Places Of Interest In Cyprus

Being an island with such a varied and interesting history, there are many, many places to explore and delve into the past. There are a wealth of archaeological sites, museums, castles, monasteries and old Cypriot churches, all are well worth the visit.
Entrance costs
vary but most are either free of charge or at a nominal cost. It is an island of diversity where potatoes
grow in the rich, fertile soil of the east and yet
bananas are abundant on the many plantations in
the west.
Throughout Cyprus, the typically Mediterranean landscape is still blessed with the timeless beauty of antiquity. There are crusader fortresses framed by tall cypress trees,
Greco-Roman theatres carved out of cliffs and
Byzantine monasteries perched on mountaintops.

Sophisticated cities successfully balance the ancient and modern. The capital, Lefkosia (Nicosia), is surrounded by Venetian walls with heart-shaped bastions, Larnaka, site of the major international airport, is also home to St. Lazarus Church and the crypt of the eponymous saint resurrected by Christ.

Near the harbour at Pafos are the Roman floor mosaics of the Houses of Aion, Achilles and Dionysus their depictions of mythological scenes amazingly well preserved.

A visit to local wineries enables you to sample and savour the produce of the islands vineyards.|
Ayia Napa Ayia Napa was originally a small fishing village and has become a major tourist centre. Famous for its nightlife, Agia Napa is determined to maintain its popularity in this area. This is the resort for fun in the sun!
Families haven't been forgotten. Huge strides have been taken to make it a place that caters for all the family. With some of the best beaches on the island it's easy to have fun with a bucket and spade, building sand castles! All types of water sports can be found to cater for all enthusiasts.
The interesting medieval monastery right in the heart of Agia Napa has a 16th century church partially cut into the rock and boasts an ancient sycamore tree, at the south gate, believed to be 600 years old.

Argaka/Pomos On the north coast just a ten minute drive from Polis lie the villages of Argaka and, further north east, Pomos. During the summer months music lovers can visit the tiny local taverna. This enjoys spectacular views of the bay and entertains with a variety of jazz and other popular music.
Argaka has a lovely picnic area adjacent to the beach and is a perfect way to spend a day relaxing in the shade of the trees. The original houses, in the old part of the village, were built with hewed limestone or with igneous pebbles from the stream running through the village. Upper Argaka stands upon a slope with excellent views towards the sea and of Paphos forest. The east part of the village has officially been deemed as a region of natural beauty. Several streams flow down to the sea, the largest being the Makounta upon which the Argaka dam was constructed.
Pomos is a small fishing village with stunning inland views of the Troodos mountains. A small, new harbour has made it possible to take boat trips along this scenic coastline.

