When Aphrodite came ashore in Cyprus she couldn't have made a more inspired choice! An island idol worthy of even a Grecian Goddess, holidaymakers pay homage to its beautiful beaches, rugged natural landscape, ancient antiquities and sun across the seasons. Known as the 'Jewel of the Mediterranean', its many gleaming facets are too tempting for treasure-hunting tourists. Sun worshippers, history buffs and outdoor adventurers come in quest of their dream holiday. But where to stay in Cyprus, this island of endless options? From its most vibrant resorts to its quaint coastal towns and villages calling from all compass points, let us help you find the Adonis to your Aphrodite.
On this island teaming with tourist treasures you can be assured that wherever your holiday HQ, you've an irresistible itinerary of fun-filled days, sunny splendour and R&R in the making.
Life's a beach in Protaras and with the most stunning selection in Cyprus, here's the port of call for those who find carefree hearts come with sandy toes! Yes, Ayia Napa is a neighbour – but how near, and yet how far! Away from pulsating nightspots your holiday soundtrack will be of gently lapping waves and animated chatter from waterfront eateries.
Nearly the whole of this south-eastern tip is crafted of coves, the poster child being Fig Tree Bay, with silky sands and cerulean waters basking in blissful Cypriot sunshine. The Cape Greco National Forest Park is the emerald exception to the rule, where cameras are poised in promise of cinematic scenery and resplendent rock formations. A boat trip lets you take in the sight from the sea – the waters a treasure in themselves for their watersports, diving and snorkelling spots.
Away from coastal creations you can still get your culture fix. Take a tour across the Green Line into fascinating Famagusta and now-abandoned 'ghost town' Varosha, or head to Ayia Napa and see in surprise its venerable Venetian monastery. Part bustling beach resort, part breathtaking beauty spot, what Protaras offers entirely is the classically curated holiday dream.
Sssh! This might just be Cyprus' best-kept secret. If your idea of holiday heaven is a slice of seclusion and a taste of traditional life then the hideaway village of Argaka is yours to discover. It's a privileged spot and few others can boast its beauties. Set on the northwest coast, it's surrounded by Mediterranean blueness and mountains, carpeted in the lush pines of the fringing Paphos Forest.
It's a fertile landscape where you can forgive man's intrusion into Mother Nature with its cultivated citrus groves and fruit orchards. Especially since the bountiful local produce makes the easy distance from field to fork at the handful of local tavernas and eateries you'll find. They may be few, but with mouth-watering menus and a generous serving of warm local hospitality you're sure of a feast!
The beaches of Argaka might not be the stuff of postcards, but its pebbly coast is the more charming for being less commercialised. Whatever sand-seekers might think, nesting sea turtles are fans, and if it's good enough for them… If however sand is missing from your sun and sea love triangle, you'll find it by the bucket load at the nearby resorts of Polis and Latchi. Just a stone's throw further on is the wild and wonderful Akamas Peninsula, which only adds to the scenic walking trails and landscapes to traipse around Argaka.
Named for the goddess herself, the Aphrodite Hills Resort is well-worthy of deity status. Legendary holidays await in this purpose-built holiday community. Not satisfied with fabulous villa accommodation and its glorious Mediterranean aspect, it takes the Paphos region's trove of tourist treasures and adds more than a few of its own.
This is the A-Z of holiday R&R, with an opulent spa, glorious golf, spectacular sporting facilities and a whole menu of shops and restaurants ticking off the entirety of your wish list - and the rest of the family's too. Not forgetting the kids of course, who will love the beach and Kids' Club nearly as much as parents will love having their every entertainment taken care of.
It's almost not necessary to leave the resort at all – almost. With the pleasures of Paphos and its mesmerising historical sites in one direction and the wonders of Ancient Kourion in the other, you won't know which way to turn for your glimpse of Millennia-gone. The beaches of Pissouri Bay beckon to sun seekers, while national treasure Petra tou Romiou - better known as Aphrodite's Rock - is the resort's namesake must-see sight.
Come one, come all to Coral Bay! If you're in pursuit of pleasure, this lively resort on the west coast is the place for you. Top and tailed by limestone cliffs, this carved out crescent conjures up 500m of Blue Flag beach at its heart. Those looking for a healthy dose of 'vitamin sea' will lap up the shallow calm waters particularly suitable for children, while those who like to get their beach-bums going will appreciate an abundance of watersports to try.
Backed by a long strip that runs from the waterfront through the resort, shops, tavernas and eateries extend into the distance offering respite from the rays, culinary temptations, prime people watching positions - or all of the above.
For those who want a hub to call home and to keep their personal perimeter small, you can do no better. Fun times are at your fingertips with Go-Karting and Pafos Zoo on the doorstep. If your wanderlust is ignited, Coral Bay is also superbly set to explore some of the island's favourite attractions. With Lara Beach, the glorious Akamas peninsula and a sweet scattering of fishing villages to the north and the promise of Paphos and its fascinating archaeological park to the south, this is what it means to have your cake and eat it.
A holiday here can be as lively or as leisurely as you please, the tempo is yours to set! Whether you visit beaches by the bucket load, embark on a voyage of discovery through a millennia of ancient history or make an expedition into the great outdoors, traversing trails and making mountains your own, the many fabulous things to do in Cyprus make for a meze of magical holiday moments. Come and see for yourself what we mean…
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