Kourion was an important city-kingdom in antiquity and stands as one of the most impressive archaeological sites in Cyprus. Its theatre – located on the southern end of the abrupt hill on which the city is built – is of great significance.
The theatre was constructed at the end of the 2nd century BC, but took its current dimensions during the 2nd century AD. Consisting of a semicircular orchestra that is surrounded by seats of the cavea (subterranean cells), it was enclosed to the south by the building of the scaenae frons (façade) that must have reached the height of the cavea, though today only the foundations remain.
On either side of the stage were two vaulted parodoi (corridors) from where the audience entered the theatre. The theatre could seat up to 3,500 spectators.
In the beginning of the 3rd century AD modifications were made, and the theatre was transformed into an arena that was used for fights with wild animals. At the end of the 3rd century AD, the arena spectacles declined and the theatre reassumed its proper purpose.
Excavations began in 1933, conducted by the University of Pennsylvania, whilst many other University Archaeological Missions – as well as the Cyprus Department of Antiquities – continued the excavations.
Today, it is the scene of many cultural activities and theatrical performances, especially during the summer season.
Region: Lemesos (Limassol)
Address: Kourion, 19km west of Lemesos on the road towards Pafos (Paphos)
Contact No: Tel: +357 25 934 250
Operating Hours: September 16 – April 15, daily: 08.30 – 17:00
April 16 – September 15, daily: 08:30 – 19:30
Operating Period: All year round.
Closed on Christmas Day, New Year’s Day and Easter Sunday (Greek Orthodox).
Entrance Fee: €4,50
For organised groups consisting of more than 10 persons there is a 20% reduction on the entry fees.
The Department of Antiquities can issue special entry cards for all its museums and ancient monuments: One (1) day entry cards – €8,50, three (3) day entry cards – €17,00, seven (7) day entry cards – €25,00.
Disabled Access: Partly accessible.
Courtesy of the CTO