Ayios Philon on the Karpass Peninsula

Ayios Philon Church, seen from the baptismal font of the ancient basilica

The church of Ayios Philon located on the north side of the Karpasas Peninsula was reconstructed in the 10th century on the foundations of an earlier 5th basilica. Both structures were a type of fortified monastery providing some protection from invaders.

St. Philon, who was baptized by St. Epiphanios of Salamis, brought Christianity to the area.  Numerous small basilicas are found inland throughout the area, showing that Christians flourished from the earliest times in this remote region of Cyprus.

A prosperous Phonecian town and port were situated here first and was half way between Asia Minor and Salamis and the rich ports on the coast of the Levant.

The Byzantine complex was abandoned in the 8th century because of the constant Arab raids, but was rebuilt at the turn of the millennia.

The remains of Ayios Philon's Roman era harbor

Ayios Philon's Roman Harbor

The Ruins of Ayios Philon Church

Interior of Ayios Philon Church

Still seen today are the remains of a cistern and baptismal area, as well as, several areas of mosaic floors of a utilitarian nature. These mosaics can’t compare to the exquisite designs of the Roman Period in other parts of the island, but its remote setting is one of the loveliest in Cyprus.

Today Ayios Philon is all but forgotten, but well worth a trip because of its beautiful location on the northeastern coast of Cyprus, almost to the tip of the Karpasas Peninsula.

The Oasis is located there.  It’s a small hotel and restaurant with good food and service.  The views are spectacular.

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