It’s general consensus that the healthy climate and natural beauties of Cyprus, as well as its archaeological wealth and the traditional hospitality of its people make the island an ideal holiday destination. Since the independence in 1960, tourism development has been accorded a very high degree of priority by the Cyprus Government.
Cyprus is the third largest island in the Mediterranean Sea, Other neighbouring territories include Syria and Lebanon to the east, Israel to the southeast, Egypt to the south, and Greece to the northwest. The physical relief of the island is dominated by two mountain ranges, the Troodos Mountains and the smaller Troodos Mountains , and the central plain they encompass, the Mesaoria . The Mesaoria plain is drained by the Pedieos River , the longest on the island. The Troodos Mountains cover most of the southern and western portions of the island and account for roughly half its area. The highest point on Cyprus is Mount Olympus at 1,952 m (6,404 ft), located in the centre of the Troodos range. At Troodos Mountains, wild moufflons roam and cedars grow, and gem-like churches and monasteries are replete with unmatched Byzantine frescoes and icons. Ten of the finest examples are designated by UNESCO as World Heritage sites. The narrow Kyrenia Range, extending along the northern coastline, occupies substantially less area, and elevations are lower, reaching a maximum of 1,024 m (3,360 ft).
Cyprus is a haven for archaeology lovers. From Neolithic settlements more than 10,000 years old, to spectacular Greco-Roman ruins, such as the ancient seaside amphitheater of Kourion, to Crusader fortresses such as Kolossi, the list of treasures is boundless. By no means will you want to miss Pafos, a wellspring of antiquities in the west, including the mysterious Tombs of the Kings…and Roman mosaics that are so colourful, extensive and well-preserved, they are recognized by UNESCO.
Although Cyprus is the third largest island in the Mediterranean, it is surprisingly compact and easy to explore. In between rugged mountain peaks and the shimmering coast you’ll traverse untrammelled landscapes and rolling hills with vineyards that still produce the world’s oldest named dessert wine, sweet Commandaria. Linger in idyllic villages such as Omodos and Lefkara where the rhythm slows down and there’s always time for another coffee. All across Cyprus, you’ll have the opportunity to experience a distinctive cuisine composed of meze, small plates of everything from flame-grilled, delicately spiced meats to
fresh vegetables and amazing cheeses, such as the famous halloumi (the savory sheep’s cheese that grills).
With its rich past as anchor, Cyprus is also a thriving modern nation with a service economy second to none in the whole region, and the Cypriot people, worldly and warm, are only too happy to share it with you. Which means among other things, an attractive range of accommodations, luxurious hotels with both local flavour and the highest international standards, quality tourist villas, agrotourism options and more.
Cyprus’ location, coveted by empires since ancient times, is still ideal today for visiting nearby countries, such as Greece, Israel and Egypt. But with so much history to see and culture to enjoy and cuisine to savor – and with Aphrodite as your guide – you will have more reasons to stay and explore Cyprus than you might think.
Paphos was the capital of Cyprus in ancient times and once again celebrated this accolade when in 2017 it reigned as European Capital of Culture.
An air of romance and history carries through the naturally abundant and culturally rich region of Paphos. Comprised of its old and new towns, rural villages and picturesque resorts, the region is home to some of the most stunning areas of natural beauty on the island, whilst its many archaeological sites are historically invaluable, with Kato Paphos declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site as a whole. Centered around the quaint harbor and impressive Medieval Castle, Paphos’ environs then stretch to incorporate the tourist resort of Polis Chrysochous. The pretty and tranquil area – known simply as ‘Polis’ – has expanded to become a sub-district in its own right, and encompasses the beautiful Akamas National Park, Lara beach – which is a breeding site for turtles, and the traditional fishing shelter of Latchi.