Today we once again began the day with a bus ride at 8 am, this time to the Troodos Mountains, which contain the highest peak in Cyprus. We arrived at Troodos Square, where there were a couple of souvenir shops and beautiful views overlooking the mountain range. I was surprised to learn that these mountains do in fact get snow in the winter. After exploring the square and the shops for a little bit, we took a bus to Omodos Village. This village was the type of town that I pictured when picturing Cyprus beforehand; lots of cute shops, cafes, rocky roads, and pretty buildings. In the center of the village, we visited the Timios Stravos Monastery. We couldn’t take pictures inside, but it was beautiful, and claimed to have an ancient relic– a piece of the rope from the Holy Cross. We ended our time in the village with a group lunch, mezze style, at Stou Kir Yianni Tavern, where we had dishes like salad, bread, pasta, and various meats with the restaurant’s original sauce.
After this, we travelled to Limassol where we met with executives from the Cyprus Port Authority and the Limassol Port Director in the Limassol Chamber of Commerce. CPA manages the various ports in Cyprus. We learned all about how the port is managed, and how it was privatized (or as the President corrected us, “commercialized”) in 2017. It was interesting to hear them address the issue of sustainability, because they invest in off-shore oil drilling. They explained the carbon emission goals of the EU for the future, and how the war in Ukraine has affected the energy sources in Europe currently. Because of this, they explained that they need to focus on providing energy for the current generations, while still working toward a sustainable environment for future generations. It was also interesting to hear them talk about globalization, and all of its benefits. Overall, today was a great day filled with a mix of exploration and business.