All posts by 8509 Magazine

Cyprus’ love affair with wine is ages old, in fact archaeological excavations indicate that production of wine on the island dates back more than 5500 years, making it one of the very oldest wine industries in the world. This history continues to be written by today’s winemakers who use traditional indigenous grape varieties along with well known grape varieties to produce some wonderful wines which we highly recommend you try for yourself.

wine pic 1

Places of interest in the historic story of wine making include the picturesque villages of Omodos and Laneia, where you can view the most ancient of wine presses: Laneia’s dates back to 1844 which is the same year that the first contemporary winery ETKO Ltd opened.
Paphos Mosaics also beautifully depict wine making and consumption.

You simply cannot discuss wine making in Cyprus without mentioning Commandaria, an amber coloured desert wine which is the world’s oldest named wine still in production. Produced since around 700BC, it is known as the “wine of the kings and the king of the wines” because it was very famous amongst Royalty in the 12th century and was even heavily exported to many European Royal Courts. Legend has it that Commandaria was served at Richard Coeur de Lion’s wedding to Queen Berengaria in 1911.

wine pic

We urge you to take a day and experience Cyprus’ wine production for yourself – the history and the beautiful scenery that this journey will take you on will add to the magic of discovering the stunning tastes on offer. Originally pressed by foot before the days of electricity, wine production, although still traditional, is very sophisticated in comparison and wineries are aplenty throughout the island. The Cyprus Tourist Organisation have compiled a wine route programme, made up of 7 routes, which is a great reference and we will give a brief overview of each. Don’t forget to call ahead to arrange your appointment with the wineries though!

We recommend that you ask for wines produced by indigenous varieties by name, which are very rarely used in blends – these include:
WHITE: Xinistry, Spourtiko, Promara, Muscat of Alexandria*.
RED: Mavro, Maratheftiko, Giannoudi, Lefkada.
*Muscat of Alexandria is mainly a dessert wine. Top tip: try Muscat Ayia Mavri Winery in Kilani Village where an old charming couple have won multiple awards.

 

Wine Routes:

wine routes map

 

map 1

Wine Route 1: Laona – Akamas
Wineries: Fikardos Winery (Mesogi: 26 949 814), Kamaterena Sodap (Stroumpi: 26 633 000), Tsalapatis Wines co Ltd (Polemi: 99 624 929), K & K Vasilikon (Kathikas: 26 633 237) and Sterna Winery (Kathikas: 99 699 082).

map 2

Wine Route 2: Vouni Panagias – Ampelitis
Wineries: Ezousa Winery (Kannaviou: 99 415 909), Vouni Panayia Winery Ltd (Panagia: 26 722 770), Kolios Winery Ltd (Statos – Agios Fotios: 26 724 090), Makkas Winery (Statos – Agios Fotios: 7777 2221)Chrysorrogiatissa Winery (Panagia: 99 626 642), Tsangarides Winery (Lemona: 26 722 777), Shoufas Winery Ltd (Koilineia: 99 447 424), Kalamos Winery (Amargeti: 99 519 268)

map 3

Wine Route 3: Diarizos Valley
Wineries: Lagria Winery (Salamiou: 99 346 990), Nelion Winery Ltd (Praitori: 99 666 414)

map 4

Wine Route 4: Krasochoria Lemesou
Gaia Oinotechniki (Agios Amvrosios: 99 442 472), Agia Mavri Ltd (Koilani: 25 470 225), Vardalis Winery Ltd (Koilani: 99 642 255), Vlassides Wiinery (Koilani: 99 441 574), Lambouris Winery Ltd (Kato Platres: 7000 9463), Antoniades Winery (Mandria: 99 824 475), Zambartas Winery (Agios Amvrosios: 25 942 424), Ktima Gerolemo (99 696 031), Zenon Winery (Omodos: 99 492 979), Malia (Keo) Ltd (Malia: 99 692 295), Nikolaides Winery (Anogyra: 99 649 655), Linos Winery (Omodos: 25 422 700), Constantinou Winery (Pera Pedi: 25 470 370), Argyrides Vasa Winery (Vasa: 25 945 999).

map 5

Wine Route 5: Koumandaria
Wineries: Co-op Commandaria Winery (Kalo Chorio: 99 534 060), Karseras Winery (Doros: 99 413 238).

map 6

Wine Route 6: Pitsilia
Wineries: Kyperounta Winery (Kyperounta: 99 589 612), Tsiakkas Winery (Pelendri: 99 567 898), Vassiliades Expressions Winery (96 342 622).

map 7
Wine Route 7: Mountainous Larnaka-Lefkosia
Wineries: Ktima Dafermou (Lefkara: 7000 8373), Aes Ambelis Winery (Kalo Chorio Oreinis: 99 651 361), Ktima Christoudias (Kato Drys: 99 034 828)

Learn from a local:
Haris at O’Vrakas Taverna in Pissouri Village Square is one of the best known and most knowledgable sommeliers in Cyprus – he is very open to you picking his brain for information or asking for recommendations on Cypriot wines. His enthusiasm for the island’s rich wine making history is hard to beat!

Recommended references:
– Pick up a ‘Cyprus Wine Routes’ brochure from any CTO office, or download via their website: www.visitcyprus.com
– www.wineriescyprus.com has a full list and interactive map of all the wineries around the island.
– Look out for the ‘wine route’ road signs on the roads.

Why Play Tennis – by Scott Wakefield

Scott Wakefield

Why play tennis? What are the benefits for your lifestyle and fitness? Scott Wakefield, the fantastic Head Coach at Aphrodite Hills Tennis Academy reveals all:

 

It’s a great workout: A combination of fun, aerobic and anaerobic workout. Tennis players are nearly always moving, and the combination of short sharp sprints during rallies with constant changes in direction build muscle and stamina. Tennis promotes bone strength and density: it strengthens bones of young players and helps to prevent osteoporosis in older players. Tennis also improves your hand-eye coordination, constantly watching the ball and timing your contact points.

Tennis through the ages: Tennis is a fantastic life sport from 4 years old to, if you are lucky enough, 100 years plus! Tennis is truly the sport for a lifetime, it has been proven!
Tennis is social: Tennis is a great way to meet and make new friends. It opens up a whole new social group and organised social tennis sessions are a great way to keep playing in fun and friendly matches; you don’t even need a partner. We run social tennis at Aphrodite Hills every Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9am – 12pm, year round.

Mental Tennis: Tennis keeps you sharp and mentally focused. It is great for problem solving and is a game based on angle geometry and physics where strategies and tactics can win you matches. Being mentally strong fortifies your mind and helps out in all other aspects of your life.

All year round: Tennis can be played all year round, even in winter months. Cyprus receives some of the best weather in Europe so indoor courts are not necessary and there is even a shaded tennis court at the academy so that tennis can even be enjoyed during the midday sun.

Stress Buster: What better way to relieve stress than by hitting a ball as hard as you can? It feels great, and when you hit a winner it is even better!

Other benefits: Tennis helps develop a good work ethic: improvements through lessons and practice reinforces the value of hard work. Tennis helps you to learn to win graciously and lose with honour. Tennis helps you manage mistakes, learn to play within your abilities, manage and minimise your mistakes in your game and in turn, in life.

Call the Aphrodite Hills Tennis Academy to find out how you can get started!

Check the Tennis Academy Schedules and Rates here.

Golf – Why Choose Elea Estate?

The golf course at Elea has been created to challenge golfers of every level. The par 71, 18-hole course, designed by Sir Nick Faldo, incorporates natural features to evoke a truly Mediterranean feel. Elea Estate Golf Club with its beautiful greens, manicured fairways and strategic bunkers is set to be not only the best golf course in Cyprus, but is already winning accolades as one of the leading golf destinations in Europe and beyond.

Elea 1

Hole 9
The 9th hole at Elea provides the classic risk and reward hole! A good tee shot leaves you the option to play more aggressive with your second shot and have a chance for a birdie or par. A tee shot out of position however will require a testing lay up between a well placed bunker and the water hazard. Many cards have been broken on this inviting par 5.

Tranquility
The Elea clubhouse offers stunning views of the Mediterranean, a
welcoming atmosphere and fine dining food. It is the perfect way to relax and enjoy your day in Cyprus.

