Hala Sultan Tekke or, the Mosque of Umm Haram, lies approximately 6 km southwest of Larnaka. Umm Haram (Hala Sultan) was the Islamic prophet Muhammad’s wet nurse and wife of Ubada bin al-Samit, one of the highest ranking officers of Moawia. The mosque was built over a tomb which, according to tradition, belongs to Umm Haram. The term tekke (convent) applies to a building designed specifically for gatherings of a Sufi brotherhood (“tariqa”) and may have referred to an earlier feature of the location. The present-day complex is open to all and does not belong to a single religious movement. Hala Sultan Tekke is a listed Ancient Monument and lies in a tranquil setting on the west bank of the Larnaca Salt Lake, which appears to be an important site also in prehistory.
“Finikoudes” is the name given to the main strip of sand on the eastern coast of Larnaca. It translates literally to “small palm trees” referring to the line of palm trees planted back in 1922. It is considered one of the most famous beaches of southern Cyprus, around 600m long with fine grey sand. Finikoudes beach is conveniently centrally located and stretches alongside the city’s main promenade and the coastal road, Athenon Avenue. It has become known as the lively coastal promenade with an array of picturesque multi-coloured umbrellas, attracting large crowds both day and night.
Its shallow waters are flanked by the marina with its pier and fishing harbor on one side and a second pier and the Medieval Castle on the other. The organised coast has toilets, showers, changing rooms, sun-beds, umbrellas, dustbins, recycling bins and a beach bar. Relax with a book on the beach and then take in the nearby museums and historical sites, or simply wander into the city for shopping and restaurants.
After a relaxing walk in the beachfront of Finikoudes and a revitalized spirit you will find yourself at the end of the famous promenade. On your left you will be able to see the Djami Kebir Mosque which is one of the most well-known Mosque’s in Larnaca, not only because of its easy-to-access location but also because of the history hidden behind its existence.
You can find this mosque in the heart of the city and discover its many compartments scattered all around the lot. The two-story building is surrounded by big windows and its front is dominated by arches giving it a look that reminds something sacred and substantial. Enter the mosque and check out the columns and arches that divide the space in three parts. When you exit the building you will find a fountain that was built back in 1748 and discover its connection with the many wells and aqueducts constructed by Ebubekir Pasha which are of great length in the city. These wells were made in order for the people of the city to have access to fresh drinking water.
Meet a whole new Cyprus through its history. One of the places that can make that possible is the Larnaca district Archaeological Museum. If you find yourself in the center of the town do not hesitate to look for this museum as it is not that far from where you will be. The inauguration of the museum dates back in 1969 and it has since been enriching its content with more and more exhibitions and findings. Discover the history of Cyprus piece by piece and period by period. The rooms of the museum follow a chronological succession so that the visitor may have a more complete picture of the historical development of the city of Larnaca, Kition and Cyprus in general.
Larnaca is so much more than a sunlit summer paradise. There is history behind this beautiful town and you can discover it yourself. Ancient Kition is one of the most important parts of Larnaca’s history and you can find out more about it by visiting the historical sight. Kition was an ancient Greek city, kingdom of Cyprus and it was located where Larnaca is today.
Jan 11, 2019 ,
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