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Paphos, Cyprus » City Info

Paphos (or Pafos), a city rich in history & culture, is a gem of Western Cyprus. There is archaeological evidence supporting the city's existence from the Neolithic period. Believed to be the birthplace of Greek Goddess of love and beauty ‘Aphrodite’, Paphos proudly boasts the remains of villas, palaces, theatres, fortresses and tombs that belong to Classical, Hellenistic and Roman periods. A site with such remarkable architectural and historic value is an ornament to the city and thus has been included in UNESCO’s list of world heritage sites as a natural and cultural treasure. Paphos, roughly divided into Old Paphos and New Paphos, is also famous for its sun-kissed, white sand beaches. The city was valued as a major port and the capital of Cyprus during Roman times. Later, when the British colonized the island, the city started losing its value, especially after Nicosia gained importance. Today, this small harbour has slowly and steadily, emerged as an attractive tourist destination.

Top 10 Paphos Landmarks

  

Paphos Castle ( Wikipedia )

Located on the edge of Paphos harbour, Paphos castle is one of the most famous landmarks of the city. A number of archaeologists have taken an interest in excavating and investigating the castle as it dates back to the Roman era. The Byzantine fort, originally built to protect the harbour was destroyed because of an earthquake in 1222. It was then rebuilt by the Lusignans in the 13 th century and since then has seen a few more reconstructions till date. It currently serves as a background for the annual open-air Paphos cultural festival, which takes place in September.

  

Aphrodite’s Rock - Petra Tou Romiou (Birthplace of Aphrodite) ( Wikipedia )

Named after the Greek Goddess of love and beauty; Aphrodite, the rock located between Limassol and Paphos is believed to be sacred. Legend says that this is the point where Aphrodite emerged from the sea in a surge of amazing sea foam in 1200 BC. She herself chose this rock as the ideal location to begin her life as a mortal.

  

Tombs of the Kings ( Wikipedia )

Tombs of the Kings is a large necropolis burial ground situated about two kilometres north-west of Paphos harbour in Cyprus. Many of these underground tombs that date back to the 4th century BCE, are sculpted out of solid rock. Believed to be the burial sites of Paphitic aristocrats and high officials, some of the tombs have frescoed walls and Doric columns. The tombs are listed in UNESCO World Heritage Sites for their archaeological magnificence.

  

Paphos Archaeological Park ( Wikipedia )

Paphos archaeological Park is famous for sites and monuments that date back from prehistoric times to the Middle Ages. However, most of the remains in the park date to the Roman era. Spectacular mosaic floors of four Roman villas are the highlight of Paphos Archaeological Park.

Paphos Lighthouse

Situated in close proximity of Odeon, Paphos lighthouse is a golden point of the city as it can be seen from any corner of Paphos. If you are fit enough to climb the staircases successfully, the top of this lighthouse offers you an opportunity to catch panoramic, magnificent glimpses of Paphos. Once you reach to the top of this lighthouse, a look at the historic and scenic city of Paphos makes your visit worth a treasure.

  

Akamas Peninsula, Paphos( Wikipedia )

The most beautiful location on the entire island, the Akamas Peninsula is located to the west of Cyprus. The peninsula covers approximately an area of 230 square kilometres surrounded by mountains and densely wooded, almost inaccessible forests. These forests incrude around 530 plant species endemic to Cyprus and hence enjoy a great biodiversity. Because of its ecological significance, the Akamas peninsula is not only a tourist attraction, but also of great interest for botanists from all over the world.

  

Ayios Neophytos Monastery ( Wikipedia )

The historic Ayios Neophytos monastery takes you back to the ancient life of Cypriot hermit and writer, Neophytos, who carved the monastery out of mountain rock in the year 1159. Today, home to only a handful of monks and a museum, the monastery is famous for the grottoes dating back to the Byzantine Empire. Located just 20 minutes from the busy Paphos town centre the monastery holds a two-day religious fair in January to sell Cypriot arts & crafts.

  

Agia Solomoni Church

Originally, a Christian catacomb, Ayia Solomoni Church was carved underground out of limestone rock. Home to several 12th century frescoes, the church also houses some of the original graves that date back to the Hellenistic period. The remains of the old frescoes from the 12th century and some holy water are the main attractions of Ayia Solomoni Church.

Ethnographical Museum ( Visit Site )

Considered as the richest museum of Cyprus, Ethnographical Museum was known as the Folk Art Museum until 1971. It holds a collection of woodcarvings, jewellery, tapestries, woven goods, pottery, embroidery, and national costumes from the 19th and 20th centuries. Today it is famous among tourists, especially among history and art lovers as an excellent place that introduces the lives of the people from the prehistoric era.

