St. Hilarion Castle

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The St. Hilarion Castle lies on the Kyrenia mountain range on the island of Cyprus. It was originally a monastery, named after a monk who allegedly chose the site for his hermitage. Later fortified by Byzantines, it formed the defense of the island with the castles of Buffavento and Kantara against arab pirates raiding the coast. Some sections were further upgraded under the Lusignan rule.

The castle has three divisions or wards. The lower ward had the stables and the living quarters for the men-at-arms. The church lies on the middle ward and the upper ward was reserved for the Royals.

Much of the castle was dismantled by the Venetians in the 15th century to reduce the upkeeping cost of garrisons.

St. Hilarion Castle was the inspiration for the Snow White castle in the Walt Disney film.


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