Your second home awaits you.
That is the message from the Cypriot Minister of Tourism, Savvas Perdios, who cannot wait to welcome the British back to the beautiful beaches and azure waters of his island when the trip returns. Here we offer an enticing guide to the best of Cyprus.
Out of this world: A look at the love bridge of Protaras in Cyprus. You can go diving, windsurfing and jet skiing in Protaras
Welcome news from the Cypriot Minister of Tourism
Savvas Perdios, the Minister of Tourism in Cyprus
Cyprus is a joy right now. There is so much color. It was here yesterday 25c (77f); the sun was shining; People swam in the sea and walked on the beaches.
We very much look forward to sharing this with UK tourists soon.
We know how much they enjoy Cyprus and we enjoy hosting them. They come here for the weather, the beaches, the hospitality and the quality of the food.
It’s an island that feels like a home away from home to them. History has shown us that UK travelers who come to our country tend to return. So we try to make this possible in every possible way.
We learned a lot from the last year. We got an idea of what it is like to operate a target with existing protocols. It went well and everyone was brought to safety. No tourist left Cyprus with Covid-19.
It is up to the UK government to decide when people can fly but we will open a new system of restrictions to UK tourists on April 1st, and from May 1st vaccinated UK tourists will be able to travel here without them test- or quarantine restrictions.
We’re a small island which means you can get anywhere in an hour and a half. You can vacation on the beach, then take a trip to the highest mountain and come back for dinner on the beach. Not many goals can emulate that. Even though it’s winter and lockdown, the weather has been lovely the past few months. It’s a great selling point for Cyprus.
We are determined to work as usual this summer.
No masks are mandatory on the beach, by the pool, or while exercising and enjoying food and drinks. It will be a very relaxed atmosphere.
All companies know what to do and are ready. Our vaccination program is going well and by June we will have stabbed around 70 percent of our population. And we test a lot – around 40 percent of our workforce every week.
No other destination found out how ready they are, and we did it.
We are on the way to recovery and look forward to welcoming you again.
BY SAVVAS PERDIOS, MINISTER OF TOURISM
Try scuba diving, windsurfing, and jet skiing while staying in the seaside resort of Protaras in the southeast of the island.
There are no less than five beaches nearby, with Mouzoura Beach being one of the best and having a good restaurant for lunch.
Make yourself comfortable in the minimalist-chic Silver Sands Beach Hotel with its small sandy bend and jetty for boat trips. The stylish cocktail bar has a beautiful terrace with sea views.
Do not miss: Take an evening to sample the lively bars and nightclubs of nearby Ayia Napa – at least we hope they are up and running.
details: One week half board from £ 410pp from Gatwick (easyjet.com).
Ride regular bikes or e-bikes (electric bikes that help you pedal) on winding roads and trails between remote villages in the south of the country on a country tour.
Visit olive farms, wineries, and honey-making centers, plus taverns and restaurants for lunch, and stay in a range of hotels, apartments, and guest houses.
Your luggage will be transported. The route takes you through rolling hills and ends at the sea. You can leave if you prefer.
Do not miss: A visit to the quiet 15th century Aghios Minas Monastery in the village of Valva, with its elegant mix of Byzantine and Gothic styles.
details: 14 nights from £ 1,190 per person in May with transfers and flights (sunvil.co.uk).
Located between Paphos and Limassol on the south coast, Pissouri is a village of low, whitewashed buildings in a quiet bay.
The Kotzias Beach Apartments are located 100 meters above a hill from the sea and offer a wonderful retreat with a wonderful view over the water after a day at the beach.
There’s a small pool surrounded by palm trees and lawns, with a rocky mountainside on one side.
Each room has its own terrace or balcony. Perfect for indulging in a novel or Colin Thubron’s entertaining 1975 travel book Journey Into Cyprus.
Do not miss: Take a walk in the hills behind Pissouri.
details: A 14-day self-catering from £ 812 per person departing from Manchester on May 20th (olympicholidays.com).
Explore the rugged coastline of Akamas National Park, which extends over 144 square kilometers in the northwest of the island, during a hiking vacation.
Make yourself comfortable and enjoy yourself in the Tavros Hotel Apartments (1st to 4th day) near the picturesque village of Latchi with its three small taverns and in the Souli Hotel (5th to 8th day) near a small beach You hikes of any length you choose every day in the nature reserve.
Loggerhead turtles nest on the coast and foxes, snakes, owls, griffon vultures, fruit bats and seals can also be spotted.
Sir David Attenborough filmed here.
Do not miss: The Fontana Amorosa is a freshwater pool in which Aphrodite is said to have bathed with her lover Adonis.
details: A week long trip from £ 667 per person with transfers between accommodation, breakfast at Souli Hotel and Gatwick flights (sunvil.co.uk).
MARINAS AND MUSEUMS
Larnaca pictured is the third largest city in Cyprus. There are lively cafes and bars by the marina and there are also museums, forts and archaeological sites
Escape the first day of enjoying the usually lively cafes and bars at the marina of Larnaca, the third largest city in Cyprus in the southeast.
