Thursday, 21 September 2017
CYPRUS: Visit Quiet Larnaca
Larnaca has a reasonable claim to being the oldest city in Cyprus, with evidence of habitation up to 6000 years ago.
Modern Larnaca, like other Cypriot coastal towns, is divided into an older city center and a wide sprawl of hotels and restaurants along the beach.
Larnaca is a city on the southern coast of Cyprus and the capital of the eponymous district. It is the third-largest city in the country, after Nicosia and Limassol, with an urban population of 84,591.
Larnaca is known for its palm-tree seafront, the Church of Saint Lazarus, the Hala Sultan Tekke, the Kamares Aqueduct and its medieval fort. It is built on the ruins of ancient Citium, which was the birthplace of Stoic philosopher Zeno.
The Salt Lake fills with water during the winter season and is visited by flocks of flamingoes who stay there from November until the end of March. It usually dries up in the summer. In the past, it yielded good quality salt scraped from the dried surface. The salt from the lake is now considered unsuitable for consumption.
The climate in this area is described by the Koppen Climate Classification System as a hot semi-arid climate due to its low annual rainfall and strong summer drought. It is sometimes described as a mediterranean climate, but its winter rainfall is below the required amount to avoid the semi-arid classification.
The city's landmarks include: the Church of Saint Lazarus; the Catacomb of Phaneromeni Church; Hala Sultan Tekke; the Kamares Aqueduct; and the Fort of Larnaca.
So-called "Foinikoudes" is the promenade along Athenon Avenue on the seafront. A row of palm trees lines either side of it.
A bust of "Kimon the Athenian" stands on the Foinikoudes Promenade, with this quote referring to him on the pedestal: Even in death he was victorious.
The marble bust of Zeno stands at the crossroads near the American Academy. Zeno was born in Kition in 334 BC. After studying philosophy in Athens, he founded the famous Stoic school of philosophy.
- The Armenian Genocide Memorial stands on Athinon Avenue.
Larnaca's economy has been growing since 1975, after the loss of the Port of Famagusta, which handled 80% of general cargo, and the closure of Nicosia International Airport, meant that Larnaca's airport and seaport had increasingly important roles in the economy of the island. A €650m upgrade of Larnaca Airport has been completed.
The service sector, including tourism, employs three-quarters of Larnaca's labor force. Many travel and tour operators and other travel-related companies have their head offices in Larnaca.
The beaches of Larnaca are lined with nearly identical seafood restaurants catering to tourists. Although there are many continental and international restaurants in Larnaca, visitors do not miss out on indulging in the local food. Many of the staple dishes involve beans, such as fasolaki or French beans cooked in red wine with lamb, and louvi me lahana or black-eyed beans with chard.
Some of the standard appetizers are potato salad, kohlrabi salad, and hot grilled black olives. The next course may include Cyprus village sausage and sheftalia, dolmades and keftedes, kolokassi in tomato sauce, and several aubergine-based dishes. Baked or grilled lamb (souvla) usually appears somewhere in the course of dining, as does some kind of fish.
Larnaca is home to the country's primary airport, Larnaca International Airport. It also has both passenger and cargo seaport and a marina.
Larnaca International Airport is the largest airport on Cyprus, located 6 km to the west of the city center. Taxis to the city take 15 minutes, there are also scheduled city buses. There are no left luggage/baggage storage facilities at the airport.
Shared taxis (grammi) connect Larnaca to Nicosia and Limassol.
Larnaca is a thin ribbon of a town and you can walk around most of it. The seaside Larnaca Promenade (Phinikoudes) is particularly pleasant for a stroll in the evening.
By law, taxis should charge by the meter, but many cabbies will refuse to use it. Metered fares should be 65 cent to get in; plus 22 cent/km. Night surcharges apply after midnight.
- South East coast of Cyprus
- Ayia Napa
- Cape Greco
- Agia Triada
The Church of St. Lazarus (Ayios Lazaros Sq), an Orthodox church dating to the 9th century, is reputedly built around the tomb of the biblical Lazarus, brother of Mary.
