Cyprus is an idyllic destination for families, full of impressive cities, tropical landscapes and intriguing ancient landmarks. But with so many choices, it can be hard to know where to base yourselves for your holiday. For families, we recommend Paphos; situated on the southwest coast, this seaside destination is a perfect example of the picturesque beauty of Cyprus. Aside from the view, there are many reasons why Paphos is the perfect family holiday destination.
Cyprus as a whole is one of the safest places to have a beach holiday in Europe. The island is known for its high level of security and the locals are friendly and adore children. With a huge selection of blue flag beaches, days can be spent playing and splashing in the long stretches of shallow, azure waters and resting under palm trees on the sand. For the best temperatures, aim to visit in May or June, before the sweltering high summer heat sets in.
Rising out of the ocean you can see Aphrodite’s Rock, where the Greek goddess is said to have emerged from the sea. It is one of the must-see landmarks in Paphos, and the locals say if you swim around it three times, you will find true love!
There are a multitude of activities and entertainment opportunities for every age. In the towns and villages surrounding Paphos, you’ll find welcoming cafes, restaurants and shops filled with souvenirs, hand-crafted relics and Cypriot treasures.
The Paphos Zoo is well worth a visit, set in a natural and unspoilt area with over five-hundred species of exotic animals to discover and lots of space for the little ones to run wild.
Paphos Castle is a well-known landmark of the area which was built to protect the harbour. It’s one of the many historical relics found in the area that depict its fascinating past and it also offers magnificent views of the coastline – so you don’t have to be a history buff to enjoy a visit. For little pirates, there is a half-day boat tour which takes you on a pirate-themed journey through the crystal clear waters of the Blue Lagoon as you enjoy a fun filled, musical show. The cruise stops at a popular swimming spot before serving up a delicious buffet back on board.
School age kids will love expanding their knowledge of ancient Greece with the intricate mosaics and paintings found at the Paphos Archaeological Park. The well-preserved artworks display scenes from ancient Greek mythology, with plenty of interesting ruins to explore. Head to the Tomb of the Kings to climb through a series of caves and tombs where high-ranking officials were buried centuries ago.
Paphos is teeming with beautiful places to eat and drink whilst gazing at the blissful ocean views or indulging in the culture of the rural villages around the city. Try the Bonamare Beach Bar Cafe on Timi Beach for a great menu with plenty of child-friendly options such as burgers, jacket potatoes, homemade pizza and chips. They also have a wonderful cocktail menu for great prices.
For a more traditional palette, try the Klimataria Tavern in Mandria village, just outside Paphos. Set under an ancient grapevine, the relaxed atmosphere here makes you feel like you’re surrounded by friends and family as you try authentic Cypriot dishes and taste some truly delicious wines. There are still plenty of options more familiar to the kids, with a selection of kebabs, burgers and chips too.
There is so much to do in Paphos and its surrounding areas, you will be spoilt for choice. Enjoy your visit and have fun making holiday memories for all the family.