Machairas Monastery is situated at an altitude of 870 metres on the slopes of Mount Kionia in a picturesque depression of the Machairas Mountains.
It houses the miraculous icon of Panagia of Machairas, attributed to Agios Loukas the Evangelist. Legend has it that an unknown hermit brought the icon to Cyprus secretly from Asia Minor during the years of iconoclasm (8th - 9th centuries). The hermit resorted to a cave on the mountains of Machairas.
After his death, the holy icon remained there until around 1145, when blessed with divine grace the hermits Neofytos and Ignatios, reached the spot and found the cave covered with bushes. In order to approach the icon, the two hermits had to cut the bushes with the help of a knife given to them by divine hand. Thus, the icon took the name ‘Machairiotissa’ (the word machairi in Greek means knife) or, more simply, of Machaira. The monastery of the same name was later built on the same spot and is one of three Cyprus monasteries that remain under the Patriarch's jurisdiction.
The brotherhood is extremely devout, keeping vows as strict as those of Mount Athos in Greece.
The monastery of Machaira has big estates of land acquired from donations dating the Frankish era. The three - nave church of the monastery was built between 1892 and 1900. Its wood - carved iconostasis was made in 1919 -1921 by Georgios Kyriakou from the village of Chrysida. The bell tower is 19 metres high and dates to 1900.
Thanks to a grant by the Anastasios G.Leventis Foundation, the monastery’s vestry in the basement was renovated. It consists of the monks’ original cells as well as stables and storage areas. It also houses a collection of old books and manuscripts, icons and other religious artefacts.
No photos or video - cameras are allowed within the monastery area.
Tel: +357 22 359 334, Fax: +357 22 359 333
Operating Hours: Open daily from 08:30 - 17:30 The monastery is open for group visits only on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 09:00 - 12:00 (Call in advance)
Operating Period: All year round