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Perhaps every traveler wants to visit a small island with a heavenly climate in the Mediterranean. We are talking about Cyprus – an island full of historical and natural attractions, located in the northeastern part of the Mediterranean Sea. Magnificent nature, beaches alluring with snow-white sands and the purest azure of sea waters, the most exquisite entertainment, numerous sights of Cyprus, fraught with a long history – all this and much more is united by the mysterious island. Thanks to the fusion of Turkish and Greek cultures, a mixture of languages and religions took place on the island, which literally divided the state into different worlds and made the island even more attractive to its many guests. Below is a list of the main attractions of Cyprus, so that when traveling to these picturesque places, you will not have any questions about what to see in Cyprus. You just have to choose the most interesting of them for a personal visit. And experienced guides in Cyprus, in turn, will help you plan a personal route full of beautiful places and extraordinary discoveries.
What to see in Cyprus in the first place
When choosing excursions in Cyprus, take the calculation is the fact that the island is divided into zones of influence of two states, so initially you need to decide on which part the sights that interest you are located. In the descriptions you will find accurate information not only about the history, but also about the location of a particular tourist site.
1. Baths of Aphrodite (48 km from Paphos, Chrysocho Bay)
Baths of Aphrodite covered in myths and legends
According to ancient legends, Cyprus is the birthplace of the goddess Aphrodite, which is why many memorable places on the island are associated with her name. The Bath of Aphrodite is a small grotto in the rock, where, according to legend, Aphrodite and her lover, the god of fertility Adonis, spent their romantic meetings. The bath looks unusually picturesque:
- The secluded pond is surrounded on all sides by vegetation and, as it were, covered by a limestone rock. The water here is cold even on the hottest days, because underground springs spring here, preventing the water from warming up. The grotto is only half a meter deep and about 5 meters in diameter.
It is believed that those who bathe in this bath will provide themselves with health and beauty for many years. And even if there is no desire to plunge into the waters of the baths, then you should just watch the natural beauty and feel the romanticism of these places.
Official website: http://www.visitcyprus.com< /p>
2. Tombs of the Kings in Paphos (Paphos)
Tombs of the Kings in Paphos
True connoisseurs of antiquity will definitely find something to see in Cyprus – undoubtedly, the Tombs of the Kings in the city of Paphos in southwestern Cyprus. The majestic necropolis, whose history of creation goes back to antiquity, became the last refuge for dignitaries and representatives of the aristocracy of ancient times – one has only to imagine that the first tombs were hewn out of stone as early as the 4th century BC.
What What are these grandiose creations?
- Underground rooms are hollowed out right inside the rocks and, connecting with each other by stairs and passages, form one huge complex. Burials exactly repeat the dwellings of the buried people – amazing copies of luxurious houses and palaces in which these noble personalities lived. All tombs in the necropolis are numbered for the convenience of visitors to find the right one. Next to each burial, you can find an earthenware jug that was filled with wine, milk or honey so that the deceased could “get enough”. These gifts were placed in special ritual chambers located next to the tombs.
Official website: http://www.mcw.gov.cy
3. Petra tou Romiou (25 th km of Paphos-Limassol road)
On the 25th kilometer of the road leading from Paphos to Limassol, there is a place whose history is shrouded in myths and legends – Petra tou Romiou, or Aphrodite's Beach. One of the most romantic attractions in Cyprus is a small stretch of rocky beach with beautiful boulders and clear water, which is especially popular among couples. It is believed that after bathing in these waters, lovers will stay together forever. Swimming at Aphrodite's Beach at midnight, you can find eternal beauty and youth, a successful marriage and healthy children. Also, according to beliefs, one of the large rocky stones – the stone of Aphrodite – has a special power, and after performing a certain ritual around it, you can later meet true love.
On Petra tou Romiou beach, you can not only enjoy the beauty of nature, see famous and memorable places with your own eyes, but also visit a cafe located in a parking lot near the beach, on the opposite side of the road. Here you can also take a shower, shop for local souvenirs or visit a restaurant with stunning sea views, driving a little further on the road towards Limassol.
4. Akamas National Park (western Akamas peninsula )
The pristine beauty of nature in Akamas Park
Approximately 50 kilometers from Paphos, you will enjoy beautiful panoramas of nature – unique landscapes with an abundance of vegetation and pristine beaches. This is another attraction of Cyprus – the Akamas National Park, a reserve in which nature has been preserved in its pristine beauty. This is an area of coniferous forests, intoxicating with their fragrance, pebble beaches and sandy coves with crystal clear water.
