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Cyprus Honeymoon Guide

Bustling beach resorts, ancient ruins, medieval fortresses, lush mountain vistas, pretty green valleys dotted with olive groves, an energetic nightlife and a warm climate are just some of the reasons why Cyprus is such a popular honeymoon destination.

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Paphos Beach
Phaphos, Cyprus – Image courtesy of Wikipedia Commons

Introducing Cyprus

Explore the lush, pine-scented Troodos Mountains on foot or by jeep safari, visit centuries-old wine-growing villages and have fun with a choice of watersport activities at one of several beach resorts such as Kato Paphos, Protaras or Ayia Napa all of which boast a choice of pristine beaches.


Top beaches in Cyprus

With year-round sunshine, a warm climate and beautiful sandy beaches, it's easy to see why Cyprus is such a popular honeymoon destination.

The eastern coast of Cyprus offers fine, white-sand beaches that shelve into shallow turquoise waters as well as deep-water bays framed by rocky outcrops that offer good snorkelling and diving.

The south coast offers long, golden-sand beaches, while the western coast offers secluded coves.

Some of the best beaches in Cyprus, include…

Ayia Napa…

Nissi Beach, Ayia Napa, Cyprus

Nissi Beach – Unwind on the golden sands of Nissi Beach, which shelves gently into the calm waters of Nissi Bay.

The beach is sheltered from the wind and is one of the most attractive beaches in Cyprus.

Facilities include loungers and sun umbrellas for hire as well as various watersport activities including waterskiing, windsurfing, parascending or jet skiing.

Lively beachfront bars make this a popular spot with the clubbing crowd during the high season.

Nissi Beach is located 2km west of the town centre.

Makronissos Beach, Ayia Napa, Cyprus

Makronissos Beach – Also known as Golden Sands, Makronissos Beach is located 1km west of Nissi Beach (and is linked to it by a walkway and cycle path).

Unwind on the golden sand, go swimming and try out some of the many watersports options at hand.

Behind the beach lie excavated Hellenec and Roman ruins. Quad bikes are also available to hire should you feel the urge to explore cross-country.

Pantahou Beach, Ayia Napa, Cyprus

Pantahou Beach – Dig your toes into the golden sand of this popular kilometre-long beach that stretches east from the fishing harbour of Ayia Napa.

The calm water is clear and ideal for swimming. Facilities include lifeguards during the season and several beachfront restaurants and bars.

Agia Thekla Beach, Ayia Napa, Cyprus

Agia Thekla Beach – Unwind on the golden sands of this 300 metre-long beach that shelves into the typically calm sea of a tiny cove. The beach is named after an old church situated nearby.

Facilities include lifeguards the season, watersports and a beachfront convenience store. The beach is located 3km west of Ayia Napa and is easily accessible from the main road leading to Ayia Napa.

Konnos Beach, Ayia Napa, Cyprus

Konnos Beach – Unwind on the golden sands of this picturesque 200m-long beach that sits between steep pine-covered slopes and the protected shallow and calm waters of this small sheltered cove.

Facilities include sun beds and umbrellas, lifeguards during bathing hours as well as beachside restaurants and convenience stores.

Konnos beach is located east of Agia Napa between Cape Greco and Protaras and can easily be reached by boat from Protaras oand Ayia Napa.

See more beaches and beach resorts…

Protaras…

Fig Tree Bay Beach, Protaras, Cyprus

Protaras Beach – Unwind on the fine, golden sand of one of Cyprus’s best beaches that is perfect for sunbathing, swimming and pursuing a variety of watersports from paddle boats to jet skis.

Located in the popular town of Paralimni, the beach is also known as Fig Tree Bay, and takes its name from a single, solitary fig tree that has been there since the 17th century.

Facilities on the beach include toilets, changing rooms, sun beds, umbrellas and water sports facilities, with a variety of accommodation, restaurants and food kiosks nearby.

The beach also offers disabled access, including a special wheelchair at the lifeguard tower to help disabled persons enter the sea with assistance from the lifeguards. Lifeguards are stationed at the beach from April to September.

Paphos…

Pachyammos Beach, Paphos, Cyprus

Pachyammos Beach – This narrow sandy beach is sits in front of the hotels on Poseidonos Avenue.

