From time to time I am asked about recommended car rental companies in Cyprus. Although I live here and do not rent a car regularly, I have had the chance to do so several times while here (for both long and short periods) and I also receive updates from my readers about their experiences, so I decided to write a specific guide to renting a car in Cyprus.

Do you need to rent a car in Cyprus?

Public transportation is relatively limited and I will detail it later in the post for those who are interested.

If you land in Paphos and intend to only stay in the city, you can probably forego a rental car. This is also true for those who land in Larnaca and do not intend to leave it, or for those who plan to stay for the entire vacation in and around the hotel and not travel around.

If you only plan to go on guided tours with a local guide, you can arrange transportation as part of the service. If you plan individual trips to relatively close places, you can take a taxi or bus.

But, if you arrive in the mood to explore Cyprus or travel at your own pace and stop at points spontaneously, a rental car is the way to go.

Most Israelis who come with children on a trip to Cyprus like to take a car straight from the airport and get around with it. In general, you can find parking everywhere, even in Limassol or Nicosia, although it is better to choose accommodation that includes parking. I will detail parking options later.

If you plan to go to the villages in the Troodos Mountains, or move between several destinations during your trip, then you must have a rental car, and in my opinion, getting around with one is much easier, especially with children. You can leave the equipment in the car and not have to carry it from place to place.

Even if you are short on time for your vacation and want maximum flexibility, renting a car or using taxis will be the most effective.

Also keep in mind that taxi prices are expensive. A trip from Larnaca to Limassol costs around 60 euros by taxi one way. Even within the city, each trip is at least 10 euros and usually ranges between 10-20 euros for distances of 10-20 minutes.

A recommendation for the summer of 2024 and a benefit for blog followers

Local and recommended Cypriot car rental company

Cosmos Car Rental (to order a rental car directly from Cosmos don’t forget the 10% coupon code: trvbox) is a company that provides rental cars all over Cyprus.

What I like about them is that they provide a delivery service for a nominal fee to almost any destination in Cyprus, so you can start or end the rental from any hotel and not have to pick up the car and return it at that point.

They have a main office in Larnaca, so if you are nearby you can come and pick up or return the car from there at no extra cost, but you really don’t have to do even that – they provide a free delivery service to any hotel or other point in Larnaca, which is really convenient if you don’t take the car. You can just choose a pick-up point called Larnaca City and then you adjust exactly where they should deliver the car to you.

They have really good customer service and they don’t try to insist you into buying all kinds of insurance.

Car insurance at Cosmos

When renting from them, you can add such extended insurance that will reduce your participation fee by at least half (40% to be exact compared to their normal participation fee). For example, for a sum of about 100 euros for small family vehicles instead of 250 euros or for 350 euros for a van with 8/9 seats (instead of 900 euros). You will see the details during the order after choosing the vehicle and you can choose then.

It is also possible to additionally or only purchase windshield and tire insurance at a lower price of about five euros per day so that you do not pay at all for any damage caused to these items.

If you don’t want to upgrade to their insurance (for example if you take out external insurance) then the deductibles are generally fair and you can ask for the refund from the external insurance you took out, for example in the travel insurance abroad or through another insurance for a car rented abroad as I detailed in the post about renting a car abroad.

In terms of payment and deposit – they allow payment in cash so if you don’t have approx. Credit can still be rented from them and leave a deposit in cash.

A safety seat

If you are traveling with children, they provide you with baby and child car seats for free!

Crossing Turkish Cyprus with a rented car

Crossing Turkish Cyprus/Northern Cyprus with a rental car – most companies do not allow this, and the guys at Cosmos would also prefer that you not cross with the car, but if you need to, you can coordinate it with them. In general, they warn that they will not be able to provide you with road services or help in North Cyprus and you will have to deal with breakdowns on your own and bring the vehicle back to the border with Cyprus yourself and at your own expense. In addition, you must pay at the border crossing for a special insurance that will allow you to pass with the vehicle to Northern Cyprus. You can talk to them in advance and find out these details – and write to me where you are going to North Cyprus because, to be honest, I haven’t had the chance to travel there and I don’t know the area.

The bottom line is they really try to provide good service and I recommend them, and I would love to hear in the comments or if you write to me how it was for you.

Ordering the vehicle through the Cosmos company and a discount coupon

The most worthwhile part – you can order a car from them in two ways:

Order online with prepayment that gives a 10% discount on the price. But keep in mind that you can’t cancel with this option.

Order online with no advance payment at all and free cancellation.

And I received from the owner a 10% discount coupon for ordering online without prepayment so that you actually earn both an order without prepayment on the credit card and free cancellation as well as the discounted price.

To order a rental car directly from Cosmos (don’t forget the 10% coupon code: trvbox)

To compare prices from all rental companies in Cyprus

Which rental companies are recommended?

All in all, all the companies that operate in Cyprus are usually fair and do not try to charge you for all kinds of damages or unfair payments. In several of my rentals, even when I didn’t take extended insurance from the rental company, I didn’t feel like I was being “searched” when returning the car like they have done to me in other destinations in Europe.

All companies, even the small ones, have the option of giving you car seats for babies or boosters for older children at affordable prices. You can also buy a small jumbo booster without a back for 8 euros.

In the big cities there are quite a few local rental companies that operate mainly in the season; some are not even active outside the summer so the supply is small then. On the other hand, so is the demand, so it’s fine.

My recommendation is to also check reviews of the branch through Google Maps – where customers will usually share their experience.

If you compare prices in the Papam Papam search engine, you will be able to filter and see only offers from recommended rental companies according to the score they have on Google Maps. The rental prices in Cyprus are also very cheap. If you take a manual car, it will of course be cheaper in most cases. In the off-season you can rent a small manual car for less than 25 euros per day.

Driving in Cyprus and driver’s license

Driving license when renting a car in Cyprus

To rent a car in Cyprus you need a valid driver’s license and all companies ask that you at least hold this license for about a year.

If your license is issued outside Europe, there will be rental companies that will also request an international IDP license.
The reports show that there is no need for an international driver’s license (they also checked the laws in Cyprus and confirm that Cypriot law allows non-Europeans to drive without the need for an international license) so you can skip it and drive with the Israeli license alone. Here is what they published about drivers’ licenses in Cyprus.

The driving experience in Cyprus

There are highways between Larnaca and Paphos that are very convenient and the roads to the mountains are generally pleasant and have wide margins. There are many gas stations along the way (the price of gas as in Israel may be a little cheaper) and convenient stopping points. It is important to know that driving is done on the left side of the road (like in England), but you get used to it quite quickly in my opinion and from what other travelers have written to me.

Parking in Cyprus

In terms of parking, there is absolutely no reason to fear that you won’t find parking. In most places there is no problem finding a spot and all the big hotels have private parking lots. If you go to the more touristic areas such as the old town in Limassol, or the marina area in Larnaca and Paphos, you will find many parking lots that cost 2-3 euros for two to three hours. Please note that two yellow stripes on the side of the road mean that you are not allowed to park there even if the curb of the sidewalk is gray.

Public transport in Cyprus

For two years we lived in Limassol in an apartment close to the boardwalk where line 30 passes, the main line that runs from the remote part of the resorts like Parklane and Amara and reaches the other side where the mall is. The line runs frequently and is usually not busy. I traveled by bus a lot with Sophie when she was a baby (she didn’t like being in the car and I preferred to travel with her by bus when I could). But if I had to go to places where the bus does not go, I would take a taxi or drive my car. The buses in Limassol and in general in all of Cyprus do not reach the more distant places and taxis are not that easily available.

There are two apps through which you can order taxis, but keep in mind that many times you won’t find one through them and it would be better to coordinate with a driver in advance or call a taxi company: the Bolt app and the CABCY app.

Each city has its own bus company and they also make intercity trips.

Website for information on all bus lines in Cyprus

In Paphos you can find the official website of the local bus company Osypa where you’ll have information about all the lines in English, including timetables and a detailed map of the route. There are dedicated lines to attraction points such as line 622 to the Aphrodite baths and of course a bus from the Paphos Airport to the city center. There is also an interactive map where you can click on stations and see when the nearest bus arrives and where each bus goes in real time.

Children up to the age of five travel for free. A single ride costs €2 and a daily free ticket €6.50. For prices on the website.

Personally, I find it most convenient to use the Moovit app to find the line I need wherever I am in Cyprus. For the most part, the application is quite accurate.

Larnaca and Ayia Napa also have buses that travel along the promenade.

In conclusion, if you are coming to Cyprus for a short backpacking vacation, you do not have to rent a car, but if you want to travel around the villages or go to several destinations, I definitely recommend renting a car. Taxi prices are expensive in Cyprus and they are not always available, and the bus lines run almost only in the tourist areas and can be busy in the summer.

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At the end of May, the trip that my siblings and I had been waiting for, for a long time, finally came. I live in Cyprus, my two sisters in Israel, and my brother in the United States. Five years ago we started the tradition of a trip with siblings and so far we have been together in Madrid and Vienna, and now it was time for our trip to the north of Italy. We all landed in Milan at the Malpensa Airport and from there we continued to Lake Maggiore, which is north of Milan.

Because we traveled at the end of May, which is not the peak of the season, places weren’t crowded anywhere. Maybe in July and August it feels different.

Before I continue to tell about this trip, I will remind you that a few years ago I took a trip with Roman to Lake Como, which is also in the area. So if you’re looking for recommendations there, it’s worth going through the posts I wrote about Lake Como.

5 things you must do in Lake Maggiore in northern Italy - Traveling outside the box

General information about the trip we made to Lake Maggiore

Who? Four adults

When? End of May 2024
How long? 4 days
Weather? Between 18 -24 degrees a day and there were two days with some rain
Where did we stay? In the town of Agra I rented a villa through Airbnb
Rented a car? We rented an electric car through Hertz at the Malpensa Airport. Equivalent prices can be found through Papam Papam, the search engine for car rentals.
Flights? My sisters flew from Israel with Wizzair and had a four-hour flight. I arrived from Cyprus with EasyJet.

Siblings trip

How do you get to Lake Maggiore?

We arrived at the lake with a car we rented from Hertz. We picked up the car from the Malpensa Airport in Milan.
The process of receiving the car was easy and pleasant. The Hertz counter is in Terminal 1, where our flights also landed.

The representative offered us to purchase additional insurance to cancel the deductible, but we politely refused and settled for the basic insurance we had with the reservation.

It was approximately an hour-and-a-half drive to the town of Agra, where we stayed.
To search for a car, you can use the search engine for comparing car prices, Papam Papam.

At first we were worried about the electric vehicle because we didn’t know how far we could drive it before the battery ran out, and we weren’t sure where we could charge it either. 

In practice, there are many charging points along the way and in the villages. In the town of Agra, through Google Maps, we found the charging point next to the villa and when we went to Dumenza for dinner, we directed Google Maps to the charging point in the center; that’s how we also earned free parking while charging. To find the charging points we simply searched on Google “EV charging” and it showed us where there are such points. To charge you have to download an app called “Be Charge” and you can create an account or register as a temporary guest.

The lake can also be reached by train from the central station in Milan.

The electric car we rented

The villa we stayed in at Lake Maggiore

We stayed in the town of Agra, which is located up the mountain (about a quarter-of-an-hour round trip in the mountains) and we had a special villa designed by the architect Carlo Molino (a well-known architect in Italy). The main advantage of the villa was the crazy view from it. Just a feeling of living openly. The location of the villa is in a relatively isolated location, but by walking for about fifteen minutes you can reach the center of the town, which has two restaurants and a grocery store.

Those who love peace and quiet will surely love the villa.

The downside of the villa was that it is not maintained well enough. Everything was clean and the bedrooms were great but in the living room the furniture was old.

The villa had three rooms, a shower room, and a kitchen and living room. There were two more bedrooms also in the lower part of the villa but there was a very suffocated feeling and I would not recommend sleeping there.

My sister is a Pilates trainer so in the morning she gave us a Pilates workout in the garden and with the view of the lake we felt like we were at a retreat. We would prepare the breakfasts in the villa with ingredients we bought in the market and supermarket in the town of Luino and really enjoyed the experience

In short, we really liked the villa especially because of the view, but in the pictures on the Airbnb Villa website, the rooms and living room seemed of a higher level than they really were.

Link to the villa

Where to sleep in Lake Maggiore?

