How many people does it take to change a light bulb? It’s a question that often leads to a funny or philosophical answer but Paphos in Cyprus has its own version of the question in the form of ‘How long does it take to remove a shipwreck?’ or two, as the case stands, for Paphos seems to have given up on one and is seemingly taking its time to decide on the second.
One is reminded of Oscar Wilde’s ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ where, paraphrasing Lady Bracknell;
‘To have one shipwreck to deal with may be regarded as a misfortune, to have two looks like carelessness.’ Paphos’ first shipwreck came over seventeen years ago when, allegedly, a drunk captain managed to allow a storm to carry his vessel slap bang into the middle of a 600m wide reef and deposit it in just over a metre of water. Conditions meant that it was impossible to salvage it and so it remains there to this day.
The latest shipwreck arrived on December 6th 2011 on another wild and stormy night. Sea Caves’ favourite tourist spot, Bar Oniro, was in for a late season tourist boom as the ship considerately entrenched itself on the rocks just in the line of sight of the bar and against the backdrop of the setting sun. Due to close in early December, the bar remained open for several more weeks serving coffees and stiff drinks to warm the cockles of those who came from far and wide in their Cyprus rental cars to see the latest wreck to visit the Island of Love.
Many say the rusting wreck of the Edbro III, registered in that utopia of shipping; Sierra Leone, spoils the view, whilst others say that it gives a nice contrast to all that natural beauty of one of the island’s mini wildernesses. No one seems sure of what it might have been carrying but amid the speculation of nuclear weapons, Afghan refugees, gold, diamonds and more, a less romantic view appears with other suggestions of a partial load of scrap metal bound from Limassol to Rhodes.
What seems to be the overriding question though is will it beat the record for the longest surviving ‘above water’ shipwreck or will the rather lackadaisical activity that surrounds it on a daily basis, ever lead to its removal ? For now though, Oniro’s, whose name translates from the Greek for ‘Dream’, are hoping that they never lose the dream tourist attraction on their doorstep by chance.
10 August 2015
We're not aware of any aeriel photos of the wreck so took the opportunity to snap this from the skies on arrival into Paphos. Only a snap from an iPhone (other mobile phones are available) through the hazy plane window, but shows the beautiful coastline and the shallow seas that clearly caught out the ship here (the lighter shades of blue indicate shallow waters).