Elea 2

Elea Golf Club, 2010:
Sir Nick Faldo, the course designer, opened Elea Golf Club on 18th October 2010 – the course is known as his ‘Mediterranean Masterpiece’. The course was subsequently ranked as one of the ‘Top 10 New International Golf Courses of 2010’ by one of the world’s biggest selling golf journals Golf Magazine in the USA. Faldo commented on Elea Golf Club ‘When we designed the golf course we decided to put the emphasis on thoughtful, rather than big hitting, golf and there are plenty of strategic riddles for the golfer to explore and unravel over all 18 holes’.
Visit Elea Estate to see what the hype is about – whether you play the course, make use of the practice facilities or dine in the Clubhouse, we are sure it will be one of your holiday highlights.

8509 Discount: 10% off 18 hole green fee rate

Tel: 26 202 004 discount
Website

Diving in Cyprus – Facts at a Glance (Steve Ford)

Steve FaceSteve Ford, owner of Cyprus Diving Adventures, shares his favourite scuba diving facts about Cyprus for our 2017 edition of the 8509 magazine.  We bet some will be a real surprise!…

Relative links:  Interview with Steve 2015 / Diving in Cyprus 2016

 

The coastline of Cyprus has been awarded more blue flag awards for the cleanliness of its sea and beaches per capita and coastline than anywhere else in the world.

On average there are over 800 turtle nests on Cyprus beaches every year, with many more individual turtles visiting our waters every summer. Loggerhead turtles outnumber green turtles by four to one.

turtle diving 2

To date there are over 250 fish species in Cypriot waters, which is home to the greatest diversity of marine life in the Mediterranean.

mediterranean monk sealThe relative isolation of Cyprus in the Eastern Mediterranean has resulted in the evolution of several endemic species such as the rare Mediterranean Monk Seal.

The sea off Pissouri Bay is home to the largest reef in Cyprus, with the deepest known and largest cave for divers.

There are over 80 dive sites in Cyprus, from Paphos in the west to Cape Greko in the east.

Cyprus is home to the ‘Titanic of the Mediterranean’ – the Zenobia wreck.

Apart from the Zenobia there are a further 12 wrecks around Cyprus for divers to explore.

MS Zenobia

Marine reserves on dive sites include St George’s Island, the 2 Limassol wrecks area and the Zenobia wreck.

Underwater visibility is typically 20 to 40 metres and the sea never gets lower than 17degreesC in the winter. Summer water temperatures can reach 30 degreesC.

There are 5 protected marine areas in coastal waters and a further number of reef marine reserves. These are in open water, or supported by artificial reefs.

 

Experience the magic of scuba diving in Cyprus with Cyprus Diving Adventures and enjoy special 8509 discounted prices and free pick up & drop off.

Visit Steve’s Website                                                                                                         Call Steve Now: 97 661 046

Pafos2017 and Paphos Old Town

2017 is a very special year for our charming city of Paphos – it is the year that it boasts the title as one of the two cities in Europe selected as ‘European Capital of Culture’. What exactly does this mean? It means that for the period of one calendar year, the city organises a series of cultural events with a strong European dimension, to highlight diversity of culture and a sense of belonging within the European community. Pafos2017 successfully kicked off the year with a wonderful opening ceremony which took place in Kennedy square (just outside the town hall) on 28th January 2017.

dancers

“Chairman of the Organisation puts it perfectly: this title European Capital of Culture offers the city of Pafos a great opportunity to improve its economy through its publicity on an international level and its acknowledgment as a quality cultural and tourist destination, to attract new investments, create new positions of employment, develop an open dialogue with society, motivate its citizens, change its vibe and “freshen up” its ideas.”

The town itself has undergone a lot of improvements, as part of 10 major infrastructure and development projects, with a price tag of around €26.2 million. The roadworks that came in tow were begrudged by many, however they have been more than worthwhile and even the sceptics were surprised to see the completion deadlines met – and the aesthetic results are just fantastic!

pafos 2017 ped area image

The works focused on Kennedy Square and the town’s traditional retail centre in Paphos Old Town, which have been pedestrianised and completely overhauled. There is a new plaza in front of the old police station as well as a new bus station and municipal, 200-space car park, located behind the old police station. The transformation of the Town Hall Square, Kennedy Square and the surrounding area really bring out the beauty of the existing old government buildings that are dotted around.

Since winning the bid in 2013 the city has already hosted a wide variety of cultural events and throughout this year 152 projects and more than 350 activities have been planned, with the participation of more than 1,500 artists.

Pafos2017’s motto is “Linking Continents – Bridging Cultures” and all events fall under their three main themes: Myth & Religion, World Travellers, and Stages of the Future. Open Air Factory is the main concept for the Pafos 2017 organisation, which means utilising a network of sections, units and workshops throughout the district (such as streets, school yards, archaeological sites) where people from all walks of life are invited to ‘create’, celebrating the outdoor living culture here.

Events throughout the year will include theatrical performances, dance performances, creative & group art and more – keep an eye on the official website for programme information and go along to experience some of the events for yourself: www.pafos2017.eu. We will also keep you updated on our Blog.

Paphos Old Town was already brimming with lots of trendy, arty cafes, restaurants and bars and the new upgrade to the area will only encourage more, as well as adding to the charm that it already boasts. It’s now a lovely area to wander around, to soak up the culture, enjoy a coffee whilst people watching or to dine and spend an evening. Head down there and check it out for yourself!

Paphos night

Old Town Hot Spots: our pick of the best

Dining: Koutourou Ouzeri – for fresh, homemade goodness /
To Plato Sushi & More – for fantastic sushi platters / Fettas Tavern – for mezes and live Greek music / Palia Ilektriki – for cultural dining.

Coffee shop: Vintage Art House Espresso Bar– pure retro coolness / Ananas 8 bit coffee – jazzy, arty, friendly vibes / Let Them Eat Cake – homemade delights.

Drinks: Craft – laid back, arty & eclectic / Timothy’s – rough diamond / Boulevard – where the cool kids go / Muse – classy cocktails with a view.

Music/Art: Technopolis 20 – the epitome of Pafos2017; cultural, traditional, arty & charming.

Achilleas Jewellery

Tel: 97 718 013                                                                                                                       Websitediscount

Achilleas is a second generations jeweller, specialising in 3D jewellery design. They offer a large collection of gold and silver jewellery sets with precious stones, as well as bespoke pieces designed to your heart’s desire. Repair service also available. Situated in the heart of Kouklia village, opposite the car park.

8509 Discount: 10%

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Buying Property

Cyprus Economy & The Property Market

The Cypriot economy has experienced positive growth rates in 2016 and the expectations are that this trend will continue in 2017 which is excellent news for the property market here. Services including tourism, professional services, shipping and real estate, considered as the backbone of the Cypriot economy, are growing, all contributing significantly to the country’s GDP.

One of the Largest increases of the decade (43%) was noted in the total property sales contracts submitted at the Land Registry in 2016, with December 2016 exhibiting an increase of 121% compared to December 2015. This is an important indicator that confidence in the real estate market is improving.

TH02 buying property

The interest of foreign investors in Cyprus’ real estate market keeps growing, since over one quarter of the deeds of sale submitted in 2016 involve overseas buyers. This is primarily due to the Cypriot government’s initiative regarding the Cypriot Citizenship Program, the permanent residency program as well as the various tax incentives offered.

Government Incentives and Title Deeds

Government incentives means that there will be no transfer fees for property purchases subject to VAT, while for other purchases, transfer fees will be reduced to 50%, as estimated based on the provisions of the current legislation. Moreover, improvements in developers issuing title deeds in the name of purchasers who have paid the amount due in full to the land developer, has enhanced the credibility of the Cypriot real estate market. Title deeds are available for most properties for sale here on Aphrodite Hills.

Advice

Buying your dream property in Cyprus can be a simple process but it is important to work with a reputable, licensed property company that have good local knowledge. The Cyprus land registry system, which was set up by the British, includes safeguards to protect you and your purchase. The property contract will be in English and if you have any queries, ask your lawyer for clarification, lawyers tend not to work on an hourly rate here so feel free to ask questions if you need to!

Aphrodite Hills

When it comes to location, there is nowhere in Cyprus like Aphrodite Hills, which is attracting purchasers from countries as far afield as Russia, Australia, China, America, The Middle Ease and Scandinavia. The properties available range from cosy one bedroom apartments to grandiose six bedroom villas.

V16 buying property

Local Property Prices

The average house prices in Cyprus for the first three quarters in 2016 when compared with the 2015 yearly average, indicates a 2% increase, reaching a value of €332,155.

