An ideal Mediterranean holiday may sound far-fetched and heavy on the pocket, but once you give a thought to Cyprus, that dream vacation might just become a reality! Packed with timeless archaeological sites, stunning beaches, gorgeous coastal cities, and picturesque villages – the island country of Cyprus is the perfect place to experience culture, history – or to simply unwind!
The soothing sight of the glistening blue sea and the balmy weather have been drawing crowd in numbers, so why are you still here? We give you 6 incredible reasons to head for a Cyprus vacation, in case you need some more convincing.
The island of Cyprus is mere four hours away from the Middle East, it’s a wonderful destination for a quick weekend getaway or a week long vacation.
Best holiday destinations in Cyprus
1. Fall in love with the city life
An eclectic mix of the old and the new, the cities of Cyprus are definitely worth giving a shot. One of the oldest cities in the world, Larnaca has some of the best ancient Cyprus sites. The Byzantine church of Agios Lazaros, Al Kebir Mosque, and Larnaca Fortress are not to be missed while touring the city of Larnaca.
The capital city Nicosia is home to some of the most beautiful galleries, museums, and ancient monuments. Visit the iconic Cyprus Museum or take a tour of the Nicosia Municipal Arts Centre, or roam the famous Ledra Street – there is so much you can do in this awesome city.
2. Soak up some sun
The Mediterranean vibe will get to you once you head to the beaches of Cyprus. Swim in the sparkling water of Aphrodite Beach, it’s where the Greek goddess, Aphrodite is supposed to have emerged from the sea. Enjoy the beach side of Cape Greco and explore its sea caves; it is also a hot spot for divers. Do visit the Cape Greco National Forest Park while you there. The chalky white, sandy beach of Makronissos is quite a crowd puller as well. The family-friendly Coral Beach is another spotless beach and great for swimming. The bars and restaurants along the seaside adds to the vibrancy of the place. Looking for the best beaches in Cyprus? There are plenty of them to choose from!
3. Admire the scenic countryside
Cyprus holidays are incomplete without touring the traditional, picturesque villages. Just a few kilometres away from Paphos and Limassol, the village of Lofou is an exceptional beauty. Cobbled streets, plenty of natural beauty, and lots of quality wine – this village should definitely be on your bucket list.
One of the most beautiful villages of Cyprus, Kakopetria is surrounded by breathtaking landscape. It has well-preserved ancient chapels and churches, traditional architecture to admire, and iamatic springs (hot springs) that are century old and still in use. Polis Chrysochous, Platres, Lefkara, and Omodos are few other villages that are equally appealing and worth visiting.
4. Marvel at the heritage sites
With a country steeped in rich history, Cyprus is a treasure trove of UNESCO World Heritage listed sites. The town of Paphos is a haven for history buffs. Restored Roman villas with mosaics dating back to the 3rd century, Tomb of the Kings – a 3rd century built necropolis, and the Sanctuary of Aphrodite are a few archaeological sites that will leave you in awe. The Saint Hilarion Castle that lies on the Kyrenia mountain range is an absolute wonder. The climb to the top offers an unmatched view of the surroundings. The stunning castle which is now in ruins is associated with many urban myths and local legends.
The churches of Troodos village are definitely worth mentioning and are one of the unique places to visit in Cyprus. Painted between the 11th and 16th century, the splendour of these historical churches can be experienced once you visit them. Nine churches of this village have been given the status of UNESCO World Heritage, that’s quite a feat!
5. Relish the exotic food
The usage of fresh herbs and spices make the food of Cyprus healthy and tasty at the same time. Even today, the traditional recipes are brought in use to make the dishes. With Greek and Turkish influence, the cuisine is unique in its own little ways. Dinners mainly consists of appetizers, salads and dips, followed by a meat-based main dish, and end with dessert and a strong traditional coffee. Meze, Halloumim, Kebabs, Souvaki, there are endless dishes that will satiate your hunger. And you can indulge as much as you like, the Mediterranean diet is anyway considered to be the healthiest in the world, right?!
6. Let your hair down
View this post on Instagram
If you are looking for awesome beach parties, head to the town of Ayia Napa and party the night away! With hundreds of discotheques and bars at your service, it is the best place to holiday in Cyprus. Though not as popular as Ayia Napa, the city of Larnaca also has some decent bars and clubs that cater to the young crowd. Along the palm-fringed promenade, there are several cafes and restaurants that light up this city’s night. Nicosia being one of the best places to visit in Cyprus, also assures that your evening is well spent. Those wanting to just relax and enjoy the nightlife can head here and relish the local cuisines in its restaurants, cafes, and bars.