After a busy Christmas we needed a break. And now we are in lock down we are so glad we went.
Had a good look around and fancied Cyprus as we had never been and it had a few bucket list items we wanted to tick off.
Two countries in one day
Sand and Snow in the same day
Visit to the only divided capital in Europe
So £270 each for 3 nights 4 days all inclusive it was worth a punt.
Its a 15 minute drive from the Paphos airport.
The rooms are very nice its very clean, foods excellent, beer well its free and quite drinkable, staff are outstanding.
So lets have a look around
We hired a Car a Kia Seed, to be honest it was excellent, the hotel has free parking but I would think it would be very full in the summer as we only just managed to park in January.
A couple of things off the bucket list Two countries in one day, visiting Northern Cyprus and a divided city, the only one in Europe.
Northern Cyprus officially the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus is a de facto state that comprises the northeastern portion of the the island of Cyprus Recognised only by Turkey. Northern Cyprus is considered by the international community to be part of the Republic off Cyprus
Nicosia is the last remaining city in the world that is still physically divided, with a United Nations buffer zone between the Greek and Turkish Cypriot sections. The city has been divided since 1974, when Turkey occupied the northern part of the island.
The Hotel staff explained how we could park in Nicosia and walk across passport control and in the the Buffer Zone then through the Turkish passport control.
We parked in a Carpark in Diagorou ( Street?) Opposite Cafe Route 66. Its 3 Euro for the day.
Handy news agent just to one side of it for snacks and drinks.
Stand with your back to the carpark and turn left, walk along the street and take the first left in to Eva Gore. Walk along it and you will come to a large square cross this and look for a busy shopping street called Ledras, its quite a nice street walk along and you will come to the border, you show your passport at both sides and walk through.
Its just like you have stepped in to a Turkish Bazzar.
Had a great day out, headed back to the hotel ready for Day 3
For a long time we wanted to do Sand and Snow in the same day.
Remember to check the forecast and ask the locals as some times the roads are closed, the road back had quite a few stones on it from small rock falls so take your time, it is worth it.
So as the hotel is on the beach it was easy.
We then drove to a stunning little village called Omodos a village in the Troodos Mountains. The village produces a lot of wine and holds a wine festival every August. You can visit a 17th-century stone-built monastery via a cobblestone path and sample local wine for free at many outlets. You will also find a good mix of restaurants including traditional tavernas and a few modern bars housed in traditional buildings.
We asked a few locals about good places to eat and ended up here
George’s Daughter & Son, we couldn’t fault it.
We left Omodos and headed for the top of the Mountains.
Just before the top of Mount Olympus we stopped at a carpark and went sledging.
We then returned to the coast a different route, we tried to drive to the top of Mount Olympus, we drove up but couldn’t park, so headed back to the hotel via the Phaphos forest and to see the sand again
Day 4 some of the old stuff
We didn’t need to be back at the Airport until 6pm so we thought we would see the Ancient sites of Phaphos.
Had a bit of a lie in and the kids went swimming then off to see the sites.
Paphos (or Pafos) is a town in Cyprus whose history dates back to the Neolithic period. It was in Paphos that the mythological goddess Aphrodite was born and along with her came the legendary upsurge of cult worship that lasted for many centuries.
A must-see site located on the picturesque Paphos harbour, the fort was built during the Frankish occupation of the island in the 13th century, replacing the Byzantine castle of ‘Saranta Kolones’.
The Venetians dismantled the fort in 1570 so that the Ottomans, who had begun their conquest of the island, would not use it. According to an inscription above the entrance of the fort, the Ottomans rebuilt the stronghold in 1780. Nearby, stand the ruins of a second fort, which was probably built during the same period.
These is quite a bit to see so here is just a selection of what we felt was the best
Tomb of the kings
This is well worth a visit and its cheap too ( 2.5 Euro), Students get in free so don’t for get ID
If you want to know a bit more
Paphos Castle in Cyprus. Pafos Castle (Medieval Fort) was originally a Byzantine fort built to protect the harbour, and was rebuilt by the Lusignans in the 13th century, but then dismantled by the Venetians. The Ottomans rebuilt it in the 16th century when they conquered the island. What survives today is the 1592 Ottoman restoration of the western Frankish tower with its Venetian additions. An inscription above the only entrance of the castle bears witness to this restoration. The main part of the castle is a big square tower that has an enclosed courtyard in the middle. The ground floor consists of a central hall with small rooms on each of its two long sides, which were used as prison cells during Ottoman Rule. There are 12 battlements on the roof, which received a corresponding number of cannons. The Ottomans removed the cannons in 1878, when they handed over the administration of the island to the British, who used the castle as a salt store until 1935, when it was declared an Ancient Monument under the Antiquities Law.
The Church of Ayia Kyriaki
A short walk from the town centre is another ancient site that has a 15th century church built on it.The Church of Ayia Kyriaki is built on the ruins of an early Christian basilica of the 5th century that unearthed the ruins of recent excavations from the Department of Antiquities. It was built at the time of the Christianisation of the island and eventually became the first Cathedral in Paphos. It is one of the greatest early Christian basilicas in Cyprus. Almost the whole area is coated with a mosaic floor and decorated with geometric motifs.