The next couple of days were spent hanging out with Trish and Jim of ‘Dragon Song’ and making the most of this stunning anchorage, which we had to ourselves. In fact after the weekend there were very few locals in the area. With Lebanon across the water and Israel a short hop eastwards, this was a far cry from the usual packed Turkish anchorage, to which we’ve grown accustomed.
The only constructive thing we did was visit the Apostolos Andreas monastery, a beautiful little building with a natural water spring and a couple of nuns. As the following photographs illustrate it is an extremely photogenic place indeed.
“This ‘Lourdes of Cyprus’ is dedicated to Saint Andrew and has been a site of pilgrimage from its earliest days. The monastery gained a reputation for miracles as far back as the arrival of St Andrew (among other things the patron saint of Scotland, Russia, Greece, Romania, fishermen, spinsters, sailors and navigators), who is said to have cured the ship’s captain of blindness here. Beneath the relatively modern church dating from 1740, there are steps leading down to a square, vaulted chapel, three baptismal basins fed by a sacred spring and an old wharf. In the 12th century it was a fortified monastery, but the chapel built in the 15th century is the oldest surviving building now. The United Nations declared the monastery a World Heritage site, but recently, with lack of funding and maintainence, there have been concerns about the natural deterioration of the buildings at the site.”