A wide variety of wild plants grow here, many of which remain only in this limited area:
- wild plum; arbutus; myrtle tree; eastern plane tree; mountain lavender; cyclamens; orchids; pink-purple peonies listed in the Red Book.
The richness of the local fauna is also surprising:
- 168 species of birds; 20 species of reptiles; 12 species of mammals; 16 types of butterflies.
A notable place on the peninsula is the Avakas Gorge, located among limestone cliffs up to 30 meters high and stretching for about 3 km. A mountain river flows along the bottom of the gorge. This place is also worth visiting, because even the path to it is interesting – in order to get into the gorge itself, you should walk about 2 kilometers through the protected park, which smoothly, changing landscapes one after another, turns into a deep and narrow gorge, striking the eye with its monumentality.
5. Catacombs of Saint Solomon (Paphos)
Catacombs of St. Solomon – a Christian shrine in Cyprus
Travelers who wondered what to visit in Cyprus are given the opportunity to see one of the most unique Christian shrines – the Catacombs of St. Solomon. This is an ancient structure, partly created by nature, partly by man. According to one of the beliefs, in ancient times, a certain righteous Solomonia lived in Paphos, who refused to perform Roman rites and was forced to hide with her sons in the catacombs from her pursuers. According to one version, the pagans walled up all the passages in the catacombs, dooming the woman to a slow death, but 200 years later, when the passages in the catacombs were freed, the holy martyr came out safe and sound. According to another version, the sons of the woman were found after the escape and executed, and Solomonia herself was left alive, and the unfortunate woman spent days and nights in tears over the graves of her sons, eventually dying of grief.
The first thing that opens up to visitors to the catacombs is a pistachio tree, completely hung with multi-colored shreds of fabric. The fact is that when visiting the catacombs, you can ask Saint Solomonia for healing from various ailments, and in order for prayers to be heard, you should tie a commemorative shred on a tree branch.
If you wish, you can take a walk through the catacombs, as well as visit a small a well in the depths of the catacombs, the water in which has healing powers – it cures eye diseases.
Be sure to watch this beautiful video about Cyprus!
6. Keo Aliki winery (Limassol)
Keo Aliki winery cellar
The city of Limassol, a major economic and cultural center of the country, is also considered the center of winemaking in Cyprus, and being here, you do not have to think about what to visit in Cyprus. After all, it is here that you will have a unique opportunity to visit one of the largest factories in Limassol – the Keo winery. The tour takes place on the premises of the factory as part of a promotion, so visitors have a number of opportunities to:
- observe the production of the best wines in the area; taste any product for free; hear some entertaining stories about the plant and its products; buying good wine is much cheaper than in stores throughout Cyprus.
One of the most famous alcoholic beverages produced at the Keo factory is Commandoria premium wine – the history of its first release dates back to the 8th century, and now it is considered one of the best wines in Cyprus. For the production of this drink, a special grape variety is used – Xynisteri, and the process of making wine also has its own subtleties. Grapes are dried in the sun so that its juice acquires sweetness, after which the juice is poured into special vessels and aged in them for several years.
7. Show of dancing fountains (Protaras)
The magic of fire, water and the music of dancing fountains
One of the most spectacular sights of Cyprus, amazing with its grandeur, is located in the small resort town of Protaras. Every evening, magic jets come to life here to rhythmic music, synchronously soaring up and performing extraordinary pirouettes. All this is accompanied by a laser light show and all kinds of effects in the form of smoke and fire.
The dancing fountain show is based on a modern and one of the most sophisticated fountain control systems in the world. As many as 18,000 nozzles and many LED lamps immersed in water create a mesmerizing performance: water streams, illuminated by multi-colored lights, constantly change their movements, obeying musical rhythms and creating an amazing atmosphere.
The show attracts the attention of both adults and children, and you can watch this beauty from May 1 to September 30. Guests are invited to book a table in a cozy cafe directly next to the fountains or on special spectator benches.
