Roadtrip in Cyprus – Follow the sun

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Hello,

it passed already another great weekend. :) (PS: Ok, it’s already 2 weeks ago now)
I guess I will write a novel again, so organize a coffee and some cookies already. ;)

We (Alive and me) had the spontaneous idea a few weeks ago to make a road trip. The point was to see the sunrise in Karpaz (east end of Cyprus) and then driving all the way to Akamas to the west end to see the sunset… in the same day.

And last weekend it happend. In preparing we was posting the event also in Facebook on the Couchsurfing Cyprus page. Just in case some people would like to join us.

Who doesn’t know Couchsurfing… It’s a webpage with an interesting idea. People who like to travel offer their couch (or whatever) for other Couchsurfer to sleep on. It means someone could ask if he/she can sleep a few days on your couch. On the other hand you can also use other peoples couch. So if I would travel, for example, for a few days to Paris, then I have a look who is registered from Paris and offers his couch. Then I contact this people and if I am lucky then I have a free accommodation option for a few days and also get contact to local people. And on top I’ll get some insider information and maybe this one is also free to show me his/her city. So, it’s a great thing.

Of couse I don’t have a couch in my small studio. But some people of this community meet from time to time for a beer or to do something. Couchsurfer are in general very open people… else they wouldn’t do it. ;)

There was some people interested in our trip and 4-5 confirmed that they will join. Angelina, a – at the moment – long term traveler, was even already in the area.

Gopro FensterhalterungWe started on Friday evening.Of course absolutely to late. I forgot to pick up the GoPro car mount from Chester. So we had to pass by. I think around 7pm we left finally Limassol.
Till Karpaz is it good 250km. First to Nikosia, then crossing the border and then the whole way down to Karpaz, through all the small villages. I didn’t expected to arrive before 12. But we was surprisingly quick and arrived around half past 11 at Burhan. Burhan is renting bungalows at Karpaz.
Who is reading my blog regularly know from my “I AM” article what Karpaz is and what is going on there ;)

For all who don’t read my blog so often… a short version :) Karpaz is a nature reserve area without any houses, hotels, etc. Just a few bungalow rentals have the permission to build their bungalows there. Electricity they get only from generators.

When we arrived was Burhan (the owner) luckily still awake. So he could show us a place where we could put our tent. Which we did quick and after a beer on the beach we went to sleep in it. I forgot my inflatable bed and had a very uncomfortable night. :( Additionally we had 2 “older” English ladies next to us which was talking till late night. And in a tent you hear everything. I heard everything of their life- and love stories… which was even somehow sweet. From some stories you could made a movie. And one of them had really a good voice to tell stories… Anyway. I couldn’t sleep.

Burhans im KarpazWe was the first people which was awake next morning. Straight in the dining room for a coffee and a cigarette!!! :) And then planing our Saturday. The road trip shall happen on the Sunday.
Angelina wasn’t showing up.
So we decided to have a look to Agios Philon. It was an ancient city… hundreds of years ago. A bit of it is left. Including the old church. In front is a bay in which shall be still the remaining of the old harbor… that was our target. :) And around noon back and in the afternoon to the peninsula… which makes me crazy. Also here I want to go snorkeling. In the evening then drinking a beer with the others and then driving already to the end of the island (Sunday 5:30am sunrise… I don’t think anybody would be in mood to get up at 5 and then driving the rest to the end in the morning… then better sleeping straight there).

Angelina got up around 9 yet again. So we was chatting a bit and informed her about our plan. She didn’t wanted to come with us. She wanted to wait for the others, which wanted to come as well.
So we went alone to Agios Philon.

Agios Philon is direct above Dipkarpaz, the last village at the end. After we looked around a bit we decided to enter the water direct on the beach and see what we can discover.

Gordon beim SchnorchelnThe water in the whole bay is not very deep. Approximately 1-2 meter. Mostly we could stay. And no sign of the old harbor. :(
When we went out of the bay, then it became quick deeper. Around 3-5 meter. But still not sign of any remaining of a harbor. Therefore we found a lobster. Alice wanted to take and cook him :( Luckily she didn’t :)

After we checked the whole area again we went back to the beach. Without any success :(
And then back to Burhan.

It was already noon and the others still didn’t arrived. So we sat down with Angelina and talked a bit. Around 1 we decided the start to the peninsula. The others will find it by them self and Burhan know where we would be.

So we started to walk this around 1km, armed with snorkel and fins again :) This time as well with an umbrella… the sun was really strong. Especially in the noon time is it deadly to go without.
After half an hour we arrived. Quick dropping the stuff, arranging the umbrella and straight in the water. But without Angelina, she was more for sunbathing :) We wanted to snorkel.
So we went around the whole peninsula. It was again disappointing for me. Not much to see and I couldn’t find any hint which would solve the secret of this peninsula. :(

Secret of the peninsula? Confused? :) Well, this peninsula makes me crazy. Have a look on it on the pictures. Everywhere around is nice sand beach. And exactly here the peninsula starts are just rocks around. And very strange (hard to explain). Additionally is it not possible to enter the hill on the peninsula. This peninsula has something mysterious… and that makes me crazy :) Maybe a pirate hiding place, a volcano,… who knows :)

Ok. When we was back to our towels was Angelina gone. Maybe it was to long for her. Who knows.
We packed slowly as well and went back. On the way we saw her, with the others – which arrived in the meantime – on the beach.

GruppenfotoAfter a bit relaxation on the beach we went back to the dunes at the peninsula. A bit fun on the dunes and finally back to Burhan for a cold beer. :)
The day was going to end and the moon was shining bright already in the night. We decided to leave Burhans place around 10pm and to go to the end of the island.