  

The Mosaics of Paphos

Famous as the finest mosaic in the Eastern Mediterranean, the Paphos Mosaics are located beside the harbour. The mosaics seen in the Villa of Dionysos, Orpheus and Aion, and the Villa of Theseus depict compositions from Greek mythology. They are made from small cubes of marble and stone called tesserae. Additionally, glass paste was used to develop the range of colours.

Top 5 Bars

Here are few bars you can’t miss when you are in Paphos and enjoying your holiday. Ayios Antoniou Street, locally known as either Bar Street or Nightlife Street comes alive at night with a number of bars. This tourist strip has the maximum concentration of bars in Paphos.

  

Splash Bar

This is the best place for music and Karaoke fanatics. Splash bar, as the name suggests has a small swimming pool, which can be used only during the day. Along with some great wines and beers, it also offers some unique cocktails.

Location: Kato Paphos, Paphos

  

Pit Stop Pub ( Visit Site )

Run by the Efstathiou Brothers, George, Michael and Angelo for over 20 years, Pit Stop Pub has been providing food, drinks and entertainment all year round. Located close to many hotels and apartments, the pub is famed for their Bingo nights and large Jackpots.

Location: Tombs of the Kings Ave, Paphos
Tel.: +357 26 933 852

Robin Hood ( Visit Page )

Robin Hood is a pub with pleasant atmosphere and is located in the middle of the famous tourist strip of Ayios Antoniou Street. It is highly visited because of its reasonably priced drinks and medieval castle-like appearance. If you are a fun-loving person, a visit to this bar is a must.

Location: 4, Agiou Antoniou Street, Paphos, Paphos, Cyprus
Tel.: +357 26 932 521

Rainbow Disco

The oldest club in Paphos, Rainbow Disco offers an opportunity to enjoy a modern music such as RnB, trance and garage. Atmosphere in this bar is friendly and fun-filled. Rainbow often has themed night parties. Well-established DJs play music in this bar.

Location: Bar street, Kato Paphos
Tel.: +357 26 934 803

  

Flairs Bar( Visit Page )

Flairs Bar proudly serves a variety of unique drinks for their guests all year round. This great dance and cocktail bar on the Agiou Antoniou 'Bar' Street in Paphos also offers free shots and ladies free nights, to celebrate occasions.

Location: Ayiou Antoniou, Paphos

Top Activities

Walking Tours/Town Walks ( Visit Site )

Paphos town walk, also known as strolling around Ktima can be enjoyed every Tuesday free. Organized by Paphos municipality in collaboration with CTO and the Cyprus Tourist Guides Association, the tour takes tourists to various archaeological sites dating back to the Chalcolithic, early Bronze Age and to the present. Avail this tour, as its goal is to introduce tourists to Ktima and the evolution of its lifestyle from the late Byzantine and Medieval times until today. It offers a chance to see a variety of UNESCO listed World Heritage Sites such as the Mosaics, the Tombs of the Kings and the Temple of Aphrodite. This town walk is a great opportunity to know better local life, year-round atmosphere in Paphos and its continual cultural development.

Address: 3, Gladstonos Street, 8106 Paphos
Tel.: +357 26 932 841

Paphos Aphrodite Festival ( Visit Site )( Wikipedia )

Paphos Aphrodite Festival aims to promote Paphos as an international centre of high profile cultural events. Planned by Company Pafos Aphrodite Festival Cyprus (P.A.F.C), the festival welcomes music fanatics to enjoy opera performances and take a deep dive in the world of music. Organized at the Medieval Castle Square in Paphos, the festival invites world famous, internationally acclaimed companies to perform at the festival during the first weekend of September.

Location: Paphos Medieval Castle Square, Kato Paphos
Tel.: +357 26 822 218

  

Aphrodite Water Park ( Visit Site )

Set within 35,000 square meters of natural landscaped grounds, the park is situated at the far eastern end of the Kato Paphos coastal road. A day out at the Aphrodite Water Park is a great way to spend quality time with a family. The place offers entertainment and appeal to every generation. Packed with a variety of attractions, the park has a snacks bar and a varied selection of rides among which the rafting ride is the biggest family rafting ride in Europe. Its location is ideal for tourists as it is situated about 300 meters inland from the Cypria Maris, Paphian, and Pioneer and Phaethon hotels. A large free car park in front of the water park adds up to the visitors' convenience. Ideal months to visit are between May and October.

