Cyprus Passion

Choirokoitia is found on the southern coast of the island and about 6km from the sea. Located just 35km from Larnaca city, this charming little village is a step back in time.  It is an archeological site of the Neolithic age. In 1998 it was listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO and is in the top 9 most ancient sites in the world.

The site was actually discovered in 1934 by the director of Antiquities in Cyprus, Porphyrios Dikaios. He had carried out excavations during 1934 all the way through to 1946. More excavations were held later on in the 70’s but stopped due to the Turkish invasion in 1974. They however were able to resume excavations in 1977.

The name Choirokoitia is actually derived from the word Choiro, meaning pig and kiti, which means where pigs are raised.  This site is very well known and is also a very well-preserved prehistoric site. Choirokoitia is one of the important prehistoric sites due to the evidence found it’s set up and function. It is very well organized in a functional society that shows its was surrounded by a communal protection. You can find around 20 other very similar settlements on Cyprus but this is the most well preserved.

There are five cylindrical shaped structures that were actually reconstructed using the exact same methods, techniques and materials. Inside the buildings you’ll find replicas of the objects that were found in the original buildings. This setup showcases how the site was during the Neolithic era.

In order to preserve this site a management plan was formed. The plan is to protect the site for future generations to come. Some of the safeguards in place is a ‘buffer zone’ around the site so development of the village doesn’t go to close to the site. Other parts of the plan were the planting of specific trees and fauna that were found in the Neolithic age.

Choirokitia is an agrotourism destination that has much to offer, from the wood architecture to the cobblestone streets. You will also find traditional basket weaving here and a restored olive oil mill. One can visit the mill and see the old methods and tools used to product olive oil.

Now the local church is actually a amazing Byzantine church named Panagia tou Kambou, meaning Our Lady of the Fields. It has Gothic elements and also medieval elements and has frescos dating back to the 16th century. There are more churches in the village to see too like Agia Paraskeui, Agios Georgios, Agios Iacovos and Agios Kyriakos.

Choirokoitia was abandoned with no known reason in around 6000 BC, but this makes it all the more reason to visit. This village has an to offer a real authentic and traditional Cypriot experience.

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