Official website: http://www.magicdancingwaters
8. Eucalyptus Grove (Limassol)
Attracts to the seaside town of Limassol and another attraction of Cyprus – a eucalyptus grove, stretching along the coast for about one and a half kilometers in length. It is difficult to pass by the intoxicating aromas of numerous eucalyptus trees growing right along the coastline and not enjoy this beauty. During the summer heat, it is especially good to hide from the rays of the scorching sun, and fragrant ethereal vapors bring peace and tranquility. In rainy weather, the grove will also become a great place for walking, when the aromas of trees mix with fresh air saturated with ozone – such a kind of “inhalation” will help improve health and boost immunity.
The park also has sports grounds, a children's playground area. After enjoying a walk, you can visit a cafe or a restaurant with a picturesque view of the sea – there are many such establishments along the eucalyptus grove. Guests also have the opportunity to check into one of the hotels located in the immediate vicinity.
9. Cavo Greco National Forest Park (Cape Greco)
Beautiful view of the azure sea
In the eastern part of Cape Greco, also called Ayia Napa, there is a luxurious reserve park Cavo Greco, whose area is huge – more than 385 hectares. Initially, the purpose of creating the park was to preserve the unique flora, fauna and landscape of this part of the island. Later, another important mission was added to this goal – to attract more tourists to Cyprus.
Along with the pristine nature, here you can find landscaped picnic areas, bicycle paths and hiking trails with benches for rest, from where excellent views of the coast, with its purest sea water. By the way, the coast here is ideal for diving and fishing – in coastal waters you can find moray eels, octopuses, sea bass and igloo fish.
Today, the national park is inhabited by
- about 4 hundred species of plants, 14 of which are considered extremely rare – juniper, acacia, mastic tree, fennel, wild garlic, etc. many representatives of the fauna – hedgehogs, foxes, hares, snakes, lizards and various birds.
10. Finikoudes Beach (Larnaca)
The beautiful Finikoudes beach in Larnaca
And what to see in Cyprus for lovers of sunbathing? The first thing worth visiting is, of course, Finikoudes Beach, located right next to the central promenade of Larnaca. It is one of the most popular beaches in Cyprus, so entire regular buses come here from time to time, bringing numerous tourists and those who simply want to have a good rest.
The name “finikoudes” itself means “little palm trees” in translation – indeed, the beach is separated from the city by a palm alley, which was planted here back in 1922. Once small palm trees have now turned into large trees, the beauty and grandeur of which delight many visitors.
The length of the beach is about 0.5 kilometers, and the width in different places varies from 30 to 100 meters. The sand on the beach is of volcanic origin, so its color has a grayish tint. The Blue Flag certificate, which Finikoudes corresponds to, confirms its cleanliness and safety, and the service here meets the highest demands:
- lifeguards are on duty throughout the territory; inventory rental works; there is a sanitary zone; shower room with fresh water; perfect cleanliness is maintained throughout the beach.
Sights of Cyprus: what else to visit while in Cyprus
Guides in Cyprus, offering certain routes, are guided by the most popular requests of tourists. However, at your request, the program can be revised, so carefully study the descriptions of the sights below so as not to miss the opportunity to adjust the route and remain completely satisfied with the excursion.
11. Ayia Napa Blue Lagoon (Ayia Napa resort, Cape Greco )
The crystal clear waters of the Aina Napa Blue Lagoon
The island of Cyprus has become famous all over the world for its nature, amazing landscapes, pristine forests and beautiful coastline – for guests with any interests and preferences, there is something to see in Cyprus. One of the extraordinary natural attractions of Cyprus has become the Blue Lagoon, located in close proximity to the popular resort of Ayia Napa. This is an area of amazing beauty, which is a combination of monumental rocks, lush vegetation and azure coastal sea waters. By the way, the water here is so clean and transparent that even without going into it, you can watch colorful fish and whole shoals of bright fish scurrying briskly near the shore.
- Not far from the lagoon, there are unusual mysterious caves, partly filled with sea water, and it is not necessary to have diver skills to visit them. Any vacationer can sunbathe, dive into the water with a mask, study the underwater world. Boat excursions from Protaras or Ayia Napa are organized to the shores of the lagoon, and from the rocks located near the lagoon, a wonderful view of the surrounding area opens up.
12. The ancient city of Soli (Morphou, northern Cyprus)
Antique amphitheater in the city of Soli
The sights of Cyprus are very diverse, and in addition to the wonderful creations of nature, here you can also see ancient man-made monuments created by man himself. One of these monuments was the ancient city of Soli, located near the capital of Cyprus, Nicosia. Today, only ruins remain of its buildings, which, nevertheless, allow us to approximately form a general picture of the ancient city. All the ruins that have remained of temples, palaces and other buildings are protected by special canopies, and remarkable places are marked with signs showing the name and approximate date of construction of the structure.
