We first went looking for the old village of Axylou two years ago. We didn't find it, though we had a lot of fun in the process. The other day, after a chance tip-off, we had another go...
Originally I was going to give you a detailed route to Old Axylou, but I think it is easiest if you just look on the map link at the foot of the blog. That shows you exactly where to find it. Should you chose to locate the village for yourself, you will find yourself at this point. Before carrying on to the village, have a look to your right.
Yes, that's right. Old Axylou has its own cemetary. They are Turkish Cypriot graves, which tells us the old village was also TC. So, let's have a look at the PRIO database, to see if there is any information...
Axylou is a village located on the southwest foothills of the Troodos Range, fifteen kilometers east of Paphos (Ktima) and immediately southwest of deserted village Eledio. Goodwin suggests that Axylou might mean “without wood” in Greek. Turkish Cypriots adopted the alternative name of Aksu in 1958. It literally means “white water.” Before 1953 the village was situated almost one kilometer west of its current location. Due to an earthquake that hit the region in 1953, the old village of Axylou was severely damaged. Following the earthquake, the government (British) decided to move the village to its current location, where it built prefabricated houses for the displaced villagers. Interestingly, during this period the government also built some extra houses for the approximately 35 Turkish Cypriots of the neighboring village of Eledio and encouraged them to move to the newly built Axylou rather than rebuilding their lives in their former mixed village.
So, unlike most of the other abandoned villages, Axylou was evacuated because of an earthquake, over 20 years before the invasion.
Cyprus is still very green.
The graveyard itself isn't very big. I imagine there used to be more graves though.