Facilities include lifeguards, watersports, sun beds and umbrellas with a wide range of bars, restaurants and telephones nearby.

The quality of the water is tested frequently and the beachfront is cleaned everyday.

Coral Bay Beach, Paphos, Cyprus

Coral Bay Beach – Relax on the golden sands of this popular beach, located around 13km north of Paphos. The beach is easily accessible by bus.

Facilities include a variety of watersports from pedalos to windsurfers and parasailing.

Latchi Beach, Paphos, Cyprus

Latchi Beach – Although covered in pebbles, Latchi Beach offers the best conditions in the region for diving or snorkelling.

The nearby laid back Cypriot village of Latchi provides some of the best fish tavernas in Cyprus.

Lara Bay Beach, Paphos, Cyprus

Lara Bay – Pick your own secluded spot on this quiet and unspoilt beach, located just north of Paphos.

The beach is the site where endangered green and loggerhead turtles come to lay their eggs. You may also be able lucky enough to see endangered monk seals here.

Petra tou Romiou Beach, Paphos, Cyprus

Petra tou Romiou – Long considered to be the legendary birthplace of Aphrodite, Greek Goddess of Love, and ancient patron goddess of Cyprus, Petra tou Romiou Beach offers stunning sunsets from a rocky coastline.

It's also a great spot for a swim and a picnic. Located along the road from Lemesos to Pafos.

Geriskopou Beach, Paphos, Cyprus

Geriskopou Beach – This popular pebble and sand beach is just a couple of kilometres from the harbour at Paphos.

Facilities include nearby accommodation options, beachside restaurant, volleyball court and various water sports as well as sun bed and umbrella hire. Lifeguards are on duty during the summer season.

Limassol…

Lady's Mile Beach, Limassol, Cyprus

Lady's Mile Beach – Pick a secluded spot on this 8km-long beach that gently shelves into shallow, clear water. Located a few kilometres from Limassol, this beach is mostly deserted.

Pissouri Beach, Limassol, Cyprus

Pissouri Beach – Sunbathe on the golden sands of this pristine beach and swim or snorkel in the clear, warm waters. Beachside restaurants are renown for great seafood.


Kourion Beach, Limassol, Cyprus

Kourion Beach – Although a stony beach, Kourion is popular for windsurfing and hang gliding from the nearby cliff top.

The long and curving beach has splendid backdrop as the dramatic ruins of Kourion are perched on the top of the cliff overlooking the beach.

Larnaca…

Finikoudes Beach, Larnaca, Cyprus

Finikoudes Beach – Pick a spot to unwind on this 500m-long golden-sand beach that borders Larnaka’s palm-lined beachfront promenade. The beach gentle shelves into clean and calm waters.

Facilities include toilets, showers, changing rooms, access for the disabled, sun beds and umbrellas, a variety of water sports and lifeguards during the bathing season.

The beachfront area hosts a range of cafes, bars, restaurants and hotels.

The beach is easily accessed on foot and by bus and car. The area is the venue for the two-week Larnaca Kataklysmos Fair, usually held in June.

See less beaches…


Saint Hilarion Castle

What to do and see in Cyprus

Wander picturesque streets in the Old Town of Nicosia, a UNESCO World Heritage Site crammed with 16th century architecture and the only divided capital in the world, with it’s UN-enforced Green Line separating the Greek and Turkish sections of the city.

Discover Cyprus' ancient sites by hire car. Glimpse the island’s history at the archaeological site of Kourin, peer into the Baths of Aphrodite – a natural grotto fringed with gorgeous maidenhair ferns where (supposedly) the Greek goddess of love used to bathe – admire exquisite mosaics in Paphos, then visit the Tombs of the Kings, a massive underground catacomb complex dating back over 2,000 years.

Explore one of Cyprus' ancient castles. Walk in the footsteps of the Crusader King Richard the Lionheart on the ancient ramparts of Limassol Castle or head into Northern Turkey and climb the lofty heights of Saint Hilarion Castle (photo) or Buffavento Castle that were once bulwarks against Saracen raiders.

Don't miss the colourful Limassol Carnival and Paphos’ Anthesteria Flower Festival, both held in February. Sample local wine at the Limassol Wine Festival in September and watch the Cyprus Rally in November.

