101 Things to do in Cyprus
Make the most of your holiday in Cyprus with my list of 101 things to do
Cyprus has so much to offer the visitor, it's often difficult to find the most exciting things to do, the prettiest villages to explore or the best food to eat until your holiday is almost over.And don't you just hate it when you find the best things to do on your last day? Grrr.
But hey, don't miss out as you can use my insider knowledge to plan your holiday before you get here with my top 101 things to do in Cyprus list.
I've split my 101 things to do list into sections to make it easier for you to find the things that appeal so, whether you love culture, activities, shopping, scenery, touring, eating,
or just plain relaxing, there's something for you on this 101 things to do list.
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Cultural/Historical 101 things to do
Cyprus is a haven for culture vultures and many places on the island are UNESCO listed. If you're looking for archaeological or historical sites, check these must-see places out:
1 Tombs of the Kings - on Tomb of the Kings road in Paphos.
2 Paphos Mosaics - including the Houses of Dionysos, Theseus & Aion, situated next to Paphos harbour.
3 Kourion (or Curium) - ancient city kingdom of 2nd century AD - Limassol. Beautiful restored amphitheatre and well preserved remains of the ancient city. Get there by following the signs off the motorway close to Episkopi garrison.
4 Agia Paraskevi church - Byzantine 5 domed church in Geroskipou - Paphos.
5 10 UNESCO listed Byzantine churches in Troodos mountains - most famous is Agios Nikolastis Stegis near Kakopetria.6
Restored flour mill at Kakopetria in the Troodos mountains. A delightful village for an overnight stay too.7 Kykkos
Monastery - founded in 1100. Archbishop Makarios served there. Tourist buses regularly visit or just hire a car for a wonderful day out in the mountains.8
Chrysorogiatissa monastery - excellent vintage wine since 1770 made by the monks. If you ask nicely, the priest may even offer you a tasting!9
Byzantine museum - Perisiterona village near Polis. Also the brand new folk and craft museum at Steni village further down the hill.10
Cyprus Museum - Nicosia. Must-see antiquities from the Neolithic Age
to the Byzantine Age.
11 Kolossi Castle - Limassol. Close to Kourion (see above)
12 Famagusta Gate - Nicosia. One of 3 restored gates of entry through the ancient city walls built by theVenetians.
13 Agios Lazaros Church - Larnaca. Built in the 9th century, the church was built over the tomb of the patron saint of Larnaca, St Lazaros.
14 Stavrouni Monastery - near Larnaca. Breathtaking views from the monastery set high on a hill-top. NB: Women are not allowed inside but can still enjoy the views from the car park.
15 Choirokoitia - UNESCO listed Neolithic settlement between Nicosia and Limassol.
16 Paphos mediaeval fort - a popular venue for chilling out in Paphos and the location for the annual open-air opera, held in September.
17 Panagia tou Sinti monastery on the Xeros river near Paphos - an important building of the Venetian period. Wonderful isolated location, perfect for a long walk or cycle ride.
18 Museum of Polis - small but worth a visit if in the area.
19 Palaichori - Pitsylia region of Troodos - has a "struggle" museum, a former hideout of the EOKA. Read heart-breaking stories of men that lost their lives.
20 Trooditissa monastery - majestic monastery dating from the 13th century. Closed to visitors but you can walk/cycle through the gated entrance to take a scenic route to Foini village.
Activities 101 things to do Cyprus
If you love the great outdoors like us, there are plenty of sporting activities to keep you occupied in Cyprus:
21 Walk on one of the many nature trails - some of our favourites are on the Akamas Peninsula and near Platres in the Troodos mountains.
22 Grab a yoga mat and lose yourself in some energising flowing yoga practice on a mountain hilltop. Or just go to a local yoga class.
23 Learn to dive Cyprus off the Akamas peninsula or dive down to the famous Xenobia wreck off the coast of Larnaca.
24 Take a boat trip along the Akamas peninsula.
25 Hike along part or all of the long distance E4 path around the island. The most scenic sections are on the west of the island.