The last kilometers of the way you can’t call the street really ‘street’. It is a imposition. Especially with our 2 small cars. But we did it and reached the last dip of Cyprus. A really strange feeling to be there at the end of the island in the middle of the night. Far away from every civilization. Additionally the metal sound of the metal ropes of the flagstaff in the wind (at the end are 2 huge flagstaffs with the 2 Turkish flags) and a high-current transformer was somehow broken and had flash-overs all the time… like a Tesla with this typical sound. It was really a bit scary :)

We decided to sleep in the car. The other 3 really decided to put a tent :o And they did it. The wind was blowing strong there and the wild donkeys wasn’t far, we could hear them. But they wanted it… ok.. :)
They placed the tent between to bigger bushes, so it was at least protected from the wind.

So everybody grabbed a beer and we came all together with 6 people in the small 3-person tent. Alex had a guitar and played some songs (he can really play). Was really nice. Ok, mostly I couldn’t follow the conversations, because all the others spoke Russian and went back often in this language. Also Russian and Moldavian songs we got to hear. We was 3 Moldavian, one Russian, one half Russian half Greek and me as German.
Around 12 we decided that it is time to go to sleep, cause we have to get up at 5 and the both driver had to drive the whole day.

But then we discovered a not so nice story. When we arrived at the end and standing around, a park ranger passed by. We thought already that we are in trouble now. But he just asked if everything is ok, we said “yes” and he carried on to his guardhouse, which was around 100 meter further.
When we was going to sleep, Alex just wanted to put the guitar in the car. Then he closed the door. The trouble just was that the key was still in the car. But the doors was locked already (however that could happen). So… car locked and key inside. The typical situation… which just shouldn’t happen at the end of Karpaz. Where the next civilization is around 30-40 km away.
We tried to open the car somehow for half an hour. Unsuccessful. Then we called the guard… now is not everything ok anymore! :(
He came, but also couldn’t do more then we did. But he was very friendly and helpful. Maybe he was happy to have a bit variation on his boring position there.
We couldn’t open the car anymore and around half past 1 we went to sleep for now.

5 o’clock in the morning starts the first alarm clock. And surprisingly we woke up very quick. After 3 1/2 hours of sleep in the night before and the night before this wasn’t even better.
First of all out of the car and open an instant coffee and lighting a fag :)

Sonnenaufgang in KarpazIt was already very bright and I got afraid that the sunrise will be already before 5:30. So I just grabbed the cameras and went up to the viewpoint on the hill… just in case. The girls woke up the others in the meantime and was following.

The view was amazingly beautiful. Indescribable beautiful. The view point is a small hill, on which are also the flags. From up there you look straight on the sea. On the left side is sea, on the right side is sea and straight is also sea.
I was preparing quickly the cameras. We wanted to record the whole day. Therefore we had more technique with us then anything else :)

After the technique was ready I sat down and relaxed. Nice sating on a stone and drinking coffee while enjoying the moment. And this was a perfect moment to enjoy. You can see it well on the pictures and the movie.
You sit there. The temperature is just right. The sea from 3 sides. The sky is bright already and the horizon is orange/red… is announcing that the sunrise will be soon. The fisher men going out with their boats. And then the sun starts rising slowly. It’s just dreamlike.

We stayed there till 6. Then we went back to the cars. The one was still locked and with the key inside. So there was no other way as to break a small back window to get in the car again. :(
Then quick packed everything together and we started our road trip. We had good 14 hours time to get to the other end of the island. The sounds much for 400km, but it isn’t. Only the last 50km is highway. The rest is country road… through 2 mountain ranges and with stops. A long way.

The first stage was to go back thought the Karpaz till the first village Dipkarpaz. Here we had the first petrol stop. On the kiosk quick bought some cigarettes and can coffee and straight back on the road.
After Yesilköy we turned to the north to Balalan and then on the coast road in the north in direction to Girne. Somewhere on the way we made a second stop for a fresh coffee, to get also the second eye open ;)

A proper breakfast we got around 9:30am in Girne. Nice Turkish breakfast … ok, well, wasn’t that tasty. But what to do. We was hungry.
After our strengthening we drove further to Nikosia, to the border crossing Metehan. After the border another quick stop to get rid of the long clothes and wearing something more soft. It was noon in the meanwhile and the sun was warming a lot.

And back on the road. We left Nikosia in direction to Troodos. Already on the short, new A9. The road was going a while above the Troodos mountains till it went south direct in it. Till the highest point, the Mount Olympus with 1970 meter. And here was an insect plague waiting for us. I never saw so many bugs. This was animating to leave the scene quick again :)

We left the mountains then (obviously) on the other side and finally got to the highway. Now we get faster ahead.
Cause we was good in time we decided to make another stop at the Aphrodite rocks/birthplace. Going swimming a bit… pardon… snorkeling. :) And I found a silver chain and a golden armlet :) The ladies was happy about it :)

Sonnenuntergang in AkamasAnd finally the last departure at 8pm.The last kilometers to Akamas. Though Paphos and passing by Coral Bay… till the other end of Cyprus. We arrived the west coast around 7pm. A bit early even. So we had time so search a nice restaurant on the coast with a good view on the sunset… and a cold beer :)
So, we really managed it.

To see the sunrise at the east end of the island and on the same day sunset on the west end.
That was a really great trip. Hopefully soon more :)

So, I wrote enough now :) Below some pictures and a video. The official video will follow. I still work on it.

See you next time.

Warm regards
Gordon

Here the route. There is a mistake at Balalan. Google don’t have the first part of the coast street yet.

View Larger Map

And already a small video with the out takes.

The pictures of the road trip:

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