Cyprus is blessed with a blend of unsurpassed attractions combined with a laid back way of life that is sure to relax and invigorate.
Bask in year-round sunshine, with stretches of long sandy shores, pebbled coves and rocky outlets lapping the crystal clear, warm Mediterranean Sea. Take to the seas with a refreshing array of water sports, or set sail to the Middle East and Greek Islands.
Meander through innumerable mountainous villages, where local handicrafts and traditional practices provide vivid rural snapshots. Set your own pace whilst exploring the intoxicating landscape of scented pine forests, valleys brimming with citrus and olive groves, majestic snow capped mountains and dramatic limestone cliffs. Revel in the unrivalled natural beauty of the Akamas nature reserve and Troodos mountains by jeep safari, hiking or mountain biking, or for the ultimate comparison why not ski and swim on the same day!
Taste the finest wines and sensuous cuisine, or step back in time by delving into 10,000 years of captivating history. At night, escape into the zesty, cosmopolitan nightlife scene, or simply relax with a sunset cocktail by the beach.
Family fun in the sun, romantic breaks, much needed R&R or active island pursuits - Cyprus offers it all, with a warm Mediterranean welcome wishing you many a happy return.
The varied inland terrain comprises flat, lush valleys, hilly pine forests and impressive mountain ranges. A coastline measuring over 650 kilometres boasts 52 Blue Flag beaches, with a mix of secluded and facilitated beaches catering for every beach lover’s taste.
Some 340 days of sunshine a year bless Cyprus, with long summer months that seem to never end. Autumn brings sporadic storms but typically warm temperatures. The chillier winter months are exceptionally short compared to the UK. A good enough snow covering on the highest peaks affords good skiing opportunities, with spring blooming sometimes as early as February.
Sea ports: Limassol and Larnaca.
Limassol is the main trading port, whilst both ports offer cruises to Syria, Egypt, Israel, Lebanon and the Greek Islands.
International airports: Paphos in the southwest and Larnaca in the southeast are both undergoing expansion, promising vastly increased capacity. Both airports offer frequent flights. Prices vary depending on the time of year, with the low cost airline EasyJet having commenced flights in spring 2008
Driving: All major towns are connected by highway. A new highway is also planned between Paphos and Polis.
Taxis: Private taxis are readily available all over the island, and taxi minibus services provide transportation between major towns.
Car Hire: There are numerous international rental car offices in every town, with prices structured according to the season.
Famed as the island of Aphrodite, goddess of love, Cyprus’ mythological magic is accompanied by a tumultuous history spanning 10,000 years, with the Hellenic, Ottoman, Byzantine and Roman eras all leaving their traces behind. Today, this peaceful, welcoming country is an international melting pot of culture.
The island’s rich hospitality serves as a major attraction for returning holidaymakers. As an incredibly family-oriented country where traditional values thrive, the island is an ideal place to raise a family and enjoy a peaceful, integrated lifestyle. The crime rate is exceptionally low with no vandalism. Pollution and traffic congestion are at a minimum, delivering a breath of fresh air in every respect.
Rural life provides the ultimate community experience, where everyone knows one another and help is always at hand. In these country settings, authentic stone homes accompanied by pretty courtyard walls overflowing with vibrant flowers instil a sense of harmony between man and nature. The sight of handicrafts, local produce and wine making provide a nostalgic reminder of days gone by, at the same time offering a scenic escape from the contemporary coastal towns.
Yet even the modern towns and cities boast more than their fair share of culture. Picturesque old towns with their winding cobbled streets and striking architecture, compare to bustling tourist areas and popular markets. Combining ancient sites with modern entertainment, the Roman amphitheatres in Paphos and Episkopi, and the ancient castle in Paphos, are also the venue for live theatrical and musical performances. Add to this the well scheduled events calendar island-wide, which ranges from musical performances, wine festivals, seasonal fairs and harvest celebrations, and it’s easy to see how the integrated culture offers just as much allure as the island’s beach life.
The beach is the ultimate draw for many newcomers to the island, yet the wide range of hobbies and activities encourage a healthy, well rounded lifestyle.
Family Fun: Visit the water parks, bird and reptile parks, or go horse riding and go-karting.
Water sports: Try your hand at para-sailing, water-skiing, kayaking and canoeing, banana and tube rides, sailing and windsurfing, with boat and jet-ski hire available for over 18-year-olds with a driving license.
Scuba diving: Explore shipwrecks and archeological treasures amidst the kaleidoscopic marine life, or if you are not yet qualified, there are courses available for all ages and abilities.
Golf: Three currently operating 18-hole golf courses are within half an hour’s drive from Paphos, with a further 11 planned.
Skiing: There are four ski lifts at Mount Olympus in the Troodos mountains, open between January and March.
Walking and mountain biking: 200 kilometres of designated nature trails offer a mixture of challenging and easy going routes for hiking and mountain biking to suit every age and ability. The mix of shady and sun-drenched areas means that you can time excursions to make the very best of the island’s seasonal diversity and varied temperatures. Alternatively, take a jeep safari which affords more extensive trips in the Troodos mountain range and Akamas nature reserve.
Cosmopolitan cities offer an enticing mix of designer shops and international brand names. For those seeking a more local shopping experience, the local markets and rural villages are a hub for traditional wares including lacework, weaving, jewelery and pottery.
Cyprus offers a diverse range of nightlife entertainment options. Choose from:
- Live Greek music nights whilst enjoying a lavish mezze spread
- Lively bars and clubs in the popular tourist areas
- Operatic, contemporary music, theatrical performances and folklore shows
- Pop into one of the many 5-star hotels to enjoy fine dining or a sunset cocktail
Cypriot cuisine is one of the healthiest in the world, thanks to the abundance of fresh local produce. Fresh salads, seafood and fruit are a must during the hot summer months, with local meat dishes such as moussaka, afelia, stifado and the never ending courses of the famous mezze providing hearty meals year round. Dining out options are vast and varied, from inexpensive local tavernas to upmarket international establishments.
Healthcare standards on the island are very high. Emergency treatment is free. Hospitals and clinics are well equipped with the latest technology, with the majority of doctors and dentists being trained in either the UK or the United States. In addition, there are numerous pharmacies in every town offering non-prescription medicine.
State schools offer a very high educational standard, with the accompanying benefits of foreign children quickly becoming bi-lingual. There is also an excellent selection of private schools with admirable facilities and exam results.