Monastery of Holly Cross in Omodos, Cyprus

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A while back in September, my mum was visiting for probably the 15th time since I moved to the island, so finding unique places to show her is a bit of a struggle.

To escape the heat (believe it or not even at the end of September it was HOT), we drove up to the edge of Troodos Mountains to a picturesque little village of Omodos, Cyprus. Known for being part of the wine routes, Omodos is a small village centered around the Monastery of Holy Cross.

I have visited the monastery before, but never ventured further than the main courtyard. This time I had a proper look around and was amazed at what kind of hidden treasures we found.

The beautiful grounds of the monastery stretch way beyond the main square and some of the rooms were turned into a museum giving you an insight into the history of the monastery.

Omodos is easily accessible from Limassol or Paphos, there are two roads to enter the village, with one of them leading directly to the main parking at the edge of the village. If you follow the route to the center, you will find the monastery at the top of the main square.

There are no entrance fees, however, if you want to see the church appropriate clothing is recommended and robes are provided free of charge. No photography is allowed inside the church, but it’s fine to photograph on the monastery grounds.

There were large groups of tourists heading inside so I thought it would be pretty crowded, but strangely everyone went to the church ignoring the rest of the rooms in the monastery which were open for visitors. This was not obvious to me either on my first visit.

The monastery has a very interesting, albeit long history which I won’t bore you with. You can read more about it right here.

A visit to the monastery is a must if you’re coming to the village. Sadly, apart from a walk through the village itself and seeing the monastery, there is very little to do. Some local wineries have their shops in the village so you can pop in for a wine tasting and buy some wine to take home. 

The food options are fairly limited, most of the restaurants are located in the main square. Play it safe by choosing a local fresh salad which is always delicious =)

If you’re planning to visit one of the villages, I highly recommend planning a trip to 2 – 3 at the same time as it’s quite a bit of drive to get there and all of these are located very close to each other. Some of the other villages also offer beautiful traditional accommodation in guest houses, with most options in the village of Lofou.

Enjoy the virtual tour and if you have any questions just leave a comment below!

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Lucia has spent 6.5 years living in Cyprus, and writing about all the local gems and beautiful places the island has to offer. On Cyprus Escapes, she shares her discoveries to help travellers plan an unforgettable trip to Cyprus.

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