Resort Costs

All property owners on the Resort pay a small annual ‘resort charge’ which includes the security cover and maintenance of the sewerage system. The ‘village charge’ is only for properties set within the villages of the resort, and covers things like pool maintenance, external decoration and gardening of common areas etc. The ‘Kouklia council charge’ is for refuse collection, lighting, resort cleaning and other municipal costs. finally, there is an Immovable Property Tax which is paid annually to central government. All these charges are surprisingly inexpensive.

Mortgages

The Cyprus banking system has gone through a period of transformation and most high street banks are offering mortgages and loans once again. However, it is still difficult to achieve a Loan to Value of more than 70%. Your lawyer or agent may be able to advise.

aphroditerentals.com

Holiday rentals on the Resort depend on the size, location and specification of the property. Holiday rentals can be achieved throughout the year, with the busiest time being during European school holidays and peak from July – August in high summer. These are exciting times for the Cyprus property market, specifically on Aphrodite Hills with good investment opportunities coming up all of the time. If you enjoy the lifestyle here on the resort, why not invest in a property and become part of the adventure.

We recommend Fonterra Estates Ltd as they have their own, in house legal team, have excellent knowledge of the resort and have over 30 years’ experience in real estate.

Contact them or us if you wish to discuss any of your property needs. We can point you towards the best buys and give you the low down of the property market on the resort.

Fonterra JPEG

 

 

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Cyprus Land – Limassol

Tel: 25 310 629

Cyprus Land is situated in the heart of Limassol and is an area of 5,0000 square meters dedicated to Cyprus’ history, culture and traditions – going back to the Middle Ages. Within this fun exhibition park there is: a blacksmith’s shop and arms room, a pony stable, game yard in the form of a medieval fortress for kids, a craft village as well as folk dancing and shows of Knights clashing swords.

Lefkara Village

Lefkara is one of the island’s most popular villages for tourists, and for good reason. Perched on the mountains on Larnaca district, it is a picturesque village best known for its production of lace and silver, where you will see local craftswomen embroidering on the streets outside their shops. Take your time and wander through the cobbled backstreets, and make sure to visit the interesting museum.

Combine the trip to Lefkara with a stop off at the Golden Donkeys farm in Skarinou, a local sanctuary for the beloved donkey that also has a small cultural centre too. Also nearby is the breathtaking Stavrovouni Monastery – women are not permitted inside the monastery but it’s still worth the drive up the twisting hillside for the view at the top and the monastery is gorgeous too!

Latchi

A beautiful fishing village with a picturesque harbour, a lovely spot for lunch – particularly for seafood options. Visit one of the sandy beaches for a relaxing day of sunbathing and snorkelling. The ‘secret’ beach down the cliff edge of the Aphrodite Beach restaurant is great and is also really close to the entry of the ‘Baths of Aphrodite’ as well as the starting point of two wonderful walks. Latchi is around a 45 minute drive from Paphos town.

Kouklia

Unspoilt, small neighbouring village with a pretty village square, lovely for coffee/ lunch. A visit to Aphrodite’s Sanctuary is recommended and also the small Panagia Katholiki Church which is opposite. There is a small family run snake farm in the village showing local snakes of Cyprus – not for the faint hearted!

Paphos Harbour

The harbour is a popular spot for lunch, where you might even catch a glimpse of the local pelicans strolling along the pedestrian area. there are various options for boat trips and boat hire here. A visit to Paphos mosaics is between the harbour and parking area, allow one to two hours. Tomb of the Kings is also recommended. The Old Town has a charming indoor market, as well as the new pedestrianised area (town centre plaza and Makarios Avenue shopping street), which is about a 10 minute drive up the hill from the harbour.

Feature Walk: Aphrodite Nature Trail

Start Point: Just above the Baths of Aphrodite, Akamas Peninsula.
End Point: Circular route.
Time: 3 hours.
Note: Occasional scrambling on loose gravel.
Highest Point: Moutti tis Sotiris (370m)
Trip Length: 8 Kilometers.

The trail is classed as a high degree of difficulty, mainly due to the uphill and downhill gradients and the terrain (a mixture of loose gravel and some larger rocks which require occasional scrambling), however will be fine for adults with a good level o fitness. The views will not disappoint after the climb to the top!

Points of interest along the walk include the starting point, the Baths of Aphrodite (where legend has it, the goddess used to take her baths), the ruins of Pyrgos tis Rigainas (Queen’s castle) which are believed to be part of a medieval monastery complex, a huge 860-year-old oak tree near the ruins and, of course, the stunning view points towards Cape Arnaoutis on the Akamas, Polis and Pafos (Paphos) Forest.

There are two water fountains along the route you can keep an eye out for!

Gabriels

★★★★★ – €€
Tel: 26 432 527

Situated in the centre of Kouklia village on the left past the church. Gabriels offers a great range of tasty traditional Cypriot dishes, with regular specials. Great option for take aways!

Apokryfo

Lofou Village

★★★★★ – €€€
Tel: 25 421 828

Warm reception and utterly delicious traditional cuisine, in the beautiful setting of Lofou Village. The meze is highly recommended and will be tailored to your tastes. Makes for a great day trip – but do make sure you phone ahead to book.

Sophia’s Unwin(e)d

Kouklia Village

★★★ – €€€
Tel: 26 432 016

New Restaurant in Kouklia square. Different Mediterranean flavours are created using local herbs, fresh olive oil and skills of Nectarios, the Greek chef who creates some real unique and traditional dishes. Lovely, cozy welcoming atmosphere with a beautiful menu.

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Tony’s Kebabs & Crepes

Pissouri Square

★★★★★ – €€
No Thrills involved in this dining experience; Antonis serves delicious Cypriot kebabs which have been lovingly prepared by his and his family’s hands; children and the grandchildren help out in the summer months. His crepe stand on wheels offers a tasty desert option when you’re on foot. If you’re lucky you’ll catch Tony’s rare but seriously charming smile!

Troodos Mountains

Troodos mountains should not be overlooked – there are lots of lovely top offs to explore on the ascent, the highlights for us are:

Troodos Mountains

Troodos Mountains

Omodos is a beautiful village located in a valley just before Kato Platres.  It is rich in history, has beautiful back streets, craft shops, side alleys and stone-built monastery – one of our favourite villages which is well worth a visit.  Pop into the house of Socrates if you get the chance, he’s a real character!  Googlemap Link.

Mount Olympos is the highest point of the mountains – pop to the top for some beautiful views, walks and even skiing in the winter season!  Googlemap Link.

verrengariaFor something different, drive to Prodromos village (near Pano Platres) where you can explore the huge abandoned ”Vereggaria Hotel“. Googlemap Link.

Other villages worth a visit: Kakopetria, Kalopanagiotis, Lofou, Lefkara, Pano Platres.

Venetian Bridge Trails – Paphos Forest

There are many hidden Venetian bridges around Cyprus, but the 3 most famous of which (Kelephos, Roudias and Elias) run along a trail of around 11km in the Diarizos Valley in Paphos Forest.  A beautiful walk in the peaceful valley, or equally beautiful drive – see if you can spot all 3 bridges.

Click here to read more on our Blog post, including a link to a great map which outlines all the bridges.

venetian bridge

Limassol Marina

Limassol Marina was completed in 2014, and is one of the most impressive projects in Cyprus to date.  It is a lovely spot for an afternoon wander where you can fantasize about the yacht of your dreams.  Grab a coffee and watch the world go by, or get a bite to eat in one of the beautiful seafood restaurants.

limassol marina

Not far from the Marina is the old town of Limassol which hosts the old medieval castle, where Richard the Lionheart wed Berengaria of Navarre in the Middle ages, but nowadays houses the Cyprus Medieval Museum.  There are some beautiful eateries nearby (we would recommend any of the Carob Mill restaurants next to the castle), and we would definitely recommend a walk along the cobbled back streets where you are sure to find some souvenir and craft shops.

Googlemap Link to Limassol Marina / Googlemap Link to Limassol Medieval Castle.

Artemis Trail

artemis-trail

Start point: 300m from the junction between the road to Olympus mountain peak (Chionistra) and Troodos on the Prodromos main road.
End point: Olympus mountain peak (Chionistra)
Length: Approx 7km
Time: Approx 2 1/2 – 3 hours
Difficulty: Easy trail, with gentle gradient.  Suitable for all ages and fitness levels.
Solid footwear and sensible clothes are recommended and don’t forget to take plenty of drinking water with you.  This circular walk is self-explanatory and easy to follow once you locate the starting point: follow the road up to Mount Olympus, take the turn for Prodromos and you will come across a small car park with a large wooden sign entitled ‘Artemis Trail’.  Follow the dirt path to the right of the sign and there will be arrows to guide you along the way.  The route is at an altitude of around 1850m and offers spectacular views in all directions.