Major sightseeing attractions in Cyprus

From ancient ruins to medieval fortresses and lush mountain vistas, Cyprus offers a choice of must-see attractions for inquisitive couples celebrating a honeymoon, including the following must-see sights….

Mosaics of Paphos

Mosaics of Paphos

Admire this mesmerising collection of colourful mosaics featuring lifelike scenes and intriguing tales from Greek mythology.

Found by accident in 1962, the mosaics decorated the floors of several large, opulent Roman villas dating from the 3rd to 5th century BC. In the House of Aion, scenes depict the gods Apollo and Aion as well as the legendary royal beauty Cassiopeia.

The mosaics in the Villa of Theseus depict a heroic theme with a club-wielding Theseus preparing to take on the Minotaur watched by Ariadne, while Achilles is seen as a child.

The House of Dionysus is the largest villa and features more than 550sqm of floor space in 14 rooms decorated with colourful mosaics of Dionysus, the god of wine.

The excavated site is in the southern sector of the Pahpos Archaeological Site, south of the Agora and about 300m from Pahpos harbour.

Pahpos Archaeological Site

Pahpos Archaeological Site

Wander the sprawling Pahpos Archaeological Site, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that was first unearthed in 1962 and arguably the most exciting and inspiring archaeological site on Cyprus.

Known as Nea Pahpos (New Pahpos), the ancient city of Pahpos was founded in the late 4th century BC.

Today, you can examine lavish mosaics found on the floors of four Roman villas; admire the Roman Odeon, a partly restored Roman theatre, with 11 tiers of seats, standing on a hillside overlooking the site; visit the Asklipion, a hospital and temple dedicated to Asklipios, god of medicine; and stroll the Agora, the former marketplace of the ancient city.

Elsewhere, stroll the long ramparts of the ancient Roman Walls and visit the semi-circular Hellenistic Theatre with its seven rows of stone benches cut into the rock of the hillside overlooking Kato Pahpos from the south slope of Fabrica Hill.

Peer into the honeycomb of vaults and dungeons surrounded by a dry moat at the Saranda Kolones, a stronghold erected in the 13th-century.

The sprawling Pafos Archaeological Site is located in the western section of Kato Pahpos.

See more sights…

Tombs of the Kings

Tombs of the Kings

Descend stone stairways into the rock-carved tombs and discover impressive Doric columns, a below ground-level atrium and niches built into the walls where bodies were stored.

The well-preserved underground tombs and chambers at this UNESCO World Heritage site date from the 3rd century BC to the 3rd century AD and are unique in Cyprus.

Named for their grand appearance and the Doric pillars that help support the structures, the rock-carved tombs are thought to be the burial sites of residents of Nea Paphos who were members of the higher social classes of the period. There is no evidence the tombs were actually used by royalty.

The tombs are built in the peristyle court structure, much loved by the ancient Egyptians who believed that tombs for the dead should resemble houses for the living, a tradition reflected in the Pahpos tombs. The tombs are located two kilometres north of Kato Pahpos.

Baths of Aphrodite

Take a romantic side trip to the natural grotto where legend has it that the Greek goddess of love, Aphrodite, used to take her baths. The Baths of Aphrodite are located on the Akamas Peninsula near Polis, about 48km north of Paphos.

Ancient Kourion, Cyprus

Kourion

Stroll around the ruins of ancient Kourian, a spectacular 13th century BC archaeological site that sits on a hillside overlooking Kourion Beach and the Mediterranean Sea.

Relax on the stone seats of the Greco-Roman theatre, or forum that has been completely restored and is used today for open air musical and theatrical performances.

Visit the public baths, the Nymphaeum, the necropolis, the Fountain House, House of Gladiators and House of Achilles.

The ruins of Kourion are located near the town of Episkopi, within the Aktrotiri Sovereign Base Area, on the southern coast of Cyprus.

Tip: Come in the quiet of the morning to escape the midday heat and the afternoon crowds.

Amathus, Cyprus

Amathus

Wander the ancient ruined foundations of this once proud city – founded more than 3,000 years ago and one of the very first of the island’s city-states.

Discover the remnants of ancient temples, city walls and Byzantine churches, including stone columns that mark the site of the Hellenistic gymnasium and foundations of a very early Christian basilica, dating from the 5th century AD.

