Kourion an Explorers Paradise | Kourion Archeological site, Limassol, Cyprus
An archaeological site so rich in history and culture, it truly is any explorer’s paradise! From Greek mythology, to Hellenistic, Roman and Christian history, the culture and mystery to be found in Kourion will keep a long lasting impression on you and for many, it will even open new horizons of research!
It doesn’t come as a surprise that Kourion is one of the most important archeological sites on the Island Cyprus!
The whole site has been inhabited during different recorded time periods, the Hellenistic, Roman and Christian including mythological ancient Greek times. Spread out over a good kilometer on the mount Kourion there are 11 main sites where you will discover impressive archeological structures with unique architectural styles as well as breathtaking mosaics.
Kourion and Greek mythology
Some say the ancient city was founded by the Argives and some even associate it to Kinyras, a King of Cyprus known in Greek mythology. Through his relationship with Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty from the Island, the mythical King Kinyras had a daughter called Cyprus, after whom the Island was named, it is said. You can find the temple of Apollo Hylates, the house of Achilles and maybe even find your own surprising discovery on site!
The views from all areas on the site are astonishing! No matter which part you are exploring, the overview of the town below and the sea is so incredible, it does not come as a surprise that this location was chosen by so many in history as a place a live.
Opening times: Open all year
08:30 - 19:30 (April 16 – September 15)
08:30 - 17:00 (September 16 – April 15)
Price: Euro 4.50.-
Address: Ancient Kourion (Archeological Site) Episkopi, Limassol
As the different sites are spread out on the mountain, you will be walking from one part to the next. Since there is a lot to see and it is extremely warm most of the time throughout the year, make sure to take lots of water as well as a map to guide you along the way.
House of Eustolius
The house of Eustolius has some of the most impressive mosaics found on the whole site! After being rebuilt a couple of times throughout history, the remains which are in exposition are those from the Roman architecture.
21st Century Explorer location! Explanation boards in braille as well as different languages.
With boards in braille, explaining the beauty of the site to those who no longer have their sight, the archeological site sets an example for most European museums and historical sites, making it in my opinion a 21st Century Explorer location! Respectful of people with differences!
Originally constructed in the 2nd century BC it was a circular structure but over time it was completely destroyed so the theatre which is seen now, is mostly a modern construction.
From theatre pieces to holding gladiator games back in the day, today it sits up to 2000 spectators for modern spectacles throughout the year.
Did you know!
The world hypocrisy comes from Greek theatre terms. As the actors wore masks, covering their true faces were therefore known as hypocrites, people who pretend.
Built in the 2nd Century AD and reconstructed in the 4th Century, it was completely destroyed by intense earthquakes also in the 4th Century leaving the ruins which are visible today. Any findings from this particular site can be seen in the Local Museum of Kourion in Episkopi.
The Kourion Episcopal Basilica / Early Christian Basilica
The remains here are traced to the 5th Century AD where it is said the Bishop of Kourion once lived. The marble sculptures and impressive structures highlight what great importance this site must have held back in the day!
The Agora, the Stoa & the Northeastern Hellenistic Public Structure
These three sites are located quite close to one another. At the Agora you can find some of the most recent excavations which show hydraulic installations as well as public buildings. The Stoa has impressive marble columns dating back to the 2nd Century and the northeastern Hellenistic public structures presents some of the oldest findings on Kourion.
The Roman Nymphaeum
According to Greek Mythology this is the site where the Nymphs, the daughters of Poseidon lived. It is extremely impressive as the architectural influence of 4 different time periods can still be found here. What truly stands out are the public baths, which were built in the 1st Century and destroyed in the 7th during Arab raids.
House of the Gladiators and Early Christian House with a Tricilinium
Built in the 3rd Century and destroyed by Earthquakes in the 4th, this site shows you the house of the Gladiators. The mosaic and mind-blowing view truly stands out here!
House of Achilies
Close to the sanctuary of Apollo Hylates, you find the house of Achilles. With impressive mosaic floors showing pagan themes, this site is truly an unforgettable one!
For all the explorers, this place is truly a unique gem to visit. The amount of ancient artifacts and pieces of history presented to you can keep you exploring for hours! Needless to say, if you are into Greek mythology, you want to see this site.
You can feel the rich history when walking through the site. Knowing that during the days of Alexander the Great the whole original site was almost completely destroyed as well as having suffered tremendous earthquakes throughout various time periods and having a strong mix of different architecture throughout history, its richness truly can be felt! As mentioned at the beginning, it truly is an explorer’s paradise, because it leaves you questioning so much more than you knew before about the history of ancient Greece and its different influences!
Definitely a site for all the change makers out there wanting to learn about the secrets of the world!
We are generation change.
Enjoy! Yours truly,
© Isabel Buchbinder
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