In Lake Maggiore there are many towns and in general I think it’s nice to stay in all of them. We stayed in a small town called Agra, which is above the town of Luino. If you prefer to stay close to the lake, then I think the town of Luino is a great option because you can get to other towns from it by ferry or by car and it has a nice selection of cafes, restaurants, shops and supermarkets.

A hotel located on the lake Relais Villa Porta – link to the hotel

A hotel with a view of the lake Camin Hotel Luino – link to the hotel

Agra 

The town where the villa we stayed in is located. It is a very small town with only two restaurants and one grocery store. If our villa wasn’t there then I wouldn’t have particularly visited this place. But if you stay in this town or close to it, there is a nice restaurant that is open until late called Ristorante – Pizzeria Tio Pepe di Valentini Paolo & C. From the villa it takes about fifteen minutes to walk to the restaurant.

Luino 

A town near the lake. We went several times because it was on the way to our town.

It’s a pretty touristy town and if you rent an apartment on the lake like we did then there are some big supermarkets. We also bought wine there at a store called Enetoca 25 12.

We had dinner there but the restaurant was not of our liking, so I will not recommend it. However, the alley where the restaurant was located was really beautiful, so I am attaching directions for you to go to this alley.

Lavender shop

Cafes Coffee in the town of Luino

A nice cafe with delicious pastries but no view of the lake: Caffe Teatroi.

And Cafe Clerici, a cafe located by the lake, where the coffee is just reasonable but the view is lovely and if the weather is nice then it’s totally worth sitting there.

Local market on Wednesdays

Every Wednesday there is a local market in the town. The market is touristy and I would not define it as a mandatory recommendation but if you are already nearby, it is nice to walk around there, especially in the food area. We bought bread for our villa and some cheeses and sausages both for the villa and to take back home with us.

The market has all kinds of things: clothes, bags, games, shoes and also local produce of cheeses, sausages, fruits, vegetables and more…

The Mercato di Luino market is open every Wednesday from 08:00-17:00. Arrival instructions.

Ferry to other towns on the lake

From Luino you can take ferries to other towns around Lake Maggiore.

We took a ferry from there to the town of Canobbio (located on the Italian side). We got to the ferry exactly two minutes before it left and bought tickets from the box office at the entrance.

Directions to the ferry.

Canobbio 

How do you get to the town of Canobbio?

A magical town that we arrived at by ferry from Luino – we paid 32 euros for 4 people for a round trip ticket. The cruise was about 25 minutes. Canobbio can also be reached by car or taxi from Luino, but it’s about an hour’s drive.

Wander around the town

This town is so beautiful that you can spend hours there just walking around and going into different shops. There are nice boutiques as well as various brand shops like the Swiss “On” shoes.

A cafe in Canobbio

We sat there in a cute cafe called Forno Zaccheo that had good coffee, pastries, and desserts.

My siblings ordered a tiramisu and said it was delicious and I opted for an apricot jam cookie. There are all kinds of cookies, pastries and cakes.

Forno Zaccheo Coffee and cookies

Take a dip in the lake

It wasn’t hot enough to get into the lake but there was a stunning spot with a descent to the lake where we just laid there on the grass and talked – directions. If you were to go in hot weather, I recommend bringing a bathing suit because it looks really fun to get into the lake. Arrival instructions.

Ice cream

The truth is that I’m not much of an ice cream fan, but my siblings had ice cream at an ice cream parlor – Gelateria il bacio di Tonsi Nadir and said it was great 

Icecream at Cannobio town

Orrido of Saint Anna gorge

Unfortunately, due to lack of time we didn’t get to this place but it looks amazing! This is a gorge with crazy views. The problem is that walking there from the center of Canobbio is 40 minutes and we couldn’t get a taxi. If you are arriving by car, this seems to be a place that is definitely worth going to. Arrival instructions.

Locarno 

At first we thought of going to Lugano but then my sister, Usherat, found a spa of heated natural salt water pools with an amazing view in Locarno so we changed our minds and went there, and it was an excellent decision!

How do you get to Locarno?

We drove with our car for about 50 minutes (from the town of Agra). It is a flat ride around the lake and no traffic jams so it was a great ride.

Hot salt water spa Termali Salini & Spa Locarno

One of the highlights of our trip. That day the weather was gloomy and a little rainy and this place is perfect for such weather.

You can order tickets online but we paid at the entrance. The payment is in Swiss francs but you can also pay in euros. The cost of entry to the baths only is 38 euros. If you also want a towel, then it is another 7 euros.

If you also want to enter the sauna, there is an additional fee (note that the entrance to the saunas is fully nude only). Spa treatments can also be ordered. My brother took a 20 minute massage and felt it was unnecessary.

From the moment you enter you feel like you’re in a relaxing dream. The spa is located right in front of the lake.

There are changing rooms with lockers where you can leave all your things. It is forbidden to take pictures or use a cell phone there! (So unfortunately I don’t have any photos from the place). At the entrance you get a bracelet with which you can open and close the locker as well as buy food and drinks in the restaurant inside (you pay at the end before leaving).

There is a heated pool inside with natural salt water and Jacuzzis but the highlight is the natural salt water pool outside. You can go out to it from the pool inside and enjoy the perfect view. When we were in the pool it was raining and it was an amazing experience to be in the water at a temperature of 34 degrees while it was raining on us.

At one point we went to a restaurant and ordered fruit smoothies and sat on the sunbeds inside and read a book.

We were there for about five hours and there is no doubt that we could have stayed there for a whole day if we didn’t want to get a few more things done. Link to the spa’s official website.

Arrival instructions

A cafe shop with perfect coffee

My brother found a small cafe that only serves coffee! The place looks like a small office with two benches, a coffee machine, and coffee-related products. The place is run by a lovely couple (the woman is from Bolivia and the man is from Switzerland) and they specialize in coffee from Bolivia. I had two cappuccinos because the coffee was so good and they have different flavors of coffee beans. I tried the two types they offered and was really impressed. If you are a fan of good coffee, this is definitely a recommendation you shouldn’t miss. Muyu Cafe. Open only in the months of March – September between the hours of 09:00 and 16:00.

Japanese tea up the mountain

My brother found another recommendation and this time it was for Japanese tea in a special place. We decided we had to try it. This recommendation is less mandatory for me since the tea and the place did not live up to my expectations, but if you have some free time, you can definitely try it.

This is a place that looks like a Japanese botanical garden and is very beautiful to walk around. Inside there is a tea shop and a place to have Japanese-style tea. You can order any type of tea you want and wait for it to be served. It might be worth making a reservation in advance because when we arrived there were relatively many people. My brother ordered matcha, I ordered ginger tea and my sisters jasmine tea and chai tea. The tea was nice, nothing special. The atmosphere was more special than the tea. The place is called Casa del Te.

Street food festival

Coincidentally the day we arrived we found out there was a street food festival by the lake just outside the spa we were at. The festival is three-days-long days and is held once a year. You can check on their Facebook page when the next festival will be.

The festival was very nice, with over 45 food stalls from all over the world. What’s more, because this is the Swiss region, the prices are according. The prices of the dishes were between 7 euros and 13 euros for small dishes and 13 to 18 euros for medium ones.

Facebook page Streetfood Festival Locarno.

streetfood festival bao ban and dumplings

Macagno 

How do you get to the town?

We got there by car, through an about 10-minute drive from Luino but you can also take a ferry. The ferry to Canobbio stops first in Macagno.

What do you do in Macagno?

It’s another charming town that’s fun to wander around and in addition there is an area of grass with trees so there is shade and there is also a playground and a café. In addition to this, in the summer there are water sports and you can get into the lake. Arrival instructions. We didn’t get to walk around the town much because just as we arrived, it started to rain. But if the weather is pleasant or warm then of course the town is worth a visit.

The best restaurant we’ve been to in Lake Maggiore

On our second evening in Lake Maggiore we went to a restaurant in the town of Dumenza, at about a 5-minute drive from Agra where we were staying at, and the truth is that the restaurant was amazing. We loved everything, from the food, the wine, and the view from the restaurant. If the weather is nice, I recommend booking a place to sit outside because the view is lovely.

We parked at a quarter-of-an-hour’s walk from the restaurant because we left the car to charge at the electric car charging station (directions) and the road to the restaurant was really beautiful.

Dumenza town

We ordered quite a few dishes and each one was tasty and a success with us. We ordered several starters, minestrone soup, a rabbit dish with polenta, pasta with truffle mushrooms, ravioli, and for desserts we ordered cake and cream borla. Everything was really flavorful and the service was great. The menus are only in Italian so we used Google Translate to translate it into English (this is what we had to do in most restaurants because the menu was only in Italian).

Ristorante Smeraldo.

Things to do in Lake Maggiore with children

Although we weren’t at the lake with children, it was just the four of us, I saw some great recommendations for the lake for those who come with children, so I’m adding the ones I think that are worth checking out.

The Wonderwood ropes and climbing park is suitable for all ages with different degrees of difficulty. Free entry up to the age of three. The park has rope and climbing routes, swimming pools, and various attractions such as children’s vehicles.

Link to purchase tickets to Wonderwood

Spa with a waterpark. Splash e Spa Tamaro can be reached by train to the Rivera-Bironico station or by car. This is a spa that also has pools and slides. link to website

Ropes park. The Adventure Park Monte Tamaro ropes park is close to Splash e Spa. You can visit both places in the same day or in two days. This one is a rope park with ropes, a roller coaster, a cable car, and a playground. link to website

Additional attractions in Lake Maggiore

We didn’t get to try the following attractions but they look like something worth checking out

Hop-on Hop-off tourist ferry to three islands in Lake Maggiore – link to purchase tickets
Visit to the winery and wine tasting in Lake Maggiore – link to purchase tickets
Cooking class at Lake Maggiore – link to purchase tickets

Hope my post helped you. If so, I would very much like you to respond here in the comments, and if you have any more questions, you are also welcome to ask them in the comments or write to me on the blog’s social networks: Facebook and Instagram.

Looking for more information about Italy? I have more posts about Italy on my blog.

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I’ve been in the United States several times but up until this last trip, I had only traveled to New York, Las Vegas, and Florida. So, when we had the opportunity to fly to the California area, we were immediately excited.

We went for a 16-day trip that started with 6 days in Los Angeles then went to San Diego for 3 days and after that to the town of Loreto, in Mexico, for 6 days.

Information about Los Angeles

Los Angeles is considered the entertainment capital of the world and is a paradise of idyllic weather. It is an international center for business, commerce, entertainment, culture, media, fashion, science, technology and education. It is a very fascinating city with plenty of things to do.

How do I get there?

We arrived on a United Airlines flight with a stop in San Francisco. The first flight was 15 hours to San Francisco and then another 2-hour flight to Los Angeles. It was a long journey but well worth the effort.

Disneyland

Well, it’s no secret that one of the most famous attractions in the city is Disneyland. When I was a child, I visited Disney World in Orlando, so I was really excited to go back to another version in Los Angeles. This is an attraction suitable for both children and adults. We were a couple without children and we really enjoyed ourselves. There are many types of facilities there, and if you buy a ticket with the option to skip queues, in some facilities you can go straight on without waiting in line. There are facilities for children, for the whole family and extreme ones. This is an attraction for a whole-day trip or even for two days in order to have time to do all the facilities.

Tip: There is a check at the entrance and you are not allowed to bring in selfie sticks or GoPro sticks, so if you planned to do so, keep in mind that they’re not allowed.

In addition, from the parking lot there is a train that takes you to the entrance of the park itself. It is recommended to come with comfortable walking shoes since it is a large park and you have to walk a lot from facility to facility and also time spent waiting in lines (standing). It is recommended to arrive as early as possible in order to have time to make installations without much waiting time, and it’s best to go on days that are not too hot.

Book tickets to Disneyland

Universal Studios

Another place that is an attraction where you can spend the whole day and, like Disneyland, it is a place that makes you feel like you are in a movie. There are fewer facilities than Disneyland, but there are also all kinds of shows that we really, really liked. In addition, the setting is very impressive. My impression was that Universal Studios is more suitable for youths and adults and less for small children, if compared to Disneyland, where there are many facilities that are also suitable for babies and small children. At Universal Studios, most of the facilities are more challenging, involving lots of roller coasters.

