Tochni, a charming village located between the cities of Larnaca and Limassol in the Larnaca district, has emerged as a burgeoning agro-touristic destination with a rich historic background.
The village is situated on two slopes and is divided by the "Arkatzin" river, locally known as "the river of the arch." Its narrow streets and alleys lead to the village square, passing through characteristic traditional houses built with local stone. The presence of typical taverns and kafeneia (traditional coffee shops) adds to Tochni's allure as an idyllic destination offering a pleasant environment.
Regarding the origin of the village's name, various assumptions exist. Some link Tochni to the Greek word "techni" (τέχνη), meaning "art," attributing the name to the village's admired craftsmanship. Another version suggests that it derives from the ancient Greek word "dochmi" ("δόχμη"), denoting a space measured by the width of the palm, possibly alluding to the village's small size.
Tochni boasts a long history, with written testimonials dating back to Medieval Times when it was referred to as Togni and Docni in older maps. Historian De Mas Latrie mentions that King James II granted the village as a manor, while Leontios Machairas records a church tradition that Saint Helen visited the village during the 4th Century AD.
The village's main church is dedicated to Saints Constantine and Helen, constructed on a bridge over the river that divides the village. According to tradition, Saint Helen built a temple during her visit to the area, and the current church is said to occupy the same location. Adjacent to the church stands a Byzantine Museum housing rare ecclesiastical relics, including two Holy Gospels from the 16th and 19th centuries.
Further to the southeast of the church of Saints Constantine and Helen are the ruins of another church, dedicated to the Holy Cross and showcasing a Gothic style. While there are no precise historical references to its construction, it is estimated to belong to the 14th century. At the same location, there was an older Byzantine church that was transformed into a Latin church during the Frankish rule. Additionally, two small chapels were built at the end of the 20th century in the southern part of the village: one dedicated to Saint Barbara and the other to Christ the Saviour (Sotiros Christou in Greek). A vestige of the Turkish population and Muslim culture is the mosque found in the northern side of Tochni, where the majority of the Turkish population lived before the Turkish invasion of 1974.
Starting from the village outskirts, a nature trail follows a circular route of approximately 3 km, offering the opportunity to enjoy the diverse wild vegetation of the area, interspersed with orchards and panoramic views of the sea. Tochni and its surroundings have also become an ideal bike center, offering beautiful routes suitable for both amateur and leisure cyclists, with varying levels of difficulty.
As one of Cyprus's oldest villages, Tochni preserves a unique character while encompassing diverse points of interest, a rich history, architectural charm, and natural beauty.