Location: Tourist Area, Off Poseidonos Avenue, Kato Paphos
Opening Times: May - June: 10:30 am to 5:30 pm
July - August: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm
September - October: 10:00 am to 5:00 pm
Tel.: +357 26 913 638

  

Pafos Zoo ( Visit Site )

Situated near Agios Georgios/Coral Bay Pafos Zoo is set in a natural setting with lakes, ponds and gardens. It is unique in Cyprus that it houses the third largest bird collection in Europe. The zoo is open to the public and has a tremendous variety of birds and animals from around the world. From ponies, giraffes, monkeys, tortoises and exotic parrots to emus, ostriches and swans, this park also have a children’s farm where children can interact with cute bunny rabbits, guinea pigs, chicks and goats. The amphitheatre of the zoo daily arranges acrobatic owl and parrot shows with educational programs in the intervals. Children’s birthday parties can be arranged at this park, as it is open all year round from 9 am until the sunset, including Christmas day.

Opening Times: Winter season 1st October -31st March: 9:00 am to 5:00 pm
Summer season 1st April -30 September: 9:00 am to 6:00 pm
Tel.: +357 26 813 852

  

Diving In Paphos ( Visit Site )

Paphos is an excellent choice for a diving holiday. Home to thousands of excellent diving spots such as underwater cliffs, valleys, coral colonies, and ancient shipwrecks, the city is surrounded by crystal clear seawater. Absence of dangerous underwater currents in the seas near Paphos is ideal for taking deep dives. The city offers well established diving schools equipped with fully qualified instructors to welcome the novice divers to plunge into the seas near Paphos. Any time of the year is good for diving in seas near Paphos.

Paphos Karting Centre ( Visit Site )

Paphos Karting Centre is located at just 5 minutes walk from Paphos harbour. From Limassol, it takes only 35 minutes to reach this centre famous go karting centre. The floodlit track is the only bridge and tunnel track and one of the biggest karting tracks in Europe. Booking in advance is not needed to enjoy the thrilling tracks at Paphos Karting Centre. The centre also provides a snacks bar, which offers food & drinks, a cafe, restroom etc.

Location: 40 Konstantinou Palaiologou, Riverside Block 2, 8201 Geroskipou
Opening Times: November to February, Daily, 10:00 am to 6:00 pm
March to May, 9:00 am to 9:00 pm
June to October, 9:00 am to 11:00 pm
Tel.: +357 26 913 435

  

Akamas Jeep Safari

Paphos holidays are incomplete without a jeep safari to the Akamas Peninsula, a nature preserve and the most scenic corner of the island. Home to 168 species of birds, 12 mammals, 20 reptiles and 16 butterflies, this magical and unexplored countryside unfolds the beautiful landscapes and coastal area; indeed a jewel in the southern crown of Cyprus. By availing this safari, tourists can visit historic spots such as birthplace of Aphrodite, Avakas Gorge, Lara Bay, Baths of Aphrodite and Polis etc, to add more.

  

Old Venetian Camel Trail ( Visit Site )

The camel trail is one of Paphos’ most adventurous activities. The Old Venetian Camel Trail takes the trailers to the remote parts of the island while passing through the south of Chryssorogiatissa Monastery. The adventurous trip by jeep or enduro bike lasts for about half a day, but is a treasure to cherish. The route is spotted with three ancient bridges: Kelephos, Elea and Roudias further west. Legends say that these bridges were built to enable pack animals, especially camels, to cross the river and trade copper from the Troodos mines to Paphos.

  

Paphos Byzantine Museum

Located in a mediaeval fort near Paphos harbour area, Paphos Byzantine Museum is one of the best museums to show off the city’s beauty and history. The museum holds an interesting collection of artefacts from the Byzantine era, including icons dating back from the 12th to the 18th century. The other museums such as the museum of St. Neophytos Monastery, the Byzantine Museum of Arsinoe, and the Omodos museum feature ecclesiastical treasures including icons, frescoes, manuscripts, woodcarvings, gold and silver covered gospels, and embroideries among which many artefacts trace back to the 7th and 8th century.

Top Paphos FAQs

Q.1) Where is Paphos located?

Ans : Paphos, a city rich in nature and history is located on the western coast of the island of Cyprus. Surrounded by the Mediterranean Sea, the town of Paphos is situated around a small harbour. This ancient town is said to be the birthplace of the Greek goddess Aphrodite.