Book tickets to Universal studios

A tour of the homes of the famous

This was one of the tours I was most excited about. There are tours from the Star of the Stars that depart every day several times a day, which are for 10 people, in a large, open vehicle. The driver is also the guide and with the help of headphones you can hear his explanations throughout the trip. Our driver/guide was super funny and told us lots of stories about the celebrities and their homes. You don’t see too much of the houses themselves, except for Leonardo DiCaprio’s Doge’s house, where we only saw a gate because there are guards who don’t allow you to go any further, but I really liked hearing the stories about them. In addition, the guide put on music according to the movies he was talking about, which created a fun and light atmosphere for the tour.

The tour was about two hours and we did it through the Starline company.

Buy Tickets to Hollywood Sightseeing and Celebrity Homes Tour by Open Bus tours

Farmers Market and Grove

This is a very nice area that has both a shopping complex and a market with many food stalls with cuisines from all around the world. The shopping complex itself is very beautiful and includes a movie theatre . This is an area that is not too busy and has a pleasant atmosphere, so you can also just walk around without even doing any shopping. Directions.

Beaches in Malibu

One day it was decided that we would go to El Matador beach in Malibu. The trip was about an hour long and was really fun because it is along the sea, so you see both that and vacation homes with interesting architectures all along the way. From the right side there were views of mountains and blossoms, so we also stopped on the way to enjoy the view.

There are several beaches in Malibu but our host, Christian, recommended El Matador, which is considered one of the most beautiful and special in the area. To get to the beach you have to park on the side of the road and walk a few minutes on a marked path, and from there you go down to the beach. The descent is not difficult, but it is not very recommended for people with disabilities.

The beach itself is full of rocks and cliffs and even small caves and it is undoubtedly a really beautiful beach that is worth going to if you are a beach lover.

Santa Monica Pier

The Santa Monica Pier is considered one of the most famous places in the city and has been a filming location for many scenes in movies and series. At the pier you will find street performances, several stalls, an amusement park with a giant wheel, an aquarium, and a video arcade. There is also a beach there and it is very nice to come and watch the sunset from there. Directions.

Griffith Park viewpoint

Griffith Park is one of the largest urban parks in North America. It has many hiking trails and you can go for a picnic, a walk or just to enjoy nature. Unfortunately we didn’t get to roam around in it since we had a lot of other activities, but we did get to watch the sunset from its observatory. This is a very popular place to come to watch the sunset and take photographs since it offers a view of the entire park and the city of Los Angeles. In addition, it is one of the best vantage points to view the Hollywood sign.

From the parking lot to the observatory there is an uphill walk of a few minutes but it is worth it. There are many lawns and you can come with a sheet or a mat and sit there for a nice picnic and watch the sunset and the beautiful view. Directions.

The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens

It is a collection-based educational and research institution founded by Henry A. Huntington (1850-1927). This is one of the most magical and relaxing places we got to visit during our stay in Los Angeles. It is a huge place! I recommend arriving at opening hours, at 10 in the morning because the place closes at 5 and even so, it is most likely that you won’t be able to see everything there, anyway. 

The thing I liked the most was the wide variety of botanical gardens: Japanese, Chinese, rose gardens and more. You can walk there for hours and just enjoy the special beauty of each and every garden. The place is very well thought out and clean, and it is not crowded with people, either. The museums were also particularly interesting. In the museum about the works in Europe, you also get audio and so you can learn about the different paintings displayed there. We were very surprised by the place and did not expect something so beautiful and special. I highly recommend it for garden and art lovers.

Tip: This is a very photogenic place for Instagram so it’s worth investing in nice clothes and accessories 🙂 But of course come with comfortable shoes since the place is very big and you’ll have a lot to walk there. In addition, there are various restaurants scattered among the gardens and at the entrance. The Japanese restaurant in the Japanese gardens is recommended as well as the main restaurant at the entrance, which has a delightful Mexican stand. official website.

Rodeo Drive

One of the most famous streets in the world and also one of the most expensive in the world, with more than 100 world-renowned shops and luxury hotels. Chances are you’ll get there and you won’t even be able to buy a pen, but still the street itself is beautiful and it’s easy to get lost in its charm and splendor. It is recommended to visit the Four Seasons Hotel there. This is a very famous hotel that has been home to many iconic personalities, including Warren Beatty, John Lennon and Elvis Presley. Today, it is affectionately known as the “Pretty Woman Hotel” because it provided the backdrop for some of the scenes from the classic film “Pretty Woman”. In addition, it is recommended to visit the shopping center located right in front of the hotel, where you will find luxury stores such as Versace, Jimmy Choo, Lanvin and Tiffany & Co. as well as the Urasawa sushi restaurant, which is considered one of the most expensive sushi restaurants in the United States.

Hollywood Star Walk

Apart from doing the tour of the houses of the celebrities in Hollywood, of course, before that, you have to go through the Hollywood Walk of Fame and see the stars of your favorite celebrities. You will also find all kinds of people dressed as movie characters who will offer you to take a picture with them in exchange for a tip. There is no doubt that this is a super touristic attraction and it is a must for anyone visiting Los Angeles for the first time.

Since we only had 6 days to be in the city and 2 of them were in Disneyland and Universal Studios, we only got to see a small part of the city, but for a first time there, I felt that we saw a lot of the famous places that are generally recommended for a first experience. Los Angeles is huge and you need much more than a few days to explore it, and it left us with a desire for more. The advantage of being with Christian, the host on the trip, was that he knew where to go, where to park and recommended the things we should see the most.

Recommendations for things worth doing in Los Angeles for those visiting there for the first time. We were in the city for 6 days as part of a private trip through an American company. Every day we did a different activity and we got to do familiar tourist attractions like Disneyland and Universal Studios and visit special places like El Matador Beach in Malibu and an observation point in the city of Los Angeles.

As part of our trip to California we spent some time in San Diego.

We were in the city for three days and the truth is that we needed more time for her. There are lots of cool things to do and see there. It is suitable for nature lovers as well as for those who are looking for a more relaxed city life.

How do you get to San Diego?

We arrived by car from Los Angeles. The trip includes a host who stays with you at home and drives you to attractions and from place to place. So our host, Christian, took us from Los Angeles to San Diego. About a three hour drive.

San Clemente

It’s a cute town on the way from Los Angeles to San Diego.

We stopped there for a delightful breakfast at the Pierside Bar-Cafe .Directions.

I ordered toast with avocado and an omelet with seasoned potatoes on the side and it was a great dish. Roman ordered a pear benedict with avocado and that too was really good. In short, if you are looking for a place to eat in San Clemente, I think this is a great option and if you sit outside there is a view of the sea.

After breakfast we went for a walk on the platform and in the town itself.

Coronado Island Peninsula

The trip to Coronado is an experience in itself because you cross a bridge from which you have an amazing, picturesque view of the harbor, sailboats, blue water and more. There are shops and cafes in the port area. I really liked the shops because they don’t just sell souvenirs; they also have cool clothes at good prices and accessories such as for the beach, bags and more.

From the port we took a ferry to the convention center which is an area that has one, but is also full of shops, restaurants and hotels. You can rent a bike there to get around or just walk and enjoy the view of the sea and the luxury yachts that are moored there.

The cost of the ferry is 5 dollars per person one way and 10 dollars both ways.

The ferry ride is short, about 10 minutes, but it’s a cute experience.

In addition, it is highly recommended to visit Hotel Del Coronado. (arrival map) This is a historic hotel that looks like a castle from the outside. It was considered the largest resort in the world when it opened in 1888 and hosted the biggest names there such as Marilyn Monroe and Prince Edward.

Cabrillo tide pools and lighthouse

This is a very popular and really magical area. I recommend coming with sandals that can get wet because if you want to look for cool things you will have to put in the effort in the search and get your feet a bit wet.

This is a place that is very suitable for children who can search for hours for different creatures among the rocks such as crabs, octopuses, lobsters, fish and more.

We got there in the afternoon in April and it wasn’t too busy but I have the understanding that it can get very busy. If you are a photographer, it is worth coming with macro lenses because you can take great pictures there.

Regardless of the search for surprises in the rocks and pools, this is also an area that is really nice to just sit in front of the sea or go visit the lighthouse that is up the hill.

In the lighthouse you can also see how they used to live there and there is also a small museum that shows how the lighthouse worked. There is also a small observation point up the lighthouse (on the third floor). When we were there, there were relatively many people and only three persons could go up per time because the stairs are very narrow.

In addition to the way to tidal pools, there are also hiking trails that can be done and there is also the Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery. This is a huge federal military cemetery that cannot be missed.

San Diego Zoo Safari Park

This is a place that is difficult to see everything it has to offer even dedicating a full day to tour it. San Diego zoo park is one of the biggest and most famous attractions in San Diego. The place was opened in 2010 and it covers 1,800 dunams!

It has a wide variety of endangered animals, including species from Africa, Asia, Europe, North and South America, and Australia.

It contains over 2,600 animals representing more than 300 species, as well as 3,500 plant species.

There are various shows there such as a bird show (we really enjoyed it) and there are also various attractions such as omegas (with a rather expensive additional charge).

I really liked the train ride in the area of Africa, where the guide tells a bit about the animals on the way.

Basically, getting around the park is on foot, so it is recommended to come with comfortable shoes and be prepared for a lot of walking, but in the African region there is the train ride (which you usually have to wait in line for about 40 minutes or reserve a place for a fee to get in without queuing).

There is also a short scene of a cheetah running after a doll. Why is the show short? Because the cheetah runs so fast, you only see it for about two seconds, but it’s very cool, nonetheless.

There are many restaurants in the park. We ate at The Watering Hole at Kijamii Overlook, which has an amazing view of the African region and while you eat you can see giraffes.

Book tickets to San Diego zoo safari park

In short, there are many things to do in San Diego, but due to only having a short time to do so, we only managed to do a small part of them. I am sure that in the future we will return to explore it more.

Cyprus is a perfect destination for a vacation with children. The most recommended months are May – September when it is already warm enough to go to the sea and the pool. But even those who decide to come to Cyprus with children in the fall and winter seasons will find enough things to do here. I wrote an extended post about what you can do in Cyprus in winter.

What is convenient in Cyprus with children is that there is a wide variety of all-inclusive hotels, water sports, various attractions such as sailing, jeeps and rope parks. There are attractions suitable for babies, toddlers and older children.

Tips before flying to Cyprus

SIM abroad

I personally recommend using an ESIM, which is an electronic SIM, and recommend Airalo. I was very satisfied with their user experience (simple tutorial videos for operating the SIM card) and everything worked without any special problems. I wrote more about them in an extended post on the subject of taking a SIM card abroad and also about other options such as buying a local SIM card.

Blog followers have a 15% discount code for the Airalo company to purchase an ESIM – to redeem the discount, click on this link. The discount code is already included in the link. See it at checkout.

The biggest drawback at the moment is that some devices do not support an electronic SIM. How can you know if your device supports the electronic card? Very simple: go to this link and you can see. Link to which devices support ESIM.

Car rental in Cyprus

There is no convenient public transport in Cyprus. For those who only come for a backpacking vacation, buses and taxis will provide a good enough answer, but if you also want to travel, I personally recommend renting a car. It is true that lanes go in the opposite direction, but as someone who lives here, I can say that you get used to it quickly. Car rental prices in Cyprus are quite cheap compared to other places in Europe, especially if you come in winter. You can search for a car in the Israeli search engine Papam Papam. Personally, I really like to search through them because they save me time (instead of going to several websites) and they also have the option of filtering out non-recommended rental companies.

Attractions in Cyprus

There are two websites through which you can find various attractions in Cyprus such as wine tours, jeep tours and more. I recommend searching on the following sites: Get your guide and Viator.

Outdoor activities for children in Cyprus

Larnaca

Paphos

  Limassol

Golf in Paphos

At the Minthis resort you will find golf courses and you can rent equipment and take lessons with the children.

Water parks in Cyprus

There are three water parks in Cyprus, in Limassol, Paphos and Ayia Napa. The parks are quite similar so there is no need to travel specifically to one park if you are already in a destination that has one. 

Water parks have lockers, a tubing track, a wave pool, an area for babies and toddlers, slides for adults, a fast food restaurant, a coffee and ice cream stand, and lots of sunbeds. Most of the water parks are not crowded, but in July and August they may be busier, especially on weekends. So my recommendation is to visit in the middle of the week if possible.

