6 Reasons Why Cyprus Will Become The Next Trendy Destination For Travelers

6 Reasons Why Cyprus Will Become The Next Trendy Destination For Travelers

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Mediterranean islands are generally related to seaside getaways, translucent, teal waters and breathtaking sunsets, and so they normally compete with one another for the title of main summer season vacation spot yearly. There’s simply too many to call, and we’re positive you’ve heard all about Ibiza, Santorini, Mallorca, Malta and the like…

But what concerning the Eastern Mediterranean island of Cyprus? Cyprus is gaining recognition quick and vacationers could wish to get there quickly earlier than everybody else has the very same thought.

(*6*)

Move over, Italy

We can already see our British and European readers rolling their eyes at this, with Cyprus having been a main vacay hotspot for years. We completely get it, it’s hardly Albania or a kind of unheard-of, severely underrated nations most individuals can’t even pinpoint on a map. It is, actually, certainly one of Europe’s favourite summer season islands.

Unfortunately, from our aspect of the pond, Cyprus continues to be not practically as profitable as Greece or Spain: the U.S. didn’t rank anyplace within the prime ten of vacationer arrivals into this nation back in 2019, with fewer Americans visiting than Romanians, Poles, Ukrainians – and even the blacklisted Russians.

Panorama Of The City Of Limassol, Cyprus

After two years of Covid and strict border guidelines, which have solely not too long ago been dropped completely, we are going to take a wild guess right here and presume U.S. arrivals have dropped even decrease on the listing. While this can be attributed to a scarcity of nonstop flights between the 2 nations, this has by no means discouraged Americans from touring to faraway areas earlier than.

Thailand has been a significant Asian vacation spot for years, and direct flights have solely returned not too long ago after 10 years of pause; to not point out the Pacific islands, the place connecting flights are the norm. No matter how far you go, you will see an American snoozing on the seaside, beer cup hanging from the traditional neck strap, in locations as distant as Fiji.

Young Male Traveler Holding Up A US Passport And A Boarding Card At The Airport

So why have most Americans nonetheless not heard of Cyprus, one may surprise? On this text, you will see out why, as a U.S. citizen, it’s possible you’ll be one of many few within the Western World nonetheless sleeping on this Mediterranean jewel – and naturally, why it ought to undoubtedly be as massive a summer season vacation spot as other Southern European countries:

Where is Cyprus to start with?

Aerial View Of Paphos Castle, Paphos, Cyprus

That’s a tough query, and there may be no easy reply. Let’s begin with a number of information: first, Cyprus is a Mediterranean island, and over the ten millennia it has been inhabited it has acquired a big inflow of immigration from neighboring kingdoms and Empires, equivalent to Greeks, Persians, Turks, Armenians and whatnot.

It is a member of the European Union, regardless that it’s situated 226 miles from the closest Greek island. Regardless of the gap, Greece continues to be Cyprus’ nearest fellow EU member. Comparatively, Turkey’s southern coast is solely 50 miles away from the Northern Cypriot shore, and different nearer neighbors embody Lebanon, Syria and Israel.

Greece And Turkey Flags Flying Side By Side

While it’s indisputably culturally European, Cyprus could also be geographically positioned in both Europe or Western Asia, because of its distant location within the East Mediterranean, solely a stone’s throw away from a number of Middle Eastern nations. But then once more, the road that divides the continents is blurry and has modified over time.

Today, regardless of surviving quite a few invasions and being topic to the rule of each single superpower you possibly can title, Cyprus has remained loyal to its Ancient Greek origins. The overwhelming majority of Cypriots communicate, and a few even determine purely as Greek, which means the island is Greek in (practically) all points – regardless of being its personal nation.

Limassol Old Town, Limassol, Cyprus

Some takeaways from this:

  • Cyprus is a Mediterranean island, and a rustic
  • Although it’s technically in Western Asia, it’s a undoubtedly a European nation and an EU member*
  • Its official forex is the Euro
  • 1.2 million folks stay there
  • The overwhelming majority of islanders communicate Greek, though some communicate Turkish (extra on that later)

*Think the Canary Islands, which are an integral a part of Spain and have been for hundreds of years, however are geographically situated in Africa

Ok, however what precisely are Americans lacking out on?

1. First of all, Cyprus is hotter than most of Europe all-year spherical

St Nicolas Agios Nicolaos Church In Protaras, Cyprus

Cyprus is scorching. And we imply scorching scorching. In the phrases of the nation’s personal tourism board, it has an ‘intense’ Mediterranean local weather. The lengthy dry summer season extends from mid-May to mid-October, when temperatures can attain over 100 levels in lots of coastal cities. Luckily, the ocean isn’t too distant for a refreshing dip.

