"Not really Kissonerga at all........" Kissonerga by leics

Kissonerga Travel Guide: 0 reviews and 3 photos

....but Coral Bay doesn't exist on VT, and Kissonerga is the nearest village.

I went there (bus 15 from Pafos) a couple of times, for a gentle pootle along an almost deserted beach (December, remember!) and, mostly, to explore the Bronze Age settlement on the north-westerly headland (or the south-westerly, if you get off the bus at its terminus).

Kissonerga (like the rest of the coastline between Coral Bay and Pafos) is in the process of being built-up with hotels/flats/villas etc for both the holiday and the ex-pat market. No doubt it is packed-out with roasting bodies and water-sports-fans in the summer (Kissonerga is not particularly safe for swimming, Coral Bay is). Even in December it seemed a popular spot for locals and visitors to enjoy the sunshine.

But that's all by-the-by. The site was my point of interest and (on my second attempt, because 'open daily' is a lie) I managed to explore it. Entirely alone (the chap in charge was mending his car), which was wonderful.

Maa Paliokastro is sited at the end of a headland, bounded on three sides by cliffs; an easily-defensible spot. It was originally settled in the Chalcolithic (Copper Age), when people lived in rock cavities with wooden roofs. Later, in the Bronze Age, it became a wealthy settlement with not only stone houses and massive defensive walls but some examples of the first 'public' buildings on the island. Bronze ingots were exported from Cyprus around the Eastern Med, so no doubt this contributed to the wealth of the settlement.

In use from around 1200BC, the site was destroyed in 1185BC (probably by a pirate raid) but rebuilt. It finally ceased to exist around 1150BC.

The site has been recently excavated, although only foundations and low walls are visible. Amazingly (to me at any rate) the whole area is entirely covered with huge chunks of prehistoric pottery, including rim sherds and handles. There is a semi-underground museum, designed to look like a Greek 'tholos' tomb, which houses replica artefacts and has some interesting information boards.

It's a nice place to visit; the only sound is the sea and the birds and one can really imagine what it was once like to live there. Worth a hour or so of your time, if you get bored with lying on the beach.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Worth visiting the prehistoric sites
  • Cons:Very tourist-oriented apart from the prehistoric sites
  • In a nutshell:Really about Coral Bay
  • Last visit to Kissonerga: Dec 2007
  • Intro Updated Feb 26, 2011
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leics

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