Holy Cross church (Kouka)

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The site of one of the first monasteries in Limassol, today only a beautiful church still stands in Kouka village, which is dedicated to the Holy Cross. It is located at the western end of the village and its foundation is estimated to date back to the years of Saint Helen (4th century A.D.).

The Holy Cross church is one of the few that are built in the shape of a perect cross. Originally, there was a typical dome in the center of the cross, which was probably destroyed after an earthquake, and now it features a gothic, crossed dome instead. The church is dated back in the years before Saint Helen arrived on the island. Items from previous historical eras have also been found in the area. This leads to the assumption that the church may be the oldest Christian temple in Cyprus.  

According to the tradition, Saint Helen visited the humble and poor monastery during her stay in Cyprus, and left parts of the Holy Wood, which are now found in the old cross that is kept in a glass case in the church. Right next to the Cross of Kouka, there is another Cross which also has a piece of the Holy Cross, donated by a Greek businessman, Constantinos Loullis, who singled out the little church due to its rare shape. What makes the church stand out are the awe-inspiring murals inside it, dating back to the 12th - 14th century and still intact.