know. But there are people who claim their wishes have been fulfilled after worshiping the tree.
Obviously, it’s a superstition, but sometimes superstitions give you hope to have a better life.
The Wish-Fulfilling tree of Cyprus is pretty famous all over Europe.
It is situated in the Paphos district. The tree is quite strange in shape and it is ornamented with handkerchiefs and ribbons.
People believe that whoever hangs a handkerchief in this sacred tree will see their wishes fulfilled. People also believe that infertile women will bear children and people will return to their loved ones when something that belonged to them is tied to the tree along with a belief that good will happen.
Common wishes are for fertility, cure from disease, and care for deceased relatives in the afterlife. Some worshippers inscribe their prayers with pen on white handkerchiefs.
I have also talked about Cyprus beaches in my other article titled, “Why is Cyprus a good holiday destination“.
Cyprus is a good holiday destination if you are a beach lover. Beaches in Cyprus are clean and crystal clear.
Cyprus has a variety of blue-flagged beaches which means they are safe, hygienic, and friendly.
Cyprus has warm weather throughout the year. Almost for 8 months a year, you can see a clear sky.
Isn’t it the best time to enjoy the beaches when the weather is sunny and clear?
A total of 65 beaches in Cyprus have received the prestigious Blue Flag award for 2019, reflecting excellence in environmental education, management, water quality, safety, and services.
No matter which city you’re based in, you’ll find that at least one of the most beautiful beaches in Cyprus is nearby since they’re spread out across the country fairly evenly.
Cities such as Paphos, Ayia Napa, Limassol, or Larnaca do get pretty crowded in summer mainly because of the tourists and foreigners.
Cyprus is best known for it’s beautiful, elegant, and mesmerizing beaches.
Some of the famous beaches in Cyprus are:
- Makronissos Beach
- Coral Bay
- Nissi Beach
- Konnos Bay
- Blue Lagoon Akamas
- Aphrodite’s Rock & Beach
- Golden Beach(Nangomi Bay)
- Fig Tree Bay
Paphos is a coastal city in southwest Cyprus and is the capital of Paphos District.
Do you know why Paphos is famous?
The whole city of Paphos is a UNESCO world heritage site. Not just a building, not just a field, but the whole city.
As we have already discussed above in the article about Aphrodite and the Tombs of the kings, they are also in Paphos.
Paphos Archaeological Park covers most of the ancient Greek and Roman City and is a UNESCO World Heritage site for its ancient ruins.
Paphos Archeological Museum documents human activity in western Cyprus from the Neolithic age to the 18th century.
Tourists love to visit Paphos because of its cultural and natural beauty.
Troodos is the largest mountain range in Cyprus, located in roughly the center of the island.
What’s so famous about Troodos, you asked?
Firstly, Troodos is the only place in Cyprus where it snows. It is the most significant mountain range of Cyprus, covering most of the western and some of the southern parts of the island, and accounting for almost half of its area.
Troodos Mountains are a good place for skiing in winter.
Secondly, there are over sixty churches in Cyprus with Byzantine and post-Byzantine wall paintings, out of which 10 of them are situated in the Troodos Mountains.
Not only that, those 10 Churches are actually listed in the UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Troodos mountains are known worldwide for their geology too. These mountains slowly rose from the sea due to the collision of the African and European tectonic plates, a process that eventually formed the island of Cyprus.
Ayia Napa is internationally famous for its Nightlife, Clubs, and Beaches. People from all over the world visit Ayia Napa to have quality time with their friends and family.
As we discussed above, Nissi Beach is one of the most popular beaches in Cyprus. The fun fact is, Nissi Beach is in Ayia Napa.
Ayia Napa is actually called the “party-town” by Cypriots. During summer, the majority of people from Cyprus as well as foreigners, at least visit Ayia Napa once a year.
You can watch the video below to have a better glance at Ayia Napa.
Cyprus is best known for its History, Geography, Mediterranean cuisine, Wine, Beaches, Halloumi, Copper, and mainly as the birthplace of Aphrodite. Below are the few other things Cyprus is famous for which I haven’t covered in the article above.
- Carnival in Cyprus is a unique blend of ancient Greek and later traditions.
- The Ghost Town
- Limassol Castle
- Cape Greco National Park
- Turtle Beach
- Kato Paphos Archaeological Park
- Cyprus is famous for its warm temperature.
- Traditional Crafts
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