PEAK 15 – Cyprus – Mount Olympus

Did you know that there are two Mount Olympuses? Not only the famous Greek mountain can boast of this name. You can find Mount Olympus also in Cyprus. I was surprised how high the mountain actually is and I found out that you can even ski in Cyprus in winter. Unfortunately, this mountain had one major disadvantage and it became the most tourist unfriendly mountain of my expedition. Follow my steps on this popular summer destination.

Date of summit: 16th July 2018 6:50 
Traveling mode: Car
Height of the peak: 1952m
Hiking distance: 0,48 km 
Time to ascend : 14 min 
Map of my hiking journey to Mount Olympus: Movescount 
Personal rating of the mountain: ** (6 stars maximum) 
Beer on the peak: Kea Beer ** (6 stars maximum) 

I was very curious about Cyprus and since I didn’t make much research in advance I was looking forward to what I’ll see. The first surprise happened already at the airport. When picking up a rental car in Paphos I found out that I will be driving on the left. It makes sense. It used to be a British colony.

Fortress in Paphos

I had a romantic plan to spend the night at the famous beach Petra tou Romiou where the goddess Afrodité was born according to the legend. Once I reached it though I found out how hot and wet it was outside. I realized I would never be able to fall asleep there so I changed my plan and headed directly to Cyprus mountains. Since it was late there was no traffic and I was soon close to the highest point of the whole Cyprus.

At the height of 1900m there was a different extreme. It was very cold there but I preferred that and I also had a view to the beautiful Milky Way. I think I selected the best place to spend the night at.

My sleeping spot under Milky Way at Mount Olympus

The other advantage of this sleepover place was that I woke up very close to Mount Olympus. I just had to climb the skiing slope called Zeus and I was on the top. Unfortunately it is impossible to reach the real highest point of Cyprus because there is a military zone with a large radar. It was even forbidden to take pictures there. Since there were no guards unlike the place where the main road leads to the top I took some pictures. Happy I didn’t end up in prison.

The Zeus slope
Illegal summit picture

Since this mountain was very tourist unfriendly I didn’t stay long and headed back to Petra tou Romiou to get 10 years younger. According to the legend everyone gets 10 years younger after a swim in the waters where Afrodité was born. Since I didn’t become a teenager again though I doubt this legend.

View over the Afrodité beach

Then, I headed to the beach city Larnaca to spend some time on the beach before I moved to the next mountain. To be honest I didn’t really become a fan of Cyprus. In my opinion other countries in the Mediterranean have more to offer.

Larnaca

My tips for the mountain Mount Olympus:

  • Don’t come to the peak on the main road. There are guards and you will not be able to make a summit picture. Instead find the start of the skiing slope Zeus and climb the few hundreds meters up. You will have a better view without guards.
  • Spend the night in Cyprus mountains and watch the amazing Milky Way (avoid full moon period)
  • If you have time, hire a bike in one of the rental shops below the mountain.
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