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History Paphos

Paphos is an ancient city that dates back to the Neolithic period. A temple to Aphrodite was built during the 12th century BC, who according to mythology was to have been born at Paphos. Paphos holds plenty of historical value, as ruins of villas, theatres, fortresses and tombs are found dating to Classical, Hellenistic, and Roman periods. The site where the modern city now lies is referred to as New Paphos (Nea Paphos), which is 12 kilometres Northwest of the original Paphos. This city is rumoured to be founded by Agapenor, the chief Arcadian. Just as old Paphos, New Paphos was dedicated to the worship of Aphrodite, and many impressive temples were erected in the deity's honour. Around the time that Nicosia was founded (about 2500 BC), Paphos saw a decline in attention, declining in popularity and functionality throughout the Middle Ages and the Ottoman rule. As most British citizens branched out to live in Nicosia or Limassol, the city continued to dwindle until 1974.

Paphos weather

The geographic location of Paphos lends itself to subtropical Mediterranean climates. Sunny Paphos boasts over 3400 hours of sunlight each year. The annual precipitation rate is 386.7 mm. The area receives the most moisture and rain during late fall. Early spring and summers rarely see any precipitation at all. However, the humidity ratings in July and August can oftentimes increase to 85%. July and August are also known for excessive heat. The climate changes come from hot air flow off the Sahara Desert, which drifts across the sea to Cyprus. This extreme weather can cause droughts, last seen in 2008 when a particularly dry summer caused Cyprus to ship water into the area from Greece due to such conditions. Winters see snow about once every 10 years. Snowfall is negligible to non-existent in Paphos and the only place likely to receive such are the hills of Tsada, located six kilometres to the north of Paphos. Average temperatures are quite temperate at 23.6 C as the high and 13.9 as the low. Summers can reach upwards of 30, while mild winters usually do not dip below 9.

Transport Paphos

Paphos is small enough that holiday-goers can generally get around on foot. The city has a public bus system, run by OSYPA LTD. The local bus is a good idea if you choose to go outside the immediate confines of the city. If travellers so choose, they can use car hire to get around Paphos. The airport is located six and a half kilometres from the centre of the city and there are car hire agencies on-site. Another alternative way to get to Paphos is the port, though most cruise and cargo ships lately opt to use the port at Limassol, which is 60 kilometres from Paphos. If you arrive at this port, it is highly recommended that you choose car hire or taxi to get to the city. Local companies also rent out bicycles and quads for travellers that are more adventurous.

One interesting and fun way to spend your time in Paphos is by taking a quad bike and heading off the beaten path. There are many small villages in the hills of Cyprus waiting to be explored, and a car hire or quad hire may be the best option to do so. Keep in mind the climate around your time of visit when deciding what type of local transport to use. If you do not like hot weather and are planning to come to Paphos in the summer, consider a car hire instead of a bicycle or quad, as summer weather can reach upwards of 33 C and 90% humidity. Furthermore, bear in mind that the winter months between November and February can be quite wet.

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Best Paphos

This old city is full of history and there is so much of this remaining and in great shape for visitors to see. The Paphos Archaeological Park is home to the Houses of Dionysos and Theseus, which are ruins featuring well-preserved mosaics for which they are famed. The Odeon Amphitheatre is also of historical importance, dates back to the 2nd Century AD, and still hosts plays and musical concerts in its 1200-seat theatre. The Odeon is located within the archaeological park. Tala Village is a great place to see living history. The village is quite traditional, which makes it definitely worth a visit. Located to the north of Paphos, the village is also home to the Agios Neophytos Monastery. At the end of the marina is the Paphos Fort, which dates to 1586 and was built by the Turks. This historical stronghold has functioned as both a prison and a fort over its long lifetime. Furthermore, you will also find the Tombs of the Kings. Though not the actual burial sites of royalty, the sprawling area was the final resting place of rich citizens and dignitaries, though most or all the tombs have since been plundered. For families, the Aphrodite Water Park and the Paphos Bird Park are both great fun. The water park has a number of slides and rides, a wave pool, lazy river, and more to keep everyone cool in the warm summer months. Paphos Bird Park is located north of the city and has a number of animal exhibits to enjoy.

Exploring Paphos

Paphos is a great starting point for a number of day trips around the island of Cyprus. For instance, the Akamas Peninsula, which is to the north-west of Paphos, is full of places to explore. The peninsula is home to sandy beaches, gorges, and a very diverse wilderness that lends itself to hours, if not days, of exploration. The Androlykou and Petratis Gorges are located in the north part of the peninsula. The southern portion of the peninsula is home to the Avakas Gorge, which has very high, steep cliffs that converge at the top, making a tunnel-like opening at the bottom of the gorge, where a stream runs. Because the Akamas Peninsula is very remote (Paphos is the nearest town at over 38 kilometres away), the area is widely unspoiled by humankind.

A scenic drive through the Troodos mountains rewards explorers with the quaint village of Nikokleia and a number of small inns, villages, and wineries. For a touch of mythical magic, visit the Aphrodite Hills. Here, the Rock of Aphrodite sits in the sea and is said to be the site Aphrodite ascended to Cyprus. There is legend surrounding the rock. It is said that if you swim around the Aphrodite's Rock, you will be blessed with eternal beauty. Unfortunately, this may be a bit too adventurous for most travellers, as this part of the sea is known to be quite rough. Instead, travellers can climb the rock and even visit a tourist shop and restaurant.

