The rugged Cape Greco National Park on the stunning east coast of Cyprus is, hands down, one of the most fascinating areas of natural beauty to explore on the island, with its spectacular sea caves, and rocky headland laced with sandy coves. That’s not to forget the stunning nature trails to traverse and the park’s landmark whitewashed church to ogle at.

 

 

But there’s one building in the park that often puzzles visitors, with many having little idea what it actually is.  Cutting edge in design with a minimalist exterior that blends into the rocky environment – matching the colours of the surrounding red oxidized earth – the Cape Greco Environmental Centre calls out for attention due to its sheer simplicity and challenging groundbreaking design. With the one storey geometric container between two gabion walls perfectly reflecting the surrounding landscape without using concrete or earth excavation, the building and its three architects were awarded the 2016 Cyprus State Architecture Award.

 

Photo: A. Aristododelous Construction 

 

 

But it’s not just the striking exterior that stands as a talking point. Step inside the building and you’ll have the chance to familiarise yourselves with information on the land and marine ecosystems of the Cape Greco peninsula.  A great place for the whole family to enjoy, the interior comprises exhibition spaces, three marine aquariums, a small café and more.

 

Photos: Nireas International Water Research Centre 

 

 

Where?  Cape Greco National Park, Ayia Napa. Open Monday – Friday 10am – 3pm. Tel: +357 23- 814412. Adults: 2 euro. 6-12 years: 1 euro. Under 6: free. 

 

Cover photo: Charis Solomou