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Bellapais Monastery, Kyrenia

Categories: Ruins, Historic Sites, Tourist Spots
Inspirock Rating:
4.5/5 based on 1,400+ reviews on the web
Ruins of the Gothic Bellapais Monastery adorn the hillside of Kyrenia Mountain, with its French ornamentation, Genoese and Venetian influences, and lush colorful gardens. Dating back to the 13th century, the building served as a monastery and living quarters of Kings Hugh the 3rd and Hugh the 4th. The site was neglected and mistreated for centuries until the 1900s, when a small portion of the monastery and its surroundings were restored. Today you can see evidence of centuries of destruction, preservation, and restoration, nestled in maintained gardens of palm trees, carob trees, and flowers. Due to its extraordinary acoustics, concerts are often held at the abbey. Using our international travel planner, Kyrenia attractions like Bellapais Monastery can form part of a personalized travel itinerary.
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  • Bellapais Abbey represented one of the most exciting moments of the entire week in Cyprus, first of all because it does something confronted to a pure Gothic building founded in XIII ^ century at two steps from the Middle East and Asian Turkey! I do not intend to paraphrase the guidebooks, I prefer instead emphasize the evocative grandeur of the building, with the ruins and its rooms, among which the Byzantine rite church, cloister and a beautiful Roman imperial sarcophagus; but the broader picture that strikes the visitor, with characteristic cypress trees in the courtyard of the monastery, the Green Besparmak Mountains (in Greek) or Pentadaktylos (in Turkish) behind the beautiful village, and on the other side, bottom, on sea and in terrafermai Taurus Mountains rising in neighboring Anatolia; Bellapais Abbey was very fond of the British writer Lawrence Durrell, who lived and worked nearby, condensing its Cypriot experience in the opera "the bitter lemons of Cyprus", book in which is mentioned the tree of idleness, then torn down and that now gives its name to a restaurant which is located in nearby piazzetta.
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  • Usually have difficulty keeping my husband interested when I visit a ruin especially of a monestery or church. He loved Bellapais - the setting the architecture and hidden spaces. Met I got to spend m...  read more »
  • We visited twice. Once during the day to go inside the abbey. The other visit was to a restaurant just outside the abbey so we could eat and enjoy floodlit views. 
  • This is set on the hill to Bellapais and so the views from every room is breathtaking across the town of Girne and out to sea. The staff are so friendly, helpful and food is very good. I have stayed here twice with another visit planned in 2mths time.
  • This town is one of the most beautifully kept towns in all of Kıbrıs. Every building is historic and the views from up here are simply spectacular. You can almost see the whole beş parmak mountain ranges from up here.
  • Very nice, friendly service and good cuisine characterise this House as excellent. Unfortunately, this House is not wheelchair accessible through the hillside and steps to the restaurant and swimming pool, partially narrow ways. But otherwise first class.
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