Holidays in

Easygoing ambience in south Cyprus

Laid-back Larnaca lodges in your brain. The oldest inhabited city in Cyprus, Larnaca holidays promise both ancient culture and a thriving modern city. The biggest draw of holidays to Larnaca are arguably the beaches. Miles of aquamarine sea fringed by gently sloping golden sands make for some of the most idyllic, and safest, beaches on the Med. 

Palm-heavy Foinikoudes promenade stretches from the fishing harbour to Larnaca Fort, with watersports, boat rides and entertainment along the way. Head away from the front to the Turkish quarter’s tiny craft shops and whitewashed houses. A decent walk takes you to traditional outlying villages, with freshly grilled fish and brandy sours made with local lemons. 

In the evenings, Foinikoudes buzzes into neon life. Live it up in the cocktail bars and nightclubs, or do as the locals do and pull up a pew for a late-night coffee and some people-watching at one of the many cafés open until the early hours.

Larnaca is superbly placed to explore Cyprus, with the country’s largest airport nearby. If you do leave the city, mountains and forests await, dotted with traditional villages where locals still practise handicrafts such as lace and silver making. But if you don’t want to leave the city you don’t have to – everything you need is within its boundaries.

Three tips for a top trip

Go out for a strollLarnaca is compact and easily walkable. Everyone strolls the Foinikoudes promenade, stretching 600 metres from the colonial buildings of Europe Square to medieval Larnaca Fort.
Spy on an abandoned townVarosha used to be a tourist magnet. With the Turkish invasion it was abandoned, and it’s now an eerie fenced-off ghost town on the Turkish Cypriot coast.
Snorkel with ZenWhen it sank off the coast in 1980, the ferry Zenobia was carrying 100 trucks and cargo. In the clear waters you can see the wreck, even when snorkelling.

Best attractions to see in Larnaca

Larnaca Fort

This medieval fort was converted to a prison under British rule – the gallows were in use until 1948. In summer there’s a host of cultural events.

Agios Lazaros Church

Lazarus is believed to be buried where the church of Agios Lazaros now stands. Gilt and silver columns and intricate woodcarving make this 9th-century shrine an essential stop.

Salt lake flamingos

Calm and ethereal, Larnaca salt lake is a magnet for wild birds and nature lovers. In winter, thousands of flamingos gather to create a striking natural showstopper.

Your Larnaca questions, answered

Excellent. Most of the wide, sandy beaches slope gently to the sea, making them incredibly safe. Should you need more thrills, one of Europe’s biggest waterparks is nearby.

The name for the border between Turkish and Greek Cyprus. There are various car and pedestrian crossing points, almost always straightforward and trouble-free to use.

Oh, yes. Halloumi-making? Olive-harvesting? Cypriots are extremely proud of their traditions, and there are many opportunities to watch and join in with local artisans in Larnaca.


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