Eating drinking Paphos

Paphos has a good selection of dining choices. While the city does offer Internationaland western staples such as KFC and McDonald's, the local flavour hits a high note in dining in this Cypriot town. For the best taste of regional food make sure that you venture outside the main city to the mountains or the village of Kathikas. Here, travellers can be treated to a conventional Cypriot meze in one of the taverns or restaurants or in a customary ouzeri, which is a caf? that serves ouzo, a traditional anise-flavoured Greek and Cypriot liqueur.

A meze consists of small dishes to be shared around the table. At the Cypriot table, you may find seafood dishes, kalamata olives, various cheeses, vegetable dishes, and meats. Local foods include saganaki (fried or grilled cheese), bekri-meze (diced pork stew), melitzanosalata (eggplant salad), keftedes (meatballs), dolmades (stuffed grape leaves), and tatamosalata (salad made of fish roe). Meze also includes garlic bread, which pairs nicely with the olive oil infused spreads and salads. Two types of meze are indicative of the appropriate drink pairing for the meal. The ouzomezedhes menu is designed to go with ouzo, while the krasomezedhes is meant to go well with a wine pairing. Many traditional Cyprus meals are accompanied by local wine. For those not fond of wine, the locals like to opt for lager. In addition, the local Cyprus Brandy is often accompanied by the meze meal.

Nightlife Paphos

Nightlife in Paphos is surprisingly lively. The city is full of partying once the sun goes down. Agiou Antoniou is a street dedicated to nightlife and is affectionately nicknamed Bar Street or Nightlife Street. For fantastic music and atmosphere, Woodyz Music Bar is a great stop to add to your list. This popular bar has lots of cocktail and beer choices. One of Paphos oldest bars is the Rainbow Disco. Although the drinks at Rainbow Disco are on the pricier side, the ambiance is nearly unmatched, especially later in the evening when the other club scenes begin to wind down. Resembling a Medieval Castle is not the only shtick that Robin Hood Bar has going for it. Each night offers a different music genre, meaning the club caters to all types of crowds. For those who prefer to make the music, Splash Bar needs to be a place that you visit. This karaoke bar has a unique addition to its d?cor, a swimming pool in the centre! The list of bars and clubs in Paphos to serve your nightlife desires goes on and on. Though the town is full of sightseeing and sunbathing to do during the day, many tourists will attest that saving up your energy to spend a night on the town in Paphos is well worth it.

Shopping Paphos

Shopping in Paphos is a fun experience. There is literally something for everyone, from small tourist shops along the sea to larger shops and furniture stores along the road to Polis. The region is known best for local-made leather goods, laces, and items from nearby Yeroskipou. The leathers here are a great option for souvenirs and are reasonably priced as well. If you are looking for local items then make sure you take a look round the Kato Paphos Harbour.

The Paphos Market is in Old Town. It is open daily and offers locally grown fruit, vegetables and seafood, and of course, the regional favourite, leather. On Sundays, the Paphos Open-Air Market is a huge draw for locals and tourists, alike. Located in the Timi village, this market has vendors selling local Cypriot goods, handmade crafts, and gifts. Makariou III Avenue is home to a slew of small shops and an open-air market. Be advised that the Makariou III Avenue shops close during lunchtime on Wednesdays and afternoons on Saturdays. The city has a good number of large shopping centres and supermarkets, as well. A Debenhams department store is one great example of UK influence in Paphos. The store features groceries and kitchen items, clothing (including designer brands), a basement full of furniture, gifts, and electric items, and a large cosmetics department.

Disabled visitors Paphos

When travelling anywhere with a disabled companion or member of your holiday party, it is a great idea to inquire ahead of time about facilities and the accessibility of the town. Paphos has a number of accommodating businesses and lodging options to serve the disabled and persons with reduced mobility. Additionally, there are agencies that will hire out wheelchairs, scooters, and other disabled-friendly items to assist travellers during their Paphos holiday. Travellers have found that the city is becoming more adapted to handicapped visitors and that many local bars, caf?s, and shops are now offering public toilets. Additionally, many Paphos busses have wheelchair lifts/electronic ramps for access onto the bus.

The following is a 2011 list of lodging options that offer wide corridors/doorways, disabled access to beaches/pool, public toilets and ground-floor accommodations where lifts are unavailable: Imperial Beach Hotel, Paphos Gardens, Luca Laura Beach, Azia, Cyrpia Maris Resort, Venus Beach, Pafian Park, Paphos Amathus, Mayfair, Kefalos St. George Hotel, Beach Tourist Village, Annabelle, Thalassa, Aloe, Kissos Hotel, Elysium Beach Hotel, Coral Beach Hotel/Resort, Cynthania Beach, Athena Beach, Athena Royal, Natura Hotel, Avanti Hotel, Atki Beach Tourist Village, Anassa, Pioneer, Helios Bay Hotel Apartments, and Crown Horizon.