There are several interesting facts about the ancient city:
- In ancient times, Soli was one of the 10 largest cities, on which all the main life of the island was concentrated. According to assumptions, the city was once captured by the Achaeans, and the inhabitants were resettled by the conquerors to a new place. <li style=”text-align: left;”>The city of Soli acquired its name in honor of the famous Greek philosopher Solon, who once gave the local king Philokrit a number of valuable advice.</li>
13. Old Town of Limassol (Limassol)
Limassol Old Town Quarter
Fans of historical sights will definitely find something to visit in Cyprus – the old city in Limassol just falls into this category of attractions in Cyprus. In fact, the old city is the historical center of modern Limassol, and these places are imbued with the spirit of provincial Greece. The local small houses and narrow streets have witnessed many historical events taking place here.
The old city has no specific boundaries – we can only say that it is located along the waterfront near the old port of Limassol. To see the local sights, it is better to walk the entire route and start it from the Limassol fortress. Moving deeper into the old quarter, you will see:
- Cathedral; a number of Muslim mosques; a lot of souvenir shops; many cafes and bakeries.
Empty houses and villas will catch your eye, which were abandoned by residents mainly for political reasons back in the 70s of the last century.
14. Archbishop's Palace (Nicosia)
The official residence of the Archbishop of Cyprus
In the very center of Nicosia, there is the most important attraction of Cyprus – the Archbishop's Palace, erected directly next to the old building of the palace. Despite the fact that this building gives the impression of an old building, it was erected not so long ago – in 1961. Its architecture is an imitation of the old Venetian style, which gives this impression.
In 1974, during the war with Turkey, an enemy attack was made on the island, and the palace building played the role of a place for hostilities. The palace suffered significant damage, but in the 80s the building was completely restored and restored.
Directly on the square in front of the palace in 1987. a huge statue of Archbishop Makarios was erected, who played a significant role in the history of Cyprus – standing up for the integrity of the island and the independence of his people. Therefore, the archbishop's bedroom is kept completely intact in the palace building to this day, and his heart is placed and stored in a special vessel.
15. Salt lake and flamingos (Larnaca)
Larnaca Salt Lake – a favorite resort of flamingos
Most of the tourists who have visited Cyprus at least once drove along the white shores of the Salt Lake, which is located between Larnaca and the village of Dromolaskias. In general, this lake represents several adjacent lakes, the total area of which is about 2 sq. kilometers. The salt lake plays a crucial role in the ecosystem of the island, therefore it is under the protection of the Ramsar Convention. Representatives of the fauna find their refuge here. But, undoubtedly, the most important attraction of this region are the beautiful pink birds – flamingos, which come here for the winter. Therefore, from autumn to spring, guests have a unique opportunity to admire the beauty and grace of these large birds. It is not possible to get close to flamingos – they are quite cautious, therefore they keep their distance from people and quite far from the coast, and in order to see them in all their glory, some visitors even arm themselves with appropriate optics.
16. Water park « Aphrodite” (Paphos)
Water attractions in the water park “Aphrodite” in Paphos
If you are interested in the entertainment attractions of Cyprus, Paphos will delight you and your children with the large water amusement park Aphrodite, dedicated, like many other objects of Paphos, to the goddess of love Aphrodite. On a relatively small area of the water park of 35 thousand square meters, high-speed and thematic slides, magnificent pools and rivers, entertainment for the smallest with animators and other exciting attractions are compactly located. And this diversity is surrounded by rich vegetation, flowers, real rocks, picturesque waterfalls and mysterious caves – all this gives the park a certain exoticism. The layout of the place is so successful that despite the variety of entertainment, there is a free approach to each of the attractions, and there are no queues.