Points of interest: Black pine forest, rare endemic species of flora and interesting geological formations, two x 500 year old black pines and ‘walls of the old town’ – ruins of temporary fortifications built during the last year of Venetian rule (1571).

* Look out for the random art sign around half way into the walk: it changes regularly!

The Village Square

DSC_0679There are a multitude of facilities available at The Village Square which all enhance the holiday experience at Aphrodite Hills Resort.  Here is our low-down on these facilities:

Gallery Multi Shop                                                                                                               Tel: 26 956 156

Situated at the centre of the Village Square, the Gallery Multi Shop has a wide range of stock including souvenirs, sports gear, jewellery, cosmetics, toys & games.

Orchidea Jewellery Shop                                                                                                 Tel: 99 490 804

The biggest jewellery manufacturer and importer to Cyprus of exclusive custom made gold jewellery set with diamonds, precious and semi-precious stones.  Pandora charms are also for sale here.  Open 7 days a wee during peak season: 10am – 2pm and 5pm – 9pm.

 

JCC ATM Machine

JCCThere is a JCC cash point situated in the village square, next to the beer garden, which is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Segway Hire

Also available from Leos Rentals in the Village Square, for €50 per hour.

Next Bike

A Nextbike station is situated in the village square, in front of Costa Coffee.  You just need to get a code to unlock a bike, by calling (77 78 83 23), texting (99 408 094) or by registering on the Nextbike system online: www.nextbike.com.cy

Qautrifun (Surrey Bikes)                                                                                                  Tel: 99 631 491

A really fun and novel way of pedalling around the Resort as a family, couple or group of friends! Hire station is situated in the Village Square.

Inline Horses                                                                                                                         Tel: 95 545 352

inline horsesFantastic, fun way of entertaining (and exercising) the little ones – these fluffy horses (and zebras!) will charm the kiddies and provide an innovative and safe way of moving around.  Enjoy your Costa Coffee while the kiddies whiz around full of joy!

 

 

 

Pissouri Village

Pissouri village page 18

Have a coffee or a drink in O’Vrakas Tavern in the pretty village square and watch the world go by with the locals by day.  Take the time to wonder around this picturesque village where the backstreets and old buildings paint a lovely picture of village life in Cyprus.  Pissouri Bay is also a beautiful spot for a coffee, and the pebbled beach here is a great option for sunbathing or watersports for the more adventurous.

Village: Turn left out of Aphrodite Hills and follow the B6 passing APHRODITE’S ROCK until you reach the outskirts of Pissouri.  Take the right hand turning next to a small garden shop.  At the top of the hill take the first lane left for easy parking.  A few minutes walk brings you to the cobbled village square below the church. Googlemap image.

Bay: Turn left out of Aphrodite Hills and follow the B6 passing APHRODITE’S ROCK until you reach the outskirts of Pissouri.  Follow the road passed the Police Station (on your left) and follow the road for around 3km until you reach the turn off for the Bay (on your right).  Googlemap link. 

The Plaice Fish & Chips

★★★★ – €€
Tel: 25 222 239
Website

New in 2015: delicious fish & chip restaurant serving the freshest produce, traditional fish & chips (gluten free batter is available on request) as well as fresh fish dishes. A great breakfast menu is available, as well as light lunch options. Fantastic option for take aways. Stunning marine-boutique decor, cozy atmosphere and lovely bar. Open daily, check website for seasonal operating hours.

Googlemap Link

Read our full review of The Plaice here * 

8509 Discount: 10% sit-in meals

The Plaice 2017 with bleed 060317

La Bodega Cava

discount

Tel: 26 930 690
Website

The ‘Aladdin’s Cave’ of high quality wines, champagnes and spirits.  Extensive variety of alcohols, including specialist spirits which you will be hard pushed to find anywhere else!  Regular wine tasting events, knowledgable staff, gift hampers, accessories and lovely local delicacy foods.

* Delivery service for orders of €150.00 and more.                                         * Delivery FREE for orders over €300.00.

8509 Discount: 10% off spirits

La Bodega JPEG

Gateway Technologies

Tel: 99 400 908                                                                                                                     Website

Electronics company specialising in IPTV, Satellite TV installations and equipment, Audio Visual installations and internet services. Also retailer of Nespresso range of coffee machines, accessories and pods.

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Feature: Paphos Old Town 2016

rustic old townPaphos Old Town is fast becoming a cool place to hang out, where traditional old buildings in secluded back streets are proving popular with their contemporary twist on food and culture – breathing much needed life back into the tourist town. Here are our top spots and highlights:

Ananas8bit Coffee: 26 600 126
Pambos serves the best freshly roasted artisan coffee in Paphos. Quirky-arty interior/alternative background music (often blues and jazz)/go to read a book/ regular events including live music & art house movies.
Highlights: the coffee, homemade syrup, ambience, Pambos himself.           Googlemap Link

Ananas8bitcoffee

Ananas8bitcoffee

Timothy’s Art and Bar: 99 424 417
We almost didn’t publish this as it is the best kept secret in Paphos. Underground/unpretentious bar set in a crumbling old house down a back alley/regular alternative live music/ no airs and graces.                                                                                                                   Highlights: flaming tequilas, music, roof terrace, attitude.                               Googlemap Link

Temple Bar Café: 96 727 314
Bar and grill, but all about the bar for us. Think Indian man meets rock music. Old house split into various areas/music memorabilia on display/ live music every weekend/laid-back/ go late.                     Highlights: garden seating area, layout, floors, music, attitude.                   Googlemap Link

Muse Café Kitchen Bar: 26 941 951
Very well known in Paphos as one of the hottest spots for a cocktail – fab range of drinks and a tasty menu to boot. Modern layout/stunning views over Paphos town/chill out music/cool contemporary lighting.                                                     Highlights: chicken kebab, espresso martini & smooth waiters.                 Googlemap Link

Muse

Muse

Plato Sushi and more: 26 951 800
THE best sushi in town, and a really cool wine bar at the same time. Brilliant sushi menu, and great lunch and dinner menu. Fantastic atmosphere, bustling location, town- feel, warm lighting, great seating.                                                                                                                  Highlights: tempura tiger prawn sushi, wine platters & atmosphere.       Googlemap Link

Plato Sushi & More

Plato Sushi & More

Koutourou Ouzeri: 26 952 953
Amazing home cooking served in a traditional house. Menu changes every couple of days, ensuring fresh dishes, tapas style. Mouth- watering food/ wonderful décor (eclectic display of antiques). Highlights: décor, friendliness, ALL the food, the ‘submarine’ desert.             Googlemap Link (25 Martiou Street)

Koutourou

Koutourou

Pafos 2017 – European Capital of Culture

Pafos2017 logo

Every year the European Union designates two cities within the Union as its ‘European Capitals of Culture’. One city from the North of Europe, and one from the South. What does it mean to be awarded this title? It means that for the period of one calendar year, the city organises a series of cultural events with a strong European dimension, to highlight diversity of culture and a sense of belonging within the European community.

Preparing a European Capital of Culture also presents the city with a fantastic opportunity to generate considerable cultural, social and economic benefits as well as helping to foster urban regeneration, change the city’s image and raise its visibility and profile on an international scale.

In 2013, Paphos was announced as one of the winning cities of the European Capitals of Culture 2017 alongside Aarhus in Denmark – the first time that a city in Cyprus has won, and the smallest city to have won, since the event was started back in 1985. Bravo Paphos!

www.fotolarko.com.cy

www.fotolarko.com.cy

 

Pafos2017’s moto is “Linking Continents – Bridging Cultures” and all events fall under their three main themes: Myth & Religion, World Travellers and Stages of the Future. Open Air Factory is the main concept for the organisation, which is the concept of utilising a network of sections, units and workshops throughout the district (such as streets, school yards, archaeological sites) where people from all walks of life are invited to ‘create’, celebrating the outdoor living culture here, where we are so fortunate to benefit from such a mild climate – after all, the culture here began under the blue skies in the form of ancient open theatres and open markets!

The vision is to turn the city into a living museum of visual arts. So far there have been theatrical performances, dance performances, creative & group art, and more. Watch this space, literally!

