Things To Do in Cyprus
Cyprus is a captivating island in the Mediterranean that beckons travellers from all corners of the globe. With its rich history, stunning landscapes, and delectable cuisine, it's no wonder that Cyprus is a top destination for those seeking memorable experiences.
In this guide, we'll take you on a journey to discover the best things to do in Cyprus, from savouring mouthwatering local dishes to basking on the island's finest beaches. Whether you're an adventurer, a foodie, or a sunseeker, Cyprus has something special in store for you.
Cyprus is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Here are some of the best Cyprus beaches:
Alagadi Beach: Situated in Kyrenia, offers a serene natural escape with soft, pristine sands and safeguarded white blossoms, making it a haven for botany enthusiasts.
Golden Beach: Located near Dipkarpaz on the Karpass Peninsula, boasts crystal-clear waters and golden-brown sands, providing a perfect spot for sunbathing and cultural exploration.
Glapsides Beach: Near Famagusta, it is family-friendly, offering warm, transparent waters and affordable sunbed and parasol rentals. It's known for its shallow waters, making it ideal for children, and breathtaking vistas.
Escape Beach in Kyrenia: This beach promises an exciting experience with jet skiing, shallow waters, and water sports, along with ample shaded areas and a lively nightlife scene.
Silver Beach in Famagusta: This is celebrated for its crystal-clear seawater, ideal for snorkelling, and is family-friendly with reasonably priced sunbeds.
Acapulco Beach: Affiliated with a luxurious hotel and spa complex in Kyrenia, it stands out for its cleanliness and water sports.
Agios Filon Beach in Dipkarpaz: It is home to marine turtles and offers spacious sandy stretches and picturesque rocks, with Turkish cuisine nearby.
Palm Beach in Famagusta: This beach features fine golden sands, clear waters, and a glimpse into the history of Varosha.
Whether you're a foodie, a sunseeker, or an explorer, Cyprus is ready to welcome you with open arms and unforgettable moments.
Cyprus is known for its delicious food, which is a blend of Greek and Turkish cuisine. Here are some of the must-try Cyprus food:
Halloumi: This is a traditional Cypriot cheese made from a mixture of goat's and sheep's milk. It is often grilled or fried and served as a side dish or in a salad.
Souvlaki: This is a popular Greek dish made from grilled meat, usually pork or chicken, served on a skewer with vegetables and pita bread.
Kleftiko: This is a traditional Cypriot dish made from slow-cooked lamb or goat, marinated in garlic and lemon juice, and served with potatoes and vegetables.
Meze: This is a selection of small dishes served as a meal or appetizer. It usually includes dips, salads, grilled meat, and seafood.
Moussaka: This is a savoury casserole. It consists of layered creamy béchamel sauce, minced meat, and eggplant.
Cyprus has a rich history and culture, and there are many historical sights to explore. Here are some of the must-visit historical sights in Cyprus:
Salamis: Founded in the Bronze Age by Tefkros, this ancient city in North Cyprus dates back to the 11th century BC. Excavations from 1952-1974 revealed a well-preserved site, showcasing Roman-era remnants like the gymnasium, baths, forum, and agora.
Kyrenia Castle: Located near Kyrenia Harbour, this architectural marvel features a mix of styles within its Venetian walls. Explore the Church of St. George, royal apartments, Byzantine chapels, and French dungeons. Don't miss the Shipwreck Museum, housing a 2,300-year-old cargo ship that sank off Kyrenia.
Karpaz Gate Marina: North Cyprus' first modern marina, it's a luxurious destination with a 5 Gold Anchor rating, catering to superyachts. Enjoy top-tier leisure and technical facilities, along with dining options and outlets on the marina's promenade.
Bellapais Abbey: Situated at the base of the Beşparmak Mountains, this medieval wonder is famous for its Gothic architecture and picturesque setting. English author Lawrence Durrell found inspiration here while writing "Bitter Lemons."
Golden Beach: A pristine 2-kilometer stretch of Mediterranean shoreline on the Karpaz Peninsula, known for its golden sands and crystal-clear waters, offering a serene escape.
Shipwreck Museum: Within Kyrenia Castle, it showcases a cargo boat from 300 BC, the oldest known shipwreck. Discovered by marine archaeologists, it provides insights into the past.
St. Hilarion Castle: Dating back to the 10th century, this castle on the Beşparmak Mountains includes a monastery and church. Legend has it that it inspired Walt Disney's "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs."
The Great Khan: An important Ottoman work in Nicosia, built between 1572 and 1579. It now serves as an entertainment and shopping centre.
Kyrenia Harbour: Often called the "Jewel of Cyprus," it features a horseshoe-shaped harbour with historical buildings, restaurants, and bars, making it a must-visit destination.
Karpaz Peninsula: A remote, untouched region known for its wild donkeys, ancient ruins, and the Apostolos Andreas Monastery dedicated to St. Andrew.
