2008 News Archive - Holidays - Flood of celebration in Cyprus

27 04 2007

June is generally viewed as the best time to visit the beautiful Mediterranean island of Cyprus, in a large part due to the fact that it is in June that Cypriots celebrate Kataklysmos.

Also known as the Festival of the Flood, this celebration coincides with the Greek Pentecost and sees unbridled festivities break out in all Cyprus' many seaside towns.

The festival gets started with a ceremony during which a priest goes to the harbour holding a cross, which after prayers he then throws into the sea.

Enthusiastic swimmers then dive into the sea to rescue the cross and the diver that retrieves it is given the priest's blessing and a sovereign.

This is a signal for the real party to begin.

Entertainment is not in short supply during the festival with a plethora of boat races, traditional dances, swimming races, wrestling and the singing of the tchattista, where groups of singers roast each other with improvised verses.

The festival also involves the celebrants dousing each other with copious amounts of water – so if you attend, expect to get wet.

During June, Cyprus experiences long, hot days and balmy nights, making it the perfect month for tourists to visit.

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