Nicosia Nicosia, (Lefkosia) the capital of Cyprus remains a divided city since the Turkish occupation of the north in 1974. The old city within the 400 year old Venetian walls is a maze of narrow streets with arts, handicrafts and traditional workshops working alongside modern shopping areas and up-market restaurants. Much of this is for pedestrians only. Surrounding the walls is the busy, modern metropolis. Here you find the modern city with its restaurants, hotels and gardens blending with the fine examples of colonial buildings. The old and new are linked through the central Eleftheria Square.
Nicosia is home to many museums, most linked to the distant past but some refer to a more recent history of British rule and of the Turkish invasion. This is a fascinating city to wander and the local Cyprus Tourist Organisation provide free of charge maps to ensure that nothing is missed.
Petra Tou Romiou Aphrodites Rock is one of the most famous spots in Cyprus. It lies between Paphos and Limassol just off the main highway. The name comes from the tale of the Byzantine hero Dighenis who, the legend goes, threw huge rocks at invaders to destroy their ships. The name literally means Rock of the Greek. This is the romantic place where, according to mythology, Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love and Beauty, rose from the water and was born to the world. This was her place of worship. Pafos was the name given to the daughter of Venus (Aphrodite). The whole area is steeped in legend and a visit at sunset is an ideal photo opportunity.
Tombs of the Kings Just on the edge of the town of Paphos are the old cemeteries. A part of this incredibly large necropolis has been excavated and is known as Tombs of the Kings. The impressive appearance of the tombs and the heavy Doric style contributed to the naming of the site. It was used as a burial ground from the 3rd century BC up to the 3rd century AD and was used by persecuted Christians, as a place of refuge, long after. The modern day excavation started in 1977 and has uncovered 3 very large tomb complexes and the investigation of many smaller tombs.
Akamas National Park The western tip of Cyprus is an area of breathtaking, rugged beauty. It is only accessible to 4 wheel drive vehicles and many tracks can be very tricky to manoeuvre. The best way to get to know this park is to explore on foot on the official trails with bottles of water, a sun screen and sturdy footwear. The results are fabulous.
This area of undeveloped wilderness comes alive in the springtime with over 530 species of plants, many of them orchids, providing a blaze of colour. Visit Fontana Amoroza, the pool at the tip of the peninsular. It is said that if you taste the water here, every woman and every girl is more desirable than on any place on earth.
Take a walk up the splendid Avakas gorge, where tree roots are visible high above you. Visit "turtle beach" Lara Bay where there is a turtle sanctuary and turtles come to lay their eggs year after year. Under the close supervision of marine biologists, Lara Bay has the most successful breeding program for the green back and loggerhead turtles in the eastern Mediterranean.
Troodos Mountains When Cyprus reaches its highest temperatures during the hot summer months there is nothing better than a day, or two, discovering Troodos. Troodos is located toward the western area of Cyprus. The high altitude refreshes with crystal clear air. They reach an altitude of over 1950 metres. They have picturesque villages, many with their own specialised local handicraft or even a locally distilled spirit. There are many fascinating churches and monasteries with ten Byzantine churches on the UNESCO list of cultural treasures. The most famous monastery is Kykko with its wealth of gold adorning the walls and high ceilings. Park the car and go for a stroll through the pine scented forest and discover a silent world.
Lefkara To the north between the towns of Limassol and Larnaca lies the traditional village of Lefkara with its white washed walls and cobbled streets. For centuries the women have sat out in the shade and hand made lace and hand stitched painstakingly intricate embroidery. No two designs are ever the same. Loukoumia (Cypriot delight) is also made here. There are two Lefkaras about 1km apart, Kato and Pano, take care not to miss one!
Omodos Located on the southern hills of Troodos lies the village of Omodos. This is the largest of the Krassochoria wine villages. Part of the village has been imaginatively restored to allow visitors to see and feel the essence of village life. Although created for the tourist it has been well thought out. It's now possible to go inside the old stone houses and see the corn mills, see the wine presses and see how they make the local spirit, Zivinir. Double distilled from every part of the grape and vine, local zivinir is drunk straight from the freezer and is said to cure all! You can see traditional Cypriot kitchens with their old clay ovens and venture down in the cellars and sample the local wine. The village also has its own Folk museum.
Coral Bay Coral Bay is just a 15 minute drive from Paphos and close to the Akamas National parkland. The resort has grown around the famous Coral Bay beach. This is one of the longest and finest stretches of golden sand in the area. It is a developing resort and most activities are centred either on the beach or on the main Coral Bay Strip. This is an ideal resort for the young, elderly and families with something for all. Concerts on the beach, both classical and popular music are always an attraction. All forms of watersports are to be found.
The main "strip" has numerous shops, bars, restaurants and with the newly opened nightclub activities can last until the early hours. A regular economical bus service can take you to the heart of Paphos within 20 minutes.
Larnaca On the south east of Cyprus is the fast expanding small city, Larnaca. It hosts the busiest airport on the island and the second largest port. The atmospheric old town is alive and bustling with shoppers. It has a pedestrian area, Zenon Kitieos, with many bars and restaurants. Visit the 17th century church of St.Lazarus with its own Byzantine museum.
Down at the waterfront pay a visit to the medieval museum in the grounds of Larnaka fort and have a leisurely stroll along the palm lined promenade to the marina. Here you will find yachts from all over the Mediterranean. The large pink flamingos return to the salt lake area of Larnaca every year and visitors flock to see them soaring in the sky.
Latchi Latchi the place where the land meets the sea, the stunning mountain range of the Akamas National park drop down to crystal clear waters as far as the eye can see. A village where old meets new in perfect harmony, fishing boats laden with nets side by side the pleasure boats in the lovely marina.