Apparently food and drinks are not allowed but when we brought water and snacks for the girls they didn’t say anything to us, however, I heard from those who checked their bags who were asked not to bring that kind of stuff.

We are subscribed to a water park in Limassol because we live here and the subscription price is much more affordable for those who plan to come more than two or three times. You can subscribe for its whole season (usually May to October) or for three months.

Buying tickets to the water park in Limassol

Buying tickets for the water park in Ayia Napa

Buying tickets to the water park in Paphos

Huge children’s park with inflatables and glamping

A huge inflatable park that opened in 2023, called Greenland. Beyond the park there is also a glamping complex, a restaurant that serves Russian cuisine, a small cafe, a fishing pond, an outdoor swimming pool (for those who stay in the complex) and a spa complex.

The park is is about half an hour’s drive from the center of Limassol towards the mountains. It can only be reached by car or taxi (there are no buses there). It is open from Wednesday to Sunday, but it is recommended to call before and make sure it is indeed open.

Perfect place for children and adults in Limassol - Traveling outside the box

Activities with animals in Cyprus

Zoo in Paphos

Paphos has a relatively large zoo. I don’t like zoos much, but this one offers some nice things like feeding the teachers (an additional fee of 5 euros per person), feeding a fillet (which was rescued from Bangladesh and rehabilitated in a zoo) costs 50 euros for a group of up to 5 people, feeding fish (you can buy food for them there) and a free 15-minute parrot and owl show (need to check show times).

Buying zoo tickets

Animal protection organization

An organization called Animal Rescue Cyprus that rescues abandoned animals and takes care of them. The children can pet donkeys, dogs and cats there. Entry is of course free. It is recommended to call before and find out if they are indeed open. And of course you can also donate any amount of money to help.

Directions to Animal Rescue Cyprus

Camel Park

The Camel Park is between Larnaca and Limassol. In the park you will find camels 🙂 and you can ride them. The complex also has an outdoor pool that you can use, there are several other animals that you can feed and there are computer games. There is also a restaurant in the complex.

Donkey Park

The Golden Donkeys Park is also between Larnaca and Limassol and is entirely dedicated to donkeys (there may also be a few goats around). There is a restaurant and a bar and a playground. You can feed the donkeys with carobs that you buy at the entrance and there is also a whole store of products made from donkey milk. It is recommended to come on days that aren’t too hot because there is no shade.

Zoo in Limassol

The zoo is small, but you can spend an hour there with the children. It also has a small playground and cafeteria and is near the municipal garden and the beach. Arrival instructions.

Recommended hotels to go with children in Cyprus

Hotels in Limassol

The Parklane Hotel has the most expensive kids’ club we have come across. With a huge and fenced area just for children as well as an indoor area for children’s creations, games and movies. Parents can stay with the children in the open area or leave children over 3 years old with supervision.

St Rapahel Resort – convenient because it is possible to stay on an all-inclusive basis, there are large lawns, it is near the beach and there is also a children’s club.

Extended post on recommended hotels and resorts in Limassol

Hotels in Paphos

Olympic Lagoon – a 5-star all-inclusive hotel that we really like, located by the sea and with a small slide for children. There is a children’s club where children and babies can be left under supervision and there is also a youth club. Every evening there is a mini disco.

Sofiana Hotel – an all-inclusive hotel near the port with a pool facility with a slide, a kids’ club with parents and evening shows.

Extended post on recommended hotels and resorts in Paphos

Hotels in Ayia Napa

Olympic Lagoon – like the hotel in Paphos with the difference that there is also a fun tube course.

Hotel Nissiblu – a hotel that opened two months ago near the famous Nissi beach. It has a kids club and is by the sea.

Hotels in Protaras

St Elias Hotel – 4-star all-inclusive hotel with an excellent entertainment team for children all day and in the evening there are activities for children. There is a children’s club where you can leave children under supervision or stay with them and there is a water park in the pool with several slides. Please note that the entrance to the slides is only from the age of 6+ and they are attentive to this. There is also the advantage of being able to have rooms with one or two bedrooms (very good for families).

Althea Hotel – a 4-star all-inclusive beach hotel with an excellent entertainment team for children all day and in the evening there are activities for children. There is a children’s club where you can leave children under supervision or stay with them. There is also the advantage of being able to have rooms with one or two bedrooms (very good for families).

Luna Park

A large Luna Park in Ayia Napa

In Ayia Napa there is the amusement park, Parko Paliatso, which is open most of the year (you have to make sure before you come because it is usually open from March to November but it changes). We absolutely love this amusement park and every time we are in Ayia Napa we go there with the girls. There are facilities suitable for both toddlers and older children. You can pay for each facility separately or buy a ticket for all. We pay by facility because there are only a few that are suitable for small children, about 5-6 of them, but that is completely enough.

The price per facility ranges from 1-3 euros and the parent accompanying the child does not pay for it.

Arrival instructions

A small Luna Park in Protaras

The resort town of Protaras has a small amusement park with some facilities for the little ones and some for the bigger ones. The payment is according to the specific facility. Arrival instructions.

Recommended beaches to go with children

Recommended beaches in Limassol

Recommended beaches with children: Desudi Beach (directions) a beach with a playground and restaurants, Vouppa Beach (directions) a beach that also has sand games for children, Panagies Beach (directions) a beach with sand and no stones.

A recommended beach in Protaras

A beach that is considered one of the most beautiful on this island Fig tree (directions)

A recommended beach in Larnaca

Finikoudes Beach (directions)

A recommended beach in Paphos

Coral Bay Beach (directions)

Extreme experiences with children

Jeep trips

We haven’t had the opportunity to do Jeep tours yet, but there are some available in both Ayia Napa and Paphos. But here is a nice option I found: Jeep trip to the Blue Lagoon in Paphos

Rope parks

There is a ropes park in the Troodos Mountains called Sparti, as well as a ropes park at the City of Dreams hotel in Limassol that you can enter for a fee even if you are not a hotel guest.

Water sports

In Ayia Napa, Limassol, Paphos and Larnaca you can find water sports to play along the beaches. The water sports include: paragliding, banana, lying down tube, pedal boat with slide, Jet Ski and SUP.

Cruising with children

Special cruise with mermaids in Protaras

A cruise that starts in June and leaves every Saturday from the port of Protaras. A two-and–a-half-hour cruise that includes an interactive story time, a meeting with mermaids in the water and a mini disco. Link to an extended post about the cruise I did with Maya.

Cruise with mermaids in Protaras, Cyprus - Traveling outside the box

Cruise in the Yellow Submarine

Yellow Submarine Cruise in Ayia Napa. A well-organized family business. There is a stop on the cruise in the caves and you can swim inside them. There is a diver that goes down and feeds the fish and you can see it from the windows of the submarine. There is also a water slide which is fun. Refreshments are available and the staff is friendly. Open from March to November and works on a daily basis with three sailing dates. Link to the Facebook page of the Yellow Submarine.

Yachting

It is possible to go on yacht trips from Paphos and Ayia Napa. The yachts go to the Blue Lagoon and there is of course the possibility to enter the water and to snorkel. Some yachts also serve refreshments.

You can find yachting in both Paphos and Ayia Napa

Buying tickets for a cruise to the Blue Lagoon from Paphos

Buying tickets for a cruise in Protaras in a transparent boat

Purchase of tickets for a Ayia Napa yacht cruise

Pirate ship cruise

Cruise in Paphos on a pirate ship – including refreshments, a stop to swim and snorkel. The length of the cruise is about 4 hours.

Buying cruise tickets

Dancing fountains in Protaras

Fountain show with lights and music at 21:00 in Protaras

You should arrive about half an hour before the start of the show.

Book tickets to the Dancing fountains

Castles in Cyprus

In Larnaca, Limassol and Paphos you can find medieval castles that have been turned into museums. Maya really likes to run around in caves and look for hidden places there. I think this is a great activity for about half an hour to an hour. The entrance price is symbolic, so if you’re in the area, I think it’s worth a visit. All the castles are located in central places near the promenade.

In addition, in Limassol there is a castle called Kolossi Castle which is bigger than the others (directions).

Directions to the castle in Limassol

Directions to the castle in Larnaca

Directions to the castle in Paphos

Skiing and sledding in winter

Usually in February though sometimes also in March it snows in the mountains of Cyprus. If you happen to go on a winter trip when it’s snowing then it’s definitely worth the trip (about an hour’s drive from Limassol). You can rent ski equipment or just sleds and enjoy the snow for a few hours. I wrote about our personal experience and more information in the post about Cyprus in winter.

Recommended villages with children

Kakopetria is in the Troodos Mountains and has a small waterfall, computer games for children and it’s just a really nice village to walk around.

Lefkara village – a touristic village that specializes in lace and silver and gold products. It is a beautiful village that is just fun to wander around. There is also a magical olive farm nearby and a dam. You will find an extended post about a vacation in the village of Lefkara.

Zigi – a fishing village between Limassol and Larnaca that is also close to the camel and donkey parks I mentioned above. It has fish taverns, a beach and a nursery that is like a maze with a small playground. You can read about this village and several other ones in the area in the post about trips and villages in Limassol.

Nature reserves to visit with the children

Cape Greco Nature Reserve

A lovely reserve located in Ayia Napa (about half an hour’s drive from Larnaca). There are hiking trails of varying degrees of difficulty, there is a beautiful natural bridge and there are places to have a picnic. Definitely worth spending a day or half a day there. You can also do jeep tours there. And there is also the Blue Lagoon, which can be reached by boat.

Book a guided tour in Cape Greco from Larnaca

Akamas Nature Reserve (Akamas Peninsula)

About an hour’s drive from Paphos. In the western part of Greek Cyprus, one of the most spectacular sites on the island, it is a highly recommended destination for travelers looking for a trip to Cyprus in nature. The reserve is stunning and has many hiking trails and a Blue Lagoon with the clearest water there is. The Blue Lagoon can be reached by Jeep trip or by boat.

Summary of Cyprus with children

In conclusion, in Cyprus there are many activities related to water: beaches, water sports, sailing with snorkels, water parks, hotels with pools. In addition, there are playgrounds, jeep tours, rope parks, amusement parks, magical villages, nature reserves and more. I decided to write briefly what you can do in the entire city so that everything is in one place for you.

Limassol with children

A castle on the boardwalk, a Colossi castle, Paradox – a museum of illusions, a car museum, a water park, water sports along the beaches, beaches, a shopping mall, indoor and outdoor playgrounds, a camel park and a donkey park. Extended post about things to do in Limassol with children.

Paphos with children

Cruise to the Blue Lagoon, water sports, cruise on a pirate ship, castle on the boardwalk, indoor playground, shopping mall, tombs of the kings, Jeep tours, beaches and water park. An extended post about things to do in Paphos with children.

Ayia Napa with children

Cruise to the Blue Lagoon, water sports, water park, amusement park, Cape Greko nature reserve and beaches.

Protaras with the kids

Beaches, a small amusement park, sailing, a promenade and a fountain show.

Larnaca with children

Beaches, water sports, playground, salt lake and a castle on the promenade.

Bonus for blog followers

If you are planning to come to Cyprus and are looking for someone to plan trips for you that you can do independently with a car (minimum for 3 days) or you want to do a private trip with a driver (also suitable for large groups) then I strongly recommend contacting Roni Schwartz. We met not too long ago and I was very impressed by his knowledge of Cyprus (he has lived here for 5 years in Paphos) and beyond that he is really charming and has been planning trips for many years.

Link to Roni’s WhatsApp for contact

If you order one of Roni’s services and say you came through me, you will get a discount.

If you book a “private trip” for a family, or a small group, Roni will make for you a “detailed plan for a sightseeing day, with a culinary emphasis”, in Paphos, Larnaca, or Limassol, including warm recommendations! A program like this normally costs 50-40 euros, but you will get it for free.

If you order a trip planning you will get one day at my expense, pay for three days planning and you will get four.

If you book a trip for a group of over 7 participants, you will receive a shuttle to the airport and back at an attractive price or a detailed culinary trip planning for an independent trip for free.

Hope my post helped you. If so, I would very much like you to respond here in the comments, and if you have any more questions, you are also welcome to ask them in the comments or write to me on the blog’s social networks: Facebook and Instagram.

