Pedoulas village
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Pedoulas village

Nicosia

A mountainous destination, in Marathasa valley, Pedoulas, is a village that offers the opportunity to explore the long religious history and tradition of the island while enjoying the scenic nature of Troodos mountains.

Pedoulas is a village lying in the scenic valley of Marathasa, on the northern slopes of Troodos mountains. Setrachos river that has defined the valley, has divided the village of Pedoulas and it has created a beautiful landscape, enriched by cherry and pine trees.

There are two variations as to the origin of Pedoulas' name. The first one indicates that "Pedoulas" is a compound word, deriving from the words "valley", in Greek "pediada" ("πεδιάδα"), and the word "people", in Greek "laos" ("λαός"). The second explanation, relates the name of the village to its history of manufacturing and trading of leather shoes and sandals - "pedila" ("πέδιλα") being the word for sandals in Greek.

Pedoulas' rich history and connection to religion is profound by its numerous churches and chapels, some dating back from as early as the 14th century. The main church is located at the centre of the village and it is dedicated to the Holy Cross. It was built between 1933 and 1935, having a cruciform plan and a dome. Among the older churches located in Pedoulas are the chapels of Saint Paraskevi and of Saint George, the wooden roof chapel of Virgin Mary Vorini, the chapel of saint Onoufrios and that of Saint Marina's. More recently-built churches, are those of Saint Raphael of Vrachon ("Άγιος Ραφαήλ των Βραχών") that takes its name from the rocky area that it is situated in ("βράχος" being rock or cliff in Greek), and the chapel of the Holy Cross (also called Stavros Fithkias) that is known for the massive white cross standing on its south side, located at the top of Fithkias hill. Probably the most significant church of the village is that of Archangel Michael, built in 1474. Having the characteristic architectural form of the Troodos' churches, it is a single-aisled church, with a timber roof. The church is competently decorated with impressive frescoes of post-Byzantine style, making it part of the ten churches included in the UNESCO's World Heritage Sites list.

Next to Archangel Michael's church, it is located the Byzantine museum, established at the end of the 20th century. It displays icons and relics holding a religious significance, from the 13th to the 20th century, that were collected from the various Byzantine churches of the village. The second museum of Pedoulas, the Folk Art Museum, is situated in a restored stone and timber house, in the centre of the village. It exhibits tools from traditional occupations, but also it showcases an example of a Cypriot house with its original furniture, offering an overall snapshot of the culture and customs of the region.

There are two nature trails passing by Pedoulas. The shorter trail, starts from the main road between Pedoulas, Prodromos and Troodos and ends up near the road leading to "The Churchill Pinewood Valley" hotel. It is a trail of less than 1km long, and it offers a scenic view of the area and the surrounding villages of Marathasa valley. The second trail, Xystarouda-Agiasma-Vasiliki Nature Trail, which is longer, covers an area of around 5km and starts from the Xystarouda picnic site, in the road of Pedoulas and Kykkos Monastery. The trail passes by the location where according to tradition, it flows holy water (in Greek "Αγίασμα"), it advances through thick forest vegetation, and ends up at Saint Vasilios church, a small 18th century chapel, that is found near Kykkos Monastery area.

Without doubt, the picturesque scenery and its rich history and tradition have made Pedoulas an important destination, throughout the year, for both locals and foreigners.


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