Limassol Castle

In the city of Limassol lies the Medieval Castle of Limassol near the old harbour in the heart of the hisotorical centre. The present building dates to the period of Turkish rule, however, the oldest reference to the castle dates to 1228 and refers either to the old Byzantine or its substitute in the early phases of the Lusignan period. According to Etienne Lusignan the original castle was built by Guy Lusignan in 1193 and was surrendered to the Knights of Jerusalem in1308.


At the beginning of the 16th century, reconstruction of the castle was commenced due to the new intense earthquake which seriously damaged the castle in 1491.
The gothic arches of the underground chamber and the openings on the side walls may be assigned to this period.

Limassol and the castle were captured by the Turks in 1538, but after the battle was won, the Venetian governor of Cyprus, Bragadino, decided to demolish the castle in order to avoid it being recaptured.
Its final destruction came after the earthquakes of 1567/8.

In 1576 the castle was taken over by the Ottomans who incorporated the remains in the new Ottoman fort which strengthened its walls measuring 2m thick.

The underground chamber and the first floor were transformed into prison cells and remained in use until 1950.