Q.2) Which countries border Cyprus?

Ans : Cyprus is an island. Only Mediterranean Sea waters are found around Cyprus. Cyprus has Turkey to its north as the closest country. It has Syria and Lebanon towards its East, Israel towards Southeast to its South and Crete (Greece) towards its West.

Q.3) What kind of weather does the city of Paphos has?

Ans : You can enjoy your stay during any season in Paphos, as it has a very pleasant weather. Summers are warm and dry and last from April till mid-November while the winters are mild. You can also enjoy over 320 sunny days during the year.

Q.4) Which languages do the locals of Paphos speak?

Ans : The country of Cyprus has two official languages: Greek and Turkish. Eight percent locals of Paphos speak Greek while 20 per cent speak Turkish. Most Greek people speak good English. Additionally, other international languages such as French, Russian, German, Armenian, Cypriot Maronite, Arabic and Romani are recognized as minority languages.

Q.5) Does Paphos have an airport?

Ans : Paphos (or Pafos) is the main city on west coast of Cyprus and has its own International Airport (airport code PFO).It is located at 6.5 kilometres to southeast of the city of Paphos. Renovated in 2008, the airport manages around 2 million passengers in a year. Airport shuttles and taxis are most commonly used for transport but rental cars are also available.

Q.6) How to reach this scenic city of Paphos?

Ans : There are many flights to Paphos from the UK regional airport. After you are out of Paphos international airport, you can board low cost airport shuttles or taxis. These can be booked online in advance to get to the city of Paphos. You can also hire a rental car to reach your destination.

Q.7) What is the cost of a Cyprus visa?

Ans : The cost of a single or a double-entry visa can cost around EUR 10.26 while a multiple-entry visa costs around EUR 34.20. Fees are to be paid in RUR. Visas issued to Russian citizens are free of cost until further notice. Please note: the visa costs are subject to change.

Q.8) Is the Cyprus visa valid for entry to the Schengen zone?

Ans : No. Cyprus is not a part of the Schengen zone. Cyprus visas only entitle the visa-holders to enter the territory of the Republic of Cyprus.

Q.9) What currency should I carry/use while in Paphos (Cyprus)?

Ans : The only accepted currency in Cyprus is Euro as the country is a member of the European Union. The Cypriot government adopted the Euro as the national currency on 1 January 2008. Most establishments and supermarkets accept all major credit cards while money and travellers cheques can be exchanged at banks. The island is dotted with ATMs that work 24 hours a day.

Q.10) What is the time zone of Paphos?

Ans : The time zone of Paphos is UTC/GMT +2 and the time zone abbreviation: EET - Eastern European Time.

Q.11) What are the contact numbers of emergency services in Paphos?

Ans : Below are the contact numbers you can dial in case of emergency.

· Paphos General Hospital: +357 26 803 100

· Paphos Police Headquarters: +357 26 806 060

· Paphos 24 hour pharmacy: +357 90 90 1416

In cases of emergency, it is advised to go straight to the local government hospital. The doctors at local government hospitals will always treat any patient, in emergency cases, on higher priority.

Q.12) Are waters near Paphos risky?

Ans : The waters around Paphos are calm and inviting. You can explore the sea caves, deserted coves and rock bridges safely. You can also experience the thrill of gliding on the sea wave on a speedboat and visit exceptional places. A safer choice is opting for boat safaris, cruising along famous coastal areas such as Paphos coast, Coral Bay, Akamas Bay, Lara Bay and finally Blue Lagoon.

Q.13) Can a non-Cypriot buy property in Paphos?

Ans : Though you are not a citizen of Cyprus, you can still purchase property in Paphos. After you have bought a property, all you need to do is get the Council of Ministers Permit to register the property on your name, when the separate title deed of the property is available. You or your lawyer on your behalf can make the application. During the process, you may take possession of the property without any restriction.

Q.14) Does Paphos have a huge number of bars, clubs and a happening nightlife?

Ans : Yes. Paphos has several bars and clubs. Most of the bars are concentrated in the area literally called as bar street, which makes nightlife in Paphos charming and unforgettable. But, in addition to that, the city is famous also for its sun-kissed beaches, sea-caves, coves, historical places, forts, archaeological sites, peninsulas and indigenous flora and fauna. So, don’t miss a chance to explore this facet of Paphos.

Q.15) Which is the best season to visit Paphos?

