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Things To Do in Cyprus

There’s so much to see and do in Cyprus, it really does have something for everybody.

Paphos Castle, Cyprus

Sunset over the historic fort at Paphos harbour

Cyprus is a jewel in the Mediterranean.  Blessed with excellent weather all year round and a laid back atmosphere, it is the ideal place to enjoy a relaxing holiday in the summer sun or to escape the cold of winter.  English is widely spoken, visitors are welcome and Cypriot people are very friendly.  A shopping trip can often lead to an invitation to share a meal at a local taverna with one of the shopkeepers.  The food in the tavernas is excellent and many have bouzouki music and traditional Greek dancing, so a meal can become an evening’s entertainment.  Paphos is well-served by a wide range of international restaurants, cafes and bars.  For those whose tastes are more lively, nightclubs are found mostly on Entertainment Street.

Surrounded by the warm waters of the Mediterranean, it is no surprise that opportunities for watersports are plentiful.  Windsurfing, snorkelling, jet skiing, waterskiing, parascending, boat trips, sailing, speedboat hire and “banana” rides are all available.  Coral Bay, just 15 minutes from Paphos by car or bus, is a favourite area for these activities.  PADI-accredited diving schools offer courses and organised dives for qualified divers.

Perhaps more surprising is the prospect of skiing in the Troodos mountains in winter.  The slopes are about an hour by car from Paphos.

The mountains and the Akamas National Park are delightful natural havens and offer opportunities for a range of activities such as bird watching, hiking, mountain biking, quad biking and Jeep safaris.

There are several waterparks in Cyprus including one in Paphos, which is great fun for the whole family.  Click here for details.  Golf enthusiasts will be pleased with the fine courses around Paphos.  There are also tennis courts, a go-kart track and a bowling alley.

Cyprus has a long and interesting history which has left the island with a wealth of interesting archaeological and historical sites to visit.  The Paphos mosaics date from the Roman period and are some of the best-preserved in the world.  Dating from an ancient time long before this, the Tombs of the Kings should not be missed.  There are many interesting museums in and around Paphos and, further afield, the ancient city of Kourion near Limassol is well worth the short drive.  Also well worth a visit near Limassol is Kolossi Castle, where King Richard the Lionheart of England was married.  There is also an abundance of Orthodox monasteries in Cyprus, many having impressive collections of Byzantine religious art.  Most welcome visitors.

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What to Buy

Local workshops produce wonderful silverware as well as jewellery in both gold and silver.  Lefkara filigree silverware is particularly exquisite.  Lefkara lace is also of the highest quality.  Leonardo da Vinci reputedly took a piece back for the altar in Milan Cathedral; but be sure to buy the genuine article, as there are many inferior copies.  It is well worth taking a trip to the village of Lefkara to see the lace being made and to buy lace and silver.

Cypriot wine is very good – you’ll certainly want your duty free allowance.  Another delicious local treat is loukoumia, or Cyprus delight, which comes in a wide variety of flavours.  Paphos has many tourist shops selling beach goods and a wide range of souvenirs.  The bronze, onyx, ceramics and alabaster are a cut above the usual quality of tourist goods.  The shops in the market of the old town are well worth browsing for interesting bargains.

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