Caves


St. Neophytos Monastery

St. Neophytos Monastery

The Saint Neophytos Monastery or in Greek, Iera Moni Agiou Neophytou, is located 9 kilometers to the west of Paphos town. The monastery which was founded by the monk Neophytos in the 12th century currently houses a museum and a chapel which is built in a natural cave. Saint Neophytos pursued an ascetic lifestyle in the hills of Cyprus and found a small natural cave in this location in 1159. He excavated the cave to include his cell, a small chapel, and his eventual tomb. His table is sculptured from rock and the stone platform on which he slept as well as his grave, are still preserved in his cell. He soon accumulated followers and the area soon became a quiet monastic community in 1170, housing up to 18 monks. After the monk Neophytos died, at the age of 85 in 1219, he was buried within the Egleistra according to his own wishes. The 'Egleistra', which is an enclosure carved out of the mountain by the hermit, contains some of the finest Byzantine frescoes dating from the 12th century. The monastery is located in a quiet and beautiful mountainous area which is close to the town of Tala, Paphos.