Results 1-2of 2 Reviews
Walton-on-thames, England, United Kingdom
August 20, 2009
From journal Summering in Cyprus - June to July 2009
October 22, 2005
Kolossi was occupied by the Knights of the Order of St John in the early 1300s, and even after the Order transferred its headquarters to Rhodes Kolossi continued to be the base for their military force. Indeed the friars dominated the area and reaped the rewards from its productive plantations. They are believed to be one of the earliest groups mass producing wine, under a co-operative (albeit enforced) of over 50 villages. The resulting sweet Cypriot wine is now the traditional wine of Cyprus – as popular as ever despite its murky history.
The current fortress was constructed in the mid-1400s and was designed to withstand attack. The walls are well over a metre thick and although the basement looks as if it should have been a prison it was in fact the main castle store. As you enter the fortress by way of the suspension bridge look up at the top of the building to the elaborate five arched stone carving. But don’t be fooled this façade is an elaborate disguise to deter unwanted visitors – this is where the castle’s occupants could pour scalding liquid on top of the potential invaders.
Not a problem when we visited, as the only other occupants were a couple of tourists and a bride and groom having their wedding photographs taken. The photographer was barking out instructions to the poor couple who must have been roasting in their finery. The groom soon looked disinterested and the bride’s main concern was that her white gown was getting dustier at every setting change.
But, back to our inspection of the castle. On the first floor, protected by perspex is a wall painting depicting Jesus’ crucifixion. It’s seen the ravages of time, but is a clear reminder that this room was frequented by holy men and probably the site of their regular devotion, that is, of course when they weren’t out intimidating the local populous.
The building has a number of huge and ornate fireplaces - a sign that the inhabitants did not skimp on home comforts and liked the finer things of life. Climb up the spiral staircase to the top of the building (it realty isn’t that tough a climb) and you’ll be rewarded with a fine view of the surrounding countryside.
The grounds around the castle, although not extensive, are peaceful and full of interest. After our tour, we took a fresh orange juice from the nearby café – not grand but an interesting experience!
From journal Episkopi Bay to Pafos