Looking for more information about Cyprus? I have more posts about Cyprus on my blog.

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We moved to Cyprus in May 2021. We decided on the move a few months before that because we wanted to have a new family experience, because of financial issues, and because we had a desire to slow down in life. Roman and I work remotely and I have a Portuguese passport (I picked it up from Portugal in April 2021), so we could move to any country in Europe and we chose Cyprus.

The truth is that many years ago, Roman proposed the idea of moving to Cyprus and I rejected him outright!

For me there were much more fun countries in Europe such as Spain and Portugal, and Cyprus was of less interest to me. I felt it was a nice vacation destination and that’s it. But then Mayush was born in 2019 and our priorities changed. With Maya, I realized that I needed a place that was as calm and simple as possible for raising children and I was less interested in the destination being full of life, with multiple travel options.

If we didn’t have children or if our children were older, we might not have chosen Cyprus, because in the end Cyprus is a small island (about half the size of Israel) and there isn’t much to do here. It is still not advanced enough compared to other European countries in terms of culture, culinary, tourism, and more… But, with a baby girl and thinking of another child in the future, we decided that relocation to Cyprus was the best decision (by the way, I gave birth here in October 2022 and had an amazing experience).

It is also important to note that Cyprus has developed a lot in recent years and is constantly changing. New places are opening and you can see a big change throughout. Now I think that Cyprus is more attractive destination for relocation than when we came. It is important to note that because Cyprus has gained momentum in recent years due to the low taxation and the war between Russia and Ukraine (many Russians and Ukrainians came here), the prices have increased significantly and there are also large waiting lists for schools and kindergartens. But, on the other hand, it brought opportunities for very good real estate investments and for greater growth in restaurants, hotels, and new attractions.

So, is it worth living in Cyprus? 

My answer would be yes, but it depends. It depends on if you have children and what their ages are, because you will have to find a suitable setting for them and now with the waiting lists it is not easy. It depends on if you are looking for a lot of attractions or something more relaxed. It depends on whether you are ready to move to another country at all or if the distance from your family will be too difficult for you.

If you are interested in real estate investments in Cyprus or are thinking about relocating to Cyprus and want professionals to help you in the process, send email to contact [@] trvbox [.] com and they will get back to you from Winest Group.

In any case, I decided to provide you a detailed post with the reasons I think it is worth relocating to Cyprus.

A destination with comfortable and warm weather

I hate the winter and for me one of the advantages of Israel is its weather, so if there is a destination with a similar climate, that is excellent for me; certainly when there are small children, it is a nightmare to be stuck at home with them due to very cold weathers.

Easy to navigate in terms of language

Since there are many foreigners in Cyprus, the signage here is in English and most Cypriots know English. Compared to other countries where the signage and the language can make it difficult and make you feel very alienated, in Cyprus it is very convenient to use public transport, go to the doctors, and overall find your way around here.

Higher quality of life

Living in Cyprus can be thirty percent cheaper than in Israel, and even more than that, depending on where you live on the island and how much you try to save. For example, in cities like Paphos and Larnaca, living is much cheaper than Limassol and Nicosia, and those who live in villages generally have lower costs. Since there are almost no traffic jams here, you can also live about 30 km from the city and still easily get to work and kindergartens and schools. You can live here in a furnished apartment close to the sea or in a private house with a pool, eat in restaurants with high frequency, relax in hotels or B&Bs at attractive prices (especially when it’s not the season), and hire a maid on a daily basis at prices that are not possible in Israel.

A few traffic jams

When there’s a baby in the car, the last thing you want is to be stuck in traffic haha, and in general I’m not capable of standing being in traffic, it feels like a terrible waste of time to me. We happened to be in Cyprus on vacation before the coronavirus at the height of the season and we didn’t get stuck in a single traffic jam. The island is small and the distances here are not great from city to city, without traffic jams, this makes the ability to travel on the island really comfortable and easy.

Calm and suitable for raising children

The atmosphere in Cyprus is very calm, the locals are very kind and nice and the feeling here is always like a vacation. No shouting, no loads, and no pressure. There are about a million inhabitants in Cyprus and its size is half that of Israel, this means that there is no congestion here and if you want to get away from the city, you can reach a calm local village or nature without people in ten minutes.

A good and accessible medical system

I inquired with Israelis who live here before moving and got good opinions about giving birth in Cyprus as well as about the doctors. The doctors here are available at any moment and give their personal WhatsApp for every contact and request, and as parents of a baby girl, this is something that was very important to us. In addition, as soon as residency in Cyprus is settled, you are entitled to government health insurance that covers almost all treatments and visits to doctors. The high availability of the doctors makes it possible to make an appointment for the same day both for specialist doctors and for treatments such as physiotherapy.

In addition, the attitude here is very personal and if you are thinking about getting pregnant and giving birth in Cyprus, in my opinion, this is one of the best places to do so. The gynecologist is also the obstetrician at birth, which is a significant difference, in addition, you can choose who will be the pediatrician who will examine the baby afterwards. The place of birth is determined by the hospital where the gynecologist works. For example, I gave birth in an excellent and intimate clinic. I had two nurses doing exercises with the physio ball and I asked for a private room with two beds. I gave birth naturally and Roman slept with me that night in his own bed.

Cyprus is a safe destination

Cyprus is considered one of the safest destinations in the world in terms of crime rates. In the 2020 report prepared by the travel insurance company Insurly, factors such as crime rates, road safety, violence, terrorism, natural disasters, and general health quality were taken into account, alongside air quality, sanitation, and risks of exposure to epidemics, Cyprus came in at 5th best place in the world.

British private schools and kindergartens

When we thought about moving to Cyprus, one of the things we thought could have a really good effect on our children’s future was the possibility of studying in English settings and actually having English as their mother tongue. We moved to Cyprus in 2021 and now Maya speaks English fluently and baby Sophie is in an English kindergarten and understands both Hebrew and English.

Private schools in Limassol: Foleys, Heritage, Silverline, Pascal, Golden Oak, American Academy, Grammer School, Island Island.

Private schools in Larnaca: Pascal, Med High, American

Private schools in Paphos: ISOP, NOVA, TLC, Aspire, a new school – Lumio

Possibility of living close to the sea and with a pool

I’ve always loved living by the sea, but with children, it’s a huge advantage. You can rent an apartment in a complex with a pool (which is what we do) or rent a private house with a pool. In addition, there are many hotels here and you can come to them and use the facilities such as the pools for a one-time daily price or make a yearly or seasonal subscription (for example, we have a yearly subscription at a four-star hotel close to home and we use the pools, the gym, and the indoor pool and sauna there in the winter).

Attractive taxation in relocation to Cyprus

In addition to all the advantages of living in Cyprus, if you live here for a few years, you can disconnect your residency, which means that you pay tax only in Cyprus and not in Israel, which is a significant economic difference! Taxation in Cyprus is significantly lower than most countries, especially for the self-employed.

It is important to note that the residency process as well as the issue of disconnection of residency should be done under the guidance of a company that specializes in this to avoid problems with residency or with income tax (double payment both to Cyprus and to the country you came from). In addition, because Roman and I are self-employed, the transition is a bit more complicated and requires the accompaniment of a Cypriot accountant, a residency separation lawyer, and an immigration lawyer in Cyprus.

Real estate investment opportunities

Cyprus has developed a lot in recent years, especially the city of Limassol, which has become a destination for many companies due to the low taxation, as well as a casino resort that will open soon and a new cruise port. Despite the rapid development of the city, the prices here still make it possible to purchase apartments at relatively low prices (you can find properties for 200-300 thousand euros) and get a high yield for the price (around 5.5-8 percent). You can make real estate investments even without living here, but it is much easier to make the investment and find a bargain if you live close by 🙂

We purchased two apartments here at low market prices in the center of Limassol and did a complete renovation for both of them with local architects and contractors. One apartment was for investment (rented from the first day we finished the renovation) and we have been living in the second apartment since the end of 2023. Now we started a new real estate project of building a building.

For several months Roman searched for a suitable area (in a central area and at a low cost for the market). When he found something he liked, he sent me materials to create a presentation with which we approached the investor.

The investor liked the idea and for several months we worked on closing the deal and at the same time we started working with architects on the design of the building. And yesterday the area finally passed the taboo and the project is being implemented 🙂

The plan is to build a small boutique building of three floors with six apartments in total.

So now the architects are in the final stages of creating the drawing of the building. With these plans we will go to get building permits, a process that, if all goes well, will take about a year. This is a big difference in this respect from Israel, where it takes five to seven years to get construction permits (from bitter experience), making Cyprus a more attractive investment for investors.

Real estate in Cyprus gained momentum during the Corona period, when the world realized that it was possible to work remotely and entire families felt that they needed to change their lifestyle. Cyprus, which is in a strategic location between three continents with similar weather to Israel, provides the answer to that need, for many reasons.

Real estate prices in Cyprus have jumped in recent years by tens of percent and in my view there is still room for improvement because the demand continues to rise every year and not only from Israel, but also from European countries such as Poland, Germany, and France. As you have probably already heard, there is a very large population of Russians and Ukrainians in Cyprus following the war between the countries. The country’s solid economy, high-tech companies that move to Cyprus because of the low taxation, tourism companies like Royal Caribbean that come on a weekly basis in the summer, self-employed people who are tired of paying high taxes and finance companies make Cyprus an attractive destination for foreign investments.

Property prices in Cyprus are significantly cheaper; you can still find an apartment for under NIS 1 million and a house within walking distance of the sea for NIS 2 million. Bottom line, you should come to Cyprus and check if it is suitable for you, too.

I recently got to meet Itai Erez, owner of Winest Group, a company specializing in real estate investments in Cyprus and personal support for investment and/or purchasing a property for private use. I was really impressed with Itai, because he is both very professional in the field, while also very genuine and honest.

He assists in relocations to Cyprus in collaboration with a team of local people in the major cities (Limassol, Larnaca, and Paphos), to find the best investment for the clients.

The escorting process is carried out in full transparency with all services under one roof. Starting with a face-to-face meeting for personal introductions (free of charge), then locating the properties, a personal tour of Cyprus, alongside help with the legal aspects of the purchase process, renovations, and even finding a tenant if necessary.

If you are interested in real estate investments in Cyprus or are thinking about relocating to Cyprus and want professionals to help you in the process, send email to contact [@] trvbox [.] com and they will get back to you from Winest Group.

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We moved to the city of Limassol in May 2021. It is the second largest city in Cyprus, as well as the most modern, and most expensive one. Since we moved here, many new restaurants, cafes, and shops have opened, and luxury towers have been built and boutique hotels have opened. In addition, a deep-water port was established here, one that allows the docking of cruise ships, and last year the resort with the largest casino in Europe was opened. The city is constantly developing and has become a perfect vacation destination. If you are coming to Limassol with children, I wrote a detailed guide with recommendations on Limassol with children.

Tips before flying to Limassol

SIM abroad

I personally recommend using an eSIM, which is an electronic SIM, and highly recommend Airalo. I was very satisfied with their user experience (simple tutorial videos for operating the SIM card) and everything worked without any special problems. I wrote more about them in an extended post on the subject of a SIM card abroad as well as about other options such as buying a local SIM card.

Blog followers have a 15% discount code for Airalo to purchase an eSIM – to redeem the discount, click on this link. The discount code is already included in the link. You’ll see it at

How do you get to Limassol?

There is no airport in Limassol. It is located between Paphos and Larnaca (a 50-minute drive from each), so you can land in either one of those cities and take a taxi, bus or rent a car and get to Limassol. 

Where to stay in Limassol? Recommended hotels in Limassol

I wrote a detailed post with all my recommendations for hotels and resorts in Limassol.

Car rental in Limassol

There is no convenient public transportation in Limassol and in Cyprus in general. For those who only come for a backpacking vacation, the buses and taxis will provide a good enough solution, but if you also want to travel, I personally recommend renting a car. It is true that you drive on the opposite side here, but as someone who lives here, I can say that you get used to it quickly. You can search for a car in the Israeli search engine Papam Papam. Personally, I really like to search through them because they save me time (instead of going to several websites) and they also have the option of filtering out non-recommended rental companies. I wrote an extended post on the whole subject of car rentals abroad and I recommend reading it especially if this is your first car rental.