Ans : If you are looking forward to enjoy your holidays in Paphos, the best time to visit is between April and November. The months between June and October guarantee a fantastic weather and a beach holiday. Additionally, Paphos is famous for its rich history. The uncountable historical and archaeological sites such as Tomb of Kings, Paphos Castle, Paphos Light House, and Rock of Aphrodite dating back to Roman and prehistoric era, ornate the entire city. The town of Paphos is listed in UNESCO’s list of World Heritage Sites for its cultural and natural treasures.

Getting Around in Paphos

Paphos offers many tourist attractions, historical places and heritage sites. The city is listed in UNESCO’s ‘World Heritage sites’.

Though public transport of the city facilitates visiting all Paphos attractions, exploring the city on foot is a great pleasure as most of the attractions are close to one another, within a walking distance. For those who are willing to avoid summer heat or are interested in investing time in sight-seeing rather than walking to different sites, numerous modes of transport are available. The public transport system of the city is efficient and reliable. One may also hire a car or go for taxi services available in the city.

Bus System

OSYPA LTD formerly known as Alepa is the Paphos Transport Organization. The local buses run by the organization cover most of the routes between all popular destinations in the city. The charges are extremely reasonable and the system is fully computerized. Maps of the city and the suburbs are made available online. Though the bus schedules are reliable, they get disturbed during festive times.

Taxis

Taxi services in Paphos work no different from those in any other tourist place in the world. Taxis in Paphos are fleets of cars and shared cabs and buses as well. Some of which are licensed and some are unlicensed. The unlicensed taxis are the cheapest and compete well with the licensed cars/buses. They offer pick-and-drop from-or-to the airport as well.

Intercity taxi service is offered in shared 4-to 8-seater minibuses. This service provides a connection service between all major towns at a fixed rate. As rates are not fixed, negotiating the fare before you get into a taxi is a must; otherwise you run the risk of being ripped off. Shared taxis operate like shuttles.

Car Rental

Hiring a car allows exploring the island and its outskirts according to your choice and pace. You can rent a car in Paphos by booking it online in advance or the time you reach the city.

Car hire services in Paphos are competitively priced and so longer trips can be planned. If some adventure or less travelled roads such as roads to Akamas Peninsula are in your mind, hiring more sturdy cars that have an extra ground clearance is a wise choice as the roads are bumpy, rutted and potholed.

Communication in Paphos

Though the city is comparatively small, the communication technology has seen a noticeable progress. As one of the most toured cities in the world, Paphos is striving to come up with the latest modes of communication such as internet, mobile phones along with traditional ways such as newspaper and radios.

The official languages of Cyprus are Greek and Turkish, although in practice Turkish is no longer spoken in the south. Cypriot Greek differs quite significantly from mainland Greek (i.e. Athenian), but they are mutually intelligible. But, as English speakers in Paphos are on rise, the language is fairly well spoken and represented in the local media - radio, television and print.

Along with local languages several English language radio channels are in action. Rock FM is aired for 24 hours in Paphos broadcasting music from English rock and pop, jazz, blues and show genre. Radio Paphos broadcasts news in local languages and in English as well.

Omega TV Paphos and Pafos TV show television programs to the Paphos district. The topics of programs are varied, including Greek and English news, weather, art and literature, politics, local interest and sports. Cartoons and films are also screened by these stations. Nationwide commercial broadcasters include Mega Channel and Sigma TV. Sigma TV offers live TV streaming from their website.

There are three English language newspapers in Cyprus: Cyprus Mail, The Cyprus Weekly and The Financial Mirror.

Paphos is the first dedicated Internet news station in Cyprus with news from Paphos. CYTA, the Cyprus Telecommunications Authority is the main telecom carrier in Cyprus, including Paphos and until recent times, it enjoyed a leading position in this sector. The company is partly owned by the government. CYTA has taken most of the telecom infrastructure in Cyprus under its wings. Its ADSL service has the widest coverage but some remote villages may face unavailability of the network.

In Cyprus, ADSL is the leading broadband technology with multiple providers offering packages that range from 1Mbps to 24Mbps. Until recently, there were no cable TV networks in Paphos and Cyprus as a whole and so cable internet was not available. Today, Cablenet is the only cable company in Cyprus and it provides up to 40Mbps speed.3G mobiles or dedicated 3G data cards are also used as a modem to get broadband services today. But the coverage is limited to urban areas and they are currently offered by CytaMobile Vodafone and MTN mobile carriers.

Satellite Internet solutions is the only option available for broadband services where ADSL is not available. This option is quite costly but it is available in all parts of the island.