DAY 1 Arrive Limassol, Cyprus
Welcome to Cyprus. You are met on arrival in Limassol, and transferred to your resort hotel. Enjoy the rest of your day at leisure and enjoy the amenities at your resort, or explore this seaside region. The resort is your home for your four nights on Cyprus.
DAY 2Nicosia excursion
Today, travel to the center of the island, to Nicosia, a modern city with a well-preserved center that dates back to the Bronze Age. Visit the Archaeological Museum with its fascinating collection of Cypriot antiquities and treasures, and the Byzantine Museum with its exceptional collection of Byzantine icons. See the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist and its 18th century wall paintings depicting scenes from the Bible. Drive past the Venetian walls of the old city and Famagusta Gate, to explore “Laiki Geitonia,” an old and colorful Cypriot neighborhood.
After lunch in a traditional tavern, stroll along Ledra Street with its enchanting and inviting shops. Return to Limassol by the late afternoon. (B,L)
DAY 3Paphos Excursion
Depart Limassol, driving alongside the sea front, past the citrus plantations, to visit the medieval Kolossi Castle, built in 1210 and once the headquarters of the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem. Your next stop is to visit the ancient Kingdom of Kourion, with its open-air theatre. See Petra tou Romiou, the legendary birthplace of the Goddess Aphrodite – where it is said she emerged from the sea.
Then continue on to today’s main destination, the city of Paphos – a leading cultural center with history so rich, the whole town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Enjoy lunch in a seaside Tavern, overlooking the Byzantine castle.
Next, visit the famous Tombs of the Kings, catacombs and an exclusive Cypriot monument from the 3rd century and burial site for the aristocrats. See the impressive Roman Villas of Aion, Dionysus, and Theseus, with their magnificent mosaics inspired by Greek Mythology. Explore the Church of Chrysopolitissa and St Paul’s column, marking the spot where the Apostle was arrested while preaching Christianity in Roman times.
The last stop on today’s tour is in the village of Yeroskipou to see the Agia Paraskevi Church, built in the 10th century, with five domes decorated with frescoes. Enjoy a tasty visit to a traditional loukoum (or Turkish Delight) factory before returning to Limassol in the late afternoon. (B,L)
DAY 4Troodos Mountain Excursion
Today, travel to the Troodos Mountains, whose peaks dominate the central and western parts of Cyprus. This is a unique geological area with deep green pine forests and beautiful native wild flowers and plants. Drive through picturesque villages, stopping to explore their celebrated UNESCO protected Byzantine churches, renowned around the world for their wall paintings (frescoes). Hidden in the Troodos region, we visit the isolated Kykkos Monastery. Founded in the 11th century, it is the richest and most important monastery on the island. From there, take a short stroll to Throni, to visit the tomb of the late Archbishop Makarios III, first President of the Republic of Cyprus.
After a relaxing lunch in the mountains, enjoy the scenic drive back to Limassol, and your luxurious resort. (B,L)
DAY 5Depart Limassol
Today you are taken to the airport for your departing flight home or on to your next destination. (B)