ROAD TRIP: Galata - Kakopetria -Artemis Lake - Prodromos Dam !!
Sunday Morning! How should I spend my day? I'm so bored! What to do ? ? ?
I got ready, geared up and called my friend George and decided to go for a road trip!
Don’t know where to? Cyprus is full of options , Just follow me…
So, me and my buddy George decided to drive to Prodromos Dam and along the way, to explore some villages of Solea Area and the river of Clarios. The suggested road trip can be accomplished, either in a half or in a full day. We started off a bit late, around 11:30, and at the end we could use one or two extra hours before the sunset for more exploring. Seen enough though, so lets immediately begin by naming the spots that I suggest for this road trip.
1. Galata - Kyrillos Watermill
2. Galata - Small Tunnel
3. Artemis Lake (Esso - Galata Dam)
4. Prodromos Dam
5. Prodromos Village
Important: I suggest that you drive a car, suitable for some off road driving.
Note that the above route is a suggestion if you are driving from Nicosia district. Alternatively you can drive the opposite away and start from point 5. Or even mix them up!
Driving from Nicosia to Galata Village takes approximately an hour. If you need a small break before you begin your adventure in Galata, don't hesitate to taste some goodies at the local bakery ‘’Fournos tis Galatas’’. Don't eat too much though, you have a lot of exploring to do.
After the small break, visit ‘’Kyrillos Watermill’’ on the North side of the village. There were more watermills in the village but this is the only one that has been restored. It is next to the beautiful Clarios river. Enjoy the old watermill, the small bridge and the surrounding scenery, before you head Norther to ‘’Panagia Podithou Holy temple’’. I really enjoyed walking the small path from the watermill to the church next to Clarios river.
The path is less than 1 km (look for the signs). When you reach Panagia tis Podithou church, take some time to observe its architecture, having in mind that it lies there from 1500 a.c.
Galata’s small tunnel
Drive through the center of the village and reach ‘’Galata’s small tunnel’’. I accidentally discovered the small tunnel a year back, while passing through the village. What a small pleasure it was.
Walk down the stairs that lead under the main road of ‘’Makariou str’’, which is a small tunnel were water flows along and ends up in Clarios river. Enough Said. Definite Must!
To reach ‘’Artemis Lake’’ , drive from Galata through Kakopetria with direction to Prodromos village. Up to a point you have to redirect North on an unpaved road. There is not an practical way to direct you there, on an unpaved road with no signs, so it is easier to use google maps (click here).
Artemis Lake is actually a small dam named ‘’esso galatas’’ due to the fact that it is next to ‘’esso galata’’ road and it was constructed in 1985 for irrigation uses. We’ve only visited it during summer and it was beautiful. Can’t imagine how it will look during the winter season , which probably will be snowy. Can’t wait to repeat my visit. We walked around it and enjoyed the surrounding view. Artemis Lake is away from any village, a bit secluded I might say and that offers the chance to enjoy the calmness of the mountains and the noises of the forest.
Tip. Near the Lake, you can visit ‘’Saint Tichikos’’ church of the 16th century and also the Fire Lookout outpost ''Pambatzia''. Be respectful if visiting the outpost because actual forestry firefighters are on the watch there.
Drive back to the Kakopetria-Prodromos street and head on to Prodromos Dam. The forestry scenery around the dam is uniquely beautiful during each season. We enjoyed the sunset there (be prepared for mosquito bite attacks), which was a weirdly nice experience. Prodromos Dam is one of the most famous in Cyprus, due to its beauty off course and also because it's easy to combine your visit with other points near such as Prodromos Picnic area suitable for barbecue, Prodromos-Zoumi Hiking trails, the famous abandoned Veregaria Hotel, a couple of restaurants and it is very close to Troodos square. On some occasions during the winter, the water in the dam freezes. Imagine that. I haven't had the chance to witness that, but it is on my ‘’to do’’ list. Can't wait.
Visiting the village can be an experience by it’s own and I will be making a separate post about it some time later. Due to lack of time, because as I have already mentioned above, we started off a bit late, we had less time to enjoy the village. So the experience of driving through Prodromos was enough for the day.
So that was it for us. Amazing day. We saw some beautiful landscapes, ancient places of worship, all year flowing rivers, scenic dams and old watermills. Eating traditional meze food in a small Cypriot tavern in Kakopetria, was the perfect way to end the road trip. After that we started driving again to head back home, wishing we had that superpower you snap your fingers and teleport home :)
Were we tired because of the day trip? Yeah, we were a bit. But did we feel pleased and fulfilled after that? That's a definite hell yeah!! Until the next time . .