Since winning the bid in 2013 Paphos has already seen many improvements, revamps and events that have given locals and visitors a real treat. It’s fair to say that we are super excited about what is in store for next year, with over 300 events and 170 projects planned: Paphos is definitely the place to be in 2017!

Look out for events that are taking place this year and next: www.pafos2017.eu

Sport Profile: Wyn Lewis

Wyn

Age: 32                                                                                                                                       Profession: Tennis Coach

Current position: Mature student. Senior Coach at Aphrodite Hills since 2009.
Studying: Coaching Performance Analysis at Cardiff Metropolitan University. It’s fascinating.
Favourite tennis player: Past: Stefan Edberg / Present: Roger Federer.
Favourite tennis event: I love the French Open. The atmosphere is amazing & the players love it!
Preferred coaching approach: I am very much a constructivist. I don’t believe in telling people what to do – with guidance, players can discover what works best for them themselves. Self discovery is a more fun & productive way to learn.
One reason that you love Aphrodite Hills: It’s the people that make the resort magical: the tourists, residents and staff. One reason is not enough!

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Wyn coaches at Aphrodite Hills Tennis Academy in the summer months – find out more about the tennis academy here.

Interview with Neil Sweeney, Elea Estate Golf Club

We caught up with Neil Sweeney, the well-travelled Head Golf Professional at Elea Estate Golf Club; he tells us why Elea stands out and lets us in on some valuable coaching tips:

neil pic

Tell us, when did you fall in love with golf & when did you become a Pro?
I started golf when I was 12, I switched on the TV one day and the British Open was on – I was instantly fascinated. My Dad took me to our local golf course where he taught me the basics, then I went to a Pro who guided me in the right direction. At 18 I enrolled with the British P.G.A, and after 3 years of studying and examinations I became fully qualified and headed to Germany. I spent 11 years in the South of Germany near to Stuttgart in the Black Forest area, 4 years in Moscow and 12 years in Cyprus now.

Name your favourite golf destinations?
I have played in many different countries – my favourite of which is South Africa, it has a great variation of courses. My next favourite which will surprise some people is Moscow, the courses are in fantastic condition and the facilities are top class.

What are the course highlights?
Elea is one of the very few golf courses where you can actually see all 18 holes form the Clubhouse terrace, with the beautiful olive trees and the amazing view of the Mediterranean with an outstanding sunset, the whole setting of the golf course is perfect. My favourite hole is the 9th (par 5) – it’s always a challenge which makes it fun to play.

What is different about Elea Estate Golf Club in general?
Every club on the Island is very different which is a positive thing. I believe we are the most member orientated – this gives a very warm family sort of feeling. Comments we receive from our visitors are very positive in this respect, we like to make them feel a part of Elea as well.

What stands out about your coaching academy at Elea Estate?
I use the latest technology: flightscope launch monitor/GASP mobile videos software/indoor swing studio with swing analysis system and more. We have a great air conditioned room for the heat of the summer or rainy days so no lessons are cancelled. All  students receive videos of their golf lessons so we can keep track of their progress.

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Visit Elea Estate’s Website Here

Sport Profile: Lee Walkley

Age: 44                                                                                                                                       Profession: Football Coach

Current position: Director of Football Coaching at Dream Team Soccer School, Aphrodite Hills.
Favourite footballer: Lionel Messi – he plays for Barcelona and the Argentine national team. He is one of the best players of his generation and the world’s best contemporary player.
Favourite football event: World Cup as you get to watch all of the best players in the world.
Best thing about coaching kids: As a coach, it’s easy to lose sight of what is truly important. It’s not all about the winning – it’s about teaching kids about life, how to be happy and successful, how to be a good friend and teammate and how to live with integrity and confidence.
One reason that you love Aphrodite Hills: It’s a stunning resort, everyone is so friendly. We also have the benefit of running the only Soccer School on the island that is open all year round.

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Diving in Cyprus – by Steve Ford

Steve Ford, owner of Cyprus Diving Adventures, has been kind enough to share some of his insight into Diving in Cyprus for our 2016 edition of the 8509 magazine.  It’s great to hear from our favourite expert how Scuba Diving is developing in Cyprus.

Relative links:  Interview with Steve 2015

Steve Face

“Diving in Cyprus offers clear seas, warm waters and fantastic visibility; ideal conditions for all levels; from beginners to professionals, technical divers and everyone in between.

There is diving to suit all tastes including wall dives, wrecks, reefs and a diverse range of marine life. Sea temperatures range from 17-30°C, perfect for those trying diving for the first time, or for individuals and families wanting to learn to dive a range of dive courses.

Cyprus waters are home to sea creatures of all shapes and sizes. There are turtles, grouper, barracuda, wrasses, jacks, corals, anemones, nudibranch, tuna, moray eels, octopus, cuttlefish and many more including the occasional rare monk seal!

turtle

It is estimated that there were a record 50,000 tourists of all experience levels who participated in Scuba diving in Cyprus in 2015, making the island one of the most popular Mediterranean dive destinations.

The famous and top 5 wreck in the world is the Zenobia, a large Swedish cargo ship that sunk off the Larnaca coast in 1980. This wreck alone is a massive destination for divers from all over the world and is enjoyed by thousands of divers every year.

zenobia

An artificial reef programme began a few years ago supported by the Cyprus Tourism Organisation, Cyprus Dive Centre Association and the Department of Fisheries & Marine Research. Four wrecks and a reef have been sunk in different locations to create marine reserves and excellent sites for diving. The amount of aquatic life that is attracted to these sites is amazing, as must-see unique eco-systems develop on each. There are two more sites being sunk soon and a very large wreck is planned to rival the Zenobia!

Current dive locations are also being made into marine reserves with the first being St George Island off the Akamas National Park. This is already a haven for big fish populations and a fantastic dive. These are all great achievements by our authorities in Cyprus and will ensure the current and future development of diving tourism across the island.”

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Visit Steve’s Website                                                                                                          Call Steve Now: 97 661 046

 

Sparti Platres Adventure Park

Tel: 99 100 003

New to Cyprus in 2015 is the Sparti Platres Adventure Park which is located in the pretty village of Pano Platres in the Troodos mountains – a great stop-spot if you are exploring the area, but also well worth the drive for a specific visit.

sparti park

The park features various courses with ropes and zip lines between the pine trees.  Take your little monkey for some outdoor adventure – kids as young as 4 can enjoy the park (right through to adults), and safety is good too – using a French safety system.

For more information, read out Blog Post on Sparti Platres Adventure Park here.

Scuba Diving – Family Activities

Tel: 97 661 046                                                                                                                       Website

Googlemap image for Steve’s brand new shop.

Did you know that kids can start scuba diving from the age of 8?  Scuba diving as a family can be a lovely way of bonding, nothing can beat sharing the experience of exploring the underwater world together!

Free local pick up service is available with Steve from Cyprus Diving Adventures, who is all about ‘safety-first’, especially when it comes to your little ones.  Learning to scuba dive in Cyprus is also especially fun because you learn in the warm, clear, safe sea waters meaning tdiscounthat the kids will also get to discover some of the local sea life too!

8509 Discount:                                                                                         1) Family, group and package discounts: enquire for full details.             2) Daily Diving, try dives and Training Courses: 10%

Steve FaceRead our interview with ‘Scuba Steve’ here.

 

CDA ad 2017 with bleed

Dream Team Soccer School

Tel: 96 297 983                                                                                                                       Website                                                                                                                                      E-mail

3g pitch

UEFA Qualified coaches offer group and private coaching all year round at the new 3G astroturf pitch next to the Tennis Academy. Junoir group coaching takes place daily: 9am – 11am and 4pm – 6pm. Private coaching also available.discount

8509 Discount: 5%

Lee Walkley imageRead our interview with Lee Walkley here.

 

DREAM TEAM SOCCER SCHOOL A5 flyer TWO SIDE v02 020317 (1)-page-001

 

DREAM TEAM SOCCER SCHOOL A5 flyer TWO SIDE v02 020317 (1)-page-002

Cyprus Facts

Did you know?

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population etc

 

2016 was the most successful year for tourism ever recorded in Cyprus. Arrivals in 2016 increased by 19.8% from 2015, a total of around 3.2 million!

The population of Cyprus is a little larger than that of Leeds in the UK, and it is just under half the size of Wales. In 1992 only 4.2% of the population were non-Cypriot, in 2011 the figure stood at 21.4%. Of all countries in the EU, only Luxembourg and Malta have smaller populations than Cyprus.

