Legend has it that when Aphrodite the Greek goddess of love and beauty first rose from the sea she landed in Paphos. Walking through the cobbled streets of the old town it’s easy to find her traces of beauty and sense of romance among the vignettes of traditional Cypriot life. Meanwhilein the cosmopolitan harbour area below there is a compact but pleasant patch of sand serviced by some chic beach bars along with a number of lively restaurants. Overlooking it all from its defensive position in the bay the Byzantine-era Paphos Fort a familiar backdrop to the many festivities that take place year-round.
Areas & Neighbourhoods in Paphos
Old Town - During the days of the Roman Empire the imperial governor was based here and the remains of his palace can be seen among many other archaeological treasures such as the Odeon theatre catacombs and several elegant mosaics still in excellent condition. On a hot day nothing beats perching yourself under an umbrella at a roadside cafe and watching the world drift slowly by.
Coral Bay - Just a short drive from Paphos this is a popular seaside resort with a Blue Flag beach. Several modern bars and restaurants brush up against more traditional rustic tavernas giving you plenty of choice for dining.
Tombs of the Kings - Sorry no royalty here. The name actually refers to the quality of the tombs found in this immense necropolis to the west of Paphos. It was mainly aristocrats and officials that were buried in these underground chambers that have been carefully excavated to reveal elaborate frescoed walls and some good examples of Roman amphorae.
Yeroskipou - Feeling peckish? This small town near Paphos is world-renowned for the quality of the Turkish Delight desserts manufactured in local workshops with all manner of mouthwatering flavours available from chocolate to banana and rose petal. The ideal souvenir or gift for someone back home or just for an after dinner treat.
Things to See in Paphos
The Paphos Archaeological Site features remains that run from Prehistoric times through to the Middle Ages. Several Roman villas along with a theatre temples and tombs have been discovered. You can see Aphrodite’s Rock also known as Petra tou Romiou said to mark the spot where the goddess emerged from the sea on the coast road to Limassol. A selfie here makes a great memento for couples but remember you’re not allowed to climb it.
Things to Do in Paphos
For a family treat why not spend the day at Pafos Zoo where you can get up close with tigers elephants and even some rare white lions. There’s a playground regular shows and a decent restaurant. One of the great joys of Cyprus is getting out and about in the island’s interior and some of the most popular ways to do that include hiring a car taking a jeep safari or even trying the latest craze of segway exploration. Make a stop at the Chrysorrogiatissa monastery - the wines produced here are regarded as some of the finest in Cyprus. Enjoy a glass or two over some breathtaking panoramic views from the monastery’s restaurant.