Watersports and diving huts divide the walkways from the array of local tavernas, restaurants and chic cafes. Local children play and dive in the water as the boats are set up for the next catch of the day. Cuisine along the marina is local, international and seafood which will satisfy anyone’s palette. Small shops and Kiosks are dotted around ideal for picking up a souvenir or just a cold refreshing drink.

Just along from the marina is a shingle beach where you can be adventurous with the watersports facilities, go diving with P.A.D.I certified divers or simply soak up the sun in this Mediterranean delight. In the evening there are some lively bars and cafes to wile the night away with a cool refreshment.

Limassol The south coast resort of Limassol (Lemesos) is the islands largest resort. It has a largest port and from here it is possible to take mini cruises to Egypt, Israel the Middle East. Built between the two ancient towns of Amathounta and Kourion it is the centre of the Cypriot wine making trade. It is a lively resort with a fun loving reputation and the best night life on the island. The annual wine festival, the carnival and drama festival, to name but a few, are all held here. Try to experience some of the plays and international opera performances at the ancient amphitheatre.
The busy St Andrews street/Makarios avenue area has shopping of all sorts from international designers with chic boutiques and chain stores to local market traders.
There are many places to visit here. Try Kolossi castle which has legends of Richard the Lionheart and Crusader tales. Ladys Mile beach, Governors beach and many others ensure that water sport activities are plentiful.
Paphos Paphos was the old capital of Cyprus. The upper part of the town with its myriad of shops and local market is characterised by its classical type buildings. The lower part of Paphos (Kato Paphos) is a popular tourist area with many attractions. The harbour with its medieval fort has a variety of boat trips and is a scenic spot to enjoy a coffee or evening meal and watch the world pass by. The amazing mosaic floors of the House of Dionyssos are to be found just a two minute walk away.

Nightlife in Paphos can be anything you want it to be. The main area of late night clubs, and the more noisy, tend to be clustered together so that they can be easily accessible (or avoided!).

