Urbanization and the lights of big cities came to Cyprus very recently, and until the middle of the 20th century, most of the population of the country was leading a rural communal way of life. Today, ancient Cypriot villages, located mainly in the Troodos Mountains, are real treasures of national traditions, color, lifestyle, architecture and cuisine.
Our tour of Ethiopia will begin in the Lofu dens at an altitude of 800 meters above sea level. Lofu was foun- ded in the 7th century by the inhabitants of the coast, who sought shelter from the frequent raids of rob- bers and pirates in the mountains. In the 1980s, most of the residents left the village and went to the cities to work. However, more recently the Cyprus Tourism Organization in the village has carried out large-scale restoration works and to date Lofu is one of the most outstanding open-air museums on the island, allowing to understand how and how the Cypriots lived some centuries ago. In Lofu also there is an ancient temple of the Virgin of the middle of the XIX century, a unique store of mountain herbs and a delicious tavern.
Our next stop will be the village of Lanja, located on a small plateau, from where magni cent views open. Local residents honor the history of their ancestors, and therefore it is not uncommon to see municipal stands
the apparatus for making grape vodka. Lanja is also famous as a village of artists. Local residents from ancient times painted and decorated the facades of houses, decorated objects of everyday life, such as utensils and vats for wine. Today in the village the- re are several houses-galleries, and also lives the famous Cypriot-British graphic artist Michael Owen.
From Lania our way lies in Kakopetria - a village located on the southern slopes of the Troodos Moun- tains. Kakopetria is considered to be one of the most beautiful villages in Cyprus. Here you can walk about the narrow stone streets, almost unchanged since the Middle Ages, look into the Byzantine stone church of the Trans guration of the Lord and enjoy fresh trout in a restaurant in an old water mill.
Then we will go to the fertile Maratas valley, formed by the Setrahos river. It is here that the village of Kalopanayotis is located. The settlement was formed in the 11th century around the current and today mo- nastery of St. John Lampadist, which is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. We will walk along the ancient pavement, admiring the neat houses and courtyards, and visit the picturesque Venetian bridge of the XV century.