The Larnaca Salt Lake is to the west of town near the airport. In winter (November to March), flocks of pink flamingos can be seen here.
The Hala Sultan Tekke mosque is perched by the side of the Salt Lake. The tomb of Umm Haram, the foster mother of Mohammed, is said to be here.
Faneromeni Church or Ekklisía tis Faneromenis . This mashup of various architectural styles used to stand in the centre of the city – until 1974. There is a marble mausoleum next to it.
For divers the main reason to go to Larnaca is the wreck of the Zenobia, a ro-ro ferry that sunk in 1980 on her maiden voyage only a few hundred meters from the harbor due to a fault in the ballast computer.
Fully laden with trucks and their cargo, the ship now lies on its side at a depth of 42 meters, with the top of the wreck at 18m and thus easily accessible even to PADI Advanced Open Water divers. If your flight comes in right, you can even see the shadow of the wreck as you land at Larnaca airport!
Alpha Divers Dive Centre (Dhekelia Rd), 2, Pyla Gardens, Dhekelia Road, Larnaca, 7081, Cyprus, a PADI Five Star Gold Palm Instructor Development Centre and a British Sub-Aqua Club Premier & Technical Centre. Located adjacent to Lordos Beach Hotel and Mariandy Hotel.
WOW Action Park, Pavlou Liasides 6, 7102, Aradippou. WOW Action Park is the largest & most exciting play centre in Larnaca where children of all ages,from 10 months to 12 years old will spend endless hours playing while parents relax with free WIFI and all the sports channels. There is a wide selection of food, drinks and desssets also available.
Dive-In Cyprus,Blu View Residence, 132 Piale Pascha, Larnaca 6027. is a PADI 5-star dive center and Regional SDI/TDI office that specializes in dives to the Zenobia, it can also arrange nitrox and penetration dives for the technical diver. Full range of PADI, TDI, TecRec and SDI courses available.
Aquadream scuba diving academy, adonidos 13. Daily dives to the best dive sites on the island.Wreck dives,shore dives,cave dives and night dives.
Moments & Meze - City Walking Food Tour. This city walking tour introduces you to the old town of Larnaca through food. A great way to get your bearings around the city and discover great places to eat for your Larnaca stay.
The nearby village of Lefkara is famous for its lace and silverware, and Larnaca being the nearest large town to the village, sells both in plentiful supply.
Oro Fino Jewellery, Pavlou Valsamaki 26, 50 metres from Foinikoudes beach, near St. Lazarus. Unique hand made creations by local designer and jewellery maker. Feel free to ask about custom pieces.
Often, eating in Larnaca can be quite expensive. However, if you're travelling on a budget, there are a few bargains to be had. Possibly the cheapest way is by grabbing a hotdog at the Enjoy Finikoudes kiosk on, you guessed it, Phinikoudes Avenue. Hotdogs are just €1 and are rather enjoyable.
If you prefer to sit down for a meal, try Ocean Basket,also on Phinikoudes Avenue where a huge, tasty serving of Fish and Chips will set you back just €5.95, which is comparable to if not less than the price of a meal at the likes of Phinikoudes' McDonalds or KFC, which are also useful places for eating on a budget, even if they do lack that local touch.
The beaches of Larnaca are littered with identikit seafood restaurants catering to tourists. The easiest way to find a good place is to simply walk along until you find a restaurant packed not with tourists, but with Cypriots!
Prasino Amaxoudi, or Green Cart in English, 20 Turan Road, tel. 24 622 939. It is placed on the corner of Turan Road and Buyuk Cami Road next to the big mosque at the end of the Promenade.
They serve probably the best Sheftalia (traditional Cypriot meetballs) in Larnaca together with other regional specialities. Prices are most friendly (€6 for a generous portion of Sheftalia), just as the service. The atmosphere is authentic the place being usually filled with locals in spite of the touristic location.
