Kourion Archaeological Site
Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site of Paphos, the acropolis of Kourion is located about 13km west of Limassol and atop a limestone promontory that is about 100 metres high along the coast of Episkopi Bay. Most of archaeological remains you find in this city date back to the Roman, Late Roman and early Byzantine periods. This was an urban city of tremendous importance for the country, especially during the Roman and Late Roman periods. The surrounding Kouris Valley witnessed occupations from the Ceramic Neolithic and Late Classical periods until the Arab raids during the 7th century.
There is evidence that this city was associated with the Greek legend of Argos of Peloponnese and the inhabitants were descendants of Argean immigrants. This kingdom flourished for centuries until it was severely destroyed by an earthquake in 365 AD.
In the mid 1st century, Christianity arrived in Kourin, presumably from St Paul and St Barnabas during their missionary journeys. An early Christian basilica at the site goes back to the 5th century, with separate baptistery. Then there is the magnificent open-air Greco-Roman theatre that was built during the 2nd century BC and further extended in the 2nd century AD. It has been restored continuously and today it is still being used for musical and theatre performances.
The remains of the Roman Agora date back to early 3rd century during the early Christian period. It was built on the remains of an earlier public building and used between the end of the 4th century until the end of the Hellenistic period. There are also the Forum Baths that were built during the early 4th century.
You will also find the ruins of a very important building, the House of Eustolios which was once a private villa that was turned into a public recreation centre during the early Christian period. The villa was once well equipped and richly adorned, consisting of four panels of beautiful 5th century mosaic floors in the centre room, together with a bathing place located on a higher level
Around the corner from the House of Eustolios are more stunning mosaic floors in the House of Achilles and the House of Gladiators. These villas were named after the scenes that is shown on the mosaics.
The view of the ocean from the city is breath taking!