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Cyprus Scents and Colours

8 June, 2015

Just as a piece of music can trigger a memory of an event or a past love, the heady smell of the 'Pakistani Night' will bring back that first visit. ?

Making a first acquaintance with Cyprus on a still summer night can often be the first intoxicating breath of a scent that will conjure up that first meeting whenever and wherever it is next encountered. Just as a piece of music can trigger a memory of an event or a past love, the heady smell of the Pakistani Night (Cestrum nocturnum) will bring back that first visit. 

So many times when visitors to Cyprus make subsequent returns they will reach their destination, stand among the flowers of their chosen resort and deeply breathe in the night air, and they will say, “This is the scent of Cyprus”. Of all the heady smells that Cyprus has to offer, the Pakistani Night is the one that is most evocative of a time and place, though coming a close second is the jasmine blossom that scents the air all day long from its fronds of delicate white flowers that can resemble a bridal veil. Time was when the elderly women in the villages would make jasmine flower garlands which they would sometimes sell, or give to the favoured few.

The colours of Cyprus are all brash and bold, and as with all the Mediterranean countries they display throughout the year the vivid reds, purples and orange coloured blossoms of Hibiscus, Bougainvillea and Oleander. Everywhere will be geraniums, trailing down walls or placed in pots outside doorways and filling every available space in a garden plot. These are the flowers that bloom everywhere, they are tolerant of drought and need little care during the long hot summer months. A little water and the reward is a riot of abundant colour all season long. Cyprus would not be Cyprus without these scents and colours.