Glapsides Beach: Located in Famagusta, it offers a pristine coastline with white sands, crystal-clear waters, and various water activities, along with a lively beachfront restaurant.
Mavi Köşk (Blue Mansion): Built in 1973, this unique villa combines Greek, Italian, Turkish, and Eastern Mediterranean styles. It's known for its intriguing secrets, including hidden tunnels.
Old City of Famagusta: A picturesque Mediterranean town with a rich history, featuring historical and modern buildings. Visit the old St. Nicholas Cathedral, and Venetian walls, and explore the pedestrianized shopping street.
Kantara Castle: Positioned at 700 meters above sea level on the Girne Mountains, it offers breathtaking views, numerous rooms, and a legendary 101st room believed to lead to paradise.
St. Barnabas Monastery: Located near Tuzla Village, Famagusta, it commemorates the apostle Barnabas and houses two museums, one focused on ancient artefacts and the other showcasing icons from the region's churches, dating back to the 18th century.
Immerse Yourself in Cyprus' Festivals
North Cyprus hosts a variety of produce festivals that showcase the region's rich agricultural heritage throughout the year:
● In April and May, the Yesilirmak Strawberry Festival invites visitors to pick their strawberries, enjoy local performances, and explore food and craft stalls in a picturesque setting.
● June brings the Lefke Walnut Festival, celebrating sweet walnut delicacies in Lefke, a historically significant village nestled between the coast and mountains.
● From late May to early June, the Esentepe Apricot Festival offers evening events in the scenic village square, coinciding with the apricot harvest.
● July witnesses the Guzelyurt Orange Festival, a two-week extravaganza featuring concerts, sports events, and more.
● August is dedicated to the Mehmetcik Grape Festival, celebrating the Karpaz Peninsula's vineyards with folk dancing, grape-based delights, and music.
● August and September host the Gecitkale Hellim Festival, showcasing the significance of Cyprus' halloumi cheese with demonstrations and various activities.
● In September and October, the International Carob Festival in Tatlisu celebrates the historical importance of carob exports.
● October welcomes the Zeytinlik Olive Festival in Kyrenia, featuring international artists, workshops, exhibitions, and more.
● In October and November, the Lefke Date Festival celebrates the date harvest near Lefke, offering fresh dates and local crafts.
Most days of the year are sunny in Northern Cyprus, making it the perfect vacation spot all year round! Your properties in North Cyprus can be your sanctuary whenever you need a routine break.
North Cyprus also hosts Flower and Bird Festivals:
● In February, the Lapta Orchid Festival opens the festival season with guided orchid walks.
● March sees the Tepebasi Tulip Festival, celebrating native Cyprus Tulips with a parade, folklore performances, and tulip walks.
● In August, the Bogaz (Yeni Bogazici) Pulya Festival celebrates the songbird with concerts and cultural events.
There are also Music, Culture, and Dance Festivals:
● From April to June, the Bellapais International Music Festival in Kyrenia features world-class musicians in various genres within the historic Bellapais Abbey.
● June and July host the International Famagusta Art and Culture Festival, attracting tourists with a diverse range of music and cultural events.
● The Lapta Tourism Festival in June offers evening concerts and events.
● In June and July, the Iskele International Folk Dance Festival showcases traditional dance performances.
● August hosts Folk Dance Festivals in Gonyeli and Alsancak, while the Kyrenia Art & Culture Festival takes place in Central Kyrenia, featuring traditional activities and concerts.
● In September, the North Cyprus Theatre Festival in Nicosia presents plays from local and mainland Turkish theatre groups.
Hike in Cyprus' Stunning Natural Landscapes
If you're an outdoor enthusiast, Cyprus offers a plethora of hiking trails that showcase its diverse and breathtaking landscapes. Lace up your hiking boots and explore the island's natural wonders.
● Troodos Mountains: The Troodos Mountains are a hiker's paradise. The trails lead through dense forests, meadows, and charming villages. You'll also come across ancient monasteries like Kykkos Monastery.
● Cape Greco National Forest Park: Known for its dramatic sea cliffs and rocky terrain, Cape Greco is a great destination for hikers and nature lovers. The views are stunning, and you might even spot unique flora and fauna.
● Akamas Peninsula: The Akamas Peninsula is a protected nature reserve with a variety of hiking paths that offer a glimpse into Cyprus' unspoiled beauty. The Baths of Aphrodite is a famous stop in this region.
Cyprus is a treasure trove of experiences for travellers of all interests. From indulging in mouthwatering local dishes to basking on the beaches in the Mediterranean, and from exploring its rich cultural heritage to embarking on outdoor adventures, Cyprus has something for everyone.
Whether you're a foodie, a sunseeker, or an explorer, Cyprus is ready to welcome you with open arms and unforgettable moments. Make your way to this Mediterranean gem, and you'll find that the island's beauty and charm are simply irresistible.