Larnaka’s Heritage Recognised by UNESCO
With its continuous history that spans over 10,000 years, the region of Larnaka is a rich tapestry of tradition and customs, and its stakeholders are committed to preserving and cherishing the authenticity that visitors love. As such, it is always wonderful news when these elements are recognised with the honour of being included in the UNESCO National Intangible Cultural Heritage List.
And 2015 ended on a high with the inclusion of Kataklysmos (Festival of the Flood), Livadia village basketry and Athienou village’s unique lace, all making the list, joining Lefkara and its village lace linens.
Kataklysmos is Larnaka’s biggest annual celebration and takes place 50 days after Easter on the Day of the Holy Ghost, which coincides with the Greek Pentecost. The entire Foinikoudes promenade is lined with stalls and activities for a week, whilst a premier programme of entertainment is held on the Seafront Stage and at Europe Square.
The village of Livadia is one of the few places on the island where a traditional form of basket making and weaving are still practised, and only a few women today are skilled in the particular art form. To coincide with its inclusion on the list, the village will open a Basketry Museum this year, which will preserve and showcase the folkart.
Whilst Athienou village is more commonly known for its bread making, it is also the home of some special lace techniques known as ‘Venis’ lace (or ‘pittotes’) and Athienou Lace (known as ‘oloplouma’). These differ from Lefkara lace linens and are only made in Athienou.
We look forward to more of Larnaka’s intangible cultural heritage making the list in 2016!