26 Bungee jump - at Ayia Napa.
27 Rock climb - at Episkopi village near Paphos or near Drouseia village close to Polis.
28 Paraglide - at any of the watersport locations across the island.
29 Kiteboard - try this new exciting activity on the water - now available in the Polis/Latchi area and also in Limassol.
30 Go horseriding - riding centre at Tochni near Larnaca and new stables (RideinCyprus) near Lysos village close to Polis on the west.
31 Hire a
or take a guided bike tour in the Paphos forest. Easy to advanced level rides available.
32 Ski - between January-April in the Troodos mountains.
33 Birdwatch - best time is in spring when migratory birds arrive on the island. A good spot to take some binoculars is the Evretou dam, a favourite cycle ride location for us.
34 Go-karting - at Paphos, Polis and other locations across the island.
35 Get WET! at a water park - great fun for all the family. Look for special offers as it can be expensive for a whole family
36 Sail - harbours at Latchi, Paphos, Limassol with small cats and larger boats available for hire. Our favourite location is off the Anassa beach near Latchi where winds are usually strong after lunch.
37 Play tennis.Most large hotels have courts for both guest and locals use.
38 Bowls - especially popular in the winter months for long stay residents. Many hotels in Paphos have their own bowling greens.
39 Like golf holidays? Cyprus has 4 golf courses on the west of the island and several more are planned. The latest is Nick Faldo's course at Geroskipou just outside Paphos.
40 Kayak - the Akamas peninsula is especially beautiful early in the morning. Sea Caves near Coral Bay, Paphos is also another popular location. Zephyros mountain sports in Paphos have great kayak instructors.
Shopping/Souvenirs 101 Things to Do
If shopping is more your thing and you need to indulge in a little retail therapy, here's our 101 list of things to do (or rather BUY!) in Cyprus:
41 Pottery - try the famous Savva pottery near Paphos or visit Foini village in the Troodos mountains.
42 Lace - best place to see it being made is at Lefkara village near Larnaca or you can buy at many of the mountain villages like Omodhos near Platres.
43 Honey - get some runny honey mummy! 1kg of local honey is excellent value.
44 Cyprus Delight - like Turkish delight only better, but please don't call it Turkish delight in the South!
45 Hand woven rugs - a mountain village speciality. Try Neo Chorio near Latchi or Phyti near Polis to see rugs being made.
46 Sweet pastries - like dhaktyla or khateyfi, a favourite Easter pastry.
47 Commanderia wine - sweet but famous! Not to my taste but if you like sweet port, then you will probably love it.
48 Olive oil - here's where to get it cheap. If you have the chance, go pick some olives in October-December with the locals.
49 Olives - need we say more...green ones marinated in oregano, olive oil, garlic and lemon juice are to die for.
50 Copper items of jewellery or kitchenware.
51 Hand made clothes - visit the old Turkish quarter of the old towns in Paphos or Limassol and get a suitmade in a day!
52 Religious icons - replicas are available everywhere but you can buy the real thing from monasteries.
53 Zyvania - Cypriot fire water. Drink with caution, especially if offered some out of a plastic bottle - it will be homemade and lethal as around 70% proof!
54 Cyprus coffee and a coffee pot for the stove.
55 An "I love Cyprus" T-shirt!
Scenery/Beaches/Relaxation 101 things to do
Here are some of our favourite chill-out spots or things to make you chilled when looking at them in Cyprus:
56 Aphrodite's Rock - between Paphos and Limassol. Idyllic and romantic, where Aphrodite first came ashore when she found Cyprus.
57 Cedar Valley - a 4x4 adventure. The road is now mainly tarmac from Pano Panagia but a 4x4 is still advisable as there are many tracks to take a short-cut.
58 Akamas coastline - by boat, bike, quad bike, 4x4 or on foot.
59 Almond trees in blossom - Yioulou valley near Paphos in February or the Sarama valley below Lysos village close to Polis are our favourites.
60 Baths of Aphrodite on the Akamas peninsula. A tourist spot but well worth a visit even for just a stroll along the coastline.
61 Beaches at Ayia Napa and Protaras - wonderfull sandy beaches but packed in summer.
62 Lara Bay near Paphos - almost always deserted due to its inaccessibility. A must-do if you love quiet, serene unspoilt beaches.
