Next July, I’m going to Ayia Napa – my first gal’s holiday, which means I’ll be prepping for three nights of hardcore clubbing, when in reality we all know I’m going to peak on the first night and nurse a hangover for the other two. Either way, I am beyond excited!
While many head to Naps for the partying, sunshine and beautiful beaches, I have always wanted to go to Cyprus as I am really interested in Ancient Greek mythology, and a short coach ride away
from where we are staying is the birthplace of Aphrodite, Goddess of Love.
It’s known as ‘Aphrodite’s Rock’ or ‘Petra tou Romiou’, ‘rock of the Greek’ in Greek. It’s on the southwest coast of the Paphos district and legend has it that this is the very site where Aphrodite emerged from the foam of the waves after what is a pretty gross conception (the white foam was produced from the severed genitals of Uranus, which Cronus, his son, threw into the sea. yum).
Along with being the Goddess of Love, she was famous for being a goddess of war, fertility, seafaring and the sea. Busy lady. Nearby her birthplace is the Temple of Aphrodite which it’s believed King Kinyras, the first king to worship her, built to honour her. Again another gross story, the King used this site to sleep with prostitutes and then marry his daughters and the royal lineage was matrilineal (descended through the female line), which then led to rituals of strangers making love at the site.
Well, I won’t be honouring that particular ritual, but I do want to see the famous setting for Botticelli’s painting.
It’s said that if you swim around the rock three times you will receive eternal youth, beauty, good luck, fertility and true love. Worth a try?