Cyprus is the 3rd largest island in the Mediterranean Sea after Sicily and Sardinia. In the world ranking, it stands as the 81st largest island.

The word alphabet comes from the first two letters of the Greek alphabet ‘alpha’ and ‘beta’.

Value Penguin voted Cyprus as 5th safest country in the world in 2015.

Cyprus has abundant sunshine for almost 300 days every year.

The ‘fasting’ calendar of the orthodox church is 48 days before Easter, 40 days before Christmas & lesser fasting periods throughout the year – in total, half the year is taken up by fasting.

King Richard the Lionheart married Berengaria of Navarre at Limassol Castle on May 12, 1191. to date it is the only Royal wedding not to have taken place in the UK.

Cyprus has the most Blue Flag beaches per capita and per coastline length in the whole world.

There is a map of Cyprus on its flag, the only nation to do so until Kosovo did the same in 2008.

Paphos, alongside Aarhus in Denmark, is the European Capital of Culture for 2017. The town is also included in the official UNESCO list of cultural and natural treasures of the world’s heritage.

Copper has been mined in Cyprus for thousands of years. the name Cyprus probably derives from the Greek for copper – kypros.

cyprus map

Customs in Cyprus

We love the little customs in Cyprus, they are what make it unique. Here are a few of our favourites:

Hospitality plays a huge part of Cypriot culture

Hospitality plays a huge part of Cypriot culture

Easter is the most celebrated religious holiday in Cyprus, more so than Christmas. Carnivals mark the start of Easter fasting period (no meat, dairy or poultry) which lasts 40 days prior to Easter Sunday. Easter ceremonies and celebrations are carried out from Thursday right through to Tuesday.

Unlike the western Friday the 13th, in Cyprus (and Greece) Tuesday the 13th is considered an unlucky day and precautions have to be taken in order to avoid accidents and misfortunes.

Hospitality: plays a huge part of the Cypriot culture. Cypriots are welcoming, friendly and love to host visitors. A saying which represents this is ‘kopiaste’ which basically means ‘welcome’ (direct translation ‘make an effort to’) which is used when inviting someone to share food, or inviting someone to your home.

culture in cyprus_evil eyeThe Evil Eye: In Greece and Cyprus, the evil eye is cast on you by someone who wishes you misfortune and bad luck. It is said that wearing a charm that carries an eye on it can protect you from any such curses.

Worry beads (Kompoloi): A collection of beads on a string to be used by one or two hands to pass time, to relax or even to have some fun. In Greek and Cypriot culture the use of kompoloi hasn’t actually got any meaning, but have been very popular for many years.

Name Days: These are celebrated more than birthdays in Cyprus. Children in Cyprus are named after saints, of which there is at least one dedicated to every day of the year, and celebrate their name day by receiving small gifts and having family & friends over for food. It is also traditional that on your name day, you buy the drinks for others, not the other way round.

 

 

Golf

Cyprus is an emerging golf destination – a place to enjoy the game all year round in the perfect Mediterranean climate.  There are currently four 18 hole courses to choose from on the island:

 

Elea Estate Golf Club:

Tel: 26 202 004 discount
Website

Located between Paphos International Airport and Paphos town, the newest Golf course in Cyprus is impressive. The challenging course, designed by the legendary Sir Nick Faldo, incorporates numerous natural features and boasts stunning views of the Mediterranean. It plays to a par 71 and measures 6775 metres. The Clubhouse is well worth a visit for lunch, open to non-golfers. Regular social events take place at The Clubhouse – check website for details.

8509 Discount: 10% off the public 18 hole green fee rate

Elea Estate ad

Aphrodite Hills Golf Club:

Tel: 26 828 203

Aphrodite Hills is the best course on the island. It occupies two plateaux, carved out of a forest of carob and olive trees, with most holes having a view to the sea. The natural topography is gentle, but there is enough movement to give each hole a distinct personality. The perfect resort course, this means that it requires thought and a sensible approach but is not over penal. 18 holes, Par 71/70, 6299 metres.

Secret Valley Golf Club:

Tel: 26 27 4000

Located just down the road from Aphrodite Hills towards Paphos, Secret Valley was the second course on the island to be established, however it was recently renovated in 2012/13 and was re-opened, vastly improved, as a Tony Jacklin signature course in Sept 2013. The course plays beautifully and is hidden in a scenic valley surrounded by natural Cypriot flora, yet still offering sea views: and the lake between holes 11 & 12 is a feature in itself. Playing to par 71, at a length of 5252 metres, it is one of the most challenging courses on the island so caution is recommended, don’t try to drive too long or you might regret it!

Minthis Hills Golf Club:

Location: Tsada
Tel: 26 642 774/5

Founded in 1994 on the hills of Tsada, the Donald Steel course was renovated in 2006/7 by Mackenzie & Ebert which improved it greatly. It plays to a par 71, measures 5828 meters and is a fun course for all standards of player, with great variety between holes. Uphill holes, tree-lined fairways and the new 13th green surrounded by water provide a challenging round, set in a tranquil and picturesque hilltop location. The setting and Clubhouse are equally stunning and make for a beautiful day’s golf, highly recommended and well worth a visit.

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Interview with Lee Walkley, DreamTeam Soccer School

We caught up with Lee Walkley, our friendly DreamTeam Soccer Director of Coaching, who told us why football training is a fun and engaging activity for kids:

Lee Walkley image

Tell us, what inspired the Dream Team Soccer School?

The idea of pupils having the opportunity to be trained by highly qualified football coaches inspired us really. My coaching ethos is FUN in football, the sessions are for boys & girls of all ages and abilities, and are designed to learn new skills in a FUN way.

Why Aphrodite Hills?

It’s a stunning resort and everyone is so friendly. The Resort have been really supportive and are keen to provide us with the best facilities – we have a new 3G football pitch for this season and have more in the pipeline. It’s also the only Resort in Cyprus to run a Soccer School all year round.

What makes the Dream Team Soccer School so enjoyable for children?

We are all about FUN in Football – we have a great coaching team who love coaching and our goal is for every child taking part to come away happy, having made loads of new friends, learnt loads of new skills and looking forward to their next session.

What do you find the most rewarding part of being a coach?

Everything…just seeing everyone having a great time!
Getting personal – who is your all time football hero and why?

Steven Gerrard, he always makes the difference on the football pitch and he always gives his all. He is a perfect professional footballer.

Have you had any famous footballers visit the soccer school?

We have quite a few professional footballers holidaying at the Resort and their children love taking part in the football. The footballers sometimes ask to join in and have a kick-about with the kids – it’s great to see the children playing football with their idols.

What life lessons do you think kids can take away from football coaching?

Fair play, making new friends, always try your hardest but have loads of FUN.

Where is your favourite place to go in Cyprus off the Resort?

We love living here on the Resort – there’s a great atmosphere, everyone is so positive, and it’s stunning…off the Resort? For us it’s the Famagusta area. My wife and I have family living there, & we love Nissi Beach.

Finishing off with the biggy – what is the most important lesson life has taught you?

To treat others how you want to be treated and to make time for friends and family – it’s so important.

Tel: Lee – 96 297 983                                                                                                           Website

DTSS Ad

Interview with Steve Ford – Cyprus Diving Adventures

We caught up with Steve Ford (known affectionately to us as ‘Scuba Steve’), our favourite diving instructor on the island – we personally dive with him, and he is the most qualified in the region:

Steve Face

So Steve, what first attracted you to Cyprus?

Having holidayed here for years we fell in love with it – the people, the food, the weather and the diving (I did my very first dive here 20 years ago). My partner Mary & I moved here in 2007 and we haven’t looked back since.

What is it that made you fall in love with Scuba diving?

Going scuba diving is like visiting another planet, you are weightless underwater and surrounded by a wonderful world that not many people see. Underwater is a beautiful place to be and so relaxing.

What’s your history as a diving instructor?

I originally qualified in the UK over 12 years ago and began teaching in quarries and on the South Coast. I’m now a PADI Master Instructor, a TDI & PADI technical instructor and a speciality instructor. I have done more than 4,000 dives to date (nowadays about 350 a year) in many countries including UK, Cyprus, Malaysia, Thailand, Spain, Greek Islands, Mexico, Egypt and Tenerife.

What buzz do you get out of diving?

Watching other people’s reactions to their first diving experience is always a great buzz, and you just can’t beat unexpected marine life surprises – like coming across big shoals of fish when you’re not expecting them!
Why is Cyprus a great place to dive?

