Last month I travelled to Cyprus to do some photography on behalf of Paphos Wine Tours. The company is expanding and improving and as part of that, they are rebranding and creating a new website and wanted some high quality images for the website to reflect the new direction of the brand. For several days I visited some of the fabulous wineries in the Paphos and Limassol areas taking photos as each winery is going to have a small section on the Paphos Wine Tours website.
I was told that one of the wineries we visited produces a wine named after a nearby village that was abandoned in the late 1960s so we decided to check it out as it would be a fascinating insight into historic and traditional Cyprus while being of interest to visitors because of the wine made in its memory. I love doing so many different genres of photography (for fun as well as for my work!) so it was really enjoyable to do this kind of documentary 'street' photography and I got to see a side of Cyprus that I haven't experienced before in my many trips.
Originally there was two villages situated very close to each other called Statos and Agios (Saint) Fotios which got hit by an earthquake in the 1960s making it very unsafe to live there. The villagers were encouraged to relocate and thus decided to combine their villages together. They began moving in the early 70s and called the new village Statos-Agios Fotios, a village which is closeby and still thriving today.
Twice a year, the chapel of Agios Fotios and Anikitos in the abandoned village of Agios Fotios reopens for services and some livestock is still kept in the old village, tended to by villagers who return to check on them. It cuts quite a desolate picture looking up at the ruined houses that are dotted along the hillside but the atmosphere within the ruins remains very peaceful. I'm hoping to return later in the year and explore it in more depth as we didn't have too much time to look around on this particular trip but it was a very memorable stop during the day!