Temperatures can simply attain triple digits as early as late April, although, and winters stay fairly gentle, to say the least: the coldest it normally will get on the coast is a mean 16 degrees. We’re in fact not bearing in mind the island’s towering mountains, the place snow falls profusely and snowboarding actions are extensively promoted over winter.

Aerial View Of Beach In Cyprus

The level is: Cyprus is the final paradise island. For those that grew up dealing with the tough Northeastern American winter, even January in Cyprus will really feel like a summer season break. It enjoys between 300 to 340 sunny days per yr, and the ocean stays significantly hotter than most different Mediterranean hubs, even within the off-season.

If you’d nonetheless fairly expertise that traditional Mediterranean summer season, ensure you carry sufficient sunscreen to keep away from burns, restrict your time on the seaside, particularly throughout peak solar hours, and drink loads of water, possibly double the quantity you’d usually at house. Trust us, the Cypriot warmth is no joke.

2. 402 miles of shoreline with turquoise waters

Cape Greco, Cyprus

Unlike most Southern European nations which are solely partially on the Mediterranean – Spain, France, Croatia, Turkey and others – Cyprus is totally surrounded by it. More exactly, it has 402 miles of both sandy seashores or scenic coastal rides the place the turquoise glow of the ocean dominates the panorama for miles on finish.

This means Cyprus is without doubt one of the few European nations with simply sufficient seashores to counter overtourism. Don’t get us incorrect, we’re undoubtedly not saying it doesn’t get crowded. Many of the preferred seashores within the nation like Ayia Napa and Protaras are completely packed in summer season, however if you happen to’re in search of quieter spots, it received’t be too laborious to search out them.

Adonis Baths Waterfall In Cyprus

With so many seashores and different bathing areas inland obtainable, together with calm water rivers and waterfalls, you’ll be stunned at what number of unblemished pure websites Cyprus nonetheless hides. Some of the perfect ones are located on the island’s Northern coast, and they don’t obtain half as many vacationers because the South.

We will clarify why that’s additional under, however most of the seaside cities and sandy seashores on Cyprus’ Karpas Peninsula, that one crooked finger stretching out on the map that provides the island its distinct geography, are just about unspoiled by mass tourism. The identical can’t be stated about different Medi rivals like Italy.

Before merchandise No. 3, the shortest History lesson doable

Ancient Temple In Cyprus With Turquoise Blue Waters In The Background, Mediterranean Sea

So why is the North not as standard amongst vacationers? In sum, Cyprus has been a divided island from 1974 onward, when an try to unite the island with Greece was violently hampered by a Turkish invasion. Due to its proximity to Turkey – the Cypriot coast may be seen from the Turkish mainland with the bare eye – the North was seized by the latter’s troops.

Prior to that, each of Cyprus’ Greek-speaking and Turkish-speaking populations lived considerably peacefully in combined communities. After the invasion, Turkish Cypriots had been pressured to maneuver to the North, and the Greeks dwelling within the North needed to flee South. Fast ahead a number of many years, and a second de facto nation now claims 36% of the island: the TRNC.

Flags Of Turkey And The Turkish Republic Of Northern Cyprus Strung Between The Minarets Of The Selimiye Mosque In North Nicosia, Northern Cyprus

TRNC is an acronym for Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, a ‘country’ whose independence has solely been acknowledged by – tee-hee – Turkey! The total worldwide neighborhood, together with the United States, considers the North to be an integral a part of the Republic of Cyprus (the South) that has been below an unlawful occupation because the division befell.

For that cause, Turkish-speaking Cyprus has not loved the identical financial increase the Greek aspect has, sustaining official diplomatic relations solely with Turkey and being below harsh financial sanctions. Even although guests are welcome, and the Northern Cypriot administration strongly encourages tourism, only a few really enterprise far North.

Off path journey, anybody?

3. Here you will see the final divided capital on the planet

Curiously, the UN-established Buffer Zone separating the internationally acknowledged Republic of Cyprus from the self-proclaimed TRNC runs alongside the center of Nicosia, the island’s capital, dividing it between each states. Greek Cypriots declare your entire metropolis – on the identical time, Turkish Cypriots think about Northern Nicosia their capital.

Due to this advanced state of affairs, checkpoints have been put in within the metropolis, together with on the primary road, successfully functioning like worldwide borders. Because of that, in an effort to cross from the Greek half into the Turkish, you’ll need to current your passport, regardless that the Cypriot Government considers the TRNC part of Cyprus.

Barricaded Street Along The Green Line In Nicosia, Cyprus

Much like Berlin within the Nineteen Eighties, previous to fall of the wall, Nicosia is a metropolis stricken by division. Sad because it is likely to be, and we’re positive this isn’t simple for Cypriots raised there, it’s the barbed wire-protected streets, the political murals lining up the Buffer Zone, and the fixed conflict between the Greek and Turkish worlds that make it such a distinctive, fascinating metropolis break.

