Sunday, 7 July 2019

Agia Napa - what to see

Agia Napa is more than bars and souvenir shops. There is plenty to see and do in the coastal town. 

The harbour in Agia Napa

If you wish to watch the fishing boats coming into the harbour in the early morning with their catch, you need to be early, around six o 'clock. The harbour has also become a popular meeting point with several cosy fishing restaurants and trendy cafés.
If you enjoy walking, you can follow the boardwalk to the right of the harbour. The path will take you past Callisto Hotel, Electra Splash and Sunwing Sandy Bay Hotel.




The monastery in Agia Napa

Let us start the sightseeing tour of Agia Napa with a visit to the famous monastery which is a meeting point in the centre of Agia Napa.
The charming medieval monastery is surrounded by a high wall and dedicated to the "Madonna of the Forest".
The church dates from the 16th century and is partly underground and carved directly from the cliff. The building to the west of the church belongs to the World Church Council, which often holds meetings here. An impressive mulberry tree outside the southern entrance is supposed to be more than 600 years old.

The entire monastery area is illuminated in the evening and has become a popular place for those who just want to sit for a while and meditate. No nuns or monks are living at the monastery, only a bunch of cute cats. If you're going to go into the small church, you should cover shoulders.

Next, to the monastery, you will find the upper and lower square. Both squares offer cafés and pubs. On the smaller square, you will find a stage where various performances take place, check the daily press or at the tourist office for a current program. During the Agia Napa festival, which often takes place at the end of September each year, the square is buzzing with activities.




A tip, sit at the lower square's café just before dusk and listen to the thousands of birds that gather in the tree next to the bus stop and taxi station in.




Thalassa Museum in Agia Napa

Close to the square and near the Liquid Hotel Apartments you will find the Thalassa Museum. The museum focuses on various educational programs and social-cultural events.

Here you will find a copy of a 4th-century BC Greek merchant ship that sank off the Kyrenia coast, as well as a variety of sculptures, paintings and statues.
Address: 14 Kryou Nero
Tel: 23 816 366





The statue park in Agia Napa

On the outskirts of Agia Napa, opposite the Marina Hotel, you will find the state park. An oasis, and a must-see. A new sculpture is added to the rich collection every year.
Entrance is free and the park is open 24/7.



Agia Thekla

Agia Thekla, the beach located near the Agia Napa Marina. Next to the beach is a small church built on an old settlement and burial ground. To the west of the church, you can see a quarry and a catacomb.

Likely, Turkish general Piele Pasha came ashore here with his troops marching to Famagusta where they helped General Moustaffa take over the city in 1571






Potamos Liopetriou

If you are looking for a picturesque fishing village, you have come to the right place. Here you will find some of the best fish restaurants in the area. In the vicinity of the fishing shelter, you will find the remains of a Venetian watchtower. The French poet Arthur Rimbaud worked in the area in the 1880s. For those who like to write, maybe this can be an excellent place to get new inspiration.


Cape Grecko

Cape Grecko is the cliff you see from the distance in Agia Napa. This area is a nature reserve, no hotels can be built on this land. It's an area for hiking, wild herbs and cyclamen. For those who enjoy snorkelling or diving, the waters around Cape Grecko is among the best on the island.

Here you will find a beautiful church at the end of the cliff, the church is almost a bit like the one in the Mamma Mia movie. Leave the main road on a sharp bend where a sandwich van is parked and drive about 200 meters, and you will find a paved wide exit road to the left. Follow it, and you come to the church of Agia Anargyris dedicated to two doctors, Kosmas and Damianos. If you follow the stairs behind the church, you come to a holy cave. At the bottom of the cave, you will find two icons representing Kosmas and Damianos.


If you like snorkelling, this is a popular spot. It is relatively easy to get in and out of the water.




The Tombs of Makronissos 

To the west of Agia Napa at Makronissos beach, you will find the excavation of 19 stone tombs. At the eastern tomb lies a small shrine. The view from this place is beautiful, and it's a strangely quiet and peaceful place.



Paralimni

The nearest village to both Agia Napa and Protaras offers an insight into everyday life. You can sit at the square café and watch the world go by. Next, to the square, you will find three churches in a row, the oldest church from the 13th century contains a small Byzantine museum. The churches are open, and the entrance is free.

In Paralimni, you will also find plenty of shops, modern trendy boutiques, traditional restaurants and cafés. Remember that some shops close for siesta between 13.30 - 16.00 and that most are closed on Wednesday and Saturday afternoon.
The local bus stops next to the square and the churches.

Just a few kilometres from Paralimni lies the village Deryneia, right on the border of the occupied northern part. From the town, you can look over to the ghost town of Famagusta (Ammochostos) which before the invasion was the island's most popular holiday resort. Even here in Deryneia, you will find many small cosy taverns. You can take the local bus from the bus station in Paralimni to Deryneia.

Deryneia's Folkloric Museum
If you want to see how people lived in the past, a visit to Deryneia's folkloric museum can be enjoyable. The museum is close to the entrance to Deryneia and is well signposted.
Address: 2 Demetris Leertis Street


















Famagusta Crossing Point

A checkpoint in Dherynia is making it possible to cross with your vehicle to the seaside town of Famagusta. You will need insurance for your car or bike. Before crossing, make sure to check the policy of your rental company as some do not allow rented vehicles to cross into the north. Also, don't forget to bring your passport.


Sotira - Liopetri - Frenaros - Xylofagou

The villages are called "the red villages" thanks to the mineral-rich red soil which is ideal for potato cultivation. Potato exports are enormously important to the island, and it is here in the southeastern part of the island that most of the potatoes are grown. The most common are two crops per year, but three may occur.
All the villages have picturesque taverns and interesting churches to visit. Liopetri is known for its traditional basket weaving. The tour operators organise excursions to "the red villages", a pleasant half-day tour that gives you an insight into everyday life in Cyprus.



Sunday, 30 June 2019

Larnaka

A new page is up with information about one of my favourite places in Cyprus, Larnaka. Since I live near, I do most of my shopping in this town. There are still many narrow streets left with old buildings, and since the city is so close to the water, there is always a cool breeze coming from the sea.
Flamingos at Larnaka salt lake.

Did you know Flamingos are visiting the salt lake in Larnaka during the winter? I will write more on that in a separate page.

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Sunday, 23 June 2019

My Cyprus

Welcome to my Cyprus. In this blog, I will share My Cyprus with you. You will find general travel advice, snippets from daily life on a sun-drenched island and my personal recommendations. The island has a lot to offer, and it's a fantastic all year round destination.
Right now, I'm starting to add content and static pages to my blog with helpful information, photos and beautiful videos.
The watermelons are ripe.

The beaches are jam-packed this time of the year. Personally, I prefer the shade away from the crowds. Since I'm not here on holiday either, I focus on my work and try to make at least one short trip out per week just to change the scenery. Wintertime for me, is the ideal time to enjoy long walks on deserted beaches, soaking up the sun and exploring the numerous sights.

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