The title “European Capital of Culture” was designed to help bring the peoples of Europe closer together. This was the idea underlying its launch in June 1985 by the Council of Ministers of the European Union on the initiative of Melina Mercouri. Owing to the many visitors it has attracted, the title has since gone from strength to strength in Europe, and has a remarkable cultural and socio-economic impact.

Over the years, this event has evolved without losing sight of its primary objective: to highlight the richness and diversity of European cultures and the features they share, promote greater mutual acquaintance between European citizens, and encourage a sense of belonging to the same “European” community.

Why we have voted for Pafos?

Pafos claims the title “European Capital of Culture” for the year 2017 with determination and pride. The entire city is a birthplace of culture and it is listed in UNESCO’s World Heritage Site. The nature of Pafos radiates a primitive beauty, its people are innocent and simple, while the ancient values are revived and the local traditions are maintained in every corner of the city. Having not only its people in the centre of this effort, but also its modern multicultural reality, Pafos activates communities, bodies and organized groups, as it wants all the citizens to participate in this huge effort and it claims dynamically a future in Europe.


Pafos, proud of its candidacy, reinforces its participation with all means and recognizes that both the city and the entire island will have long-term benefits out of this project:

  • The creation of modern infrastructure city will ameliorate the image and the aesthetics of the city and it will turn Pafos into a modern and developed city.

  • The cultural events will be promoted in such a way that every citizen will feel that he/she participates in this effort.

  • The bonds with other European countries will be enhanced.

  • There will be a development of intercultural dialogue and European consciousness.

  • The city will be better known in Europe, thus it will gain recognition from other countries as well.