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Clare
Clare

Day 6: Troodos

We discovered last night that there is only one tiny shop in Platres - and it doesn't have a huge selection of food to choose from - so we had a rather limited breakfast of toast and honey this morning, before setting out on our first adventure of the day. The guidebook had listed multiple walking trails starting from the vicinity of Platres, two of which led to waterfalls. I decided that we should start the day with a walk to the Millomeris waterfall, which was described in the guidebook as being an "easy" hike of 1.5km.

The path started not far from our apartment. As we walked along the main road towards the centre of Platres, we passed the village church.

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A little further on from there, a signpost pointed us towards the waterfall trail. The path led us steeply downhill, which didn't feel like a good start, because this wasn't a circular route, so we were going to have to climb back up here on the return journey.

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Once we got to the bottom of the descent, we found ourselves next to a small river. A bridge led us over to the opposite side.

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This is the only river which we've seen so far in Cyprus.

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The path led along the side of the water for a while. It was quite narrow in places, though.

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After a while we started climbing uphill again. Tiring, but we did emerge to some scenic views.

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No sooner had we finished climbing uphill, then the path started taking us downhill again.  This was on a gravel road, which was a bit slippery.

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We were getting close to the waterfall now. When we paused and looked up, we were surprised to be able to make out the village church at the top of the hill above us. We had come down a long way!

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Finally, we climbed down a steep stone staircase and we were at the waterfall :) 

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We hadn't met anyone else while walking on the nature trail so I thought we might be the only people here. Turns out that you can drive here, so that wasn't the case; there were a couple of groups of people in flipflops xD Never mind, it was still a beautiful waterfall.

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Once we'd admired the waterfall for a while, it was time to start the long climb back uphill to the village.

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It was hard-going in the sunshine, but eventually Platres started to look a bit closer.

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Just one more bit of uphill to go!

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We got there in the end and went back to the apartment briefly to recover and stock up on some water. That was definitely not what I would describe as an easy one-hour return stroll! The walk to the second waterfall outside Platres was described as being more difficult, so I decided that we should give that one a miss! Instead, we drove about 10km on an uphill road, towards the village of Troodos.

Troodos is located about 250m below Mount Olympus, which is the highest mountain in Cyprus at 1,952m. A path called the Artemis trail leads around the mountain at an altitude of around 1,850m and was described as being a mostly flat, circular route. It sounded promising so we decided to give it a try :) 

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The walk starts from a car park a few hundred metres up the road from the main village of Troodos. We didn't have to walk far before we started getting great views.

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The path lived up to expectations and was reasonably flat, although parts of it were quite rocky.

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It was also pretty well signposted, with visible arrows and markers to tell you how many kilometres you'd walked. We were slightly confused by this direction with an arrow and a cross though!

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A lot of the walk was through the forest, which meant it was cool and shady.

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Every so often we emerged into a clearing and could see the views :) 

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There were little signs giving the names of various types of tree and stone that we passed. I was particularly excited when we passed this one and realised it was a Cyprus Cedar, like the ones we'd seen in Cedar Valley yesterday :) 

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There were lots of interesting trees along the route, some of which looked pretty old.

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There were a number of benches along the route, where we stopped for water breaks. Despite the fact that it's October and that we were fairly high up, it was still really warm.

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We didn't meet anyone else the whole time we were walking, so it was very peaceful.

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A few kilometres in, the path started leading downwards to cross what may once have been a stream, but was completely dried up today.

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Then it was back up the other side.

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As we got further around the mountain, we could see further afield.

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This next part of the walk turned out to be particularly rocky.

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Although the path was quite narrow in places, it wasn't as scary as it looks; all the rocks were quite solid, so you never felt in danger of slipping.

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And the views were really wonderful :) 

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As we walked further on, we could see down towards one of the villages.

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After another corner...

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...we could just make out a splash of water in the distance, which looked like it might be a reservoir.

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We turned another corner...

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...and now we were far enough round the mountain to be able to see the sea. (It hasn't come out very clearly in the photos unfortunately!).

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Unbelievably, Troodos is actually a ski resort in winter and towards the end of the walk we passed some ski lifts.

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Once we'd got to the end of the walk, we were able to drive slightly further uphill to a restaurant which seems to serve skiers in the winter.

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Although we'd missed lunchtime by this stage, they were still serving food :) I may have had chicken souvlaki for the third day in a row, and then we finished up with some chocolate cake.

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The second walk was definitely a lot more fun than the first one and the views were really amazing :) Tomorrow we are leaving Platres for Lefkosia, where we may have a less active day than today xD

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