On the way to Panagia Kikkskaya.

"Two and a half thousand years ago Euripid Narek Cyprus "Aphrodite Island". It is here that the goddess of love and beauty came out of the foam ashore," — This learned text The young Cyprusive guide monotonously repeats, probably, already in the hundredth time. But we are pleased to hear her guarantee purr, plunging into a pleasant contemplative laziness.

In guidebooks it is written that Cyprus is a third major island after Sardinia and Sicily, and its area is 9251 square kilometers. The figure seems to be not small, but in practice it turns out that from one large settlement to another require no more than two hours by car. True, the inhabitants of the northern latitudes, frightened through the Sun, it is very difficult to force themselves to leave the beach, where to a gentle wave – hand.

But I easily cut off my body from the sun bed, because I don’t really like passive rest. Limassol, where I was provided with housing in a cozy hotel, took your submissive servant welcoming. Good mood is steadily improved. This, of course, contributed to the beautiful weather – plus thirty in the shade at a constant sun – and the white-tooth smiles of aborigines. By the way, local men love the blond Russian beauties and often commemorates their dark girlfriends, Cypriot in our compatriots (probably, therefore, from the mouth of Cyprus women, our representatives of beautiful sex extremely rarely hear compliments). Recently, Cypriota even organized a demonstration in defense of their rights, opposing the immoral behavior of the narrowed and boyfriends. Romanian’s waitress in our hotel (by the way, she is also married to Cypriot) told me that one Cypriot man accounts for three Cypriot women. Here is the competition!

In Limassol, the familiar Russian speech was heard everywhere. This second largest city of Cyprus is very popular among our compatriots. But the Youth Resort of Ayia Napa – with beautiful sandy beaches and transparent turquoise water was chosen by the British. The largest number of noisy night establishments is concentrated here. In the ancient pathos, formerly in Roman times the capital of Cyprus, love to be false in the sun and the Russians, and the British, and the Germans.

But we return to the marine foam. It would seem that the launched route – on the way to Paphos, the tourist bus will definitely stop at the birthplace of Aphrodite. But as they say, "who was not in this place – that Cyprus did not see". And if you travel in Cyprus yourself on a car (the car is easy to rent here, do not be lazy to park on a small area near the coveted bay and descend on a narrow ladder to a small beach. Write a cherished desire on a white napkin and make it a knot on the branches of low shrubs growing near the water edge. Then go on a large pebble and with a sense of accomplishment, hopping breathing, fall into the healthy water of the Mediterranean Sea. Oh, how nice it lulls, inlet in the veins, an unknown, amazing energy accumulated in it solar heat! They say, after the ablution in Aphrodite Bay will forever stay young and beautiful!

But next to Romantics is adjacent and the prose of life. It turns out that soon not far from the bay of the Cyprus authorities are planning to break the park, where the Giant Statue of Aphrodite will be installed. The sculptural composition will be performed in the form of waves and sinks, inside which the goddess will be placed. The height of the statue is about thirty meters, the preliminary cost of the project is estimated at $ 50 million. Artists and environmentalists have already managed to condemn this expensive project, calling the sketch "ugly", reminiscent of Hollywood and Las Vegas. But Cyprus Nikos Rolandis tourism minister is sure that the park will bring the island even greater fame and will be his business card.

And for me, there was a unique mountain massif Troodos and the famous Kickkos Monastery. Mountains stretch all over the southwest of the island. The highest place here is Mount Olymp (1852 km). Volcanic, by origin, the Array of Cypriots themselves is called the spine, the coolest island.

Loop and loop mountain road. Another turn – and from the height of a bird’s-friendly, there is nothing comparable to beauty: on an almost rigorish slope there are buildings of the richest monastery of Cyprus. It is snow-white with tiled roofs Kickkos. It is founded in 1092. Today 15 monks pray in it.

Slowly pass on its territory. It can be seen that caring hands of not one restorer worked on the reconstruction of unique frescoes, which are located under the arches of this cozy abode. This confirms the young monk Anthony, who took us. In the main church we see the rich iconostasis of the XVIII century, the icons are dated XVII century.

Coming out of the church, slowly walking along a long balcony surrounding the monastery. Its walls are also decorated with frescoes, as it turned out, completely fresh. Because ten years ago is not a term. It was then that Greek, Romanian, Bulgarian, Serbian and Cypriot artists worked on them. In the course we see and monastic cells, hidden behind the passionate oak doors. From there nobody came out. Time of meals. And Anthony all this time continues his story about the history of the monastery.

On the way to Panagia Kikkskaya.

One day, the Byzantine vicar of Cyprus Manuel Vratotic, hunting in Troodos, got lost, he wandered around the forest for a long time and met an old hermit Isaiah. The Lord asked the old man, how to return to the capital, but the hermit did not answer. The governor was angry and hit God’s man. And on returning home, Manuil suddenly broke palsy. Then he remembered how he went with hermit and sent subjects to the mountains with the instructions to bring him. He asked Isaiah for forgiveness – and there was no trace from the disease. As a reward, the hermit took the floor from Vomitis, that he will bring a sacred icon of the Virgin from Constantinople – one of the onions written by the apostle.

For a long time, Vtwotica did not decrease to accomplish this request. He was confident that the emperor of Byzantium would never dispel with such a valuable relic. However, in the end, he went to Constantinople, taking a sages of Isaiah with him.

At the time when they were in Constantinople and reflected how to convince the emperor to convey the sacred icon Cyprus, the following happened. The only daughter of the emperor fell ill with the same disease that was previously struck by Vratotic. Doctors turned out to be powerless. Then Vtwoichis appeared in front of the emperor and told him how he heard himself from an unknown illness. Hermit Isaiah immediately taken to the emperor and after his hot prayer daughter recovered. On joy, his father offered a monk any award – to choose from, but Isaiah only repeated his request.

The emperor did not want to part with the icon and sought the pretext to leave her at himself. But when he was struck by the same disease, he had to give a word: he sent Vtwimitis and Isaiah to Cyprus with the promise to send an invaluable relic. He, however, decided to smear: invited the artist who had to make a copy. But at the same night, the emperor in a dream was the Virgin. Then he realized that Cyprus would have to send the original. He sends money to the construction of the monastery specifically for this icon and will be asked in the forests of Troodos, it is in the place where Vtwytis met with hermit. With the greatest precautionary, the sacred icon transported to the monastery, where it is stored to this day.

Talk about the many miracles, creative icon of Panagiya Kikki (she received its name from the Cyprus city of Kikkos) – the rain is sent to the time of drought, the healing of people. Miraculous "Kikkskaya" Icon of Our Lady has a wonderful feature – it is unknown with what time, closed to half the pellery from the upper left corner to the right lower right, so that the faces of the mother and baby nobody can see. It is curious that in the miraculous power of the holy icon, not only Christians believe, but also the Inovers. Touching her, even a unlikely person at least for a moment will feel an extraordinary spiritual relief. To goodbate the monks distributed to us moistened by the sacred lamp oils of the rods, which must be applied to the patient.

Right in the monastery in a small shop we were offered to buy National Cypriot Wine "Commandarium" and famous strong vodka "Jivania", which is produced immediately. A few seconds, an impressive crowd of the British joined us. They briskly praised beautiful bottles with a view of Kickos on the label. Mirous bustle, gams and noise for a moment filled the walls of the monastery. But the monks accustomed to it. This is also life. Without tourists nothing to restore the abode. Reliable rosary, they passed by us with a smile on the lips.

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