You could possibly be having a luxurious Turkish breakfast within the morning on the Northern aspect, as you take heed to the Quran being recited out of the closest minaret, after which cross to the South within the afternoon to strive some conventional Greek pastries and go to museums the place you’ll study concerning the island’s Greek origins. Quite actually, Nicosia provides the perfect of each worlds.

4. Wine excursions. Yes, in Cyprus.

Glass Of Rose Wine Pictured Against The Backdrop Of The Troodos Mountain Range In Central Cyprus, Eastern Mediterranean

Those coming to Europe with their hearts set on a vineyard tour will hardly consider Cyprus as their first decide. After all, how might Cyprus even compete when France has Bordeaux, Champagne and the Loire Valley, proper? That’s when Cyprus turns into massively underestimated – even amongst Europeans which have been visiting for years.

It has the very best local weather for rising grapes, and Cypriot wine is among the many very best quality wine in the entire of Europe, rating 50th in the world by way of complete manufacturing. A majority of tourists could wish to head straight to the closest seaside straight out of the aircraft, however little do they know Cyprus has a complete wine business that’s but to be found.

Traditional Stone Houses And Cobblestone Streets In The Village Of Lofou, Inland Cyprus

An off the trail factor to do within the nation – we love these – goes wine tasting in any of the inland villages, significantly these on the slopes of Troodos Mountains. This vary sits on the precise heart of the island and options the best Cypriot peak: the aptly titled Mount Olympus, evocative of the Ancient Greek mythology.

As for the wine produced right here… It is the drink of the gods. Among a few of the finest wine-producing villages, we now have Lofou, the place the busy seaside life is changed by mountainside city views, with cobblestone streets and a extra laid-back really feel. Other necessary stops embody the picturesque Omodos and Pera Pedi, only some miles north of town of Limassol.

5. Cyprus is rather more reasonably priced than different Medi holidays

Couple Of Tourists Riding A Vespa On The Promenade At Larnaca, BEside Larnaca Castle, Cyprus

Minimum wages are a powerful indication of a rustic’s buy energy and how costly issues are. In Spain, the minimum wage is roughly $1,068.84, overwhelmed by France’s whopping $1,566.62, and each of those nations anticipate vacationers to provide proof of no less than $101 in spending cash per day during their keep.

Even although Cyprus does not have a minimal wage, the common Cypriot makes about $940 a month, proving dwelling prices are far much less exorbitant than France’s, the place the naked minimal a employee is paid continues to be 60% greater. Naturally, these figures have a direct affect on the worth of fundamental objects (meals, a bottle of nonetheless water, sunblock, insect repellent and many others).

Aerial View Of Old Marine In Girne/Kyrenia Cyprus

We received’t deceive you: Cyprus will not be an extremely low-cost summer season vacation spot. It is definitely no obscure Balkan nation the place vacationers can go by with $`100 {dollars} a complete week, or the budget-friendly Central America, that has even overtaken Europe currently in complete hostel bookings. But it is cheaper than the Western Mediterranean.

Paphos, a metropolis on the nation’s West Coast, has been named this yr the fourth most affordable summer season vacation spot in Europe, the place vacationers can stay comfortably off of $72.78 on common per day. Needless to say, Paphos beats previous summer season favorites like Italy’s Amalfi Coast, Spain’s Costa del Sol and France’s Côte d’Azur by way of affordability.

6. Oh, and Cyprus will not be that distant

Young Female Traveler Using Phone And Laptop While Flying

There could also be no direct flight connections between the U.S./Canada and Cyprus, however North Americans can simply attain this summer season dreamland by way of quick stopovers in quite a few European nations. An Austrian Airlines flight leaving from JFK, last vacation spot Larnaca (Cyprus), with an air-side transit in Vienna solely takes about 12 hours.

In addition to Austrian Airlines, different European carriers like AirSerbia (Serbia), Swiss Airlines (Switzerland), and Lufthansa (Germany) provide non-direct hyperlinks to Cyprus, with transfers normally lasting lower than two hours. But hey, even when you have a protracted layover forward, this isn’t essentially a nasty factor, no less than on certain routes.

Happy Young Couple Wearing Summer Clothes Leaving The Airport Following International Travel

Plus, Cyprus simply wants that much-needed U.S. tourism increase. Prior to HBO’s Game of Thrones, that launched Croatia to a wider American public, there have been no direct flights between the Balkan nation and the States. Now, United has a successful summer route connecting Newark and Dubrovnik. Who is aware of… Maybe Cyprus will comply with go well with someday?

