05 Oct Ayia Napa. The Underrated Gem.
Although my favorite destinations are islands, I had never thought of Cyprus that way. Turns out as I’ve discovered, it’s one of Europe’s underrated gems.
Then surprise surprise, I have to admit we had a great time in Ayia Napa. This Mediterranean resort is known for its crystalline blue waters and sandy shores, sailing, snorkeling, beautiful weather and friendly party atmosphere that’s alive all day and all night.
So if you’re looking for a fun beach trip with lots of activities, here are the reasons why I think Ayia Napa might be a cool option for you.
Ayia Napa is full of beautiful beaches all around: Cape Greco, Blue Lagoon, Sea Caves, Konnos Beach, and the Harbor.
But if I had to choose just one, of course it would be the very famous Nissi Beach.
Aside from the gorgeous golden sand and the mild waves that gently rock under beautiful lush greenery, the beach has a small island facing it. Due to the low-depth water between the small islet and the main coast, you can walk out on a sandy lane all the way to the island. Just. Wow. Gorgeous.
Ok I know what you’re thinking: water sports on a beach? How original Ruen!
But wait, they really have everything you might be looking for.
From the usual things like snorkeling, scuba diving, sailing etc. to some more crazy things I had never seen before.
They have a big floating pool pulled by a bike, or a kayak with a slide inside it, or a floating electric bike which you have to pedal. I mean, you really have to see them to understand what I’m talking about because they’re too much fun to describe with words.
And you gotta try them all!
You might wonder what’s so special about renting a small car to get around town, well trust me this is something else.
This summer city is full of 4×4 bikes, quads and buggies, also called easy riders, and you can ride them on the sandy shore into the water. It’s a very wild feeling, and it looked like we were in our own MTV video. A must try.
Also remember that in Cyprus you drive on the left side of the road (like in England) which makes the experience even cooler.
You can drive all around and park everywhere, jumping on and off at beaches and restaurants. It cost around 70 euros per day but you can negotiate if you rent for more than one day!
I rented in KB motorbikes 2 days for 100,- Euros and honestly the staff were very friendly and cool.
The first thing I heard when I got to Ayia Napa is that it’s the favorite destination for teenagers who come to celebrate graduation, but it couldn’t be more wrong!
The town provides a multinational environment, mostly coming from the UK, Russia, Greece, Croatia and Lebanon, which make the beach vibe very diverse and even more enjoyable.
A great place to make new friends and connect with people, now you can add Mexico to the list!
Are you familiar with this “Spring Break” vibe? Well that’s practically the way I felt in Ayia Napa: there is hyperactivity everywhere. This is the party-all-night place.
The endless nightclubs host huge parties that are mostly animated by MCs and that take up most of the beach every night. The whole shore turns into a large mix of music and people letting loose.
Sounds rather loud I know but it was fun! When you’re letting yourself go and just living the moment, you find yourself putting your hands up when the DJ is shouting “put your hands up” haha, which is exactly what happened to me at Club Ice.
With international guest DJs, foam parties and all kinds of music, the nightlife in Ayia Napa is busy and it caters for every taste; you won’t be disappointed.
Ayia Napa has many attractions besides their beaches which make the destination even more interesting. This modern city is part of an ancient culture that knows the value of enjoying life.
We got the chance to do many activities that I think you might enjoy.
Parko Paliatso is a like a kid’s dream where you can play for hours. It’s the biggest Luna Park in Cyprus with rides, games, and outdoor fun for the whole family. This huge attraction on Nissi Avenue lights up the whole city at night, when you can hear the ecstatic screams of the people riding its huge Sling Shot that goes up 80 meters in the air in 2 seconds. #yikes
Another must see is the incredibly beautiful Medieval Monastery in town, which is now a religious museum.
Get back to the roots at Golden Donkeys Farm were over 200 donkeys are taken care of, keeping one of Cyprus’s oldest traditions alive. You can enjoy the gentle donkeys’ company a fresh glass of donkey’s milk.
Discover Ocean Aquarium Park where you can find over 1,000 marine species and walk in a beautiful tropical garden.
Last but not least prepare to be blown away by WaterWorld Themed Water Park, one of the biggest themed parks in Europe. Water slides, lazy pools, great food, and an amazing daily show to keep the whole family entertained. Make sure you set aside a whole day for this unforgettable experience that will keep you wet for hours!
There are restaurants and more restaurants everywhere and in all styles: Italian, Japanese, Chinese, Mexican, and more Mexican (yes I ate in all of them) but if I have to recommend something it would be the Greek Burger.
Guys it’s so cool, like a mix between a burger and a doner kebab, and the way the ingredients mesh together is so yummy. I’m not a food critic so don’t expect me to describe the tastes, especially when they are washed down with an ice cold Keo beer. It’s simply heaven.
In the end, we got tanned, we had a good time, and we were very active on the beach. All in all a quick getaway that you can repeat many times a year. Ayia Napa what a surprise you were!
So if you’re ready to give a new place a try, then Cyprus is waiting for you. Have a good one and let me know how your vacation goes.
Ruen on the Road.