With warm sun, sparkling sea, welcoming people and wonderful scenery, Cyprus offers visitors a superb holiday destination packed with unforgettable experiences, extraordinary sights and exquisite Mediterranean cuisine, plus a generous dose of romantic ancient legends to spice up those lazy days by the sea.
Cyprus known as the ‘Jewel of the Mediterranean’ and legendary birthplace of Aphrodite, the ancient goddess of love and beauty, certainly lives up to the exacting standards of its divine patroness. A stunning Mediterranean island steeped in legend, myth, beauty and romance that enjoys more than 340 days of sunshine a year, Cyprus is attracting visitors from across the world. Enchanted by the island’s endless stretches of golden sands, secluded bays and rocky coves, today’s tourists are also drawn to Cyprus for its fascinating history and culture, its exquisite Mediterranean cuisine and its glorious mountains and verdant countryside that prove that Cyprus is much more than just a ‘sun and sea’ destination.
Offering something for everyone, regardless of interests, age or budget, Cyprus describes itself as the year-round island, where each season brings something new and wonderful for visitors to discover, from swimming in the warm blue waters of the Mediterranean Sea, to rambling in pine-scented forests, skiing on the snowy peaks of the mountains, cycling through the countryside and wandering around the ancient Greek temples and magnificent Byzantine churches.
At the Crossroads of Continents
The third largest island in the Mediterranean, Cyprus is situated at the north eastern corner of the Mediterranean, 300 km north of Egypt, 105 km west of Syria and 75 km south of Turkey, while the Greek mainland lies 800 km to the north-west. The island’s hot, dry summers and mild, wet winters mean sunshine is abundant all year round and from April to September visitors can count on getting an average 11 hours of sunshine per day.
Anchored at the junction of three continents, Cyprus has always been a prized possession for the many civilisations that ruled it through history. From the earliest Greek settlers who gave the island its Hellenic identity in the second millennium BC, the island was then subject in turn to the empires of Assyria, Persia, Greece, Egypt, Rome, Byzantium, the Franks and the Venetians, the Ottomans and the British before it achieved independence in 1960.
Business Centres or Sea-Side Town
The capital of Cyprus, Nicosia, lies in the centre of the island and is the seat of government and the main business centre. The second largest town is Limassol on the south coast, the island’s chief sea port and an industrial centre and important tourist resort, as well as an international business centre with a thriving expat community made up of business people who have chosen to work and live by the sea. Larnaca on the south coast provides the island with its second commercial sea port and is one of the island’s leading tourist resorts, with Larnaca International Airport located to the south of the city. Paphos, lying on the west coast of the island, is a fast developing tourist resort, endowed with an attractive fishing harbour as well as the island’s second international airport.