Combined shopping and cafes

The easiest way is to put the NYX hotel in Google Maps.

And already there to start with a coffee and from there go out the side door straight to the shopping street Anexartisias Street, where you will find shops of local and international brands such as H&M, Zara, Mango and more…

And if you feel like buying cute things, you will also find the Flying Tiger store there.
I personally also like the Greek clothing brand BSB, especially their summer collection.

Additional and recommended coffee stops on Anexartisias Street are:

  1. Stories Cafe, that specializes in coffee and fresh croissants as well as in surprising flavors such as mango and berries.
  2. Astry Cafe, that specializes in coffee, bread, pastries and delicious desserts.

In addition, it is recommended to turn in the alleys so you can reach boutique fashion and jewelry stores (put Agiou Andreou Street in Google Maps).

If you are looking for more brand fashion stores, you can go to the MyMall mall, which I will detail later.
You can get there by taxi or bus line 30 (in front of the NYX hotel there is a bus stop).
And if you are looking for toys, gifts, household items and more, there are two branches of the Jumbo chain in Limassol.

Lady’s Mile

If you want to really feel like you’re on vacation in Limassol, then you have to go to the Lady’s Mile area (relatively close to the mall and the COD resort), it’s an area of a stunning beach and all along it there are different restaurants with sunbeds, food, and an amazing atmosphere. We personally really like Columbia Sun, which is relatively new and has pampering sunbeds and a luxurious atmosphere (and so are the prices :))

Casino

A year ago, a resort with the largest casino in Europe was opened in Limassol – the City of Dreams resort. I haven’t had the chance to go to the casino yet, but the novel has. This is a really big and well-invested casino. You get free drinks (no food). The entrance is open to everyone, even those who are not guests of the hotel.

Taverns with live music

I haven’t had the chance to be in a tavern with live music yet, but when my mother was here with friends, they went to the Nefeli Tavern and had a great time. They said that the food wasn’t very successful but there was a really good and happy atmosphere. In addition, there is also the Mageirio Tavern, which also has good recommendations.

Please note: the taverns are only open on Friday and Saturday evenings and reservations must be made in advance (it is advisable to reserve a place at least a week in advance). Both taverns are located in the old town.

Promenade and marina

The promenade of Limassol is 15 km long. At one end you will find the luxury hotels like Parkalne and Amara and at the other end the marina. Almost the entire length of the boardwalk has bike and walking tracks as well as bike rental stations along the way. In addition, there is the line 30 bus that starts from the Parklane Hotel and continues to the port, the marina, and then to the mall. Along the boardwalk you will find various stands of coffee or natural juices and in the marina area there are many restaurants and bars. In the area close to the marina called Molos you will also find several large playgrounds and a wide area of the boardwalk where the children can ride scooters.

The old City

From the marina area you can also go to the old city, which is charming in my eyes and especially worth visiting in the evening. It has stunning alleys and lots of bars and restaurants. Our favorite bar there is Da Vinci, but if you just want a coffee or something to drink then the Novak Bar Cafe (new place) is a great option, or if you are looking for a special restaurant you have the TIO restaurant, and a modern and new Mexican restaurant is also recommended.

Mymall mall

I don’t like shopping malls but I know many others do 🙂 It is important to know that in Limassol there is only one shopping mall called Mymall. It is relatively large and has many fashion brands, sports stores, and more. Downstairs there is also an ice skating rink and a children’s playground and game machines. On the top floor you will find several restaurants including TGI, McDonald’s and Ocean Basket (a local seafood chain). You can get to the mall on line 30 by bus, taxi or car (there is a huge free parking lot there).

Coffee shops

There are a lot of cafes in Limassol, but it is hard to say that they are all good. So I will give you a list of the cafes that I like the most and that have the best coffee in Limassol.

Our regular café, La Barista – excellent coffee, some desserts and pastries baked on the premises and the owner of the café, Tony, is really charming.

Inex Cafe – cafe and bike shop with good coffee, some desserts and sandwiches and has a breakfast and lunch menu.

The Cookhouse Cafe – excellent coffee and really delicious breakfasts, also suitable for lunch and dinner (I love their quinoa salad).

Stories Cafe – great coffee and fresh croissants

Espresso Drops Cafe – outdoor cafe with good coffee, really tasty sandwiches and burgers

The Shopkeeper Cafe – great coffee and a menu with light food.

Nomad Bread Cafe – they have several branches – good coffee, great desserts (also for those looking for healthy options), delicious breads and good sandwiches.

Cafe Toucan – great coffee and a menu for breakfast and lunch – I love their Sirenki (Russian cheese pancake) and their sausage sandwich.

Uluwatu Specialty Coffee – excellent coffee for takeaway and some options for healthy desserts and sandwiches.

Bike & Bean Coffee Station – great coffee and some healthy desserts and sandwiches as well as a bowl of muesli or acai. There are a few individual places to sit outside.

Picture above : La Barista Cafe

Recommended breakfasts and brunches

We have found several places with breakfast that we really liked, some in cafes, some in restaurants, and some in hotels. I wrote a detailed post about all the recommendations for breakfasts and brunches in Limassol.

If you are in the old city area, I recommend the breakfast at Jam Limassol.
If you are in the city center, then Cookhouse.
If you are on the boardwalk in the resort area, then Malindi.

You are also welcome to take a look at my Instagram because I share quite a lot about restaurants and cafes in Cyprus and maybe there will be something that will catch your eye there, but which I haven’t had time to update in the blog yet.

Recommended restaurants

Limassol and Cyprus in general are a bit stuck in the ‘80s but the whole culinary world is improving day by day on the island and new restaurants of a higher standard are opening all the time. There are some excellent Asian restaurants, Israeli restaurants, local Greek restaurants, Mediterranean restaurants, gourmet restaurants, and more… I wrote a detailed post with the recommended restaurants in Limassol. If I have to choose one worthwhile meal, it would be at the Dionysus Mansion restaurant, a Greek restaurant in the old city that never disappoints (I really like its dishes).

If you are looking for a Meze meal (a Cypriot meal in which first courses and many meat or fish dishes are served) then the most recommended restaurant for this is called Meze tavern. We tried the fish market there and really liked it. It is important to reserve a place in advance because there are not many places there.

Places to see in Limassol

Prastio Waterfall

The Prastio Waterfall is recommended mainly in the rainy season, but even when there is no water in the waterfall, it is nice to walk there. You can only get there by car or taxi and it’s about a 20 minute drive from the city center. It is a beautiful area for nature for those who want to do a hiking trail. Just note that there are areas with spikes, so it’s worth coming with comfortable shoes and no socks. You cannot travel there with a stroller, so if you come with a baby, bring a carrier. During the rainy season there is a sandwich truck and an ice cream truck, but when there is no water in the waterfall, there isn’t much to eat in this area.

Yaramsoya Dam

The Yaramsoya Dam area is one of our favorite areas in Limassol. A beautiful and calm place. In principle, you are allowed to enter the water, but the locals warn of eddies. If you want to take a little walk here – put this location or if you want to have a picnic, put this location .

The White Stones

The White Cliffs – we came to this place by chance and were really fascinated by it. This is an area of ​​natural white cliffs with small bays from which you can enter the water and in addition there is a huge tavern nearby, Agios Georgios Alamanou Fish Tavern is very suitable for families and groups, because there are large plates of meat and fish and a large variety of foods. The tavern is really suitable for those who come with children, because there is an area with trampolines and some games for children.

Villages in the district of Limassol and the surrounding area

Our favorite villages in my area of Limassol: a distance of between 10-20-minutes-drive are

Kalavasos – a magical village with three taverns and a boutique hotel.

Trocni – a medieval-looking village with two excellent restaurants.

Fasoula – a village with a beautiful monastery and a really good tavern.

Zigi – a fishing village with many fish taverns and a special nursery.

You can find all the details in the post about the villages and trips in Limassol.

Castles

In the old city area you will find a medieval castle which is now used as a medieval museum. If you are already in the area of the old city, I recommend going into the castle for a visit of about an hour. This is a nice activity for children, too. Arrival instructions.

Kolossi Castle was originally built in the 13th century, and rebuilt in its current form in the 15th century.
Near the castle are the ruins of a sugar mill from the 14th century. Arrival instructions.

Museums

The Museum of Illusions in the marina area. A great activity with children that lasts around an hour – an hour and a half. A relatively small museum but there are all kinds of interactive illusions for children. You can also ask the employees there for help to understand how to see the illusion properly. It’s also nice because you get great photos for the children’s souvenirs.

Link to purchase tickets

Car Museum – a museum dedicated to collector cars and classic cars, including a Ford Model T from the beginning of the 20th century. Arrival instructions. If you are a car lover then you will be happy to come to the Historical and Classic Museum of Cyprus, a place where you can admire the most magnificent classic vehicles of all ages. Since its opening in February 2014, the Cyprus Historic and Classic Car Museum remains the only automotive museum in Cyprus.

Water park in Limassol

One of the most fun attractions in Limassol for both children and adults. I have both gone there alone with Roman and of course with the children as well. The park is large, with many slides, and facilities for both children and adults. There is a wave pool and a slow tube course that is perfect even with babies (note that in the middle there is a small waterfall in a cave and there are children who might be frightened by it). There is a fast food restaurant and an Italian restaurant with pasta and pizza, there is a cafe, a Cinnabon stand, an ice cream and coffee stand, and lockers. Most of the time the water park is not busy and if you come in the middle of the week, there are no queues at all.

There are slides with tubes and slides with a mattress.

To purchase water park tickets

Free stuff to do in Limassol

Beaches – if you don’t sit on sunbeds that are paid for, you can be on the beaches for free.

Walk around the old city, the marina and the promenade.

Playgrounds: the recommended ones are: Desudi Beach (directions), Petite Plage (directions), Molos (directions), the Municipal Garden (directions).

Take a walk in the villages and in the area of the dam.

Castles and the archaeological site of Amethos – these are not free but the entrance costs only a few euros so I put them on the list as well.

Amethos archaeological site

Archaeological site of one of the oldest royal cities of Cyprus. The city was destroyed by an earthquake and now there are only remains discovered in archaeological excavations. According to mythology, the site was founded by King Kiniras. Entrance Entrance costs 2.5 euros

In winter the opening hours are from 08:00-17:00 and in summer 08:00-19:30.

You can get there by bike, bus, taxi or on foot. It is 2 km from the hotel I recommended or 11 km from the center (the old city).
Arrival instructions.

Zoo and municipal garden

In the center of Limassol you can find a small zoo with a cafe in the middle of it and next to it there is a city park with a large playground. There is also a grocery store there. We like to buy pigeon food at the grocery store and then feed them in the square. In addition, the municipal garden has many events such as a wine festival, events in honor of Christmas, activities during the carnival, and more… Directions.

Before you come to visit Limassol, I think it’s worth looking for special events in the city, I recommend going to this website to see what events there are.

Nightlife in Limassol

I’ll already mention that I’m not really familiar with the nightlife here in Limassol since we have two little girls and hardly go out in the evenings haha, but I’ll list the entertainment places that exist in Limassol, some of which I’ve been to and some of which I haven’t.

  1. Columbia Beach – a beach restaurant that can be reached from morning until night. On weekends it has a DJ from the afternoon on, and has a party atmosphere.
  2. Du Soleil Marina Bar – an excellent bar in the marina area. One of the most famous and full bars here in Limassol.
  3. Breeze Club
  4. Rumors Bar – a recently renovated bar in the Yaramsoya area.
  5. Guaba Beach Bar Club
  6. Nammos restaurant – similar style to Columbia Beach.
  7. Bar Da Vinci – a bar in the old city.

In general, in the area of the old city and the marina there are many bars and there is a really fun atmosphere in the evening and at night.

I think it would be most convenient for you to go to Bar Da Vinci and then from there explore the old city area to see what bars and restaurants you find.

If you arrive by car, there are small parking lots on the road that cost 3 euros and there are also parking lots in the Molos area.

Beaches in Limassol

As I mentioned above, the area of Lady’s Mile beaches is the most special in Limassol and is great for both adults and children.

Other beaches that are recommended if you want to go with children are:

Dasoudi Beach – an organized beach with two restaurants, a playground, video games and a bar.

A beach in the area of the Four Seasons Hotel that has sand games for children is Vouppa Beach.

