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Cyprus Districts

Famagusta Area

The Famagusta area (unfortunately the ghost town of Famagusta is still under Turkish military occupation since 1974) is associated with images of safe, calm and turquoise waters that are regularly featured in holiday catalogues all around Europe and beyond. Ayia Napa and Protaras are known all over the world as being a true paradise for sea and water sports lovers, but also for families with children who simply want to paddle in shallow and clean waters. By all means visit Ayia Napa – but don’t stay only there. Break away from the tourist center and explore the cluster of villages known as ‘kokkinochoria’, which means ‘red soil villages’. This is the center of our island’s potato production, which runs quietly and modestly alongside the thriving tourist industry and racing development in the area. Drive in to Paralimni and you will discover a charming blend of rural life with a holiday twist. Distinctly Cypriot, the village square is the area’s nerve center, and many visitors have discovered what the residents already know: the cafes and restaurants here do not cut corners, serving simple but ultra-fresh popular dishes that taste exactly as they should. Browse in the small shops and you will probably enjoy a chat with the friendly owners. Other landmarks are the various small churches and chapels that dot the region. One of the most attractive is the chapel of Profitis Elias, just outside the tourist area of Protaras, rebuilt in Byzantine style at the top of hill with magnificent panoramic views that make the climb worthwhile. Very close to Cavo Greko is another picturesque chapel, Ayioi Anargiroi, only a few steps from the sea. In the area of Ayioi Saranta, look for the chapel of the same name and you will discover it in an amazing setting, almost hidden among the rocks. After hot days spent on the beach and touring the countryside, the nightlife of Ayia Napa and Protaras takes over as pubs, clubs and all kinds of restaurants offer buzzing all-night entertainment. Understandably, the tourist centers in this area tend to slumber during the cooler winter months…

The Monastery of Ayia Napa is undoubtedly the optical and cultural center of Ayia Napa village. It stands at a location where, according to local tradition, a hunter in the 11th century discovered a miraculous icon of the Virgin Mary, probably hidden there during the iconoclastic period. Much later in the 16th century the monastery was built around the cave-shrine. It is said that a young woman from a wealthy Venetian family of Famagusta came to the monastery to escape family pressure to marry a nobleman. She renovated and expanded the monastery and is said to have planted the huge sycamore tree outside the south gate of the monastery, which is believed to be over 600 years old.

Explore Ayia Napa on foot…

Ayia Napa and the Sea: A Different Dimension This free of charge guided tour illustrates the historic connection of the Ayia Napa area with the sea. The tour begins with a drive to Cavo Greko, and a walk up to the top of the “tigani” (frying pan) where you will be introduced to the archaeology of the area and its natural beauty. This is followed by a drive to Ayioi Anargyroi, a chapel in the northern area of Cavo Greko. After a coffee break at the “limanaki” (fishing harbour) the tour continues along the coast to the archaeological site of Macronissos and the church of Ayia Thekla. Nature trails and various other sites that can be explored on another occasion will be pointed out. Starting point: CTO Information Office Walks are seasonal. To confirm the operation of the tour, please call: 23 72 17 96

Protaras Beach Stroll

 

Whether you enjoy a casual evening stroll or a brisk morning walk along the sea, a new coastal path directly on the beach has added an irresistible dimension to the Mediterranean magic of Protaras. Starting at the ‘Nissiotis’ restaurant and extending to the ‘Pola Costa’ hotel, this is the first completed section of a comprehensive project that is designed to embrace the Ammochostos district’s coastline. Along the way you will come across small kiosks, benches where you can take a break and rest your eyes on the sea, and a small area that will be hosting various cultural events featuring music and dance. Gradually, lush palm trees will line the road, making it even more attractive. Ready to go?