Our walk of Saturday 21 October 2017 takes place in the picturesque dense forest between Kakopetria and Platania, starting in the area called Agios Nicolaos tis Stegis. This hike is strenuous, all uphill, covering a distance of 8 km and an elevation change from ~800 m at start to ~1150 m at the end. Because of the difficulty we shall walk only the uphill leg, and return by car to the starting point. We start exactly 3 km after the turn onto the road leading towards Agios Nicolaos tis Stegis and Pedoulas, from the Kakopetria-Platania-Karvounas-Troodos main road. The walk starts at 11:00 am. Xenophon is leading this walk, which will go ahead even in light rain; if you need to, call 97613720. We walk entirely on dirt road, the hike will take about 3 ½ hours and is rated 3 for difficulty (on a scale from 1 to 3).
The forest is rich in pine trees, golden oaks, plane trees and other trees. At the end of the walk we shall have lunch at a taverna in the vicinity.
Because of the difficulty, we will only walk the trail in one direction. This translates to a set of logistics rules, which participating Strollers need to observe, as a group. Please study them carefully and make up your mind, based on your acceptance of these demands, as follows:
*you need to register for this activity (e-mail the walk leader by end Thursday)
*the event is open only to Strollers who accept participation at lunch, at the end of the hike
*we need to drive in cars of 2 adults (driver + one passenger); when registering, please indicate whether you are bringing your car, or if you need a lift
*to start, all cars shall drive from Nicosia to the walk finish (Platania); half of the cars will park there and the Strollers in those cars will get in the cars continuing from there
*half of the cars will drive on from Platania to Agios Nicolaos, the walk start
*at the conclusion of the hike, all Strollers shall drive back from Platania to Agios Nicolaos, to pick-up the cars parked at the walk start.
At that point, all cars shall drive to the taverna.
Please read all driving instructions below and have a copy with you on the day. To turn this plan into a success, it is imperative that you adhere to times and use your odometer as instructed.
If you live in or near Nicosia, you need to meet at the designated meeting point in Nicosia. If you are joining us from a distant place, such as Limassol, kindly alert the walk leader as early as possible, to work out a plan for you and others traveling like you. The meeting point in Nicosia is the very large church named tis Theou Sophias (also referred to as Agia Sophia) in Strovolos, which offers ample parking space on its side street. The car trip starts at 9:30 am. Please ensure you observe start times, for the benefit of the group.
How to get to the walk finish from Nicosia:
From Nicosia take the A9 motorway towards Troodos. The A9 smoothly becomes the B9 highway (towards Troodos), when the motorway ends (near Kokkinotrimithia). On the B9 you drive past the villages of Akaki, then Peristerona and then you reach the village of Astromeritis. At the Astromeritis traffic lights, where most cars turn left towards Troodos, zero your odometer and turn left. After 25 km you pass the entrance to the village of Kakopetria on your left. Zero your odometer and continue to drive along the main road, in the direction of Troodos. At the 1.9 km reading look out for the road sign on your right, directing you to ‘Pedoulas, via Agios Nicolaos Stegis’. Do not turn right, continue to drive straight. At approx. the 4.2 km reading, you pass the left turn to Spilia. Do not turn left, continue to drive straight. After 1.8 km, i.e. at approx. the 6 km reading you arrive at the walk finish, a dirt road on your right, bearing a green sign ‘Agios Nicolaos 9 km’. Near it, another sign pointing in the same direction reads ‘Kakopetria 6 km’. Park on the side, ensuring you do not block vehicle access to the dirt road. We meet here. In the event that you have reached the road junction at Karvounas (at the 8 km reading), you have gone too far: drive back for about 2 km, looking out for the sign on your left.
How to get to the walk finish from Limassol:
Take the main road towards Trimiklini, then Saittas. Get to the principal junction at Saittas, where you have the options of going straight to Platres or left to Pera Pedi, or right to Amiantos. Zero your odometer and turn right. At the 10.9 km reading you reach the principal junction of Karvounas (note, no traffic lights). Do not turn left towards Troodos square. Do not turn right (this takes you to Kyperounda). Zero your odometer and go straight, downhill towards Kakopetria. At approx. the 2 km reading slow down and look out for a green sign ‘Agios Nicolaos 9 km’ pointing to a dirt road on your left. Near it, another sign pointing in the same direction reads ‘Kakopetria 6 km’. Park on the side, ensuring you do not block vehicle access to the dirt road. We meet here.
How to get from the walk finish, to the walk start: Zero your odometer and go straight, downhill towards Kakopetria. After 1.8 km you pass the right turn to Spilia. Continue to drive straight. After another 2.3 km (at the 4.1 km reading) look out for the road sign on your left, directing you to ‘Pedoulas, via Agios Nicolaos Stegis’. Zero your odometer again and turn left here. At the 3 km reading slow down and look out for a dirt road on your left. There are signs on either side of this dirt road; the one on the right is blue, with faded letters; the one on the left describes a cycling path to Troodos. If you have missed the starting point, after 300 m you will see a sign indicating a left turn for the Byzantine church of Agios Nicolaos Stegis; you have gone too far; turn back and look out for the starting point.
How to get to the meeting point for the car trip:
From Nicosia get to the junction between Cineplex and Apolloneion Hospital. At the traffic lights where you have the Cineplex on your left hand side and Apolloneion Hospital on your right hand side, zero your odometer and turn left. At the 0.3 km reading you see Lidl supermarket on your right. At the 0.8 km reading you reach traffic lights. Turn left into Elaionon street. Immediately after you observe the very large church of tis Theou Sophias, with its green dome, on your right. Just past the church (1.0 km reading) take the first turning to the right into Kastellas street. This side street offers ample parking space. Park here.
Google Maps: Here is a map taking you from the junction between Cineplex and Apolloneion Hospital to the church of tis Theou Sophias http://tinyurl.com/ll9fefj
Google Maps: Here is a map taking you from the Presidential Palace to the church of tis Theou Sophias http://tiny-url.org/hEk7ggCF
Disclaimer: If you attend a Cyprus Strollers walk you do so entirely at your own risk. The Cyprus Strollers is a social club and neither the organizers nor the leader of the walk are responsible for the health and safety of those taking part.