Panagies Beach – a beach in the area of luxury hotels at the other end of the city.

For those who want to go a little further out, there is Governor’s Beach, which is close to the villages I mentioned above. There is also a restaurant there.

On most beaches you can also find water sports that include SUP, tubes, pedal boats, jet skis, paragliding, and more.

Tours and activities in Limassol

I haven’t had the opportunity to do the following activities yet, but I saw that there were good reviews for them and they seemed like great things to do for those who come here on vacation:

A jeep trip that leaves from Limassol to the Akames Reserve in Paphos

Land cruise from the marina in Limassol

Full-day jeep and boat combination tour from Limassol

Diving in Limassol reefs

A private tour of the old city of Limassol

Bonus for blog followers

If you are planning to come to Cyprus and are looking for someone to plan an itinerary for you that you can do independently with a car (minimum for 3 days) or if you want to do a private trip with a driver (also suitable for large groups) then I recommend contacting Rony Schwartz. We met not long ago and I was very impressed by his knowledge of Cyprus (he has been living here for 5 years in Paphos) and beyond that he is really charming and has been planning trips for many years.

Link to Roni’s WhatsApp for contact

If you book a “private trip” for a family, or a small group, Roni will make for you a “detailed plan for a sightseeing day, with a culinary emphasis”, in Paphos, or Larnaca, or Limassol, including warm recommendations! Such a program costs 50 – 40 euros normally, but you will get it for free.
If you order a trip planning you will get one day at my expense, pay for three days planning and you will get four.
If you book a trip for a group of over 7 participants, you will receive a shuttle to the airport and back at an attractive price or a detailed culinary trip planning for an independent trip for free.

In conclusion, Limassol is a great city for a vacation and it is also conveniently located between Larnaca and Paphos, so you can combine it with other destinations, especially if you rent a car. It has many restaurants, cafes and bars, fair beaches, and excellent hotels.

Hope my post helped you. If so, I would very much like you to respond here in the comments, and if you have any more questions, you are also welcome to ask them in the comments or write to me on the blog’s social networks: Facebook and Instagram.

Looking for more information about Limassol? I have more posts about Limassol and posts about Cyprus on my blog.

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One of the things we love most about Cyprus is the ability to visit magical villages within a short driving distance. Since we moved to Cyprus (in May 2021) we have stayed in three different villages – the picturesque village of Calabasos, a village in the Troodos Mountains, and now in the village of Pano Lefkara.

Every time we visit, we discover how humble and charming the people in these villages are and how special and colorful the architecture is. The village of Pano Lefkara is one of the most touristic villages in Cyprus, but still retains its charm (especially during off-season) and we really enjoyed our vacation there

Details about the village of Pano Lefkara

It is one of the most famous and most visited villages in Cyprus and it is located in the province of Larnaca. It was known for its stunning architecture and for the tradition of producing lace and silver products, all handmade. Lefkara is the name of an area in Cyprus and it has three villages all next to each other. The largest village among them is Pano Lefkara, which is where we stayed. Pano means above because it is the upper village and there is Kato (below) to Pakra, which is the lower village. You can reach Kato by foot. The village has many cafes, restaurants and shops with local produce.

Where to sleep in the village of Lefkara 

A charming boutique hotel with a perfect view

In April 2022, we stayed at the Archontiko Kiverniti hotel for two nights with Maya, who was three-and-a-half years old and Sophie who was six months old. The location of the hotel is pastoral with a magical view of the mountains. It is a family boutique hotel with a homely and pleasant atmosphere. There is a restaurant that serves food all day (the accommodation was based on breakfast, which was good). The hotel has a pool (we didn’t get to try it because it was too cold in April). The distance to the center of the village is a 10-minute walk (maybe even less) and it is a path in nature that is really fun to walk with children.

To book the hotel Archontiko Kiverniti and other opinions

 B&B in the heart of Lefkara village 

We booked an apartment, or in Israel’s terms, a Zimmer 🙂 in a charming apartment complex in the center of the village of Iosiphis Stonebuilt House. The complex has apartments with one or two bedrooms. We booked a two bedroom apartment because it is convenient for us and Maya to each have our own room. The price was cheap, 68 euros. And when we arrived it turned out that the whole complex was full for that weekend and it wasn’t even the peak of the season yet (so I recommend booking places in advance as early as possible). The apartment had a fully equipped kitchen (with a coffee machine and capsules and a pop-up toaster).

The apartment had an air conditioner in every room and in the living room as well as a new heating system (which unfortunately did not work when we arrived because it was new and they had not had time to install it yet). I recommend in the winter to find out in advance if the heating is working because the air conditioner on heat is very drying.

Beyond the apartment itself, the complex has a private parking lot and its highlight is the stunning yard. We sat there drinking coffee and in the morning we preferred to prepare breakfast in the apartment and sit in the yard than go to a cafe.

To book the B&B and other opinions

Where to eat in the village: recommended restaurants and cafes in Pano Lefkara

Lefkara Biscuit Cafe

We were really excited about this place because it has desserts that are baked on the premises and are really delicious. We tried the apple pie that had just been pulled out of the oven (there was also a chocolate pie) and we had rice pudding that Mayush flew over, as well as coffee.

The seating is outside on the sidewalk and the atmosphere is really nice. I highly recommend trying their cakes. Arrival instructions

Cafe House 1923

House 1923, a very cute cafe with outdoor and indoor seating. I went there with Mayush on a date and we really enjoyed ourselves. I ordered a cappuccino and Maya a hot chocolate (I made sure it was lukewarm and not too hot for her) and we ordered an apple pie, which was very good. The employees were really nice and, in short, it was a great place to sit for coffee.

Pavilion Restaurant

I think this is a good restaurant for those who come with children because the service is fast and the prices are good. Basically we wanted to go to another tavern we were in a few years ago which was really good, but it was closed so we went to Pavilion. We ordered a Greek salad, chicken breast and beef meatballs there. The dishes were good, just nothing special. Arrival instructions.

There are a lot of cafes in the village that looked really good and we didn’t get to try them, so my recommendation is to walk around the and just try the places you see because most of them get great reviews.

What to do in the village of Pano Lefkara and the surrounding area

Wander in the village

Well, you obviously have to wander around the village, and if you like photography, be prepared to take a lot of pictures because it’s really beautiful there. The village is not big but the architecture in it is so lovely and it has many shops and cute corners as well as many cafes with local produce. In short, you can walk around there for hours because every time you sit down for a coffee or go into a store or take pictures. In one of the alleys in front of the Adamos restaurant we also found a stand that offered fresh pomegranate juice which was really successful, so if you see the stand is open, it is worth trying this juice.

Lefkara dam

The dam is a 15-minute drive from the village and is really beautiful. There are places where you can stop with your car and even go down by foot. Entry into the water is prohibited and fishing is only permitted to those who have a fishing license. It’s really nice to drive around and stop at different viewpoints. Arrival instructions.

 Terra Oliva Organic Olive Farm

We came to this farm by chance just thanks to a sign we saw on the road and the truth is that it was one of the highlights of the vacation. We were so enthusiastic about the place that we will surely return to it again. A combination of a crazy landscape, local produce on the purity of the olives that was delicious and lovely people.

When we got there Mayush fell asleep in the car so Roman and I could sit quietly outside and enjoy the view and try the products they sell at the farm. The owner brought us different olives to taste, three types of olive oil, olive tapenades and bread. Of course also coffee.

When Mayush woke up we went into the store and tasted many types of jams, spreads (both sweet and salty) and even alcohol and everything from the olive tree. Everything was so delicious that we found ourselves buying half the store. lol Not really because they offer a lot of products, but we bought 112 euros worth of things (2 types of olive oil, 2 olive tapenades, 2 jams, 2 spreads, whole olives, cut olives, and more). Of course, Mayush also enjoyed walking around the farm area and seeing an 800-year-old olive tree.

In conclusion, the vacation in Lefkara was even more successful than expected. We were in this village 4 years ago and had forgotten how beautiful it is. The dam and the olive farms were an excellent addition to the vacation. We found out that there is a village nearby with a recommended breakfast (but you have to book a few days in advance) and a special monastery.

Bonus for blog followers

If you are planning to come to Cyprus and are looking for someone to plan an itinerary for you that you can do independently with a car (minimum for 3 days) or if you want to do a private trip with a driver (also suitable for large groups) then I recommend contacting Rony Schwartz. We met not long ago and I was very impressed by his knowledge of Cyprus (he has been living here for 5 years in Paphos) and beyond that he is really charming and has been planning trips for many years.

Link to Roni’s WhatsApp for contact

If you book a “private trip” for a family, or a small group, Roni will make for you a “detailed plan for a sightseeing day, with a culinary emphasis”, in Paphos, or Larnaca, or Limassol, including warm recommendations! Such a program costs 50 – 40 euros normally, but you will get it for free.
If you order a trip planning you will get one day at my expense, pay for three days planning and you will get four.
If you book a trip for a group of over 7 participants, you will receive a shuttle to the airport and back at an attractive price or a detailed culinary trip planning for an independent trip for free.

Hope my post helped you. If so, I would very much like you to respond here in the comments, and if you have any more questions, then you are also welcome to ask them in the comments or write to me on the blog’s social networks: Facebook and Instagram. Looking for more information about Cyprus? I have more posts about Cyprus on my blog.

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We have been living in Limassol , Cyprus since May 2021 and have therefore gotten to try a lot of restaurants from different cuisines. In this list you can find recommendations for local, Asian, or Israeli restaurants, as well as budget-friendly restaurants for every pocket and those that are a little more expensive.

I’ve been planning to write this post for a long while and in the meantime more restaurants have been added to me every week. In short, now I have a long list of recommended restaurants in Limassol and I am sure that if you go to any one of them you will agree with me. So let’s start…

Local restaurants

Kissos Tavern

We discovered the Kissos Tavern by chance not long ago and have already been there three times. I’ll start with the fact that it has the most fun decor ever. A colorful Greek design with special flooring and a really pleasant atmosphere that makes you feel like you are in a small Greek village and not next to a main road in a touristy area. In addition to the stunning design, the service is really good and so is the food. We ordered a fish platter, which was excellent. Lots of dishes of seafood of all kinds and tapenades and salads. We also ordered white wine and a chocolate soufflé that was decadent and delicious. This place, in my opinion, is a must when visiting Limassol.

Kapilio Tavern

A homey local taverna that we recently discovered and really liked. This is a small restaurant located in the suburbs of Agios Tychon. The restaurant is open every day but it is recommended that you call before arriving.

We ordered a grilled fish dish that was one of the tastiest I’ve ever eaten and for a really low price of 14 euros including a starter of Greek salad, hummus spread, tahini, tzatziki and olives.

Roman also ordered lamb chops and liked them very much. For those looking for very tasty food, simply made from fresh ingredients, this is the restaurant to go. Arrival instructions.

Thymari Restaurant

A chain of Greek restaurants with grilled skewers, special pita skewers, salads and more. A great option for someone who wants delicious and fast food, and you can find many of their branches in Limassol. Directions to the branch where we eat.

Home Cypriot restaurant Η Φωλιά του Κούκου

A restaurant in the old city area that has only three homemade Cypriot dishes every day: two vegetarian ones and one meat option. Simple, homemade and authentic food. The workers there are lovely and the food is delicious and healthy. You can also order a Greek salad and drinks. And they also have a good semolina cake dessert. Directions.

High-end Greek restaurant Dionysus Mansion

We have been to the Dionysus restaurant several times and every time I am excited about their courtyard, the food and the service. The restaurant is in a commercial area, but as soon as you enter the courtyard you feel peace and quiet. We ate an excellent fish dish and a dish of ravioli with truffles (served as a starter, but you can ask that they increase its size to a main dish, at an additional cost of course). Roman also ordered bone marrow and he really liked the dish (I’m less of a fan), and the lamb chops he ordered were also excellent. In short, a Greek restaurant that is worth a visit.

Israeli restaurants

It is true that you already have Israeli meals all the time (for those who live in Israel), but these restaurants serve excellent food and there is a great atmosphere, which is why I put them on the list.

