Ayios Ioannis Part 2

Published 25th of August, 2019

In the concluding part of our visit to Ayios Ioannis we continue through the village before visiting an old abandoned school, and finish up gazing down upon the Xeros Valley and Paphos Forest.

The Mosque

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We finished the last blog standing by the shuttered tavern. To our right you can see the mosque. We will have a look around the front of it in good time. First though, I want to walk in a loop through the village.

If you have not yet seen the first part of this blog please use the link below and read that first.

Go To Part 1

TC Routes

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Now this was interesting, to me at least. A signpost to Vretsia. If you don't know Vretsia, it is an abandoned village on the opposite side of the Xeros Valley. We have explored it on many occasions, and the surrounding countryside. I know that the terrain below Vretsia can be a bit of a challenge, even if you are in a 4x4, so I was interested to see where this route actually went. However, it would take us away from the village we were in, so I have had to file this for another date...

New Signs?

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I guess what puzzles me more than anything, is that these signs appear fairly new. They certainly don't look over 50 years old. Somebody is obviously still maintaining them.

Signs of Life

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Clearly somebody still lives here.

Signs of Life

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Somebody lives here too! They struck up a conversation with us as we walked past. I'm afraid my Greek isn't up to much and I think I gave them the impression that I was Polish, somehow.

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Related Blogs:

Ayios Ioannis - Part 1

We haven't explored the further reaches of the Diarizos Valley much, especially not the hilltops that head towards the Xeros Valley and Paphos Forest. We've been rectifying that recently, and in this blog we want to take you on a visit to Ayios Ioannis. We thought it would be a smallish village, but we were in for a surprise. This blog is large, so we have split it in two parts. The second part will be published in a day or two.

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Cyprus has more than it's fair share of abandoned villages. The troubles caused the displacement of both Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots.The environment itself has caused other villages to be abandoned for reasons of safety. Whatever the reason, the abandonment caused emotional pain and suffering to the affected people. So is it right to right a series of blog articles on them? I thought about this for a while, but decided that yes it was. Cyprus is a land built on antiquities, and these villages are just the latest example. I had no problem blogging about a Necropolis after all. However, some of these villages, and especially Ventris, do still get visits from the displaced families. So if you do decide to visit these places on the strength of these articles, please bear that in mind, and treat them with respect. The urban exploring motto "take only pictures, leave only footprints..." nicely sums it up.

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Nestled on the side of the Stavros tis Psokas valley, it is easy to miss Zacharia. To get to it you have to drive through the nearby ghost village of Melandra, and you might be tempted to end your adventure there. But if you persevere, you will find another abandoned village waiting to tell its tale...

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