The Republic of Cyprus is a country located on the island of the same name. The northern part of the island is disputed territory: Cyprus considers it occupied territory and the Turkish Cypriots have declared this part the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus only recognized by Turkey. The places of interest on this page relate to the Republic of Cyprus, also referred to as Greek Cyprus or Southern Cyprus. This country is visited every year by an increasing number of tourists, who mainly come from the United Kingdom. The island owes this mainly to the fact that Cyprus used to be a British crown colony. Cyprus only became independent in 1960. Check topmbadirectory for how to get to Cyprus.
The main reason to visit Cyprus is the warm climate. Cyprus is one of the most sunny and warmest holiday destinations in Europe. Furthermore, Cyprus is popular among people who are interested in culture and history. Cyprus is located at a crossroads of continents and peoples. Its geographical location has yielded quite a few interesting archaeological sites and other points of interest .
Cyprus’ Top 10 Things to Do
#1. The divided city of Nicosia
The city of Nicosia is not a picturesque place where you will be blown away by the beauty of its streets. It is primarily a place where people live and work. What is special about Nicosia, however, is that it is one of the few remaining divided cities in the world. Popular points of interest in Nicosia include Cyprus Museum, Archbishop’s Palace and Icons Museum. Most of the city’s highlights are located within the historic center. This ancient heart of Nicosia is surrounded by Venetian walls. A beautiful square has been laid out on the southern side: Eleftheria Square. This is arguably one of the most beautiful squares in the entire region. Check simplyyellowpages for mass media and culture of Cyprus.
Want to catch a glimpse of the occupied northern part of Nicosia? You can do that from the Shacolas Tower Museum and Observatory. This is the tallest tower in the historic center of the city. The eleventh floor has been set up as an observatory, from which you can enjoy a panoramic view over the whole of Nicosia for a fee.
The Choirokoitia Archaeological Site is a remarkably well-preserved Neolithic settlement that has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1998. Choirokoitia is one of the oldest cities in the world. Remains from all phases of the Neolithic era can be seen in the settlement. They provide insight into living conditions in the region during prehistoric times, as well as how Neolithic culture was spread in the region.
At the settlement, five characteristic cylindrically shaped dwellings have been reconstructed, using the same construction methods and materials as in the Neolithic. The homes feature replicas of household artifacts found in the original homes, providing a vivid picture of how it used to be. The vegetation around the houses consists of native plants and trees that have grown in Cyprus since the Neolithic era.
The reconstructed houses are located just behind the entrance of the archaeological site Choirokoitia. If you want to see the shapes of the original settlement, you’ll have to walk up quite a bit. Once you are at the top you can see the size of Choirokoitia.
#3. Troodos Mountains
Hiking, cycling, enjoying nature, visiting historic villages, skiing, escaping the heat in the summer… this is just a short summary of what the Troodos Mountains have to offer. The Troodos Mountains are the largest mountain range in Cyprus. The mountain range covers about a third of the island. It is located on the western side of Cyprus and its highest peak, also known as Chionistra, is 1,952 meters high. A cool escape during the summer months in the green heart of the island and a snowy winter destination with four ski runs. During the warm summers, the mountain area is a place where, thanks to the many trees and the height, you can enjoy a temperature that is on average five to more than ten degrees lower than on the warm coast.
Visitors can enjoy the Cypriot culture in this mountain area with its numerous villages. Visit Byzantine monasteries – such as Kykko Monastery – and churches, explore nature and enjoy breathtaking views, Discover the rich mining history of copper and other precious minerals for which the area was famous throughout the Mediterranean. The Troodos Mountains are the place for adventure, discovery and relaxation. It is not for nothing that many tourists choose to spend a day in the Troodes Mountains.
#4. Pano Lefkara
The old village of Lefkara is known for the famous Lefkara lace and the silverware that is produced here. The tradition of bobbin lace in Lefkara goes back at least to the fourteenth century. Influenced by indigenous crafts, the embroidery of the Venetian courtiers who ruled the country from 1489, and ancient Greek and Byzantine geometric patterns, Lefkara lace is handcrafted in designs that combine four basic elements: the hemstitch, cut work, satin stitch fillings and needle lace . This combined art and social practice is still the main occupation of the women of the village, who make distinctive tablecloths, napkins and centerpieces as they sit and talk together in the narrow streets or on covered patios. You can buy both products in abundance in the stores. In the folklore museum you can see how people used to live and work in Cyprus.
#5. The Archaeological Sites of Paphos
Paphos is best known as a wonderful seaside resort with beautiful beaches and wonderful weather. What is less known is that Paphos was once inhabited and that several archaeological sites have uncovered parts of ancient Paphos. The place of most interest to tourists is the archaeological site in Neo Paphos. On a huge area you can see impressive mosaic floors of ancient villas, ancient monuments and all kinds of archaeological finds. From the archaeological park you have a beautiful view of present-day Paphos.
