Paphos is the capital city of the Western region of Cyprus. The city is not very large, with a modest population of approximately 27,000 only. Tourism is the best industry in the city, offering employment for the majority of the inhabitants. The city is broadly divided into two sections, the Kato Paphos (the coastal area) and the Pano Paphos (the town itself), which is located slightly towards the inland.
The coastal region of the city boasts of the gorgeous Coral Bay, a beautiful, sun-kissed beach. The golden sands and the deep blue ocean provide a perfect haven for tourists with a passion for water sports. The 13th century Byzantine castle, that was once built to protect the harbors, now acts as a major tourist attraction. The Theoskepasti Church, built in 1923, still holds a great appeal to visitors. The seaside promenade hosts the old harbor and a good number of modern hotels and restaurants. The hospitality of the well-trained staff in these facilities is truly memorable.
The city itself holds just as many wonders for tourists as the shores. The archaeological museum holds an extensive collection of Cypriot antiquities, dating from as early as the Neolithic Age to 1700 AD. The Tombs of the Kings contains a series of underground tombs carved out of solid rock, which dates back to 4th century B.C. The Doric Pillars that adorn the site serve to heighten its appeal. St. Paul’s Pillar and the Temple of Aphrodite (the Greek goddess of love and beauty) enchant tourists from around the world. The ancient mosaic floors in the castle bear testimony to the glorious days of the past. The 2nd century Paphos Odeon, shaped out of limestone, now acts as a popular location for regular musical and theatrical performances.
When to visit
The summer season is a good time to visit Paphos. The temperature reaches around 30 degrees Celsius during day time, making the weather warm but comfortable for roaming. The cool winter is especially good for tourists who enjoy a hike in the mountains or bear a passion for mountain biking.
Where to shop, what to buy
Kato Paphos is a shoppers’ paradise. The Woolworths mega store beside McDonalds down in the Kato keeps stock of virtually anything a tourist could need. The Papantoniou supermarkets on Ellados Avenue and Chlorakas village are also hot spots for shoppers seeking good items at discount prices. Many small shops on the main shopping lane, which runs parallel to the beach promenade, provide tourists with hand made jewelry, trinkets and locally made footwear for the beach at decent bargain prices. Silverware and copperware are available at discount rates. Locally made clothing and leather goods here are cheap and of good quality. Ouzo, the local alcoholic beverage, can be purchased at many stores.
Paphos would certainly act as a welcome addition to any vacationer or traveler’s wish list. A visit to an exotic place like this could indeed bring with it memories for a lifetime.Stumble it!