There are many stretches of beach in Paphos and almost all have a large variety of water sports.
Peyia In the hills overlooking Coral Bay is the village of Peyia (Pegiea). The village square still retains that old-fashioned feel with the village spring at the heart. All local festivals revolve around this square and Peyia is well known for its display of plays and concerts with international celebrities appearing. There are a number of traditional tavernas with excellent local fayre, as well as restaurants with a more international cuisine. The pretty municipal gardens make it a very popular venue for weddings to take place for overseas visitors.
Pissouri Pissouri is in two halves. Pissouri village is set on the side of the hill and has an authentic character, with its cobbled streets and traditional tavernas. Pissouri bay is a golden sand/shingle beach with white stone cliffs and fresh shimmering waters.
Just a short drive down, through the vineyard strewn countryside, from the main Paphos/Limassol highway, it is an ideal place to relax on the beach but be within easy reach of the larger resorts. Tavernas and restaurants set alongside the beach offer a variety of dishes, sea food meze being a favourite. Pissouri is a very short drive from two golf courses and the famous Rock of Aphrodite (Petra tou Romiou). Here, it is said, is the place where the goddess of beauty and love emerged from the waves. An "absolute must" spot for the romantics and a perfect evening sunset photograph.
Polis Polis is a small town, 37 km from Paphos on the northwest coast. It is still essentially a village with a pedestrian only village square. Children happily play around the small fountain while parents relax with a coffee and while away the hours. There are numerous tavernas and restaurants in and around the square. Its full name is Polis tis Chrysochous which means "City of the Golden Land" after the fertile land that surrounded the area. Polis retains a laid back, calm and relaxed pace and atmosphere. From the centre of Polis its only a ten minute stroll to the local beach.
Protaras The tourist area of Protaras stretches 16 kilometres long and is divided into several resorts of Konnos Bay, Green Bay, Protaras Main Centre, Pernera and Kapparis dotted along the long sandy coastline. The tourist area of Protaras stretches 16 kilometres long and is divided into several resorts of Konnos Bay, Green Bay, Protaras Main Centre, Pernera and Kapparis dotted along the long sandy coastline. In all resorts can be found numerous souvenir shops, bars, restaurants and cafés. The nightlife in Protaras tourist area is more suited to families, although a couple of night clubs can be found in the centre, it makes it an ideal choice of resort for families looking for a relaxing holiday. There are countless sandy beaches all along the Protaras coast from Fireman's Beach in Kapparis, Kalamies Beach in Pernera, Flamingo Beach as well as Fig Tree Bay in the main centre out to the popular Green Bay Beach and further afield, Konnos Bay at Cape Greko. An excellent choice of watersports can be found on almost all of the beaches ranging from Paragliding for the more adventurous, Jet Skis, as well as fun rides on the "Banana Boat" or "Doughnut".
St Georges/Sea Caves This area lies just a few kilometres to the west of Coral Bay. This is generally a rugged, unspoilt stretch of coast which, although development has appeared, retains a natural beauty. The sea caves area is rich in legend and folklore. There are tales of lovers leaping over the cliffs to spend eternity together! This isn't to be recommended as bathing along this stretch of coast can be hazardous. The small fishing village of St George has its own little harbour and bathing here, in the sheltered harbour, is perfect for those who wish to have a calmer atmosphere than that of Coral Bay. There are just a handful of charming tavernas with seafood, very much, their speciality.
Chloraka Chloraka has a small man-made beach which is popular with both visitors and locals, where the sea is marvellously clear, blue and inviting. The beach is protected by a breakwater that makes it a great swimming spot. For a major wow factor you can watch a gorgeous sunset over the sea while strolling along the scenic coastal path, if you can tear yourself away from the pool, your villa at Chloraka is an excellent base for exploring. You are right on a bus route – large, comfortable, air-conditioned buses run every 15 minutes from Coral Bay to Paphos harbour and town. You will soon understand why Paphos has been designated a World Heritage Site, as the whole area is so steeped in antiquity that you can hardly move for ancient ruins, tombs, mosaics, temples and churches, museums and basilicas! You don’t need to know much about history or architecture to appreciate the very special atmosphere here. When you return to Chloraka to relax in the evening, you have a good choice of restaurants, with staff who will make a huge fuss of any children in your party! (Your kids may forsake McDonalds’ forever - beware!)
George's Ranch George’s ranch is located in the picturesque area of Sea Caves. The fully equipped stable yard has 30 stables and 14 paddocks, large practise arena, Tack Room and Shower Room for the horses. The experienced staff are always on hand to provide training or advice on horse management. Trekking around the area of sea caves is an ideal way to see the stunning scenery.
Paphos Mosaics The Paphos mosaics situated close to the Paphos Castle and harbour, the remarkable mosaics in the Houses of Dionysos, Theseus and Aion, are beautifully preserved after 16 centuries under the soil. The mosaic floors of these elite villas dating from the 3rd to the 5th century are among the finest in the Eastern Mediterranean. They mainly depict scenes from Greek mythology. The Paphos Mosaics are one of the most historic sites on the island of Cyprus. They are considered to be the finest mosaics in the Eastern Mediterranean.
Saint Paul's Pillar Saint Paul’s pillar is located at the church of Agia Kyriaki close to the harbour in Paphos. It is built on the site of an ancient Basilica, which dates back to the 4th Century AD. At this time it was a 7 sided church with 2 apses to the east of the central aisle. It is said that Saint Paul came to Paphos along with Mark the Evangelist and was tortured here on what is known as St Paul's Pillar where he received 41 lashes for preaching Christianity.
Mediterranean One Mediterranean One glass bottom boat is docked at Latchi Marina. The half day cruises take you out along the Akamas peninsular passing Aphrodite Baths and the isle of St. George, you will have a chance to swim or snorkel in the crystal clear waters of Blue Lagoon, and drinks and fruit will be served complimentary. Snacks are available to purchase on-board. The boat boasts covered seating area, a small sun deck and toilets as well as the glass bottom area.
Paliomonastrio Park Paliomonastiro is located in the foothills of Peyeia in the vicinity of the ancient chapel. Set in extensive grounds with large lawned areas, and children’s play area. There is also a Taverna where you can order traditional meze, Cypriot cuisine, or just a cool drink to sit by the water features and decks.
Kissonerga Kissonerga is a village about 8 km from Paphos, the last village before reaching Coral Bay. Along the coastline you will find an array of shops, mini markets, cafes and restaurants The village Centre envelopes the Church of the Transfiguration where the icons date back to 1770 close by from this church are the ruins of a tiny chapel dedicated to Saints Zinovia and Filonilli, who were said to have accompanied St. Paul to Cyprus.
Santa Marina Plage Santa Marina Plage is a new purpose built project situated in a fabulous sea front location in the village of Ayia Marina approx. 14km Northeast of Polis. Comprising multiple amenities consisting of bars, kiosks and a child’s play area to name but a few, and with exceptional views across the Med, it is an ideal setting for recreation and relaxation in beautiful, unspoilt surroundings.
Profitis Elias Although modern, this church was built in the Byzantine style to replace a small room that was being used as a church. The church of Profitis Elias is named after the Prophet Elijah who featured in the old testament of the bible. It is well worth the walk to the church and the climb to the top (about 100 steep stone steps) as from the top there is a breathtaking view of Protaras and the surrounding countryside. In the evenings the church is lit up.
Protaras Centre Protaras is a predominantly tourist resort located on the east coast of Cyprus, it has clear sky-blue waters, several coves and numerous sandy beaches, the most well-known of which is Fig Tree Bay. Once on the ‘strip’ you can find an array of cosmopolitan restaurants, pubs, coffee shops and most amenities. Protaras is reputed to cater for mainly for families and Cypriot tourism. Cape Greco is a 10 minute drive from the center of Protaras, and is considered one of the most beautiful places on the island. Protaras is also referred to as "the land of windmills" and you will see many dotted around still. Ayia Napa is located about 10 km southwest.
Paralimni Approximately 10km northwest of Protaras, Paralimni is the largest town in the local area with a population of over 11,000. Paralimni (translated in to English as 'by the lake') takes its name from a neighbouring stretch of water that rises in the winter months. A pleasant town with a sprinkling of shops, restaurants, bars and cafes, Paralimni offers a welcome escape from the tourist melee of the nearby resorts. Three churches dominate the centre of the town, the most notable of which – Panayia – contains an interesting ecclesiastical museum. An open air theatre, attractive gardens and fountains can also be found just beyond the town square.
Pernera Situated on the northern outskirts of Protaras, Pernera is a small coastal resort popular with couples and families seeking a holiday destination away from the hustle and bustle of Ayia Napa and Protaras. Ideal for beach holidays, Pernera is less than 1km from three small sandy beaches that are quieter and less crowded than their shoreline counterparts in Protaras.

