Kourion is one of the best archaeological sites in Cyprus, and thousands of tourists pay it a visit every year. Dominated by an impressive Greco-Roman theater, this renowned ancient city is also home to fantastic mosaics and an old Christian Basilica. The site overlooks the blue waters of the Mediterranean Sea on the southern coast of the country, and this only lends to its attractiveness. Not far from the site is the inviting Kourion Beach, and the city of Limassol is a relatively short drive away to the east. Add in the fact that there are other great archaeological sites in the area, and a trip to Cyprus's south coast only becomes more enticing.
During excavations, archaeologists found various inscriptions at Kourion, and they lend insight into the storied history of the city. These inscriptions date as far back as the eighth century BC, and they follow all the way up to Byzantine times. Ptolemy and Pliny the Elder were just two of the renowned ancient authors who recorded the existence of Kourion, and during Roman times, a pre-Christian cult established themselves here. The inscriptions at Kourion have inspired various scholars and authors to offer their own interpretations. Would-be visitors to the site can always read more about the inscriptions before they arrive, and it's also possible to book a guided tour if you want to learn more about the history of Kourion on your visit.
The history of Kourion begins before the arrival of these historic authors and civilizations, however, and many scholars believe that the city was founded during in Neolithic times. The strategic position of the city in the hills overlooking the sea was part of the reason why ancient civilizations found it so appealing. Interestingly enough, it's also the reason why paragliding is so popular here. Paragliding at Kourion is some of the best paragliding in Cyprus, and visitors can expect to see paragliders taking to the skies regardless of the time of year.
The paragliding possibilities might bring in some of the Kourion tourists, but it's the historical attractions and that lure most people in. The inscriptions at Kourion that were unearthed by archaeologists have allowed scholars to better understand the history of the site. Since these inscriptions were removed and sent off to institutions such as Stanford University, Harvard University, and the British Museum, visitors to the actual site won't have a chance to see them. They will, however, have the opportunity to view the relics that do remain. These relics include the Greco-Roman theater that has been restored. Today, the Kourion Theatre is used for various events, and it serves as a prime venue for the mid-summer International Festival of Ancient Greek Drama.
Whether you're interested in the history of Kourion or you just want to go paragliding, this place can make for an excellent side trip destination while in Cyprus.