Don't miss the remains of the aqueduct that supplied the whole of ancient Amathous and its citizens with fresh water, geometric black and white mosaics that formed the floor of the Roman baths and the colourful mosaic floors of a medieval monastery.

Excavations that began in 1980 continue today.

Amathus is located about 24 miles west of Larnaca and 6 miles east of Limassol.

Nicosia Walled City, Cyprus

Nicosia Walled City

Stroll around the picturesque Old Town, ringed by impressive stone fortifications and home to a lively melange of streets bustling with shops, bars, restaurants and local colour.

Discover restored buildings such as the Archbishop’s Palace and Byzantine Art Museum, which reveals Byzantine icons that date from the 9th through to the 18th centuries.

Don’t miss the Paphos Gate, just metres from the Turkish zone, and the Famagusta Gate, that houses the city’s cultural centre and a changing schedule of exhibitions.

In the northern part of Nicosia, see bazaars and medieval monuments and the dramatic Selimiye Mosque – the largest and oldest surviving gothic church in Cyprus. The cathedral took more than 150 years to construct and although unfinished was finally inaugurated in 1326.

After the Ottomans occupied the city, the cathedral of Agia Sofia was turned into a mosque and all the decorative elements including stained glass and colourful frescoes were destroyed.

Note: Nicosia is also known as Lefkosia in Greek and Lefkosa in Turkish. Crossing from southern to northern Nicosia is permitted.

Cyprus Archeaological Museum, Nicosia

Cyprus Archeaological Museum (Nicosia)

Discover a display of fascinating archaeological artefacts, some of which are 8,500 years old.

Admire pottery and implements from the Neolithic and Chalcolithic periods then trace the history of Cyprus through the Stone and Bronze Age, Hellenic Period, Mycenaean times and Roman Period to the early Byzantine.

See Neolithic flint blades and implements, Mycenaean ceramics and wine bowls including a gold-inlaid bowl, ivory carvings of mythological beasts that once adorned one of the thrones in the Royal Tombs at Salamis, gold and silver jewellery, and plates and chalices displayed around the Leda mosaic.

The latter date from the 6th century AD and were found at Lambousa in northern Cyprus.

Don’t miss the army of terracotta votive figurines discovered at the shrine at Agia Irini, the marble Statue of Zeus poised to hurl a thunderbolt dating from the 7th and 6th centuries BC and the naked bronze figure of the 2nd century AD Roman emperor Septimius Severus – one of the world’s most impressive relics of ancient Rome.

Limassol Castle, Cyprus

Limassol Castle

Stroll the ancient ramparts first erected by the Byzantines in the 14th century overlooking the old harbour on the site of an earlier Byzantine castle.

The castle is renowned for being the place where the Crusader King Richard the Lionheart married Berengaria of Navarre, and crowned her Queen of England in 1191.

Today it houses the Cyprus Medieval Museum, which boasts a fine collection of artefacts dating back to the Early Christian Era (384-650).

Troodos Painted Churches, Cyprus

Troodos Painted Churches

Discover a unique treasure trove of Byzantine religious art and some of the most beautiful early Christian frescoes in the world at this UNESCO World Heritage listed site, which consists of several churches dating from the 13th century.

The most impressive is arguably the Agios Ioannis Lampadistis monastery, home to three churches built side-by-side over 400 years from the 11th century and boasting a series of intricate and colourful frescoes.

The 13th-century frescoes include those dedicated to Agios Irakleidios, the Raising of Lazarus, the Crucifixion, the Ascension and the Arrival of the Magi on horseback, wearing crusader armour. In addition, a small museum houses a collection of 15 icons that date from the 16th century.

Note: Photographs of the frescoes are not allowed.

Khirokitia, Larnaca

Khirokitia (Larnaca)

Discover one of the most important and best-preserved prehistoric sites of the eastern Mediterranean. Excavations have revealed the site to be of the Neolithi aceramic period and is the oldest Neolithic sites on Cyprus, dating to 7000 BC.

Explore the settlements defensive wall, circular houses and tombs once home to primitive farmers who cultivated wheat and barley. Four of the beehive-shaped houses made of mud and stone have been reconstructed to show how these early farmers lived.

