The third season of the Hala Sultan Tekke Hinterland project took place during the last week of October and the first two weeks of November. During these three weeks, the team collected archaeological surface data from two distinct geographical regions: at the coastal plain of Larnaca, to the west of the salt lake, and at the lower foothills of the Troodos mountain range.
The HST Hinterland project focusses on research of human-environment interactions in the Tremithos and Pouzi river valleys, going from the mountainous inland all the way to the coastal plain of southeast Cyprus. The interfluvial region between the two rivers knows a long and rich history of human activity and harbours valuable insights into the diachronic evolution of metal production and international trade in the mediterranean world. The team comprised of twelve members included Ralf Vandam (project leader and fieldwalking coordinator), Jan Coenaerts (project co-leader and Cypriot archaeology expert), Karin Nys (material study coordinator and material specialist), Polte De Weirdt (senior fieldwalker and PhD candidate), as well as six students from the Vrije Universiteit Brussel and two students from the University of Cyprus.
The team successfully gathered data covering an area of around 133.4 hectares, resulting in a cumulative total of 345.6 hectares over the three-year span since the project's initiation in 2021. Material specialists have examined the retrieved archaeological material, and the next steps involve comprehensive analysis to delineate human activities in the broader region encompassing the salt lake and the lower Troodos area.