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The name Ayia Napa is derived from a Venetian-era monastery of the same name, located in the centre of the town, next to the square that acts today as a nightlife hub. The word "Ayia" (Agia) means "holy" in Greek. "Napa" is archaic and means "wooded valley" or dell, since in ancient times the area surrounding the town was covered with thick forest. Geographically, Ayia Napa lies near Cape Greco on the eastern part of Cyprus, just south of Famagusta, and forms part of a larger area known as Kokkinochoria ("Red Villages", a name derived from the red colour of the soil). Ayia Napa is about 8 kilometres (5 mi) from Protaras, a town that has recently seen similar development, but still manages to remain low-key and remains more favourable for families and local Cypriot.
Protaras-Paralimni is situated on the southeastern fringe of Cyprus and has the privilege of seeing the first sunrise in Europe. Paralimni, the main town, combines the advantages of a traditional village with the conveniences of a contemporary town, and there is an air of timelessness in the Town Center. Protaras, the tourist area, extends along the eastern coast of Paralimni and stretches for 10km from the district of ‘Kapparis’ to the location of ‘Konnos’. Hundreds of windmills grant its landscape a quaint, tranquil beauty. Fantastic beaches with crystal clear waters are found along this coast, most of them accredited with the prestigious Blue Flag status. The lengthy seaside promenade is perfect for a sunset stroll or a leisurely bicycle ride, offering visitors the opportunity to explore the area further. Visit the harbors of Agia Triada and the picturesque Agios Nicolaos. Follow a nature trail or one of the cycling paths and enjoy seamless views of the sea. Along them you’ll discover rare species of flora and fauna and you'll be greeted by little chapels, such as Agioi Saranta, which is set in a mountain cave, or Agios Ioannis, a little chapel hidden in a valley. The ascent of the 153-steps leading to the chapel of Profitis Elias will definitely reward you with breathtaking views of Protaras. Hotels, self-catering apartments, a wide range of restaurants, taverns, pubs and clubs are here to cater to the needs of even the most demanding tourist. Therefore, whether you choose to simply soak up the sun, explore the underwater world, wander the quaint streets of Paralimni, visit Byzantine churches or enjoy yourself in a club, once you are in Protaras-Paralimni a world of choices awaits you!
Discover numerous golden beaches with crystal clear waters, each of them awarded a Blue Flag, and indulge in the warmth of the sun. Enjoy swimming, water sports and a cruise around the coast of Ayia Napa. Explore the wild natural beauty of Cape Greco, and do some biking or hiking on nature trails with wildflowers and fauna. For more information on the many beaches in the area, visit:
There is a wealth of attractions and places to visit, both beautiful and interesting. Be sure to visit the Monastery and the Old and New Church dedicated to Virgin Mary, the picturesque harbor, the Municipal Museum ‘’Thalassa’’, the Makronissos Archaeological Tombs, the Venetian Aqueduct, and the rural churches and chapels all around town, as well as the Sculpture Park, the Love Bridge, and the iconic ‘’I Love Ayia Napa’’ sculpture in the Central Square.
Cape Greco National Forest Park

Cape Greco National Forest Park

Explore the multitude of intriguing nature trails lined with pine trees and a diverse botanical splendour whilst pausing to take in the spectacular views from the sea cliffs looking down to the beautiful Mediterranean Sea. Many benches are spread out along these trails to take a break from the walk and admire the surroundings in stillness. One of these nature trails forms part of the European Long Distance Trail E4, running from Cyprus to Gibraltar. Then there’s the Aphrodite nature trail which stretches 2 km along the North-East coast of Cape Greko which doubles up as a Cultural Route due to the mythical birth place of Aphrodite. A lovely monument to visit is the tiny white washed church of Agoi Anargyroi, with steps that lead down to the sea where there is a place where Holy water runs. Another trail leads to the ‘Cyclops’ cave where there is a picnic site close by. Specially made cycling paths are strewn throughout. Cyprus has the ideal climate for cycling all year round with low annual rainfall and light winds. Thirty foot high limestone cliffs have caves which have been hewn by Mother Nature. Taking a boat trip along the coast you will see that they are really striking, which is why they have been aptly named the ‘Palaces’. Cape Greko has warm sea temperatures ranging from 16 to 28 degrees and visibility reaching up to 40 metres. For this reason, as well as for the wonderful scenery and the marine life, this area is very popular with divers.

The delicious Cypriot cuisine lies at the heart of the island's culture. The Cypriot ‘meze’ is a banquet fit for a king with about twenty different traditional dishes. Meze is often the dish of choice for local Cypriots, ordering them for feasts, celebrations, anniversaries and other joyous occasions. It starts light with salads, dips, olives and fresh bread. Then you start to work your way up with snails, octopus in red wine, pickled capers and greens, followed by grilled halloumi (Greek cheese made from sheep and goat’s milk), smoked pork, fish, keftedes (meatballs), sheftalia and traditional Greek sausages. Then come the kebabs, chicken and lamb chops.
Cyprus coffee is served literally everywhere on the island. Such is its popularity- a perfect accompaniment for playing games or just shooting the breeze. Cyprus coffee is very different from European coffee, in that it is brewed in small pots with long handles called ‘mbriki’. The coffee itself is made from fresh finely ground coffee beans and is poured into tinted porcelain cups. The amount of sugar added depends on your taste: ‘sketo’ (no sugar), ‘metrio’ (half a teaspoon of sugar), and ‘glykis’ (a full teaspoon of sugar).
Cyprus wines date back to the days of ancient Greece, as it was a major part of the island's wealth. In medieval times the renowned Commandaria wines were drunk by those passing through to the Holy Land. New wineries have developed over the past decades, and you can now sample the local wines at various locations and sites throughout the island. For nighttime entertainment, a slew of bars, nightclubs and restaurants can be found in town, along the beaches and at major hotels.
Strolling down the winding streets and alleys of Ayia Napa, visitors will marvel at the variety of markets, shops and products available, including local handicrafts and artwork, such as wood carvings, traditional dolls, embroidery and jewellery. Don't forget to try some local wines, and maybe take a bottle or two back home as gifts.
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