Most of the archaeological finds from Khirokitia are displayed in the Cyprus Museum in Nicosia. Khirokitia is located about 32km from Larnaca on the Lefkosia-Lemesos road.

Larnaka Castle

Larnaka Castle

Enjoy sea views from the battlements of Larnaka’s medieval fort while rusting cannons silently stand guard. Then duck into the Medieval Museum to view a collection of ferocious swords and daggers, medieval armour and flintlock muskets as well as a display of 12th- to 18th-century pottery.

Northern Cyprus – Sights & Attractions

Discover the ruins of Crusader castles and medieval abbeys, splendid mountain vistas, empty beaches and a countryside pretty much left to its own solitude.

Life in northern Cyprus continues at a more gentle pace than in the South, partly as a result of the international boycott that has affected tourism to the North since 1974.

Kyrenia Castle

Kyrenia (Girne)

Stroll the battlements and explore the cells of Kyrenia Castle (photo) – a massive Venetian sea-fort that overlooks the town’s natural harbour and Mediterranean Sea. Inside, discover Shipwreck Museum, home to one of the world’s oldest shipwrecks believed to have sunk around 300 BC.

The ship was salvaged in 1967, complete with its cargo of wine-jars.

Visit also the Tomb-Finds Gallery, with its fascinating collection of Neolithic, Bronze Age and Hellenistic treasures. Later, relax at one of the ethnic restaurants overlooking the pretty harbour.

Bellapais Abbey, Cyprus

Bellapais Abbey

Discover the most spectacular example of Gothic architecture in Cyprus. Admire the vaulted stonework decorated with elaborate carving, wander the pavilions and courtyard framed by manicured gardens and enjoy the magnificent views over Kyrenia and the surrounding coastline.

Built by the Augustinian order in 1200, the abbey (from the French ‘abbaye de la paix’ which means the Peace Monastery) is perched on the side of a mountain just a short walk from the village of Bellapais.

St Hilarion Castle, Cyprus

St Hilarion Castle

Climb to the Queen’s Window in the upper ward of the multi-level castle for spectacular views over Kyrenia and the northern coast of Cyprus.

Originally built in the 10th century as a monastery and named after a monk who used it as his hermitage, the site was later fortified by the Byzantines and formed a defence of the island together with Buffavento and Kantara castles against Arab raiders.

The castle was further improved for the Lusignan kings in the 11th century and commanded of the pass leading from Kyrenia to Nicosia. It is the best preserved of the three castles and was last occupied in the 16th century by the Venetians.

Buffavento Castle

Buffavento Castle

Climb up to the wind-buffeted heights of Buffavento Castle stunning vistas over Cyprus. At 950m above sea level, Buffavento’s ruined tower stands in the middle of the Kyrenia range overlooking an important pass and within sight of St Hilarion Castle to the west and Kantara Castle to the east.

The castles were built by the Byzantines as a defence against Saracen raiders in the 11th Century.

Ancient Salamis, Cyprus

Salamis

Stroll past graceful columns to the Roman amphitheatre, see the remains of Roman baths and the foundations of two Byzantine basilicas at one of Cyprus’ greatest ancient sites founded more than 3,000 years ago but devastated by earthquakes in the 4th century AD. Salamis is located 6km north of Famagusta.

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Top things to do in Cyprus

In addition to sunbathing, shopping and nightclubbing, Cyprus offers a range of pursuits for active couples, including…

Snorkelling

The calm and clear waters around Ayia Napa and Cape Greco up to Famagusta are perfect for snorkelling.

Diving

Head to the waters off Larnaka, Lemesos, Paphos, Ayia Napa and Cape Greco for great diving conditions. Discover natural dive sites of great beauty as well as various shipwrecks.

The waters off Paphos offer around 30 dive sites to explore, including the wreck of the Vera K that now lies in a submerged crater at 11m, just 25 minutes from Paphos harbour. At Amphorae Reef see ancient pottery lying around in the shadow of a massive ship wrecked on the reef at a depth of just 5m to 10m.

Several wrecks lie off the coast of Larnaka including the Zenobia shipwreck, sunk in 1980 and rated as one of the 10 best dives in the world. The ship is around 200m long and lies at a depth of 16m to 42m. Look out for giant tuna, barracuda, amberjack and eel.