Official website: https://aphroditewaterpark
17. Fortress of Paphos (Paphos)
View of the medieval fort on the western edge of the harbor from the city of Paphos
At the extreme point in the west of the city of Paphos, there is a protective fort, which has become one of the symbols of this place. The uniqueness of the medieval building is given by thick walls, behind which you can visit the ruins of the former fortress. The fort was built in the 13th century by the king of Cyprus, one of the representatives of the Lusignan dynasty. Initially, the castle consisted of two towers united by a wall, but over the centuries the building was repeatedly destroyed by invaders, suffered due to natural disasters, and then restored by new owners. There was a Paphos castle and a prison, and a mosque, and even a salt warehouse. But the appearance that the fortress has today, it acquired in 1592, when it was restored in the Ottoman style. Today, this monument has the status of a museum – for 20 years in a row, opera music concerts and festivals have been held here, among which the Aphrodite festival is the most famous.
18. Kolossi Castle (10 km from Limassol)
A three-story square donjon tower in the 12th century Kolossi Castle in the Limassol area
Those who are interested in the sights of Limassol should visit Kolossi Castle, a medieval military fortress about ten kilometers from Limassol. The building, erected at the beginning of the 13th century, was once the center of the Knights Hospitaller. Today, Kolossi Castle is most often referred to as a massive battlement tower, but it is only part of the architectural complex. The thickness of its walls, which is 1.25 meters, is striking – it is this factor that allowed the tower to withstand earthquakes and survive to this day. On the first floor of the tower, presumably, there was a pantry – you can still see water tanks there. There are two rooms on the second level, one of which has a fireplace – most likely, a dining room was located here. In another of the rooms, a large fresco has been preserved, which depicts the scene of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, the faces of the Virgin and St. John. The third floor once served as a knight's hall and private quarters of the Commander.
19. Buffavento Castle (Northern Cyprus)
The ruins of the fortress walls of Buffavento Castle in the Kyrenia Mountains in northern Cyprus
The Kyrenia Mountains stretch along the northern coast of the island of Cyprus. It was there, on the very peaks, at an altitude of about a kilometer, that three glorious medieval castles took refuge – St. Hilarion, Kantaru and Buffavento. As for Buffavento, this fortress was built by the Byzantines back in the 7th century with the main goal of protecting it from Arab raids. The place for the construction was chosen ideally – from this height the whole island was perfectly surveyed. The fortress consists of two levels: the first began with a bastion, followed by a guardhouse – it still has a fireplace. A level higher are the ruins of a chapel, and from here you can enjoy breathtaking views of the Kyrenia Mountains. The castle cannot be attributed to a specific period of history – judging by the method of masonry, different levels of the castle were erected starting from the 7th century and completed until the 14th century.
20. Kyrenia Castle (Northern Cyprus)
Kyrenia Castle a 16th century castle in the eastern part of the old harbor of Kyrenia in Northern Cyprus
Another significant bastion in the lands of Cyprus is the Kyrenia Castle, towering over the old harbor of the ancient city of Kyrenia, in the very north of Cyprus. Just like Buffavento, Kyrenia Castle was built in the 7th century to resist the invasions of the Arabs. The citadel has a rectangular shape with bastions located at the tops. Such an architectural solution was so successful that the castle has never been taken by storm throughout history. The courtyard is so vast that even jousting tournaments were once held here. A visit to the interior of the castle will impress with the history, the spirit of which is kept within these walls to this day: prisoners were kept in the dungeons and, according to legend, it was here that the Knights Templar were executed. Now in these places there is a museum of torture, impressive with its exhibits. On the territory of the castle there is also the Museum of Shipwrecks and a small Byzantine church of St. George.
21. Church of St. Lazarus (Larnaca)
Church of St. Lazarus – an Orthodox church of the 9th century in the city of Larnaca
Thousands of pilgrims from all over the world flock to one of the most important shrines in Cyprus – the Church of St. Lazarus, because everyone wants to touch the relics of the saint, who, according to the Gospel, was resurrected by Christ three days after his death. The clergy did not like the miraculous resurrection then, and Lazar was forced to flee – Larnaca became his refuge. After his death, the relics of the saint were buried at the base of the church, after which the temple was repeatedly rebuilt, and it was believed that the remains were irretrievably lost. Only in the 70s of the last century, during the restoration, in the process of opening the stone tombs under the altar, the relics were found – today they are the most valuable artifact and are exhibited for general worship. Among the other treasures of the temple are a burnt-out wooden iconostasis with the face of St. Lazarus miraculously preserved, the icons of the Holy Martyr George and the Mother of God Hodegetria.
