Cyprus Guide - Brought to You by TUI

Posted on 13 Nov 2017 Posted in  Travel
TUI bring you a guide to Cyprus


As part of the excitement around the name change, TopCashback and TUI have partnered up to provide you with an exclusive series of travel guides written by travel blogger Matthew Hirtes for some of TUI’s top destinations – so whether you’re looking for a seaside excursion or a city break, our guides will give you some great pointers.

Our second guide is for Cyprus, an island consisting of beautifully sandy shores, rugged terrain, delicious food and delectable selection of wines. With just a four and a half hour flight, you’ll find yourself in a place of amazing history and culture.

And remember, you can earn exclusive cashback when you book your holiday in Cyprus with TUI.

Attractions: Despite drawing a youngish crowd mesmerized by the bright lights of party capital Ayia Napa, one can easily stumble upon Ancient Greece in Cyprus. In the likes of the south-west’s Kourion, close to Limassol, for example. The various mosaics each tell a story, such as the House of Achilles’ comic-strip-esque recounting of the time our weak-heeled hero tried to con Odyssesus out of fighting in the Trojan War by posing as a girl.

Beaches: Cyprus’ best beaches are clustered around the main resort of Ayia Napa in the east of the island. Although don’t overlook those rather more widely scattered in the west, including Coral Bay where a blue flag flies high over a beach with access to water that’s as easy on the body as it is on the eye. The pick of the Ayia Napa beaches is Nissi Beach with low-tide springtime and winter visitors rewarded with a magical sand walkway to the island from which the beach takes its name.

Drinks: Take the rough with the smooth on the drinks front in Cyprus. The more sweet than sickly Commanderia dates back to 800BC, making it the world’s oldest (dessert) wine. Contrast that to local moonshine Zivania, two parts fire to one part water.

Eats: You’ve probably tried halloumi, the cheese that melts in your mouth as readily as it does under the grill. But probably not paired with watermelon which is a popular Cypriot starter doubling as a pud. Koupepia are vine leaves stuffed with pork or lamb invariably, rice, cumin, onion, and tomato.

Goings On: Cyprus boasts a packed cultural calendar. The pre-Orthodox-Easter Limassol Carnival is the most colourful on the island with masqued balls that wouldn’t look out of place in Venice. The other side of Orthodox Easter, as in 50 days later, sees Kataklysmos, the Flood Festival, which is particularly celebrated in the island’s coastal locations over a three-day period.

Hikes: Retrace the footsteps of Aphrodite and lover Adonis on the 8km-long Aphrodite Trail. Allow three hours for a walk which will take in a near-900-year-old oak tree and quite possibly flamingos too. Remember to take a phone or camera to capture the amazing views of the Akamas Peninsula.

Souvenir: Picture-postcard Lefkara in the hilly south east of Cyprus is famous for two things. Lace and silver. Indeed, Leonardo da Vinci is reputed to have visited the village in 1481 and purchased a lace cloth to display in Milan’s cathedral.

Sport: The capital’s APOEL Nicosia are the leading Cypriot football club, so try and catch a match of theirs on holiday. On the basketball front, the form team is AEK Larnaca who have won the league three times since 2013. Cyprus’ very own Mount Olympus stores enough snow to become a skiing destination in winter.

Hotels: If you're looking for a quiet spot outside central Paphos, check out the Hotel Louis Phaeton Beach Club with its pair of huge swimming pools and a rocky beach just behind the hotel. For a more scenic experience, the TUI Sensatori Resort Aphrodite Hills by Atlantica is an ideal choice, with its position overlooking the Mediteranean Sea.  And finally, if you want a more personal holiday experience, the Aliathon Apartments are the perfect choice. It's just five minutes from the closest beach and just a half-hour stroll to Paphos Harbour.

Your Say:

Paul Smith

"Protaras is a wonderful resort with a fabulous beach. Sunrise Pearl Hotel is the best in the resort with allocated sunbed, sea views and it’s right on the beach."

Lisa Ternent

"Head to one of the island’s stunning beaches to watch the beautiful sunsets."

Keith Nicholson

"The Alexander the Great Beach Hotel in Paphos is our number 1 place anywhere. You’re guaranteed lovely weather, lovely guests and hotel staff that go the extra mile to ensure you have a wonderful holiday."
Matthew Hirtes has been based in the Canary Islands since 2004. He uses it at a base to cover Spain and beyond for the likes of Condé Nast Traveller, Telegraph Travel, and The Huffington Base. Matthew's favourite cities worldwide are his metropolis of birth, London, San Francisco (keg parties on Ocean Beach), and Seville (love those free oranges).

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