Tombs of the Kings

Tombs of the Kings Ave 63, Chloraka, Cyprus

Simona Bertolaso



Siti Storici
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The Tombs of the Kings is a large necropolis lying about two kilometres north of Paphos harbour in Cyprus. In 1980, it was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site along with Paphos and Kouklia.
The Tombs of the Kings is a big necropolis and you can see there different types of underground tombs, carved out of solid rock, which date back to the 4th century BC, many of them feature Doric columns.
Firstly, a bit of a spoiler alert as actually there are no Kings buried here. The name comes from the grandeur and majesty of the vast burial ground. These underground tombs were considered the burial place of Paphitic aristocrats.
Some of the tombs, cut into the bedrock, feature Doric columns and even frescoed walls. Dating back as far as 300 BC, the tombs were used all during the Hellenistic and even Roman eras.
Historians believe their structure was heavily influenced by ancient Egyptian tradition, which called for the tombs for the dead to resemble houses they once lived in.

The seven tombs that have been excavated so far are scattered over a wide area; the most impressive is the third one, which has an open atrium below ground level, surrounded by columns. Other tombs resemble the catacombs of Rome, where niches built into the walls once held bodies.
The site is very impressive and is considered one of the must-see sites in Paphos.

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