22. Kykkos Monastery (Troodos Mountains)
The buildings of the Orthodox monastery of Kykkos in the picturesque Troodos mountains in Cyprus
By renting a car in Cyprus, you immediately get the opportunity for a rich holiday, not tied to the regulations of general excursions. Having a car, you can visit the mountains and picturesque bays, walk along the ancient streets of mountain villages, see ancient monasteries. By the way, in the Troodos mountains you can find something to see in Cyprus by car – this is the stavropegial monastery of the Kykkos Mother of God. The monastery has always had a special role in the history of Cyprus – its brethren have always sought to inspire the people in the most difficult times. And within the walls of the monastery church, the Miraculous Icon of the Kykk Mother of God is kept – according to popular belief, this is one of the three icons painted by the apostle and evangelist Luke. This shrine is covered with many legends associated with its miracles – the Mother of God has repeatedly protected, saved from troubles, and from ancient times to this day, the icon is carried out to Mount Troni during the most difficult trials.
23. Aya Monastery – Napa (Ayia Napa)
Courtyard of Ayia Napa Monastery in the center of Ayia Napa Youth Resort
The 15th century Italian Renaissance Monastery of Our Lady of Napa in Ayia Napa
Those who are looking for the beautiful sights of Cyprus, Ayia Napa will meet with picturesque beaches with white sand, bizarre limestone cliffs and the azure sea. But a large seaside village is known not only for its developed beach infrastructure – Ayia Napa Monastery is located not far from the coast, and once the history of a modest fishing village at that time began from it. The monastery is located very close to the coast, in the very center of the popular resort. The history of the monastery began in the 14th century – they say that in those days an impenetrable forest grew on these places, where the inhabitants of nearby settlements hunted. One day, one of the hunters in the thicket discovered a cave in which an ancient icon of the Mother of God was kept. It was on this place that a church eventually grew, and two centuries later, a monastery. The most valuable shrine of the monastery is the veil given to the Savior by St. Veronica during the procession to Golgotha.
24. Selimiye Mosque in Nicosia (Northern Cyprus)
View of the Selimiye Mosque ( former St. Sofia Cathedral) from Shakolas Tower (Museum-Observatory Ledra) A.Savin
Already at the entrances to Nicosia, you can see the spiers of the Selimiye Mosque towering over the city, built in the 13th century, but still impressive in its size and monumentality. The history of the great monument is extremely rich – the mosque was built for a century and a half, and this process was accompanied by numerous disasters, the construction was repeatedly interrupted due to earthquakes and raids by the Egyptian Mamluks. Initially, the shrine was created as a Roman Catholic church, but in the 16th century, after the capture of Cyprus by the Ottomans, the cathedral was converted by the Turks into a grandiose mosque – the former decoration was destroyed and painted over, and two minarets were added to the building. But even today, the marble tombstones of the Cypriot kings, covered with carpets, have been preserved. The majestic mosque strikes the imagination with a carved entrance arch, bizarre windows, huge columns, Gothic vaults, mosaics and bas-reliefs.
25. The ghost town of Varosha (Northern Cyprus)
Varosha quarter in Famagusta – a former tourist center in Cyprus Zairon
Abandoned hotels in the ghost town of Varosha in Northern Cyprus Zairon
To be precise, Varosha is not a city, but a district of the city of Famagusta, which today belongs to the territory of the unrecognized state of Northern Cyprus. Once it was a thriving resort town with a 4-kilometer strip of beach, brand new hotels, shops, markets, nightclubs and private villas. But in 1974, its prosperity was abruptly interrupted by a coup d'etat, when the Greek part of the local people rebelled, demanding the annexation of Cyprus to Greece. And Turkey, in order to protect the interests of the Turkish part, sent troops from the north, and the Varosha region became the last point of this offensive. So Cyprus was divided into two parts, the north remained occupied by Turkish troops, and the city of Varosha on the border began to serve as a buffer zone guarded by UN troops. This place was abandoned by the inhabitants, and to this day hundreds of UN representatives guard the empty city.
26. The ancient city of Kourion (Episkopi Bay)
The ruins of the ancient city of Kourion on the shores of Episkopi Bay near Limassol Anna & Michal
Just a few kilometers from the historic center of Limassol, the ancient city of Kourion stretches along the bay. Once it was a large city-state – it was still a thousand years before our era. During its existence, the city passed into the possession of the Byzantines, Greeks, Romans, but after many centuries it began to decline – apparently, the devastating earthquake of the 4th century AD became the starting point of this process. And finally the city was abandoned in the 7th century as a result of the Arab invasions. Today, Kourion is a large archaeological museum with ruins from several eras – Hellenism, the Roman period and the early Christian era. A walk through the ruins will turn into an educational journey into the past – among the ruins you can see such objects as the house of Achilles and Eustolios, Roman baths, the house of gladiators, an ancient theater, the ruins of a basilica, the ruins of a nymphaeum, fragments of a mosaic.