Stay at the Palm Beach Hotel and bungalows on the outskirts of town, which have a pool, tennis courts, gym, pool bar and their own Orthodox chapel.
The delight of the hotel is that you can explore Larnaca, with its museums, forts, and archaeological sites, but retire to the splendor of the pool overlooking the sea.
Do not miss: A visit to Larnaca Archaeological Museum to see the Mycenaean pottery, the reconstructed Neolithic tomb, and Roman glassware.
details: One week B&B from £ 504pp from Gatwick (easyjet.com).
The Louis Ledra Beach hotel is located near the Paphos town harbor shown here. It is here that the mythical fertility goddess Aphrodite is said to have risen from the sea
Visitors to Paphos should check out the pictured Paphos Castle, which was originally built as a Byzantine fortress
Enjoy a sundowner at the beach bar overlooking the pleasant curve of sand and gravel at the Louis Ledra Beach Hotel.
This is a charming place with a winding path along the coast that leads to the city port of Paphos, about 30 minutes away, where there are sights to be discovered associated with the mythical fertility goddess Aphrodite. Paphos, where it is believed to have risen from the sea, is in the southwest.
After a swim in the calm water, there is a lot to think about while enjoying a glass of retsina (Greek white or rosé wine) or ouzo (aniseed-flavored aperitif).
Do not miss: A trip to Paphos Castle, originally built as a Byzantine fortress.
Details: One week all inclusive from £ 688 per person departing from Gatwick (tui.co.uk) on May 19th.
The stunning village of Platres in the Troodos Mountains. It is a good starting point for a walk or to visit the nearby monasteries of Trooditissa and Kykkos
WINE, ORCHIDS AND A ROYAL WEDDING
- Cyprus is the third largest island in the Mediterranean after Sicily and Sardinia.
- Alert botanists! The island is home to 20 rare species of orchid.
- On May 12, 1191, King Richard I married Berengaria of Navarre in Limassol’s St. George Chapel.
- There are no fewer than three UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Cyprus, including the entire city of Paphos.
- Cyprus is one of the oldest wine producing countries in the world. Sweet Commandaria wine has been made on the island for more than 5,000 years.
- Immortalized by Shakespeare, the story of the lovers Antony and Cleopatra ended in tragedy, but the Roman general once gave Cyprus to the Egyptian queen.
- Cypriots speak a mixture of Greek, Turkish and English.
A hideaway in the mountains beckons in the Forest Park Hotel, which is hidden deep in the pine forest on the edge of the village of Platres in the Troodos Mountains.
This four-star hotel, which sometimes hosts business conferences, has indoor and outdoor pools, a spa, and tennis courts. It is a good starting point for a walk or to visit the nearby monasteries of Trooditissa and Kykkos. A rental car can be arranged through the hotel reception. In earlier times, King Farouk of Egypt and the Greek Nobel Prize-winning poet Odysseas Elytis vacationed in Platres – so you are in interesting historical company.
Do not miss: One of the excellent hikes, the Persephone Trail, is the least demanding, about three kilometers with a nice view of a lookout in the middle.
details: One week B&B from £ 519 per person with flights to Manchester on May 22nd (olympicholidays.com).
After so long at home, it may be time to let off steam – and get away as quickly as possible. Then the Amavi Hotel on the coast near Paphos is the place for you.
The luxury suites have tinted windows with a view of the sea. Treat yourself to a treatment in the spa, massage rooms with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the water, or play a game of tennis. Then enjoy a few leisurely laps in one of the infinity pools or simply lie down on a sun lounger on the manicured lawn, surrounded by palm trees.
Do not miss: A martini in the Selene Cocktail Bar at sunset or listen to the pianist in the Nocturne Restaurant.
details: One week half board from £ 1,501 per person on Stansted flights (jet2holidays.com).
Seven miles outside of Limassol on the south coast, the island’s second largest city, the Amathus Beach Hotel has a world-class spa and a range of pools. One is especially intended for those who drive “laps” for sport. Another, with sea water, claims to be the largest indoor swimming pool in Cyprus.
It’s the kind of hotel some people don’t want to leave, right on the beach and with a relaxed open air restaurant on a terrace overlooking the sea.
Do not miss: A trip to the Byzantine castle and the excellent archaeological museum in Limassol.
details: One week B&B from £ 757 departing Heathrow on May 21 (britishairways.com).
The beautiful Akamas National Park where you can stay deep in the country in a self catering villa
Stay deep in the countryside near the beautiful Akamas National Park in one of two self-catering Lenas villas.
Car rental is included in the price of a stay in these simple but elegant accommodations tucked away on a hill with pine, olive trees and orchards. Each has its own pool, kitchen and dining terrace. The villas are located near the ancient city of Polis, which dates back to the Neolithic Age. Hence, it is easy to get supplies of food.
Do not miss: A day trip to the peaceful fishing village of Latchi near Polis to buy fresh seafood.
details: Two weeks self-catering from £ 967 per person with flights to Birmingham on May 23rd (tui.co.uk).