The famous “Tombs of the Kings” can be admired at the archaeological site of Kato Paphos, which has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1980. The monumental underground tombs are carved from solid rock and date from the Hellenistic and Roman periods. kings were actually buried here, but the size and splendor of the tombs – some decorated with Doric columns – gave the place its grand name.
#6. Kykkos Monastery
Within Cyprus there are numerous monasteries. Some of these religious communities are still in use as such. Some monasteries have since been given a different function. At 1140 meters altitude stands the most famous monastery in Cyprus: the Kykko Monastery. The original monastery dedicated to the Virgin Mary is now almost a thousand years old. However, the monastery has been restored or rebuilt several times due to catastrophic fires, the last in 1853. The main object within the museum is the Maria icon. The Kykko Monastery is a national pilgrimage site for the Cypriots.
Architectural elements from previous centuries have been preserved in the spacious courtyard of the monastery. The Ecclesiastical Archaeological Museum of Kykkos Monastery is located in the northern part of the complex and contains a collection of various ecclesiastical works of art – ecclesiastical utensils, books, icon lamps and frames, as well as crosses, ecclesiastical vestments and samples of real icons. The Kykko Monastery is free to visit. As a visitor you are expected to wear appropriate clothing. You do have to pay an entrance fee for the museum. Kykkos Monastery is open seven days a week.
West of Limassol is a plateau with an important archaeological site: Curium or Kourion. The hill of Kourion, on which the acropolis of the ancient city empire developed, occupies a dominant position on the coast 4 km southwest of the village of Episkopi in the district of Lemesos. The earliest evidence of habitation in the wider area of Kourion dates to the Neolithic Age (5500-3900 BC), while the oldest remains in the general area of the ancient city are related to settlements and tombs from the Middle and Late Bronze Ages. According to tradition, Kourion was founded by Argives in the 12th century BC.
The buildings of the former city are fairly well preserved. The extensive ruins contain some very well preserved mosaics, public baths, the House of Achilles and a necropolis. There is also an Apollo Hylates temple and a beautiful Greco-Roman amphitheatre. From this amphitheater you have a beautiful view of the surroundings and the Mediterranean Sea.
#8. Rock of Aphrodite
About 25 kilometers east of the popular seaside resort of Paphos lies a rock in the sea where legend has it that Aphrodite, the goddess of love, was born. In terms of design, the rock is not very special, but for those who are interested in the myth of Aphrodite and Cyprus, they will certainly want to take the trouble to view this piece of rock. The rock itself is not special in shape or anything. There is a beautiful beach nearby, which makes it extra worthwhile to come here. Be sure to take a dip. Legend has it that anyone who swims around Aphrodite’s rock will be blessed with eternal beauty. And who doesn’t want that?
If you are going to make an excursion that focuses on traditional Cyprus, chances are you will visit the town of Omodos, among others.will visit. Especially in the summer season the tour buses with tourists almost come and go. There are several reasons to visit Omodos. In fact, Omodos is especially popular because you see the different elements of Cyprus gathered in one place here. Omodos is a place where you can taste and buy the most delicious delicacies from the area. Furthermore, Omodos is one of the villages that belongs to the wine route of Cyprus. The climate of Omodos is perfect for wine growing, which is why Omodos is one of the wine-producing places on the island. Furthermore, Omodos is known for the delicious arkatena bread, which is made from fermented chickpeas.
The centrally located Timiou-Stavros Monastery is the main attraction of Omodos. The complex is no longer in use as a monastery, but it is largely in the state it was in when the last monks left the monastery. The church belonging to the monastery is still in use and can be visited. Make sure you are not overdressed if you want to enter the church.
#10. Port of Paphos
Kato Paphos, the lower tourist part of the town of Paphos (Pafos) has an attractive harbor where you can eat, drink and stroll along the water both during the day and in the evening. This old port of Paphos should therefore not be missing in the top ten highlights of Cyprus. At the harbor of Paphos is one of the main attractions of the city: Paphos Castle. The current version is a sixteenth-century version of the original medieval castle, rebuilt by the Ottomans. The result is a mix of classic Ottoman, Frankish and Venetian design.
The main part of the castle is a large square tower with an enclosed courtyard in the middle. The ground floor consists of a central hall with small rooms on two parallel sides, which were used as prison cells during the Ottoman rule. There are twelve battlements on the roof, on which stood a corresponding number of cannons. The Ottomans removed the cannons in 1878, when they handed over control of the island to the British, who used the castle as a salt store until 1935, when it was declared an ancient monument under the Antiquities Act.