27. Ancient Amathus city (South of Cyprus)
Excavations of the ancient city of Amathus near Limassol Carole Raddato
Going to explore the sights of southern Cyprus, you should definitely visit one of the ten remaining ancient cities in Cyprus. This is the ancient city of Amathus, with which mythology was closely intertwined – for example, there was an ancient sanctuary here, which was one of the most important places of worship for the goddess Aphrodite, and today you can see the remains of this structure. The city was built in a convenient place on a coastal cliff, on the coast of a natural harbor – this fact predetermined the rapid development of the city in the ancient period, through the local port there was trade with Greece and the Levant. For centuries, the city was conquered by the Persians, Romans, Ptolemies, Byzantines, and at the end of the glorious history, the city was destroyed as a result of the Arab invasions. Today, on the territory of the ancient city, you can see the ruins of the acropolis, the remains of the temple of Aphrodite, the market with rows of marble columns and ancient burials.
28. Kamares Aqueduct (Larnaca)
Kamares stone aqueduct or Bekir Pasha aqueduct of the 18th century on the outskirts of Larnaca in Cyprus
On the island of Cyprus, the sights of Larnaca occupy a special place – these are kilometers of magnificent beaches, ancient temples and fortresses, a walk through the surroundings of which takes many centuries into the past. There are other valuable historical sites, such as the Kamares aqueduct. This is the prototype of a modern water supply system, created in the 18th century, the purpose of which was to deliver water to Larnaca from a source located above. For two centuries, the aqueduct successfully fulfilled its important role, until in the 30s of the last century it was replaced by a modern plumbing system. Once Kamares was located outside the city, but over the years the city grew and built up, and now the building is in its very center. By the way, the city government appreciates this monument and even created a special committee to protect it.
29. Forty Columns Castle (Paphos)
The preserved gate of the 7th century Byzantine fortress in the Archaeological Park of Paphos Wolfgang Sauber
Not far from the city of Paphos is another of the many fortifications of Cyprus, created to protect against the invasions of the Arabs. This is the castle of Forty Columns, which is part of the archaeological complex. By the way, the existence of the castle was not known until the second half of the last century, when a fragment of a mosaic panel was discovered while processing the land located above the port. With further excavations, it turned out that it was only part of the archaeological treasure that lurks underground. It is believed that the castle was built in the 7th century by the Byzantines, and in the 13th century it underwent a radical reconstruction. However, a strong earthquake undermined all these works in the bud, destroying the fortress almost to the ground. The fortress got its name thanks to the granite columns that once supported its vault – it is they who have survived to this day, along with the remains of towers, gloomy dungeons and cellars.
30. Caravanserai Buyuk Khan (Northern Cyprus )
Fountain in the center of the open courtyard of the Buyuk Khan caravanserai in Cyprus
There are interesting places in Cyprus that keep the history of those years when Cyprus was part of the Ottoman Empire. One of them is the Buyuk Khan Caravanserai, the largest Ottoman settlement in Cyprus, located in the north of Nicosia. The caravanserai was built by the Turks in the 16th century immediately after the victory they won over the Venetians who ruled here before. Previously, the Lusignan Palace was located here – it was on its ruins that the inn was built. Once upon a time, life was in full swing here – every now and then an inexhaustible stream of guests arrived here, providing prosperity to its owners. Since 1878, this territory was assigned to the British, who organized a prison here, and after World War II, Buyuk Khan was equipped as a homeless shelter. Today it is an arts center with galleries, workshops, souvenir shops, and shadow theater shows.