Another fascinating seawreck is the Helicopter Wreck, a British Army Air Corps helicopter that lies at a depth of 16m, and is now home to octopus, jack and groper. Also off Larnaka is the aptly named Octopus Reef, located just 10m below sea level and home to schools of octopus. More experienced divers can head to Mushroom Rocks. At 50m below sea level you’ll get to see many large fish.

Off Lemesos, you can dive the wreck of the M/Y Diana, now home to large squid, as well as the Pharses II wreck that lies in 21m. At the Akrotiri Fish Reserve hand-feed groper, eel, sea bass and octopus. At 9m below sea level it is an ideal dive for the inexperienced.

Several dive centres operate in Larnaka, Lemesos and Paphos offering try-dives in a swimming pool as well as internationally recognised PADI open water dive courses lasting around five days.

See more active pursuits in Cyprus…

Hiking

The many unspoilt areas of Cyprus offer a network of hiking trails. Some of the best walks lie in the regions of Atalante, Kaledonia and Persephone in the Troodos area; Aphrodite and Adonis in the Akamas area; and in the forests of Machairas and Limassol.

In the Troodos area you can choose from four easy trails around Troodos village or try the longer 9km downhill hike from Platres to Fini, the 7km-long Platres to Perapedhi hike or the shorter 3km-long uphill hike from Platres to Pouziaris.

For a longer hike through forest, vineyards and alongside stone terraces try the Panagia tou Araka to Stravos tou Agiasmati trail that merges into the Teisia tis Madaris trail, an invigorating hike that circles the cliff top of Mt Madari offering fine vistas.

The Agia Irini to Spilies tou Digeni trail will take you to the secret caves of Digenis, where EOKA resistance fighters hid during the insurgency of 1955-59. For these and other hikes check out the Cyprus Tourist Office brochure pamphlet Cyprus: Nature Trails.

Walking

The towns and villages of Cyprus are fascinating places to wander around. Nicosia, Famagusta and Limassol have particular interesting old towns of narrow streets lined with fascinating Byzantine architecture.

In Nicosia, you can now stroll along the infamous Green Line, that spooky buffer zone that divides the Greek and Turkish sections of the city. Wander past abandoned, crumbling houses, admire the double minarets of the Agia Sofia mosque (once a Christian cathedral), see Turkish and Turkish Cypriot flags fluttering in the light breeze but don’t photograph the UN and Greek Cypriot bunkers that punctuate the zone.

A CTO-signposted walking tour will guide you along the route safely – it’s believed that many of the small streets and ruined buildings still contain booby-trap mines.

Skiing

In winter, from January to mid March, head to the Troodos mountain range. The towns of Platres and Kakopetria are well placed for the skiing season on Mount Olympus, at 1,952m above sea level, with excellent access to the slopes and good accommodation options.

Bungee

Hurl yourself from 60m above the deep blue see at Napa Bungee in Ayia (Agia) Napa.

See less active pursuits…


Where to stay in Cyprus

Cyprus offers a huge range of honeymoon accommodation options to suit all budgets.

The main beach resorts of Kato Paphos and Protaras are well known for their wide choice of accommodation and dinning options, while Ayia Napa is also known for its pulsating and sometimes wild nightlife.

For a complete selection of the best hotels and resorts Cyprus

Find the best deal, compare prices and read what other travellers have to say about hotel accommodation in Cyprus at TripAdvisor.


Best time to honeymoon in Cyprus

Anytime. Cyprus enjoys a Mediterranean climate, with year round sunshine. You can expect hot, dry summers and mild, wet winters separated by short, warm autumn and spring seasons.

During the peak summer season months of July and August maximum temperatures range from 27°C to 36°C (81°F–97°F) with an average high of 32°C (90°F).

For more climate info: Cyprus Weather Guide


Getting to Cyprus

Cyprus is located in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, around 75km south of Turkey and 800km east of mainland Greece.

By air, Cyprus is serviced daily with direct flights from several cities in Europe and the Middle East, with connecting flights from Asia, Australasia and North America.

Find out how to get to Cyprus


Latest update Cyprus honeymoon destination: 11 August, 2017


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