Top family activities to do in Cyprus

Friday, 23 September 2011 10:57 AM

Aphrodite's Rock: Where the goddess rose

Aphrodite's Rock: Where the goddess rose

Cyprus is a fantastic family-friendly destination for those hoping to stay in villa holiday rentals, with the island boasting a number of activities to keep adults and children happy.

Whether you want to spend time by the beach, visit local monuments or take the kids to a waterpark, there should be something that piques your interest.

If sitting by the sea and soaking up the sun is your primary objective, there is a range of excellent sandy stretches in Cyprus, enabling you to enjoy the stunning beauty of the island's picturesque blue waters.

Beaches at Paphos are particularly popular, with Coral Bay having one of the best in Cyprus, making it a great day out for those who have booked Cyprus private villas.

Not far from Coral Bay is arguably the island's most famous beach - Aphrodite's Beach, which is also where Aphrodite's Rock is located.

Legend has it that this is the location where the Greek goddess of love rose from the sea amid a shower of foam.

Here you can swim, sunbathe or simply stare at the amazing landscape, with the crystal clear waters lapping against the massive white rocks that jut out from the water.

If you want your family to learn a little about the history of the island while taking advantage of Cyprus villa offers, there is no better place to start than at the Cyprus Museum.

The institution has the best collection of archaeological discoveries in Cyprus, with several well-known exhibits including an amazing display of terracotta figures found in 1929.

Mostly depicting warriors and chariots, the pieces of art date back to between 600 and 700 BC and contain a number of references to fertility and the underworld.

The museum also has three limestone lions and two sphinxes that were uncovered in the Tamassos necropolis, with the statues exhibiting a heavy Egyptian influence.

Other popular displays include a large bronze statue of Emperor Septimus Severus and the Aphrodite of Soli statue, the latter of which often appears on tourist posters.

Once you have expanded your cultural horizons, now may be the time to visit one of the island's many water parks, with Fasouri Watermania in Limassol being the largest.

The attraction has the biggest wave pool in Europe, as well as a vast selection of fun rides, such as the Kamikaze Slide, paddle boats and a long lazy river ride.

Feeling peckish? There are eateries and snack joints at the park, including Pirates' Cove Restaurant, which serves hamburgers, pizzas and cold sandwiches.

If you want something a little more substantial, there are plenty of excellent places to eat out at in Cyprus, depending on your particular tastes.

For those who prefer organic food, St Georges' Tavern in Paphos is hard to match, with almost all of the ingredients used in the dishes grown by the owner.

With a herb garden at the back, a meat-smoking cabin and locally produced wine, this is an experience not to be missed.

Signature foods include oven-baked lamb, known as kleftico, and meze - a selection of small dishes served at the beginning of a meal.

Another favourite eatery in Paphos is the Windmill Restaurant, a family-owned business that serves traditional Greek fare.

Offering fantastic hospitality, sumptuous food and an atmospheric setting, it is considered one of the best places to dine in Cyprus.