Aldente Cucina Italiana, Located right on the beach front of Larnaca, Phinikoudes Beach, a great place to enjoy authentic Italian cuisine and glance at the sea.
Militzis, 42 Piale Pascha. A long-running favorite serving honest Cypriot fare (meat and potatoes) washed down with their own wine. No points for presentation, but the food is good and the restaurant is often packed. Figure on £5-10 for a meal.
Hobo's, Phinikoudes Promenade. A lively Cafe/Restaurant popular with many Cypriots, right on the main promenade. You can't miss it, and its often full but doesn't take telephone reservations. Food is varied from Cypriot to International Cuisine.
Kantara, Rendez-Vous, and Ganga restaurants on Dhekelia Road are probably the best restaurants in Larnaca. More expensive than the rest, but well worth it. Both Kantara and Rendez-Vous have a good selection of international wines,Cyprus wines are an acquired taste to say the least.
Nippon, Grigoris Afxentiou Ave,opposite American Academy. Expensive, but reknown Japanese restaurant serving sushi. Bookings are essential, as it is packed every night. Offers a wide range of delicious maki, California rolls, teppanyaki and more. From €50.
Viale. 10AM-12:30AM. Easy-going café/bar/restaurant that has ample space and menu variety for both breakfast and dinner. Very good quality European-style dishes, with some more adventurous selections, eg prawns with ouzo sauce.
Vlachos' Taverna' on the Dhekelia Rd, 400 metres past the Palm Beach Hotel on the same side is a fantastic place to eat local food. Sheftalia is just great and the salads are lovely.
Apollo Snack Bar, the Alley Way, Kition Building, relatively close to the beach strip is a very nice snack bar tucked away in a back alley.
Affordable, enormous and tasty portions, the owner is very friendly as well! 4-8 EUR for a decent lunch snack.
In the city centre an area just off the main promenade called Laiki Yeitonia fulfils the need for most Bars and Small scale Nightclubs. Club Deep is the most popular of these, along with Times.
Driving about 15-20 minutes away from the City Centre to the East in the direction of Ayia Napa is the Larnaca-Dhekelia Road. This is the main strip for high quality hotels, nightclubs, bars, etc, and is where most British Tourists can be found.
Blue Pine Bar near the American Academy has a huge selection of spirits,all real which is unusual for Cyprus and has a real atmosphere. The decor is wood and dim lighting and lots of Jack Daniels and Blues music paraphernalia. Comes alive after 10PM. The Bar used to be located on Dhekelia Road but moved several years ago. By far the best bar in Laranaca for chilled music and spirits.
There are countless hotels and hotel apartments of varying degrees of luxury by the seaside.
Golden Bay Beach Hotel, Dhekelia Rd,Take Highway to Ayia Napa from the airport, then take Pyla Exit, turn on the first right, and then right again, then left when you reach the end of the road. checkin: 14:00; checkout: 12:00. Part of the Lordos Golden Hotels in Cyprus. The only 5 star hotel in Larnaca, Located just outside the town centre. Golden Bay Brand Slogan: We delight, as you wished to be delighted.
Lordos Beach Hotel, Dhekelia Rd,Take Highway to Ayia Napa from the airport, then take Pyla Exit, turn on the first right, and then right again, then left when you reach the end of the road. checkin: 14:00; checkout: 12:00. Newly refurbished 4 star hotel, Located on a long sandy beach. The Lordos Beach Hotel ranks among the most prestigious hotels on the island.
This, coupled with service that is as discreet as it is attentive, makes this hotel the natural holiday choice. A place where visitors return time and time again to a warm welcome. Lordos Beach Brand Slogan: Be our guest STAR.
Ciao Stelio Boutique Hotel, Tasos Mitsopoulos Ave- McKenzie. The Ciao Stelio Deluxe Hotel, one of the finest small luxury hotels in Cyprus, combining the charm of a private house with the comfort of a 5* establishment. Located by the sea at the famous McKenzie Beach area in Larnaka, just 1km away from the town centre with the illustrious Palm Tree Promenade and only 3km away from Larnaca International Airport.
