Geography & Geology


Cyprus lies at the south-east end of the Mediterranean and is the third largest Island after Sicily and Sardinia. The Island is 225km long (from the most eastern point to the most westerly point) and 94km wide at the widest point, the coastline is 853km. Although Cyprus cannot be described as mountainous, there are clearly defined areas covered with mountains; the most notable ranges are the Pentadaktylos (1023m) and the Troodos – the highest peak known as Mount Olympus (1951m). The only lakes on the Island are in fact salt lakes to be found in Larnaca and Limassol. 


Cyprus was probably connected with other areas of dry land in the neighboring continent. At some point in time, this area was submerged beneath the sea and buried beneath many thousands of feet of marine sediment at a great depth. This subsidence continued through to the Miocene era after which volcanic activity reversed the trend resulting in the land re-emerging from the sea and forming the Troodos range. Troodos was an island of volcanic rock which possibly formed the kernel of the Island. Further volcanic action led to the formation of the Pentadaktylos range. The turbulent geological history of the Island accounts for its wide variety of rocks. Volcanic, sedimentary, igneous and lime stones of different colours can be found close together on the surface thus giving the Cypriot landscape a continually changing appearance.