31. Khirokitia settlement (Maroni river valley)
Reconstructed circular dwellings of Choirokitia between 7000 and 5800 BC. e. Ophelia2
In the Neolithic era, the lands of Cyprus were also inhabited, and this fact is confirmed by the oldest settlements found on the island. How could a person get to the lands of the island even before the era of navigation? It is believed that once Cyprus was part of the mainland, and only a strong earthquake turned these territories into an island. The Neolithic settlements of Cyprus include Khirokitia, where people settled as far back as 7 millennia BC. A small group of people was only 300-600 people. They were engaged in cattle breeding, agriculture, hunting, fishing and built round houses from stone or clay. On the site of the ancient settlement, even today you can see the remains of round-shaped dwellings, with burials located under the floor, and defensive structures. Some of them have been restored, and visiting the settlement, today you can look inside one of them to find out how people lived many millennia ago.
32. Avagas Gorge (Laon Plateau)
< img title="Cyprus Attractions: Top 35" src="/wp-content/uploads/2022/03/dostoprimechatelnosti-kipra-top-35-90b0f07.jpg" alt="Cyprus Attractions: Top 35" />< /p> A river among the picturesque rocks in the Avagas Gorge on the Laona Plateau in Cyprus
A trip to Cyprus will not be complete without beautiful nature – the island is rich in natural beauty, excellent scenery and climate. Therefore, you should definitely visit the natural attractions of Cyprus. The presentation of natural sites would not be complete without Avakas Gorge, located 20 kilometers from Paphos. This natural creation was formed more than a thousand years ago by a river flowing here, which dried up over time – now only a small stream at the bottom of the canyon remains from it. Avagas is a trekking paradise with breathtaking views and an incredible abundance of flora, including endemic and endangered species. As you pass through the gorge, the distance between its stone walls gradually narrows, eventually forming a narrow corridor where the stone masses hang right above your head – a frightening but mesmerizing sight.
33. Fig Tree Bay (r Protaras)
Attractive scenery of Fig Tree Bay in the resort town of Protaras in Cyprus dronepicr
The coastline of the city of Protaras is completely dotted with small coves, but one of them stands out from the rest – Fig Tree Bay, or Fig Tree Bay. Today it is a popular holiday destination, where a lot of figs grow – they say this is the only place in Cyprus with such a cluster of fig trees. Once upon a time, a giant fig tree was the decoration of the bay – this is where the name of the area came from. Diving lovers will be especially interested in exploring the coastal underwater world – this is facilitated by the purest transparent water and a rich underwater world with mysterious sea caves. The beach offers a lot of entertainment – boating, water skiing, sailing, volleyball, basketball, tennis, there are numerous restaurants with traditional local dishes. The bay is surrounded by a string of hotels with different levels of service.
34. Nissi Beach (Ayia Napa)
Famous Nissi Beach inside a cozy bay in the resort of Ayia Napa in Cyprus
The Cypriot resort of Ayia Napa is famous for its beaches, among which the most popular is Nissi Beach, nestled in a beautiful Mediterranean bay. An incredible number of vacationers come here every year, preferring noisy parties and fun holidays with friends. Every day this place is filled with the noise of discos, it pleases young people with a huge selection of entertainment. For example, in the daytime – banana riding, parachuting, scuba diving, in the evenings – incendiary dances, foam parties and beach competitions. Nissi Beach is also well equipped for a comfortable stay – there are comfortable sunbeds, umbrellas, cabins and showers, while azure water and soft sand are ideal for swimming. You can have a bite to eat in any of the numerous cafes and restaurants.
35. Cape Greco (southeastern part of Cyprus)
Sea caves at Cape Greco in the southeastern part of the resort of Ayia Napa Krzysztof Ziarnek, Kenraiz
When looking for what to see in Cyprus in May, Cape Greco, which is considered one of the most beautiful places in Cyprus, should definitely be included in the itinerary. This is a true oasis of serenity, located in the southeast of the island. Its territory – untouched lands that change their amazing appearance every season – it is no coincidence that in 1993 they were given the status of a national park. Thus, the flora of the local park includes more than four hundred species of plants, including endemics and simply rare vegetation. Flowers are especially beautiful – in April-May the whole area blooms with the most unimaginable colors, impresses with brightness and beauty. In addition, hunting is completely prohibited on Cape Greco, due to the need to protect local species of fauna – along with numerous foxes, hedgehogs and hares, more than 80 species of birds, including migratory ones, live here, as well as a huge variety of fantastic butterflies.
A trip to Cyprus can be compared to a real trip around the world – it is amazing how many monuments of nature, history and culture are concentrated on one small island. Holidays in Cyprus will not only allow you to escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, but also plunge into another world, touching the cultures of different eras.