Paphos Castle - History and Facts | History Hit

Paphos Castle

Pafos, Cyprus, Cyprus

Paphos Castle is a medieval fortification in Paphos Harbour.

Image Credit: iWebbtravel / Alamy Stock Photo

About Paphos Castle

Paphos Castle was originally a Frankish fortification constructed in the mid-thirteenth century.

History of Paphos Castle

At this time, the island needed a new form of defence, its previous fortification – Saranda Kolones – having been devastated by an earthquake. The remains of Saranda Kolones can be seen in nearby Nea Paphos.

However, the Paphos Castle which can be seen today actually dates back to the sixteenth century. Having been captured and altered by the Genoese in the fourteenth century, it later came under the control of the Venetians. Yet, not wanting it to fall into enemy hands, the Venetians actually destroyed Paphos Castle in anticipation of the invasion of the Ottomans, which occurred in 1570.

The Ottomans rebuilt Paphos Castle and this is the site which can be seen at Paphos Harbour today. Visitors can see the dungeons used by the Ottomans during their occupation of the area, the battlements of Paphos Castle, the place where Ottoman soldiers lived and what was once a mosque.

When the British took over Paphos Castle in 1878, they used it as a storage facility for salt until 1935, when it became a national monument.

Paphos Castle today

Currently, Paphos castle is a small rectangular stone structure, consisting of one tower with two floors. The castle is used as a tourist attraction and occasionally has thematic exhibitions. Most recently, the castle serves as the setting for the annual Paphos Outdoor Cultural Festival in September. Several archeological excavations have been carried out to investigate its past.

Getting to Paphos Castle

Paphos castle is located in Kato Paphos, at the end of the city promenade, on the territory adjacent to the port with yachts and fishing boats.

To get to the castle by public transport, reaching the bus station, the Harbour, which is located approximately 600 metres from the castle, you can use routes 603, 603В, 606, 610, 611, 612, 615, 618 or 631.

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