Aphrodite´s Baths

Cyprus, where the goddess was born

( Zum deutschen Beitrag.)It is November, the best time of the year to get  away from the wet and cold of Northern Germany. Some of my clients thought so aus well and came with me to Cyprus to discover the Island of the goddess Aphrodite.

Cyprus, Port of Latchi
Cyprus, Port of Latchi

Our hotel during this stay is the “Atlantica Miramare Beach” in the hotel zone of Limassol or  Lemesos how it is called here.
We start at 9 o’clock. We head to the region around Paphos, to the small village of Polis. There we stop at the harbour in Latchi.

Harbour of Latchi
Harbour of Latchi

Before wie visit the bath of Aphrodite, who was born out of the foam of the Mediterranean Sea, we are going to take a trip on a boat along the beautiful shore line of Cyprus.

Cyprus
Cyprus

The sun shines from the cloudless blue sky, a light breeze cools the skin. It’s the off-season, so the boat is far from full, everybody gets a nice place.
Soon wie start. The wind gets stronger as we leave the shelter of the harbour. The boat is swaying in the waves. My best guess is they built up to one meter.
I don’t care, I have good sea legs. We enjoy the fresh and clean air, the dark blue sea with the white crest and the lovely view at the rolling green hills. Pineforests take turns with grapevines. Inbetween we can see white houses. Now and again fire protection areas can be seen.
Lots of the farmers have lost their grapevine or fields to the bush fire in the past . We see many burnt areas.
It’s georgeous to sit on a slightly swaying boat and to feel the sunshine on the skin. I guess, at home it’ s raining…

View at the bay of Polis
View at the bay of Polis

Unfortunately the two hours are over much too early. Our bus drives us a bit further on, we pass lovely maintained appartements but also many only half built houses. Maybe they should have housed some more financely strong tourists, but now they are nothing more than ruins.
The sea breeze lets us starve . So Aphrodite’s bath has to wait a bit longer.
Only a stone’s throw from the entrance to Aphrodite’s baths, a nice restaurants nestles at the steep coast with the best view over the bay of Polis.
But not only the view is amazing, the food is really good as well.P1170708
Anyway, I am very curious where the beautiful goddess took her baths. That must be a special location!
Finally everybody is finished and we walk the short way to the entrance of the garden. There is no entrance fee to the garden. Many endemic plants can be seen, signs show their names. So on the path to the legendary bath one gets to know some of the native flora. Not too many flowers are blooming now in autumn, but it is green anyway.

in the garden of Aphrodite´s Baths
in the garden of Aphrodite´s Baths

The paved walkway meanders uphill for a while. Trees let us walk in the shade. After about 120 meters we have to walk down some steps. A small creek burbles along  a manmade trench at the  bottom. That can’t be her bath, or can it? No, of course not!

at Aphrodite´s Baths
at Aphrodite´s Baths

On the left hand side, in a kind of open cave at a rocky hill,her bath is situated. Under air roots, climbing plants and bamboo it looks like out of a fairy tale. A natural basin that probably gets fed by a spring.
The water is very clear, I see some stones. And what else? Fishes that look and move like eels. Maybe they are eels. How did they get here? Did Aphrodite bring the ancestors of these fishes here? I’m only speculating. I can’t believe that the goddess took her baths with them…

Aphrodite´s Baths
Aphrodite´s Baths

Michalis our Cyprian tour guide recomments to wash my face with the water that comes out of a tap.Tomorrow I would look at least 5 years younger. Even if it doesn’t work, it’ s nice to feel the cold water.
Legend has it that Aphrodite took her baths here before she went to one of her many male adorers. Not only was she even more beautiful, but no, she became a virgin again…

view from Aphrodite´s Bath
view from Aphrodite´s Bath

My idea of her baths was different, but I must admit, it is a nice and hidden spot for taking a secret bath.
We walk back, not taking the natural path, as we would like to visit a monastery that might close soon.

Saint Neophytos hermitage
Saint Neophytos hermitage

We are lucky, as the Monastery of Saint Neophytos welcomes us. He lived here as a hermit in a selfmade cave high up on a mountain. In his memory this monastery was founded and still some monks are living here. The church is equipped with many icons and the remaines of the Saint in a silver sarcophag.

Monastery of Saint Neophytos
Monastery of Saint Neophytos

In the soft light of the setting sun we leave this place of quietness and contemplation to drive back to our hotel.P1170804


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