Our excursion of Saturday 16 January 2016 takes us to the hills carrying the rather odd name Pipis, in Larnaca district, between the villages of Pyrga and Mosfiloti, south of Nicosia and west of Larnaca. Our destination is a short trip from Nicosia. At a low elevation of barely 300 m, Pipis hills offer a quite rich pine forest and some superb views to the surrounding villages and beyond. The hike is circular, follows dirt roads and includes long stretches of uphill and downhill, as we go round the hills. If you visit the area in spring, you will enjoy the feast of colours, as many flowering plants are in bloom. If you visit the area in colder weather, you will enjoy a hike in mild climate conditions. The hike starts at 10:45 am. Angelos, a friend of the Cyprus Strollers, passionate with the area, is leading the hike, which will go ahead even in light rain; if you need to, call 99308436. The hike is about 7 km long, will take about 2 ½ hours, and is classified 2 (medium) for difficulty.
At the end of the hike, we shall drive to Kokkinou taverna, for lunch. To facilitate arrangements, for your better service, you are required to pre-register, if you are joining us for lunch. To do so, please sms the walk leader or e-mail Xenophon by end Thursday. No need to register if you are not dining.
You have the choice of meeting the group at the hike start, or meet at the designated meeting point in Nicosia. In either case, you need to carry copy of this set of instructions. Meeting in Nicosia offers two important advantages: we drive in full cars, leaving some cars behind; thus, we save in fuel and enjoy the trip in good company. The meeting point in Nicosia is the Handicrafts Centre (Kentro Heirotechnias) on Leoforos Athalassas (Athalassa Avenue), which offers ample parking space. The car trip starts at 9:45 am. Please ensure you observe start times, for the benefit of the group.
How to get to the walk start:
Get to the main junction between Leoforos Lemesou/ Limassol Avenue and Leoforos Athalassas. Zero your odometer at this junction. Drive along the Nicosia-Limassol motorway, heading towards Limassol. At the 21 km reading you exit the motorway on your left, at exit number 10, following signs to Mosfiloti and Psevdas. Immediately after you reach a T-junction; turn right, following signs to Mosfiloti. At the 23 km reading you reach a roundabout, take the 2nd exit (i.e. go straight). At the 26 km reading you reach a crossroads; turn left towards the village of Pyrga. The road enters Pyrga, where you drive past two churches side-by-side on your right, and then you reach a Y-junction. Go left at the Y-junction. You drive past the village cemetery on your right, and then you exit Pyrga. Slow down and drive for another few hundred metres, until you see on your left the wooden sign indicating the start of Pipis trail. Park your car. We meet here.
How to get to the meeting point for the car trip, coming from the Hilton hotel area:
Get yourself on Makarios Avenue, heading out of town and set your odometer to zero as you drive past the Nicosia Hilton hotel. At the 0.1 km reading you reach traffic lights (with the Apoel club building on your right), go straight. At the 0.5 km reading you reach another set of traffic lights, go straight. Driving along, you pass a few more traffic lights, staying on this main road (named Leoforos Lemesou/ Limassol Avenue). At the 2.1 km reading, you reach a principal set of traffic lights. Set your odometer to zero again and turn right here. You are now in Leoforos Athalassas, a very busy avenue. At the 0.2 km reading you see a large empty space on your right and the Handicrafts Centre (a single-storey building) on your left. Park in the parking area. We meet here. The Handicrafts Centre is next to the church of St. Barnabas.
How to get to the meeting point for the car trip, coming from the Presidential Palace area:
Get to the round-about next to the Presidential Palace. From downtown Nicosia you reach this along the Kyriakou Matsi avenue or along the D. Severi avenue. Set your odometer to zero on the round-about and drive along the principal road towards Strovolos. At the 0.3 km reading you reach traffic lights. Go straight. At the 0.6 km reading you reach a 2nd set of traffic lights. Set your odometer to zero again and turn left. You are now in Leoforos Athalassas, a very busy avenue full of shops. At the 2.6 km reading you see a large empty space on your left and the Handicrafts Centre (a single-storey building) on your right. Park here.
How to get to the taverna from the walk end: Drive to the left, having the hill we walked on your left hand. After ~ 1 km you get to a T-junction; go left, in the direction of Nicosia. After ~ 1 km you see Kokkinou taverna on your right hand side; there are parking spaces in front of the taverna.
Google Maps: Here is a map for those coming from the Hilton area to the meeting place for the car trip http://tinyurl.com/phjc6s7
Google Maps: Here is a map for those coming from the Presidential Palace area to the meeting place for the car trip http://tinyurl.com/neo9duy
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.