Troodos National Forest Park, CyprusPilot Areas
The National Forest Park (NFP) of Troodos is located at the center of Troodos range that extends from the northwest to the southeast part of Cyprus and covers an area of 9,009 ha. The lowest part of NFP of Troodos with an altitude of 700 m and the highest is Chionistra (or mount Olympos) peak at 1951 m.
The area of the NFP of Troodos is dominated by forest ecosystems of Pinus brutia, Pinus nigra ssp. pallasiana, Juniperus foetidissima and Quercus alnifolia in pure or mixed formations. Troodos N.F.P. hosts the largest number of plants, compared to any other area of Cyprus, but also the largest number of endemic plants. It has been designated as one of the 13 «Plant Diversity Hot Spots» in the Mediterranean.
The ecological importance of the NFP is comprised of several elements. (a) The variety of habitat types and their good-excellent conservation status. (b) The N.F.P. of Troodos has a very rich flora, 40 % of the total flora of Cyprus and 51% of the endemic species have been recorded on the site. Moreover, 9 % of the endemic plants of the island are local endemics to the site. (c) Five plant species accepted as new additions to Annex II, three of which are priority ones, occur in the Troodos NFP. (d) The fauna of the NFP of Troodos is particularly rich in total numbers as well as in rare species. (e) The relief and the topography of Troodos range are the main regulators of the climatic conditions of Cyprus, especially of the rainfall, and consequently of the water resources. (f) Troodos forms the core or foundation upon which the island of Cyprus is built. It is one of the best developed ophiolites in the world, a fact that has influenced considerably the ideas concerning the formation of oceanic crust and upper mantle of the earth. Therefore, the geology of the NFP of Troodos has a great scientific and educational value.
The NFP of Troodos is considered as the most important mountain resort in Cyprus providing many facilities, such as a ski club, visitors’ center, botanical gardens and accommodation. Troodos NFP is surrounded by Prodromos, Pedoulas, Kakopetria, Amiantos and Platres villages. At the periphery of the site there are two monasteries, Trooditissa and Panayia Trikoukkia and the church of Agios Nikolaos tis Stegis, which has been characterized a World Heritage.