The Camel Trail Venetian Bridges

Published 23rd of January, 2019

Over the last few days we've been trying to visit the three most popular Venetian Bridges on the Camel Trail, to see how they have coped with all the rain. It took a while to get to Roudia, but now finally, we can show you what we found.

Into The Valley

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I'll start this blog with my quest to get to Roudia, as that was the big challenge. I have tried driving from Vretsia through the forest, but that was very muddy, and ultimately pointless, as the road is closed. I later found out why. I knew I couldn't get there from Kelefos, for reasons that will become obvious, and I had tried the valley floor but only got as far as Sinti Monastery. So as a last resort I decided to try going the more difficult route from Vretsia straight down to the valley floor. I would see how far I could get before parking up and hiking the rest of the way. That was the plan.

At The Bottom

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The drive down the hill was actually not that bad. There is a fire break which I have driven down before. I avoided it this time because I was unsure how muddy it would be. Instead I opted for the easier track that snakes down the hill and cuts across the fire break as it goes. This was quite tricky, as parts of it had become a river. However, with gravity on my side I soon made it to the bottom. I got as far as this. Those aren't my tyre tracks. They told me that I should stop here and continue on foot.

Blue Water

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This was my first look at the Xeros this far upstream. My first surprise was how blue the waters looked. They had a strange milky sheen to them which no doubt comes from the various minerals and rocks in the area.

It suddenly dawned on me however, that I was looking at the point where there used to be a road. There was not much sign of it any more.

High Tide Mark

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I was soon struck with how much damage had occurred to the flora in the area. The flow must have been huge at one point. Whole fields were flattened.

The Road To Roudia

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I have driven up this road many times in the past, so I set off again.

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Roudia Bridge

Now that we have covered the route from Vretsia to Kelefos, let's return to the subject of Venetian Bridges. This time, we will feature Roudia Bridge. For years this eluded us, as we drove past it without realising it was there. With the help of the previous blog, you should now be able to locate it and know where to park the car. So let's take a look at the bridge itself...

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Kelefos Bridge is probably the most well-known of all the Venetian Bridges in Cyprus, for good reasons. It features on the UK TV holiday adverts for Cyprus, showing a couple cycling over it on an afternoon ride. In reality, you won't find any cyclists here, but you will find a bridge full of charm, and surrounding countryside to match...

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Like its more famous neighbour, Elia Bridge spans the Diarizos River in the south western corner of Paphos Forest. Along with Roudia and Kelefos, it forms the Venetian Bridges Nature Trail, which is a lovely route, even if you do opt to drive, rather than hike it's distance. Let's take a quick peek...

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