Karmela Restaurant

Karmela restaurant belongs to the charming Moran, who is a well-known figure in the world of restaurants here in Limassol. She has lived on the island for twelve years and opened the Carmela restaurant a year ago, in 2023. Only recently did I have the opportunity to go there with Roman and the truth is that we really enjoyed ourselves and raved about the food. We chose to taste the broccoli salad (it became one of my favorite salads), spicy shakshuka (it was so tasty and the truth is that I really missed real shakshuka), Jerusalem mix on a bed of hummus (they are delicious) and lamb arais (I don’t like arais but Roman really liked it). And the knapa dessert was extremely successful. The location of the restaurant is excellent, in the center of the old city. In short, a highly-recommended restaurant. Link to the restaurant website.

Pitot restaurant

Pitot is a restaurant with a fun and light Israeli atmosphere. Really tasty and satisfying dishes and what I really liked about was the sitting outside with Israeli music and the fact that there are self-serve dips and pickles. We ate a cauliflower and lentil salad that could satisfy two people, a Jerusalem mixed dish on hummus and the special of the day, Schnitzel in challah with Matbouha and salad. All the dishes were really tasty and satisfying. I felt like we ate a lot and still didn’t even finish half of the dishes. For dessert we ate amazing knapa and malabi. I was upset that I was already full from the food because they were so delicious that I wanted to eat more of them.

Kosher meat throughout Cyprus

If you keep kosher and want to order meat to the apartment you are staying in or an apartment hotel to cook yourself, then I would like to recommend Simply Kosher. They provide kosher meat with free delivery throughout Cyprus + a gift with every purchase + a special benefit for blog followers of 5% with coupon code TRVBOX. The kashrut is part of Beit Yosef slaughtering Chabad (the strictest kashrut). The delivery is the same day or max the next day.

Asian restaurants

We really love Asian food and have found some great authentic restaurants here.

Hanoi Vietnamese restaurant

The Hanoi restaurant is one of the best and most authentic Vietnamese restaurants I’ve tried. The flavors are exactly the same as the ones we had in Vietnam and they are constantly adding great new dishes. In my opinion, the most recommended ones are: the bun cha dish, composed of pork, rice noodles, green leaves and a perfect sauce with meatballs. Pho soup pho ba, the flag dish soup of Vietnam, with chunks of meat and strong flavors of the local spices. Steamed dumplings with shrimp and steamed spring rolls with shrimp. And there are many more excellent dishes like the noodles with the meat and the Tom Yum soup. In short, go there and I’m sure you’ll be delighted. Arrival instructions.

Golden Monkey Restaurant

The Golden Monkey is a Thai restaurant located in the St. Raphael Resort. This is a restaurant that we received many recommendations for and we only got to go there recently. A combination of luxurious design, excellent service and excellent food. Those who love Thai food will love this restaurant.

We ordered two starters, a soup and two mains and it was too much but everything was really tasty, so not bad :). I recommend trying their green curry with the beef – this is the dish I liked the most and also the appetizer of the steamed dumplings.

Gurkha’s Kitchen Indian and Nepalese cuisine

The truth is that I haven’t had the chance to go to Nepal, only India, but there is such a delicious Nepalese momo soup that I just got addicted to it. The noodle, paneer and curry dishes are also good, but the momo soup wins in my opinion. Arrival instructions.

Raj Tandoori Indian restaurant

Excellent restaurant for Indian food at great prices. We often order takeaway because there is a 20% discount and we order a quantity for the whole weekend. Yes, we are also addicted to Indian food. The dishes we like to order there the most are: palak paneer, a spinach stew with Indian cheese, malai kofta, balls of Indian cheese in a thick sauce, butter paneer, a stew with creamy tomato sauce and Indian cheese, dal daal, a lentil stew. We always order the dishes with jeera rice (rice with cumin seeds) and Indian garlic pita naan with garlic. Arrival instructions.

Kalimera Indian restaurant

In this Indian restaurant you will find dishes from South India ,and my favorite dish there is the masala dosa Indian crepe filled with potato and with coconut chutney sauce. Yum yum. Arrival instructions.

Mediterranean restaurants

Sands Beach Club-Resto

The Sands Beach restaurant is the place for food and drinks with a stunning view of the beach and the sea. A vacation-type atmosphere and really good food. Sometimes we go there just for wine and sometimes for food, too. The shrimp dish is amazing as well as the bass. If you are looking for a restaurant that will give you the feeling of a summer vacation, this is definitely the place.

Columbia Beach restaurant

The Columbia Beach restaurant is one of the most famous restaurants in Limassol. A restaurant that is excellent thanks to its breakfast, lunch, dinner and entertainment. It has everything from everything. Seating on the grass near the beach, seating inside, fun atmosphere with a view of the sea and delicious food. There are also cocktails, soft drinks, hot drinks and on weekends there is also a DJ. For breakfast, I really like their tapioca dish, and the avocado and burrata cheese sandwich. At lunch or dinner their sushi and burger trio.

It is recommended to reserve seats in advance

Malindi bar restaurant

The Malindi restaurant is on the beach and has excellent food. The service is a bit lacking but beyond that the restaurant is excellent and we always enjoy the food. We generally have a perfect seafood pasta and also mussels in a winning sauce. There are also excellent brunches: we have had focaccia with poached eggs and avocado and sirniki (Russian cheese pancake) and we liked both dishes very much. They have a large selection of dishes for breakfast and lunch and dinner.

Bar restaurants

Restaurant Bar Da Vinci

The Da Vinci restaurant-bar is in the old city in a magical location. You will find seating outside, inside, and up on the balcony. In addition, there are karaoke rooms (which I didn’t get to try :)). There is also the option of ordering hookah for those who like it. The food is really delicious and the cocktails are great (I really liked the spicy Russian cocktail). For food, we ordered bao buns with pork, chicken skewers in espresso and mashed truffles. Everything was great.

Bar du Soleil

Bar du Soleil is a bar located in the marina area. It is one of the best bars in the city, with fun music and a good atmosphere right in the port. I included it in the post because it is also suitable as a place for a dinner with alcohol or just to spend the evening.

It is recommended to make a reservation because it is always full.

The spicy margarita is really good and so are the nachos.

Chesters Bar Restaurant

If you are looking for a meat restaurant with a fun atmosphere then Chesters Bar Restaurant will suit you perfectly. They have excellent steaks and really tasty lamb chops and the truth is that their dreamy avocado quinoa salad is also great. Maya really likes their spaghetti Bolognese. The restaurant is part of a complex of other restaurants, so if you want to sit there and order sushi, for example, then you can ask for the menu of the Zen restaurant (a highly recommended Japanese restaurant) and there is also an Indian restaurant in the complex. In short, this is a complex of restaurants where you can find food for the whole family and it is located in the area of the 5-star resorts in Limassol.

Draught Microbrewery Bar Restaurant

The Draught Microbrewery restaurant is located in the old city in a lively area. There are great burgers there! Great service and really tasty children’s dishes. Maya and Sophie flew over the spaghetti bolognese. The hamburger is served with potato wedges with a delicious seasoning. They also have delicious cocktails and a selection of beers.

Gourmet restaurants

TIO Restaurant

TIO Restaurant is a modern Mexican Mediterranean restaurant. A new chef restaurant that opened in November 2023 and is located in the old city.

We discovered the restaurant by chance while wandering around the old city and its straightforward design intrigued us. And it turned out that it was an excellent decision to enter the restaurant. This is a chef’s restaurant with a limited menu (I like this the most because this way you can order most of the dishes from the menu).

For starters we ordered a sea bass dish, an octopus dish with avocado, a shrimp salad with mango and quinoa, and smoked corn. All the starters were amazing and special. For the main dish we ordered spareribs. I don’t like fatty meat so the dish was more for Roman. But there were some parts without fat that were excellent. I personally liked the starters the most. In addition, the cocktails were really good and the service at a high level. In short, if you are looking for a restaurant for a fun date, this is the place for you.

The Garden restaurant

The Garden restaurant is very close to our house and we just fell in love with it. The decor is luxurious, with excellent service and of course the food goes accordingly. I really like the sushi and the tom yum gong soup is one of the best we’ve had. The risotto dish is excellent and so is the Carpaccio. The restaurant serves food from different cuisines, so you can find Russian food, Thai food, Japanese food, and Mediterranean food; in short, everyone can find an excellent dish there. In addition they have a very large menu of wines as well as tea and a wide variety of desserts. If you are looking for a gourmet restaurant with value for money, I think this one will suit you perfectly.

Portuguese coffee restaurant

Sunday in Lisboa is a concept store that opened at the end of December 2023 and inside there is a Portuguese coffee restaurant. We were really excited about the place because of the service, the design, the food and the wine. They have a varied menu of salads, sandwiches, pastas and cheese platters and sausages. We ordered the Lisboa sandwich there, which I thought was a bit greasy, but my friend liked it very much. Jamon sausage sandwich that Roman loved, goat cheese salad that we all loved and truffle ravioli pasta that was simply excellent. We ordered the first wine from the white wine list which is tart and light and we all raved about it. In addition, they serve there one of my favourite desserts, Pastel de Nata, a type of creme borla in a pastry. If you haven’t tried this dessert yet, you must. In short, we really liked the place.

Bonus for blog followers

If you are planning to come to Cyprus and are looking for someone to plan an itinerary for you that you can do independently with a car (minimum for 3 days) or if you want to do a private trip with a driver (also suitable for large groups) then I recommend contacting Rony Schwartz. We met not long ago and I was very impressed by his knowledge of Cyprus (he has been living here for 5 years in Paphos) and beyond that he is really charming and has been planning trips for many years.

Link to Roni’s WhatsApp for contact

If you book a “private trip” for a family, or a small group, Roni will make for you a “detailed plan for a sightseeing day, with a culinary emphasis”, in Paphos, or Larnaca, or Limassol, including warm recommendations! Such a program costs 50 – 40 euros normally, but you will get it for free.
If you order a trip planning you will get one day at my expense, pay for three days planning and you will get four.
If you book a trip for a group of over 7 participants, you will receive a shuttle to the airport and back at an attractive price or a detailed culinary trip planning for an independent trip for free.

In conclusion, you can find many good restaurants in Limassol, but it requires research beforehand. I hope my post can help you find delicious and special restaurants in Limassol. Of course, there are many more places that I haven’t tried yet, but don’t worry, I’ll update the post every time and add more recommended restaurants.

I hope my post helped you. If so, I would very much like you to respond here in the comments, and if you have any more questions, then you are also welcome to ask them in the comments or on the blog’s social networks: Facebook and Instagram. Looking for more information about Limassol ? I have in the blog more posts about Limassol and posts about Cyprus.

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Maya and I went to a cool attraction in Protaras on a cruise with mermaids. The cruise was almost 3-hours-long (it was written that it would be 2 hours but it was longer 🙂 ).

Cruise with mermaids in Protaras, Cyprus - Traveling outside the box

The start of the cruise

The cruise left the port in Protaras. The exact location was sent to us a few days before it.
We arrived a few minutes before the start of the cruise and were greeted by Tinkerbell.
Maya and I walked around the deck a bit and waited for the activity to start.
The activity started during story time, when we were told about the mermaids and the treasure.

The operators let the children look for clues and read them. The activity was about half an hour, until we arrived at the Blue Lagoon.

Meeting the mermaids in the Blue Lagoon of Ayia Napa

When we got to the Blue Lagoon we looked for the mermaids. In the end we saw them on the rocks and they swam towards us.

We went down and swam with them in the water (I brought buoys to Maya but they also brought them in the boat). The water was really clear and we got to talk to the mermaids.

When we got back up, it was possible to get a face-paint at a cost of 5 euros and we could also sit on the deck with the mermaids and talk to them. I recommend getting on the boat before everyone else does to get the face painting pretty quickly (afterwards there’s a pretty long line) and then there’s time to go talk and take pictures with the mermaids (Maya was alone with them for about ten minutes because everyone was waiting in line for the face painting).

The meeting with the mermaids was around 40 minutes.

Additional sailing activities

We said goodbye to the mermaids and then continued with a short tour of the lagoon, afterwards there was a mini disco. The mini disco was upstairs on the yacht and the truth was that it was really funny because some of the fathers also participated (after their children forced them).

Hope my post helped you. If so, I would very much like you to respond here in the
comments, and if you have any more questions, you are also welcome to ask them in the
comments or write to me on the blog’s social networks: Facebook and Instagram. Looking
for more information about Cyprus? I have more posts about Cyprus on my blog.

Pin below to save on Pinterest