The warm, clear, safe waters of Cyprus are perfect for divers of all levels and for dive training. It has a fantastic diving environment for beginner levels up to intermediate and very experienced divers. We do 100’s of entry level and above courses here and we have excellent wreck diving, walls, reefs, caves, pinnacles, islands and marine life that will satisfy the needs of all experience levels.

Can families try diving together?

Absolutely! Kids can start from 8 and we always ensure that it’s a max. ratio of 2:1 learners/instructors. It’s a great experience for parents and kids to share, something that can become a family hobby. For anyone that doesn’t fancy diving in the group then they’re more than welcome to join us while the others are diving. They can enjoy the beach or the boat and get to experience the sights of Cyprus and even stop for lunch too!

We have to mention the Zenobia – why is this wreck classed as one of the best diving sites in the world?

The sheer size of the wreck (172m long), the protected marine reserve (the abundance of sea life is some of the best in the world), the cargo; 105 lorries and trailers and their contents, its depth ranges from 16m down to 42m. You have to see it to believe it…

discount

8509 Discounts are available with Steve.  Click here to view the full list.

Tel: Steve – 97 661 046                                                                         Website

 

Tennis in Cyprus – with Scott Wakefield

We caught up with Scott Wakefield, our beloved Senior Tennis Coach at the Aphrodite Hills Tennis Academy – join Scott and his team if tennis is, or could be, your passion.

Scott Wakefield

Tell us, when did you fall in love with tennis & what is your biggest tennis achievement?
I was 5… I was entered into a short tennis county event and somehow won it. I represented Hertfordshire as their number 1 player as a junior, went on to represent the county as a senior (and won titles as both) and I have competed in tournaments throughout Europe too.
What makes the Aphrodite Hills Tennis Academy on Aphrodite Hills stand out?
Its 5* facilities (which the team work hard to maintain), the clay courts are top class & the fact that it is big enough to hold up to 36 players per hour, but small enough to keep the personalised feel of a member’s club and pay & play facility for non-members and holiday makers.
You live on the resort, what is your favourite facility other than the tennis academy?
After work socialising: Anoi & the Beer Garden. The massages at the spa are a life saver after I’ve been on court for up to 10hrs a day. The golf course is an amazing course to play on my day off as well, it’s a shame my golf doesn’t do the course justice!
Do you enjoy any sports other than tennis?
I play football in Paphos every Thursday with the resort staff.
What is the most rewarding aspect of coaching for you?
Seeing your players develop their skill set, from beginners through to advanced players. Tennis is a game for life. Meeting new players from various walks of life is an interesting part of my job and many clients also become great friends.
Can you share your favourite coaching tip that you say to students with us?
Spin is control! Make them play!

Scott interview photo_wimbledon
You have created a very welcoming & social environment at the tennis academy, what’s your secret?
My motto at the academy is: there are no strangers, just friends we haven’t met yet.
Which 4 players would you choose for a tennis ‘field of dreams’?
Bjorn Borg (my all time tennis idol) & Elvis vs Rafael Nadal & Muhammad Ali – what a match! My umpire would have to be Oliver Reed, I would love to have met him. Can I also go out for post-match drinks with them all?
Other than Cyprus, where has been your favourite place to live and why?
Mallorca has been a second home to me for years. My brother, also a tennis pro, has been teaching on the island for 12 years – hence we love Rafa! The weather is great there too (Cyprus weather still tops Mallorca though!).

Tel: 26 82 8122

 

Sunshine Sports

Cycling

Explore the island’s stunning countryside on two wheels all year round.  Mountain Bike Cyprus offer tours, bike hire (road & mountain), route information and support.  Call Al & Kirsty on: 26 432 033.  View some suggested cycle routes on our Blog.

Running

Great terrain and coastal paths make Cyprus perfect for running.  There are some fantastic running events, including marathons, scheduled throughout the year (see our events calendar below) that are growing in popularity every year, and are very well organised.  Aphrodite Hills Resort itself has some fab running routes, so if you are holidaying here then they are just on your doorstep.

Walking

A variety of walks are on offer on the island: gorges, peninsulas, mountainous and coastal, all with stunning views.  Click to jump to our Walking Section, or view our Blog for some suggested routes.

Scuba Diving

Dive sites in Cyprus include an abundance of marine life, wrecks, islands and one of the best dive wrecks in the world – the Zenobia.  Check out our interview with Steve for more information on diving in Cyprus.

Tel: Steve – 97 661 046                                                                                                    Website

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Watersports

Warm seas, calm mornings/windier afternoons make Cyprus perfect for watersports.  Kite-surfing, wind surfing, sailing, water-skiing, jet skiing and more are available throughout the island April – November.  Our recommended watersports company are Latchi Watersports who are situated in the beautiful coastal town of Latchi, next to the stunning Akamas peninsula – hire a boat with them for one of the nicest day trip experiences on the island:

Tel: 26 322 095                                                                                                                      Website

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Watersports & Boat Hire – Latchi

Tel: 26 322 095                   discount                                                                       Website                                                                                                         Googlemap Location

Head over to Latchi and hire out some watersports near the island’s beautiful Akamas peninsula – jet skis, inflatables, watersport lessons, parasailing and boat hire. Hiring a boat as a family from Latchi is one of our most recommended day trips – you can truly get away from it all and have amazing fun at sea and swimming in the aptly named Blue Lagoon never disappoints. Tom and his team at Latchi Watersports Centre have all the equipment you could wish for – the kids will have a blast, and we’re sure the adults will too!

* Read our full, personal, review of Latchi Watersports here *

8509 Discount: 15%

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Wine Dining

Whilst you are on your wine tasting adventure, why not stop at a taverna to taste the local cuisine?  These following tavernas are linked with the Zambartas article of the Limassol wine route:

If you are looking for traditional meze, freshly cooked with seasonal ingredients, try ‘Ariadni’ or ‘Pyrkos’ Tavernas in Vasa village, strictly for meat lovers. If you prefer some live music accompaniment, with a great atmosphere serving meze with a twist, then go where the locals go, ‘Stou Kyryianni’ in the picturesque Omodos village. And finally, if you prefer food with a more international touch then ‘Sykaminia’ restaurant in Ayios Amvrosios is the place to eat. The contact details for each of these tavernas can be found below, please note that the meze prices do not include drinks.
‘Kali Orexi!’ (bon appetit)

Ariadni Taverna – Koilani
Tel: 25 944 064
Meze price: €15 pp

Pyrkos Taverna – Vasa Koilani
Tel: 25 942 655
Meze price: €20 pp

Stou Kyr Yianni – Omodos
Tel: 25 422 100
Meze price: €25 pp

Skyaminia – Agios Amvrosios
Tel: 99 313 865
Meze price: €15 pp

WINES IN CYPRUS – LIMASSOL BY ZAMBARTAS, 2014

 

Cyprus is rich with beautiful vineyards and offers an array of wineries to visit. The Cyprus Tourist Organisation has compiled 6 Wine Routes throughout the island and we have been lucky enough for Marcos Zambartas, who runs the Zambartas winery with his Father Akis, to write in detail about the local famous wine route ‘Krasochoria Lemesou’. Enjoy!

Wine - Owners

Deciding to leisure at the luxurious environment of Aphrodite Hills Resort you would never have guessed that the most renowned wine region of the island is just 30km away, ideal for a day out!

Krasochoria (translated ‘The Wine Villages’) is one of the oldest wine producing areas in Cyprus and is the cradle of quality wine making. It comprises of 15 villages which produce grapes for wine making, and many of them host wineries within their boundaries.

Allow yourself enough time to visit one winery before lunch and another after lunch. Winery visits usually take around 1 hour; during which you will learn about the grape and wine production of the area, and of Cyprus in general. The visit will be complete with tasting some of the wines with explanation of their making. The good news is that for small groups the wine tasting is free.

For larger groups there is usually a mere charge of €3.50-€6.00 to cover some of the costs.

To get there, you need to take the highway towards Lemesos. After around 15k you should take the AVDIMOU – PACHNA exit and drive up the mountain through Avdimou village. Beware of goats crossing the street so drive slowly and keep your camera at reach! The land around this area is dedicated to crop production and farming. The numerous gnarled trees producing the ‘black gold of Cyprus’, the carob, are scattered around giving a green tone to the landscape especially in the summer.

