The Troodos Square is situated approximately 48 kilometers north-west of the town of Limassol, at an average altitude of 1725 meters above sea level. The area of Troodos is legally considered to be a village; however there are some specifics since the administrative region of Troodos belongs to the state and it is considered to be forestland.
Population: There are no residents since the land belongs to the state.
Distance from Limassol: 48 km, 50 minute drive.
The mountain most probably got its name from the area near the top of Chionistra (mount Olympus). This is where the three roads linking Prodromos, Nicosia and Limassol (three streets – Troodos) are connected. However, the mountain got its first name by the ancient philosopher, Aristotle, who refers to Trogodos in his work Physica.
Historically, the square and the nearby area were not considered to be developed, apart from places which were used for military purposes. Due to difficult access, it used to function as a point where tourists would stop at in order to enjoy the snow.
Businesses began developing in the 90’s, even though their lease from the state started after the period of colonialism (1960).
Sights / Museums
It is visible when looking at it by any point in Southern Cyprus (excluding perhaps the area of Paralimni) due to its geographic location. This makes it stand as a sight by itself.
The morphology of the ground, the ores, the rocks, the vegetation and others constitute objects of research for many international scientists. A visitor can enjoy all of these just by taking a walk. It is worth noting that the rocks of Troodos, which are well maintained, are the ones which were formed around 90 million years ago at the bottom of the ancient sea of Tithis. The visitor can be informed about what was previously mentioned, as well as other things at the Troodos Environmental Centre. It includes an exhibition hall, a projection and lecture room and a small shop. On the outer part there is a cyclical, botanical and geological path (Troodos Environmental Centre, open Monday – Friday 9:00 – 14:00 and every Sunday in the summer, Tel: 25-420145).
More over, near the Troodos square, the Amiantos Botanical Garden is situated which also hosts interesting exhibits. For further information see the article on Amiantos village. (Botanical Garden, open every day 8:00 – 14:00, except weekends, Tel: 25-550092).
The whole square is slated which enhances the beauty of the village.
For those, who are wondering what the purpose of the huge white balls is (which can be seen from afar), they are radars of the English military bases located in the area. One of them is at the top of Mount Olympus next to another corresponding one, which is smaller and belongs to the National Guard. Everyone can approach up to a point, but taking pictures is not allowed.
Travelers can visit the ski slopes (4 in total) and see up close the funiculars that transfer skiers at the top.
At the square, people can ride a horse or a donkey, which can be rented by tourists.
When the first signs of snow appear (usually in December-January), a great number of people arrive in Troodos and the place is usually very busy and packed. During the entire ski season, crowds of people pass through the square.
There is no place in the area which does not seem impressive. We would recommend taking a journey until Mount Olympus in order to admire the view. Caution is required though and taking pictures is not allowed since there are two army camps located there. In addition, on the way back to the square, the Morphou bay appears on the left hand side of Mount Olympus. In the wider area there are at least 10 viewpoints with a gazebo for rest.
There are four different nature trails, each one with its own unique beauty, which either start at the square area or somewhere near it. They are called Persephone (Square – Makria Kontarka), Atalanti (Square – Chromio), Artemis (encircles Chionistra) and Kalidonia (Kryos Potamos – Platres).
- Off the old road leading to Platres, the presidential summer residence is situated, which is well hidden in the forest. This particular residence holds its own historical importance since the British Governor used to stay there during the entire summer, at the time of the British Rule. Visits to the residence are certainly forbidden since it is guarded.
- Within the state forest, there are also four waterfalls; the waterfall of Kalidonia, of Millomeris (Platres), of Hantara (Phini) and of Mesa Potamos (Moniatis).
- The rich flora in Troodos is made up of a great number of endemic plants. For instance, at the mountain tops there are pine trees, cypress trees, oak trees, maple trees, hawthorn trees and wildrose trees.
- The most common animal at the Troodos mountain tops is the well-known Cypriot mouflon. It is endemic specie which is protected by the state.
- It is estimated that 90% of the tourists who come to Cyprus, visit the Troodos square.