Top 10 Cyprus Highlights
Why is picking a top ten of things to highlight on Cyprus such a tough task? In short, there is so much to see and so much to do on this sun drenched island. That is the reason behind this article. Read on to soak up ideas to fuel your inspiration.
1. If you paid any attention at all in history class at school, or if you googled Cyprus, you will know about Nicosia? It is the last divided city in Europe. It is a walled city, something that fascinates everyone who visits. You can see the medieval ramparts, you can walk or roll on them. The city boasts historic buildings and museums. And oh so many coffee shops, cafes, tavernas and restaurants. You might think that Cypriots live
to eat and drink – they do!
2. Kourion is seriously up there for lovers of archaeology. You will immediately get a sense of how people lived in this place. Visit the seaward looking, multi-level stone theatre. Go to the agora – the colonnaded market place. Let your imagination run wild! I like to think about how they got their water and food supplies to Kourion – back in the day. I’d love to hear your thoughts after you have visited.
Rugged Beauty of Akamas
3. For rugged natural beauty the Akamas peninsula is the place to go. This is the places that turtles favour to return to lay their eggs year after year. Despite the fact that developers are keen to build; the Akamas is being maintained for the wildlife, natural habitat and your enjoyment. To not go there would be a crying shame.
Finds from Pierides
4. Find a fascinating collection – encompassing maps, remarkable ancient idols, glassware, traditional clothing and much more. Where? At the accessible Pierides Museum in Larnaca. Pierides was a 19th century philanthropist who was keen to provide a home for Cyprus’s vanishing heritage. Good man!
5. Limassol is ever changing, the skyline now punctuated with recently completed high-rise buildings. In contrast the historic port area of the city is a place of narrow streets. Here you can find food stalls, craft workshops and religious buildings – churches, mosques, minarets as well as a medieval castle.
6. Agia Napa, the name conjures up feelings as soon as one mentions it. The reputation is that of a hyper lively spot. This reputation acts as a magnet for thrill seekers. Agia Napa boasts glorious golden beaches – that’s why people originally came here!
Cyprus Delight – Troodos
7. Cyprus has two mountain ranges, here I’ll highlight the Troodos. The only place on the island where in winter you can ski in the morning, drive down to the beach and swim in the afternoon! Troodos is home to many, many remote valleys where villagers make their living. For every village there is at least one old Orthodox church. Inside you will find vividly coloured, ornate frescos portraying biblical scenes from the Greek Orthodox tradition of Catholicism.
8. Amathous is a place from antiquity. Lying close to the coast, on the fringes of Limassol. Dating back more than 3,000 years the site has so far revealed fragmentary remains of ancient temples. See the ornate columns, sections of city walls and Byzantine churches. It seems that Amathous was once a waterfront location. As the harbour silted up centuries ago, the site is now a little distant from the sea.
9. Confession – The Cyprus Museum in Nicosia is a place that I have had on my list to visit but I have never yet made it! I’m told that the collection of artefacts they have here is of the highest order.
I recall that the Syrian-Arab Friendship Club, a favourite dining spot in Nicosia, is close by the Cyprus Museum. I recognise that I have no excuse and must plan my next Nicosia trip post-haste!
10. If superb mosaics intrigue and delight you then a visit to Kato Paphos Archaeological Park is a must. Wander around the lavish villas built at Paphos during its Roman Imperial heyday. When you build such a villa you would wow your guests with wonderful mosaic floors. These mosaics are huge, very detailed and very well preserved. This has earned a UNESCO World Heritage site status. Enough said!
Your questions help make our guides better for every Cyprus visitor!
I hope that you have enjoyed this top ten. I’ll be linking back here in later blog posts when I delve further. We will look more closely at what is on offer. We will consider accessibility. If you have any questions, feel free to ask them. Your questions help us make our guides better for everyone who comes to Cyprus.