In Cyprus there are six specially designed wine routes. All of them are located in Paphos and Limassol area. The routes are designed in special way to discover all the small, traditional and charming wineries located in the untouched, traditional villages that are also home to local monasteries.
It has been proven by archeologist that Cyprus has the oldest traditions of making wine which dates back to 3500 BC. There are many relics left which proves ancient traditions of wine making like mosaics, an ancient wine press and other relics that can be seen in Omodos village and the Wine Museum on the outskirts of Erimi in Limassol.
You can discover all six of the routes while in Cyprus which will undoubtedly will make your stay in Cyprus unforgettable. Here are the wine routes to visit:
1. Laona-Akamas (Paphos)
During this route you will visit the following villages Ineia, Pano Arodes and Kathikas which is located in the western part of the island. You will discover the ‘Xynisteri grape" from which full bodied white wines are mande. It has a delicate aroma and a refreshing taste.
2. Vouni Panagias-Ampelitis(Paphos)
You will discover numerous wineries which produce white wines with a taste of peaches, green apples and apricots with a delicate flavor and aroma. On this route you will acknowledge another type of red grapes from which locals make a wine called "Maratheftiko." This wine is from red fruits, roses and violets. Moreover you will get a chance to sample one of the best Mavro grape wines, another traditional grape from which a delicious dark and rose wine.is produced.
3. Diarizos valley (Paphos)
The route is located in the Diarizos river valley. The starting point for this route is in Achelia. This region was not popular before due to its low lying altitude, but recently the wineries there were modernized and the small wineries are now a force to be reckoned with. This area now also produces a very good quality wine.
4. Krasochoria Lemesou (Limassol)
This route is located in the area where most of the wineries are. Here you can discover the oldest traditional wineries and villages. In this region Mataro and Cabernet Sauvignon wines are the main ones produced. You can find the ancient wine presses, traditional stone villages and one of the best taverns in Cyprus.
5. Koumandaria (Limassol)
Commandaria is one of the most ancient wines in the world and was renown during the time of the Crusaders when Cyprus was under Byzantine rule. It is made from sun dried grapes and was. On this route you can visit the medieval castle of Kolossi, the base of the Knights of St. John. The starting point for this route is Kolossi and the ending point is Fyla.
6. Pitsillia (Limassol)
This route is located high in the mountains and is surrounded by 4 pine forests and 14 villages takes part in the production of wine. This area is where they produce rich flavored and aromatic wines. The starting point is Mesa Geitonia and ending point is Palodeia.
There are many criteria that must be met by the Cyprus Tourism Organization (CTO) to be included in the offical "Wine Routes" network. By visiting the areas listed you can be sure there will be knowledgable people to greet you and all standards for producing, storing and offering wine tastings are met.
All routes are clearly marked on the roads so it is easy follow and you can get more detailed information in any tourism office. During your journey through wine routes you will not only admire the beautiful scenery but experience the hospitality, friendliness and genorosity of the locals. You will discover another side of Cyprus ad realize Cyprus is not just great for beach holidays. You will see a traditional process and lifesyle that has been ongoing for centuries and is now a rarity in many Western countries.