Just fourteen kilometres northeast of the city of Paphos, Cyprus has a hidden dream village. The famous village of Episkopi with its impressive rock. Having a height of 70 meters and a length of 250 meters, it has also been described as the “Meteora of Cyprus”. It is, moreover, the largest monolith volume in Cyprus.
The history of the village
The traditional village in Paphos province is known from the Hellenistic period. However, we have more information about this, from the time of Frankish rule. The sources say that the Orthodox bishop of Paphos settled in the village and transferred his seat there from the city of Chrysochous. For the name of the village, there are two interpretations. The most “fairytale” interpretation states that from the high rock that dominates the village, the inhabitants set a watch in order to face any danger from pirates and buccaneers. In other words, they were on guard (“epi skopi” in Greek means “on guard”.
Cyprus and its “Meteora”
It is certainly the first thing one notices as soon as one enters the village of Episkopi. Cyprus has nothing else like it. It is an imposing, giant rock that dominates over the village. The “Gremnos of Episkopi” is one of the most interesting geological formations in Cyprus with enormous environmental importance in flora and fauna. There are various stories and testimonies about this rock. That’s where history gets mixed up with myth, and no one can say for sure what’s true. Undoubtedly, however, the Rock of Episkopi is one of the most beautiful geological formation in the island.
The main church of the village is built on the rock and is dedicated to Saint Hilarion the Great. Today’s church was built after the devastating earthquake of 1953, which destroyed part of the original church of St. Hilarion. While the church is not something special architecturally, however the view, from the point where it is built, is extremely impressive. It offers a panoramic view of the valley of Ezousa.
Cyprus and its attractions never stop impressing us. And they invite us to meet them.
External photography source: biodiversitycyprus.blogspot.com