The ancient cemetery in the Makronissos area dates from 323 BC- 324 AD. The graves were used for at least 650 years and the first one dates from 2.300 years ago!
I’ve visited the tombs many times, but this time I was actually thinking that many human beings were buried here, a few meters from the sea…
Between Makronissos Beach and Dome Beach
Although the site is just a few meters away from one of the best beaches in Ayia Napa, not many venture to visit.
The ancient cemetery is fenced, but the entrance is free any time of the day. Or night, actually…
You will find here a few tombs, dug in stone, very well-preserved.
They just needed 3 months to dif out the ancient cemetery
The official excavation at Makronissos cemetery began in November 1989 and it took just 3 months to reveal all 19 tombs. One of the sarcophagus discovered here you can see it at Thalassa Museum in Ayia Napa.
Unfortunately, the location was well known and it was the target of illegal digging since 1872. So, my guess is, we have no idea what was discovered before the official excavations.
What you will see here in the ancient cemetery
Because I am not an expert, I will just let you read what the official explanation says about this tombs:
“A typical tomb consists of a stepped dromos which leads to a rectangular stomion (entrance). The entrances were originally sealed with one large or two smaller calcarenite slabs. Most of the chambers are almost identical. They are all provided with a rectangular trench in the middle, slightly lower than the floor of the dromos and three benches at the slides of the chamber. The pyres found on the surface by the dromoi give evidence of the practicing of Greek burial customs.”
“The dead were placed in clay sarcophagi which were originally covered with three flat tiles.”
Although the oldest graves are dated 324 BC, the experts found evidence of religious activities here dating from 475 BC – and here we talk about a small sanctuary, situated very close to the burial site, where there were found some offerings dating from those years.