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Stavrovouni Monastery, Larnaka District

(4.5/5 based on 100+ reviews on the web)
Stavrovouni Monastery is a Greek Orthodox monastery which stands on the top of a hill called Stavrovouni in Cyprus; it is sometimes simply known as Stavrovouni. The monastery is one of the few places where one can see a piece of the Holy Cross. Stavrovouni Monastery was founded by Saint Helena in around 327-329 AD and therefore it is one of the oldest monasteries in the world.LocationThe monastery is located on the peak of the mountain of the same name in the District of Larnaca. The mountain in earlier times had been known under the name of Olympus, but nowadays the highest point of the Troodos Mountains further to the west bears that name. Stavrovouni, as the name already indicates, is dedicated to the Holy Cross; it can be derived from two words 'stavros' for cross and 'vouno' for mountain, so that it basically means "the mountain of the Cross".EstablishmentAccording to religious tradition, the monastery was founded by St. Helena, the mother of the Byzantine Emperor Constantine I, the Great. According to the 15th century Cypriot chronicler Leontios Makhairas, after the end of the First Ecumenical Synod in Nicaea (325), Helena went on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land when she discovered the three crosses on which Jesus and the two thieves had been crucified. She had them excavated and wanted to bring them to Constantinople, but she is said to have left one of these crosses in Cyprus during an involuntary visit caused by shipwreck. Religious history says that the Holy Cross was transferred by a miracle to the peak of a high hill overnight and that a strong light was coming out of that peak. After several unsuccessful attempts to get the Holy Cross out of that mountain, Helena decided to leave a piece there, and built a small chapel to accompany it.
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Plans in Larnaka District by other users

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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Inside, as many here do not fall-came to lunch. But here it's worth a peek for the sake of the review and the roads meandering route through the mountains with perfect asphalt on the ride a fun one drive, probably nothing too. :) On top stumbled upon a flock of bicyclists-go down this road, probably, really cool. There is a parking place, very clean toilet and can be dialed free drinking water.
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  • If you want to see a piece of genuine Cypriot artwork this is a must must see, unfortunately only men are allowed into the still working Monastery. As a small but very interesting and impressive consu...  more »
  • Combine this with a trip to Lefkara. Very interesting windy road up to the top with breathtaking scenery. The monastery itself is for smartly dressed men only and is a very tranquil and unique experie...  more »
Google
  • Even though entry is only allowed to men (without camera and with long pants), its still worth the trip up the hill to enjoy the stunning views and peace and quiet!
  • Really picturesque! Worth the drive
  • I can't really review the Monastery as no women are allowed inside. My review is based on the scenic drive up to the mountain and the view from above the hill..it's beautiful.
  • Absolutely stunning view! Strongly recommended to visit. (Monastery inside has not much to see)
  • A beautiful Orthodox Christian monastery on top of a mountain. Be aware women are not welcome within most of the monastery and photography is prohibited.