Archaeology, mythology and sun-kissed beaches
Paphos is a classic bucket-and-spade destination, yet it offers so much more than that. There are ancient sites galore, pristine beaches that are home to nesting turtles and backstreets teeming with medieval baths, catacombs and a simple fisherman’s church. The Old Town got spruced up for its joint role as 2017 European Capital of Culture, and there are excellent museums and galleries to explore. Discover a city awash with myths and legends – this is the land of Adonis and Aphrodite after all, and you too may fall under its spell.
Learn about the city’s ancient history at the excellent Ethnographical Museum, call in at Psi. on main shopping street Makariou III for a souvenirs with a difference, then enjoy a leisurely lunch of lamb kleftiko at local’s favourite Laona. Drop into The Place to watch artisans working on pottery, textiles, silk cocoon jewellery and even encaustic hot wax painting.
Tackle the vast Paphos Archaeological Park and then climb Fabrica Hill, site of an ancient theatre carved from the rock. Delve into the Tombs of the Kings, where local nobles were buried amid frescoed walls and Doric columns. Explore the village of Kouklia, the third pillar of Paphos’ UNESCO World Heritage status and home to the remains of the Sanctuary of Aphrodite, an open-air temple dedicated to the goddess of fertility. Splash around in the Adonis Baths, where it’s said Adonis and Aphrodite would regularly meet, and where Adonis died in his lover’s arms after being wounded by a man disguised as a wild boar. Book your flights to Paphos today and start exploring.