The ideal choice when visiting Cyprus. Whether you are travelling for business or leisure, it offers everything you may possibly need, impeccable hospitality, a relaxing atmosphere, unexcelled facilities, as well as breathtaking views of the Mediterranean.
Frangiorgio Hotel Apartments. A modern hotel 1-minute walk from the town's main beach and shopping areas. It has 24 furnished apartments with equipped kitchens, air-conditioning systems, heating, satellite TVs, double glazed windows, private balconies and telephones.
Other facilities include: daily cleaning of rooms, laundry service, bar, fax service, internet facilities, 24 hour reception and a new in house 24 hour mini market. Rates range from £16 to £40 depending on the season.
Amorgos Boutique Hotel, 11 Mitsi Street, 6307 Larnaca, Cyprus,Located in the heart of Larnaca Town. Amorgos Boutique Hotel has 40 Standard Double or Twin Rooms for 2 persons, 4 Superior Twin Rooms for 2-3 persons (Extra Bed) and 2 Grand Superior Double Rooms for 2-3 persons.
This hotel offers 24 Hour Reception, Business Centre: Fax, Scanner & Printer, Wi-Fi Internet Access in the lobby and Free Parking Facilities close to the hotel. It is surrounded by a wide variety of shops, restaurants, cafes, bars and nightclubs.
Blue Serenity Private Villa, Pervolia 10 min in car. A brand new family villa - 3 bedrooms - fully air conditioned - private pool. Nice quite getaway place. Prices in low season from £400 per week, rising to £600 in the high season.
Paschalis Hotel Apartments, 2 Olympou Street, Pyla Exit the airport directly onto the A3 motorway in the direction of “Ayia Napa”. Exit at junction 60 for “Pyla/Dhekelia”, at the end of the slip road turn right onto the B3 road and follow directions for Dhekelia. At the end of the road, at the lights, turn right onto Dhekelia Road. Continue for 1km along Dhekelia Road.
Paschalis Hotel Apartments is located on the right, just after the Golden Bay, Sandy Beach and Lordos hotels. checkin: 14:30; checkout: 11:00. About 200 metres from the beach. 10 minutes from Larnaca town and 20 minutes from Larnaca International Airport. A family run complex offering 12 modest and spacious one-bedroom, self-catering apartments with equipped kitchen, bath or shower room, lounge/dining room and private balcony.
All apartments are light and refreshing with open-plan living space totalling 50 square metres, sleeping up to four adults or families of up to five including children and/or infants. Private swimming pool or the local beach via an easily accessible path across from the apartments.
Pyla Village & Pyla Palms & Pyla Gardens Resorts Apartments, Pyla,Take A1 from Airport to Aiya Napa come off at 2nd turn for Pyla Village, Pyla Palms on right 2 miles and Pyla Village Resort 0.5 miles on right. Recently completed private apartments with pool, 5 minutes drive from beach, and 8 to 12 minutes walk to town. from £119 pppw.
StayCentral Apartments, 19 Onisillos Street. Located in a quiet yet central part of larnaca town, within a 5-8min walk to St. Lazarus church, finikoudes beach and town centre with its numerous restaurants, cafes and shops. Offers comfortable, freshly decorated 1-bedroom apartments with equipped kitchenette and living area opening up to a spacious private, balcony.
Free wifi and parking. Friendly owners are at hand to offer local advice and transport to/from airport. from €35 per night for 2 persons in low season.
Petrou Bros Hotel Apartments, 1, Armenikis Eklisias Street, 6022 Larnaca - Cyprus.
Petrou Bros Hotel Apartments are located in the heart of Larnaca town. Petrou Bros Hotel Apartments consists of 52 Self-Catering Apartments, 40 One Bedroom Apartment for 2 persons, 6 Two Bedroom Apartment for 2 - 4 persons, 3 Three Bedroom Apartment for 3 - 6 persons and 3 Family Suites for up to 2 - 4 persons.
Lefkara, a small, beautiful town, 30 km away.