When the heat of summer gets too much, it’s time to head off into the hills and that’s just what we did recently. We went to have a walk along the Kaledonian Falls footpath near Platres and enjoy the cooler mountain air. The falls are easy to find but if you want to have more detail you can follow the directions below. Equally if you have something to add to our report please contact us to tell us all about it or add a comment below.
Once you have arrived there is a small parking area at the start of the trail so you may be lucky to get a spot. There is also space to park on the verge of the main road. Another alternative is to park in Platres itself and stroll up to the start of the walk.
You will notice the start of the footpath to the left – just start heading up. It begins as a concreted wide path but soon deteriorates. It is quite a rough track at times so if you have mobility difficulties it may be that you want to sit this one out. Have a look at the photos we took to get a feel of the track to see if it is right for you.
The path leads upwards for a while and then starts to drop down to the river Kryos Potamos (the Cold River). The shade of the trees meant that although we weren’t as cool as cucumbers, we certainly weren’t sweating our socks off! In fact it really was pleasantly cool. Occasionally the tree canopy thinned and you could feel the sun again to remind you it was August.
You could start to hear the river as we got nearer to it. This river, unlike many in Cyprus, always flows throughout the year. The path now follows the river switching from side to side depending on the steepness of the bank. When we first did this walk a few years ago, you used the rocks in the river as stepping stones to cross it. Now, there are proper bridges to make it easier to cross. That said, using the bridges didn’t seem half so much fun as waiting for your friend to misjudge a jump to cross and ending up with a wet, soggy pair of shoes!
The path continues for a while like this. We took our time to just stand, listen and stare at times. There is always something to see – little fish darting around in the river, butterflies and birds in the air and lots of unusual plant/tree leaves and bark.
Eventually we could hear the waterfall itself and in a short while we could see the Kaledonian Falls in all their glory. Considering this was August and we have had a dry winter, there was quite a lot of water coming down. In the winter I should imagine there is going to be quite a torrent. There were some people who had gone into the water but you could tell the river was accurately named by the squeals and shouts as they went in and realised it really was cold water cascading over them.
At this point you have to decide if you are heading on up to Troodos and then getting back to the start point via the main road or going back the same way you came. We always choose the latter, so after a while of soaking up the majesty of the waterfall, we headed back down the path.
It takes us about an hour to walk up to the waterfalls but we tend not to hang around so much on the way back. This is mainly due to the fact that lunch is usually calling us but also we tend not to do so much gawping! As we went down the track more people were on the way up. My advice is to start prompt in the morning (we were there just before 10) so that you are not caught up with the crowds. The Kaledonian Falls is a popular trail and can get busy which to my mind takes away some of the magic. It also means that you get a decent table at the Psilo Dendro Restaurant before the hordes descend (but more of that later in another post).
We like this walk and judging by the number of walkers, lots of other people do too. Let us know what you think of the walk by adding a comment. Perhaps you have a favourite part of the walk or a top tip to maximise people’s enjoyment of the Kaledonian Falls… please tell us about it or add a comment below.
We got to the Kaledonian Falls by taking the B8 up from Limassol – at the motorway roundabout follow the signs for TROODOS. As you head up into the hills you go through some foothill villages/towns such as Doros and Trimiklini. As you get higher the views get more impressive but the road gets more windy so the driver needs to concentrate! Eventually you will see a sign for Platres. If you plan on parking in the village follow this road then at the T junction with Johns Taverna turn left and there is a free carpark just down the road. If you want to chance finding a space at the start of the footpath carry on the main road for a bit further. You will then see a sign for Pano Platres on the left – the Kaledonian Falls is opposite this on the right hand side of the road.