Now that you recognize all about Cyprus, and what makes it a severe contender for the perfect Mediterranean summer season ever, how about reserving these tickets straight away? Just just be sure you additionally get insured for flight delays and cancellations: in case you haven’t heard, U.S. travel is in turmoil and we don’t need your dreamy Cyprus journey to show nightmarish.

One final thing… and that is VERY essential

Female Traveler Looking Shocked Or Upset As She Checks Her Phone At The Airport

In case this piece of knowledge has already slipped your thoughts – we forgive you, because the wonders of Cyprus do take priority over anything – the island is cut up in two. To the South, you have got the Greek-speaking Republic of Cyprus, a UN member. To the North, lies the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), which occupies the territory illegally.

The island of Cyprus has three airports, although solely two of these are below the management of the Republic of Cyprus. Those are the airports within the cities of Larnaca (Southeast Coast) and Paphos (West Coast), the place most worldwide flights arrive. The third airport, Ercan, served the capital of Nicosia till it was cut up in half.

Airplane Flying Over Tropical Sea At Sunset

Now, it’s below the management of the TRNC. As a results of a global embargo, all flights to Ercan have a layover in Turkey, the one different UN member that has acknowledged the TRNC as an unbiased state. If you might be planning on visiting Nicosia in your journey to Cyprus, make a psychological observe to NEVER guide flights via Ercan.

Foreigners arriving within the island by way of the North might be turned away on the border when trying to cross into the South afterwards, because the Republic of Cyprus considers any entry into the territory via Ercan, or any of the ocean ports within the Turkish-controlled North, to be unlawful. Cypriot and European residents are exempt from this restriction.

Young Female Traveler Sat On A Rock As She Stares At The Mediterranean Sea, Cyprus

If you’re an American, in an effort to keep away from issues, simply fly into Larnaca or Paphos as a substitute. There are a number of shuttle buses, in addition to public transport, linking the capital to the Republic’s airports, although Larnaca is the closest hub to Nicosia (33.6 miles away). Oh, and please: don’t let this discourage you from visiting the North!

This rule doesn’t go each methods: Americans who land within the South, after which enter the North are allowed again within the South any time, with none points, regardless of what number of occasions they cross in a single journey. Just keep in mind to all the time hold your passport on you if you happen to’re visiting the TRNC – or, within the case of Europeans touring with out their passports, a nationwide ID card.

A Quick Recap

Lala Mustafa Pasha Mosque In Famagusta, Northern Cyprus
  • Always use Larnaca or Paphos as your level of entry into Cyprus
  • The Euro is the official forex within the South
  • The Turkish Lira is the forex in use within the North*
  • Never enter army, no-go zones with out permission

*Euros could also be accepted in North Nicosia, however not different cities within the Turkish-controlled North

Main Sights In Cyprus

Cypriot Mountain Village, Cyprus
  • The Church of St. Lazarus in Larnaca, the oldest in all of Cyprus relationship again to the ninth century
  • Hala Sultan Tekke Mosque, on the shores of the Larnaca Salt Lake, one of many holiest websites in Islam
  • Cape Greco for scenic views of the Mediterranean and sea caves
  • Ayia Napa and Protaras, the place a few of the clearest waters within the island may be discovered
  • Nicosia, the final divided capital metropolis on the planet
  • The Kyrenia medieval fort in Kyrenia/Girne (Northern Cyprus)
  • The Lala Mustafa Pasha Mosque in Famagusta (Northern Cyprus)
  • Varosha, a ghosttown within the North left in ruins within the aftermath of the Turkish Invasion (Northern Cyprus)
  • Limassol, Cyprus’ second largest and most trendy metropolis
  • Lofou, a conventional inland Cypriot village
  • Mount Olympus
  • Nea Paphos, an archaeological web site housing the ruins of an historical Greek metropolis in Paphos
  • The Tombs of the Kings in Paphos
  • The Akamas National Park
  • The Adonis Baths
  • The Blue Lagoon

What Are Cyprus’ Entry Requirements?

Young Female Traveler Holding An US Passport, Another Passport Colored Red, And A Boarding Pass

Since May 28, 2022, Cyprus has no Covid entry requirements. In different phrases, Americans can enter the nation no matter vaccination standing, with out testing and quarantine. Visiting is so simple as it was previous to the pandemic, although different necessities, equivalent to indoor masks carrying as soon as contained in the nation, could still apply.

Americans (and Canadians) can keep in Cyprus – each the South and the Turkish-occupied North – as much as 90 days out of each 180 day interval. As the nation will not be but a member of Europe’s Schengen Area, any visits to different EU nations, or Schengen-associated states, don’t rely in the direction of your visa restrict in Cyprus.

Read More:

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