Continue driving past Pachna village (on your left) and follow the road towards Ayios Amvrosios. You will reach a T-junction and depending which wineries you have arranged to visit you should either turn left towards Omodos or right towards Ayios Amvrosios.

By now you will probably have seen the first vineyard blocks. The big majority of the vines in Cyprus are trained as a bush, mainly due to the scarce water supply. As a result, vines in Krasochoria are usually low yielding which is a major factor for the top quality wines of the area.

The low yield of the vines seems to have dictated the size of the wineries of the Krasochoria. Most of the wineries are small to medium size and usually family owned.

The exception to the rule is the KEO winery at the entrance of Malia village which produces more than 20% of the wine production of the whole island. The focus of this winery is more on the everyday wines from local and international grape varieties, although lately there has been a tendency to produce higher quality wines.

The nearby village of Ayios Amvrosios hosts our own highly reputable Zambartas winery.

My father and myself established the winery in 2006 and are university trained wine makers, in France and Australia respectively. The focus of our boutique winery is on top end wines from local grape varieties, mainly the white Xynisteri and the reds Maratheftiko and Lefkada. Do not leave from that winery without tasting the Rosé!

Another winery that deserves your time is the newly built Vlassides winery outside Koilani village. Run by the Californian trained wine maker Sophoklis Vlassides, it specialises in wines from French grape varieties cultivated on owned land. The flagship wines are the Shiraz and the upcoming Sauvignon Blanc.

If you have a sweet tooth and appreciate dessert wines, you must visit Ayia Mavri winery in Koilani, just a 5k drive from Vlassides winery. Their Muscat is made from sun dried grapes and is one of the best sweet wines on the island.
Eis eyian! (cheers!)

Wine - Sig

Marcos Zambartas

* Akis sadly passed away in 2014, and we wish the Zambartas our deepest sympathy for their loss

Local Wineries

All of the traditional wineries offer wine tasting and most will be more than happy to give you a tour of the premises and an insight into the wine making process. Not only does this make for an interesting tour but the wine is often cheaper there too!

Paphos Wine Tours new

Zambartas Winery – Limassol
Tel: 25 942 424                                                                                Website
Award winning family run winery has been producing fine wines since 2006. Visits are by appointment only.
Featured in Zambartas wine article.

Fikardos Winery – Paphos
Tel: 26 949 814
One of the largest wineries in Cyprus, founded in 1990. Visiting hours are between 9am and 6pm daily, except on Sundays.

Kolios Winery – Paphos
Tel: 26 724 090
This traditional winery was established in 1999 in the Paphos area and is beautifully built in local stone. Visiting hours are Mon – Friday, 8:30am – 8pm.

Vasilikon Winery – Paphos
Tel: 26 633 237
This winery produces some of the top wine labels. Good Whites and Reds produced here. Visits are by appointment only.

Tsiakkas Winery – Limassol
Tel: 25 991 080
Set in the mountain village of Pitsilia, the Tsiakkas winery is one of the most picturesque on the island. Visiting hours are between 9am and 5pm daily, except on Sundays.

Vouni Panagia Winery – Pano Panagia
Tel: 26 722 770
Recently renovated with lovely restaurant which has stunning mountain views.  Tasting room, traditional museum & educational short film.  Open between 8am – 4pm daily.

Vlassides Winery – Koilani
Tel: 99 441 574
Contact: Sophoclis Vlassides
Family owned winery, specialising in French grape varieties. Their Reds are their signatures bottles.

Ayia Mavri – Koilani
Tel: 25 470 225 / 25 370 777
Contact: Yianoulla Ioannides
Specialising in procucing some of the nicest sweet wines on the island.

WINES IN CYPRUS – PAPHOS BY GERRY AT PAPHOS WINE TOURS, 2015

Cyprus is rich with beautiful vineyards and offers an array of wineries to visit. The Cyprus Tourist Organisation has compiled six wine routes throughout the island. This year, Gerry from Paphos Wine Tours has described the highlights of the Paphos wine region and its grape varieties. Enjoy!

Paphos Wine Tours 4

Here you are in Cyprus, one of the oldest wine producing countries in the world with a history dating back as far as 3500BC. Its ancient capital, Paphos, is known as the birthplace of Aphrodite, Goddess of Love, but the town has an even tastier claim to fame, especially for wine lovers.  We start our tour on Paphos Harbour at the mosaics in the House of Dionysus, a UNESCO designated world heritage site, which celebrates this God of Wine and Protector of Vineyards, for one reason: Paphos alone sustains a staggering 43% of the island’s grapevines.

From there we go North to the village of Mesogi, where the Fikardos family have their winery which was founded in 1990 by Mr Theodoros Fikardos, renowned as one of the founding fathers of modern Cypriot wine production. The family produce wines from various grape varieties, a little information on which we’re happy to share with you:

The most important indigenous grape variety in Cyprus is Xynisteri (zini steri). Wines from this grape are recognisable for their distinctive green apple & peach aroma.

wine - xinistry grapessmallThe majority of Paphos vineyards are located at between 450 and 1200 metres where the soil is mostly limestone formations and gypsum-clay beds. The region enjoys unique weather conditions which, when combined with this soil, make it the perfect place to cultivate the Xynisteri variety – 50% of the island’s production grows in the Paphos region.

Two rarer varieties also grow at higher levels in the region, Maratheftiko and Spourtiko. The former produces a deep red, full bodied wine whose most common aromas are cherry, dark plums & wild flowers. These qualities appeal to many winemakers.  Wines from the latter are delicate, very light with an alcohol content that never exceeds 11%. Their common aromas are grapefruit, lemon zest, and white flowers. Only the Fikardos Winery and the Vouni Panayia Winery currently produce wine from this variety.  Top tipple: Spourtiko.

We then move on to the monastery of Chrysorogiatissa where the monks produce three basic wines. The monastery was founded in 1152 but the present building dates from the late 18th century.

Continuing North we turn right towards the village of Polemi to one of the largest wineries in Cyprus, Sodap Kamanterena. This co-operative, which has a large visitor centre, produces around three million bottles per year with about 100 local growers supplying their grapes. You can view the production process from the visitor centre, and enjoy the numerous wines and spirits on offer for tasting including the famous Commandaria wine. This is the oldest commercial wine in the world produced initially by the knights of St John. Top tipple: Commandaria.

Next stop is Panayia village (via the Kannaviou Dam which merits a visit for its scenery alone) to visit the Vouni Panayia winery, run by the Kyriakydes family. The wines produced here are mainly from indigenous grape varieties. In addition to the aforementioned varieties they have also reintroduced Promara (an elegant white) and Yannoudi (an oak aged red) There is an impressive new building with an abundant cellar & an educational facility. Top tipple: Barba Yiannis Maratheftiko.

The beautiful Kannaviou Dam

The beautiful Kannaviou Dam

 

The penultimate winery on this tour is the Kolios Winery which lies close to Statos village. On 24 hour’s notice they will serve you a meze meal in their restaurant which is attached to a tasting area with spectacular views of the surrounding countryside. Top tipple: Cornetto Rose.

Heading downhill past Statos Village we approach  Amargeti Village (which has a lovely cobbled street, church & museum) where we visit the Kalamos Winery, with palatable wines that are great value for money. Top tipple: the local oak-barrel aged spirit, Zivania.

We hope you enjoy your tour around the Paphos area and enjoy the great wine and scenery on offer – get your taste buds and your cameras at the ready.

Yia mas (to your health)                                                                                                     Gerry, Paphos Wine Tours.

Gerry (right) on a tour, at Fikardos winery

Gerry (right) on a tour, at Fikardos winery

Call Gerry – 99 158 312

Gate to India

★★★★– €€€€€
Tel: 26 828 240

The Gate to India serves innovative Indian cuisine in a stylish setting.  The chefs here honour an array of different cooking traditions but with a more creative vision.  Mouth-watering menu, and all the side dishes that make Indian cuisine so special.  This restaurant is reserved for children aged 7 years and above.

Catering Services

Catering services can also be hired for your rental property, or as a resident in Cyprus, from the wonderful Gourmet on the Go company.

Gourmet on the Go can cater for all sorts of parties, buffet style or silver waitress service, and provide a wide variety of dishes, all from the comfort of your own home.  Catering equipment and white linens will be provided, and your home will always be left as clean as when they arrived.

Whether it’s a wedding party, business party or private function,  Gourmet on the Go are our recommended option for you.

Tel: 99 611  011

Our recommended catering company for you

Our recommended catering company for you