Monday, June 11, 2007

Paphos Day 6 - June 2

Today we split the day. The morning was spent at the beach, then when it got too hot we moved up to the pool to take a dip. The Mediterranean although lovely to look at was just a bit too cold for me. Then, once we'd had enough sun we head into town to do some more exploring of ruins.

In the Paphos harbour is the entrance to the Paphos Archaeological Site. This excavation site is known for mosaics and my goodness there are a lot of them. Surprisingly only a few of them are actually under cover. The majority are just out in the open air. The site itself is huge and I'd heard it mentioned that anytime someone would dig a hole to start a construction project something else would get found. Which makes you think, at what point do you have to say enough with preserving the past, get on with the now and the future? People need a place to live and history is full of civilizations building on top of what another so where do you draw the line?

Sorry, got a bit side tracked there. Back to the ruins.

The mosaics are interesting but I'll be honest, after the first few it was a bit boring. There is much more to see other than these anyway. There are columns (some standing some toppled), more tombs , a castle and also a church - but I couldn't find it. In looking at the map at the entrance it seems to be across the street but we just ran out of time.

I think we wandered the site for a good couple of hours and at the end of it I wanted to just curl up in the shade and grab a nap, but that wasn't the plan. First was an ice cream break, then postcard shopping and I also wanted to find some cold bottled water as I was starting to feel a bit dehydrated. Then we hop a bus to try and find the old town of Paphos.

We weren't on the right bus, but it was worth it purely for the entertainment value as the driver was singing to the radio at the top of his lungs. According to the route map this bus should take us within a few blocks of Old Paphos, but instead of being in the old town we were in the high street shopping district. This in itself isn't a bad thing, but all the shops are closed as it's close to 6. Looking up I can see some kind of tower so we walk in that direction and it's an old Moor Mosque. Seems to be a bit of a ruin and the doors although slightly ajar are locked. But you can look in through the windows. It's quite small but is another one of those cool finds.

We wander the streets for a bit but time is fleeting and we need to get back to the hotel to meet the tour rep at 7PM.

As this is our last night we decide to check out the divey bar around the corner from the hotel for an after dinner drink. It's a tiny open air place with plastic chairs two huge wide screen TV's (both showing football), The Eagles Greatest Hits playing in the background and on the walls pictures of the proprietors family. From one of the pictures it looks to be his army picture from his days in the service. Brenda orders a Brandy Sour as that is supposed to be the local cocktail and I order a Cyprian Whisky (nothing special). We don't stay much longer past finishing our drinks as it's hot, smokey and I'm about ready to fall asleep from the long hot day and all the walking we did.

It's our last night. I'm not ready to go back to the real world yet.


Peggy said...

I hope you didn't bring any of that Cypriot booze back with you. The stuff just doesn't travel well. I think you have to be on a rocky, hot island in the Med to appreciate those drinks.

Chris said...

No, didn't bring anything back as it really didn't wow me. The Cyprus Whisky just tasted like alcohol. No subtle flavours or aromas. Kinda like lighter fluid (not that I've tasted that).