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Exploring the Troodos Mountains in Cyprus

The Troodos Mountains are known as the green heart of Cyprus and it’s not difficult to fall in love with this region. A recent road trip allowed the family to explore the delights of the Troodos Mountains in Cyprus and I’m here to show you just how amazing this area is.

I’ve mentioned this a few times across the blog already but I’m not going to stop now. From the age of 8 to 12, I lived in Cyprus and this Mediterranean island still feels like home. I have fond memories of driving up steep roads through the Troodos Mountains whether it was to explore traditional villages or learn to ski in the winter. I have a family of my own now and, having returned to Cyprus in 2023, it would have been rude not to head back up the Troodos Mountains.

The Troodos Mountains are the largest mountain range in Cyprus with Mount Olympus reaching a height of almost 2,000 metres above sea level. Mount Olympus is crowned with infamous white golf balls (radar stations) and, for me, feels like the geographical centre of Cyprus (it’s not but you know); a sort of true north that means you can work out east/west/south from. You can never get lost in Cyprus right?

You’ll find traditional Cypriot villages nestled in the hills, famous for wine-making, an abundance of monasteries and churches plus breath-taking nature everywhere you turn. All the while the scent of pine trees underpin the memories you create; the Prost Phenomenon in full effect. The smell of pine trees, wherever I may be, always brings me back home to the Troodos Mountains.

Anyway, let’s get in the car and take a road trip through the Troodos Mountains. Let me provide the perfect inspiration for your next trip to Cyprus.



Omodos is probably the jewel in the Troodos Mountains’ crown. It’s the most picturesque village surrounded by mountains and vineyards which is probably why it attracts so many visitors each year. It is said that Omodos has been famous throughout history for the wine that is produced here so if you’re looking for an introduction to Cypriot wine, you’ll find it here. You’ll also find a medieval wine press if you’re after the historical side too.

The monastery of Timios Stavros is the oldest in Cyprus and is said to house a piece of the True Cross which clearly elevates its importance. Make sure you wander around the whole monastery before taking in the beauty of the church with its glass chandeliers (exactly how it was when I visited as a child twenty years ago).

I love the main street of Omodos with its local tavernas and shops; the perfect place to have a coffee and watch the world go by. We ate lunch a little deeper in the village, passing through narrow alleyways before arriving at Katoi. Emma had the lamb kleftiko whilst I had the chicken kebab. Don’t miss the little shot of homemade alcohol at the end of your meal – I had to double check I was still ok to drive!

A word of warning if anyone happens to be travelling with a baby/toddler, the main street of Omodos is entirely cobbled (old school cobbled) so not the best for smaller strollers/prams – I wished we had used the carrier for Evelyn; it’s just far more practical.


The village of Lofou, in my opinion, is a must-see on any trip to the Troodos Mountains. Between 1946 and 1986, the village was entirely abandoned; a ghost town if you will. However, the buildings remained intact and has since been beautifully restored. I remember visiting Lofou regularly as a child (we used to have a vegetarian meze perhaps at the Lofou Tavern) and I’m pleased to say that the village is just as mesmerising as it was twenty years ago. Thankfully, the village is still peacefully quiet and you may well be the only person wandering the streets like we were.

There are a few restaurants to choose from if you are feeling peckish or, if you like a beer, be curious and follow the yellow and black signs for Lofou’s microbrewery. The cold bottle of beer and a seat in the shade were a welcome relief from the warm Cypriot heat.

Troodos Village

Troodos Village is the final destination for many visitors to the Troodos Mountains. The village/resort sits just 250m below Mount Olympus which is the highest point in Cyprus and is based around the lovely square filled with pine trees. There’s not much here except for a few restaurants and hotels but given the drive that you’ve just completed, you deserve a little rest!

Troodos Village is the starting point for many hiking and cycling trails if you’ve got the energy but it’s in the winter when things get a little different. Did you know that it snows up here from approximately January to March and you can take to the slopes if you love a bit of skiing? It’s not the Alps but there aren’t many places where you can go from a dip in the Med to skiing in the snow within just a few hours. I first learnt to ski here many years ago but I think speeding down the slopes on a bodyboard was more my style!

Mount Olympus

Mount Olympus is the highest point on the island of Cyprus at a total of 1,952 metres. Whilst you can’t quite reach the peak thanks to a military base, we drove as close as we possibly could up the F935 road before turning around and taking in the views from the Northwest View Point. On a clear day the view point offers stunning views out towards Northern Cyprus and Nicosia (perhaps if you squint).

Pano Platres & Caledonia Falls

Whilst our most recent road trip didn’t cover Pano Platres and the serene Caledonia Falls, I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend a stop at the village of Pano Platres (I bought a laser pen on a school trip here when I was 11, oops) and the nearby waterfall. The trail to Caledonia Falls starts at the Trout Farm and is only 3km return though over some rocky ground. The waterfall is only 12 metres high but it’s a lovely little spot and, if you dare, you can always cool off under the water too!

Kykkos Monastery & Paphos Forest

Again, we didn’t manage to find time on our road trip to visit the famous Kykkos Monastery and the Venetian bridges hidden in the Paphos Forest, this is something we have done before on a guided tour. This actually worked quite well as I remember vividly the bus driving up sketchy dirt roads to bring us to our destination and probably wouldn’t have fancied driving a hire car up from Paphos.

Kykkos Monastery dates back to the 11th century, is around 28km north west of Troodos Village and is a highlight of the Troodos Mountains. The architecture was stunning and it’s easy to see why this is considered the wealthiest monastery on the whole island.

Many tours will also stop off in the Paphos Forest (which is a huge 70,000 hectares) allowing you to embrace the natural beauty of cedar trees and historic Venetian bridges that formed part of the old camel trail.

Car Hire vs Guided Tour of the Troodos Mountains

Ok, so I think I can confidently answer this question now in terms of whether you should visit the Troodos Mountains in a hire car yourself or as part of a guided tour. Personally, I love driving abroad so I’m more than happy to take to the roads and create my own unique road trip. Driving yourself will allow much more freedom to add additional stops or quickly pull over if you spot yet another beautiful viewpoint. However, I won’t lie, it was tiring especially with a toddler who didn’t fancy sleeping the entire journey. It takes longer than you think to drive up those mountains so if you are planning to drive yourself, make sure you set off early, have a full tank of petrol and some good tunes. I can see the benefit of a guided tour though and I enjoyed how stress-free it was. You get picked up from your accommodation (I remember we were picked up right outside our hotel in Paphos) and you don’t have to worry about a thing; you will be chauffeured around the best sights in the Troodos Mountains. Easy right! There are plenty of tours to choose from too so there will definitely be something out there for you.



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