The centre of Pernera has a selection of shops, cafés, bars and restaurants to visit as well as a small but active harbour from where boat trips can be taken. Regular bus services are also available from the centre of the resort, offering transport to the livelier Protaras strip and Paralimni’s wide assortment of shops.

Cape Greko About 4km to the south of Protaras, the rocky coast of Cape Greco marks lands’ end at the southeast tip of the island. Patrolled by a lighthouse and military installations, the furthest limits of the cape are strictly out of bounds. Further inland however, the cape’s idyllic clear waters are a perfect retreat for snorkelers or swimmers who want to avoid the busy beaches of nearby Protaras.
Ayia Thekla Taking its name from an ancient nearby church, Ayia Thekla is a small coastal village south of Protaras. A nice setting that is still relatively undeveloped, the area has a small sandy beach and a tiny nearby island. Such attractive surroundings, coupled with the close proximity to Protaras, Paralimni and Ayia Napa have seen Ayia Thekla grow in to an up and coming residential area. Ayia Thekla’s synonymously named church is considered one of the oldest landmarks in the region, dating back to the middle ages. According to local records, the monument suffered severe damages over the centuries at the hands of foreign conquerors.
Ayia Marina Ayia Marina is a small coastal village approx. 14km North East of Polis town centre.
Following the coast road out of Polis towards Pomos with the beautiful Chrysochou Bay on your left hand side, you will pass through Argaka before arriving at Ayia Marina.
This quiet little village has a Co-op Bank, a couple of small supermarkets and a bakery. There is also a new beach front area called Santa Marina Plage which benefits from a couple of restaurants, a kiosk and other activities. The large Papantoniou supermarket for grocery shopping can be found in Polis.

Ayia Marina Beach The beach is mainly shingle with areas of fabulous rock pools dotted about and is a perfect setting to relax and enjoy the sound of the Mediterranean Sea lapping at the shore.
Agios Nikolaos Harbour Agios Nikolaos harbour is sited below the small church of Agios Nikolaos. The bay is lined with bright coloured fishing and commercial boats. Boat rides and fishing trips can be made from the harbour.

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