63 Take a wine tour to discover our secret high quality boutique wineries. No retsina here!
64 Get high! - Visit Mount Olympus at the top of the Troodos mountains oon foot, by bike or just by car - NB: You can't get to the summit as it is an army restricted zone but the views from just below it are spectacular.
65 Xeros valley (home of the Sinti monastery detailed above) for breathtaking views and the Venetian bridges - my favourite is Roudias bridge but all are stunning.
Touring/Mountain Villages 101 Things to Do
If you prefer to see the entire island by touring, then hire a car and make sure you don't miss any of these favourite places we've visited on the island of Cyprus:
66 Lefkara village - near Larnaka - famous for lace.
67 Omodhos - Troodos - traditional village restored to attract visitors. You can buy delicious naturally sugared exotic fruits here - to die for!
68 Kakopetria - steeped in tradition in the Solea valley and a great place to stay.
69 Neo Chorio - old traditional village near Latchi - excellent food to be found at tthe Kouppas stone taverna and you can see old ladies weaving rugs and doing other handicrafts.
70 Pano Panagia - birthplace of Archbishop Makarios. Several good wineries close by for refreshments.
71 Anogyra (pronounced Annoy-ra) - restored houses and the old olive press.
72 Spilia - beautiful old village in Troodos with well preserved stone olive mill and idyllic mountain scenery.
73 Pedoulas - famous in Troodos for cherries. 10 different hotels and a fascinating museum. Some of the best souvla roasting on a spit we have tasted.
74 Milikouri - in the Troodos. Reached by a delightful woodland route (off road route).
75 Foini - famous for pottery and loukoumi desert.
76 Kato Amiantos - home to the restored asbestos mine which marrs the gorgeous scenery in the Troodos.
77 Laona villages in the Polis region - restored homes available for Agrotourism.
78 Tochni village - home of several Agrotourism houses, a riding centre and bike centre.
79 Phyti village - majestic position overlooking the Evretou dam. You MUST eat at Maria's Phyti tavern too - her Sunday lunch is always booked well in advance.
80 Latchi harbour - fresh fish is a delight!
And the last section of our 101 things to do in Cyprus:
Things to Eat and Drink
Our 101 things to do list wouldn't be complete without some "must eat" dishes, after all eating is the one thing you're going to be doing a lot of in Cyprus! And we've done a fair bit of that since we moved here 7 years ago:)
Grab this free restaurant guide if you want to know the best places for grub in Cyprus.
81 Souvlaki - pork kebabs.
82 Stifado - slow cooked beef stew.
83 Kleftiko - very slow roasted lamb cooked in the "kleftiko" oven. Probably the most popular dish on the menu but be warned it can be fatty.
84 Orektika - selection of dips, a great value way to try a variety of starters.
85 Sheftalia - herby minced meat sausages.
86 Grilled octopus - make sure it is fresh or it will be rubbery.
87 Tsipoora or sea bream - most commonly served fish at the end of a fish meze and one of the few fresh fish caught off Cypriot waters.
88 Loukanika - Cypriot sausages.
89 Karaoli yahni - snails. Yes it's not just the French who like them!
90 Fasolia - haricot bean casserole.
91 Meze - either meat or fish, a selection of Cypriot dishes to sample.
92 Yemista - stuffed vegetables.
93 Tava - pork or lamb stew.
94 Afelia - Pork speciality marinated in red wine.
96 Brandy Sour - THE Cyprus cocktail.
97 Pourgourri - pilaff of couscous/bulgar wheat.
98 Halloumi - the squeeky cheese, native to Cyprus.
99 Avgolemeno - egg and lemon soup eaten at Easter - not to everyone's liking though!
100 Dhaktyla - sticky little pastries.
101 Nero (water!) - you will need to drink LOTS of this in Cyprus!
TIP: Don't forget - Now available as a 36 page 101 eGuide with links to book your activities straight from your smartphone. It's your perfect holiday companion for less than a cup of decent coffee!
Most people will not have time to cover our 101 things to do during their first visit to Cyprus.
If you are only here for a few days, see our Top 10 Cyprus - our pick of the best things to do in Polis/Latchi.
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