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Last Updated on 28/02/2021
From narrow cobblestone streets to mountain views, ancient architecture and UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the villages in Cyprus are second to none with their wealth of culture and beauty.
Many of these villages are members of the island’s agritourism project which works to support traditional artisanal and agricultural businesses. Whether it’s wine, crop cultivation or handicrafts, these rural industries have been left almost unchanged for centuries.
Away from the popular tourist hotspots and beach towns, these villages offer a glimpse into the real Cyprus, its rural beauty, its people and their famous hospitality. Need more convincing? Here are the stunning Cyprus villages you need to visit:
Pretty Pedoulas Village
Pedoulas is a picturesque village located in the Nicosia district of Cyprus. High in the Troodos Mountains, it has a distinctly alpine feel to it. Temperatures remain 10 degrees cooler than sea level, making it a popular holiday resort in the summer for those in need of a bit of cooling off.
The drive leading up towards it winds through surrounding pine forests and sometimes even low-lying clouds. You would be forgiven if you thought you were in Central Europe rather than an island in the Eastern Mediterranean.
Like many towns and villages in Cyprus, Pedoulas is home to a UNESCO World Heritage-listed church: Church of Archangelos Michael. Inside, you can find absolutely exquisite Byzantine and post-Byzantine frescoes from the 11th to the 19th Centuries.
Agios Ioannis Monastery
For spas, culture and beauty, there’s nowhere better than Kalopanayiotis in the Troodos Mountains. Temperatures are a little warmer here and its steep and narrow cobblestone streets look down towards Marathasa Valley below. The village is best explored on foot but if you don’t fancy breaking a sweat up and down those slopes, you can park your car in the car park and take the short funicular which only costs a euro each way.
It’s well worth doing this excursion because at the bottom of the hill is Casale Panayiotis, a spa, restaurant and villa complex rolled into one. Also at the bottom are the famous sulphur springs. If you cross over it you’ll come to the Agios Ioannis Monastery, a complex of three churches and unsurprisingly, UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Just some of the mouthwatering food in To Katoi Tavern
Omodos is another Cypriot mountain village and a popular destination for those who like wine, artisan shops and history. Located in the Limassol District of Cyprus, Omodos is a little busier than the other villages but it certainly isn’t lacking in beauty. In fact, it’s one of my favourite villages I’ve visited in Cyprus!
The best way to see it in all its glory is to spend a leisurely morning strolling down its cobblestone streets. You’ll notice tables brightly decorated with fresh bread, sweets, glassware and gorgeous homemade arts and crafts, including lacework and table cloths.
Wander into the True Cross Monastery, one of the oldest and most historic monasteries on the island. It’s believed to be home to a piece of the True Cross. If you start to get peckish, head to To Katoi Tavern for the mother of all mezes that will keep you full for the rest of the day!
A pretty window in Arsorama Village Homes
Another village in the Limassol District is Arsos. It’s the biggest wine-producing village in Cyprus and an important member of the island’s agritourism project. This picturesque little village nestled in the hills provides a welcome retreat for hundreds of visitors as its climate remains cool and dry even in the height of summer.
If you’re a wine connoisseur then make sure to put Arsos on your list. This village is proud to be one of the best wine producers on the island and you can spend a day exploring the local wineries or even take it a step further and hike the popular Diarizos Valley wine route towards the region of Paphos.
Interested in reading more about the amazing benefits of agritourism? Read my guide to green travel here.
View of Tochni from Tochni Tavern
Each village, town and city in Cyprus prides itself on its unique and beautiful characteristics and none more so than Tochni Village. This stunning hidden gem in the Larnaca District is one of the country’s most important agritourism destinations. Many of its buildings have been made out of the distinctive light-coloured ‘Tochni stone’ and renovated to provide modern comforts.
Tochni and its winding streets is the perfect village to get lost in (trust me, I did!). It’s best to just let it happen. Take your time to enjoy the flowers cascading down from balconies, the friendly locals and the magnificent Church of Agiou Constantinou and Elenis. It’s a fairly modern 19th-century building in comparison to some of the other churches on the island. If you get hungry, swing by Tochni Tavern for the best halloumi in Cyprus – in my opinion!
Rose of Damascus in Agros Village
Agros is a stunning village located in the Troodos Mountains on the southwest of the island. It’s built amphitheatrically – which basically means that it curves around the hillside, offering panoramic views of the surrounding forest. The village still maintains its traditional roots, being a centre for agriculture, homemade marmalade, sweets and cured meats.
Agros is perhaps most well-known for its rose cultivation. Between the months of April and May, the hillsides are painted pink with thousands of roses called the Rose of Damascus. In May, the village throws its annual Rose Festival that culminates with a harvest. You can learn all about what happens to the roses at Tsolakis Rose Factory and pick up some delicious-smelling souvenirs while you’re at it.
Discover how to save money when travelling to Europe with these handy budget tips!
Choirokoitia producers a lot of delicious halloumi
Choirokoitia is a traditional village close to the main city of Larnaca. It’s most famous for both its small, family-run halloumi producers and the nearby Neolithic settlement dating back to 7500-5200 BC. Unsurprisingly, it’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site and ranks among the nine most ancient sites in the world.
Choirokoitia is a prime agritourism destination in Cyprus and visitors are encouraged to explore its authentic village-focused attractions, including basket making workshops and the Old Olive Mill which showcases olive oil production methods and tools.
Read More: The Importance of Ecotourism
On top of the Troodos Mountains
One of the most beautiful mountain villages in Cyprus is Platres, otherwise known as Pano Platres. It’s a top wine-producing village surrounded by pine forests. Although it’s a little on the small side, the village is particularly popular with visitors and it saw a number of hotels crop up during the 20th Century.
Notable visitors to the village include King Farouk of Egypt and the Nobel Prize-winning poet, Giorgos Seferis. A fun fact for literature lovers, the English author Daphne du Maurier was inspired to write Rebecca, her most famous novel in Platres. Literary giants aside, Platres is a beautiful village in its own right. Popular sites include the medieval Milia Bridge and Caledonia Waterfall which tumbles from a height of twelve metres.
You can discover more books about travel here.
Taste Commandaria at Karseras Winery
Doros, sometimes known as Thoros in English, is a small village tucked away in the foothills of Cyprus. Hidden among almond trees and grapevines, it has a reputation on the island for producing excellent-quality wine, raisins and Commandaria – the oldest named wine in the world that’s still in production today.
As you explore the village, make sure you stop off at Karseras Winery. Here you can taste this prestigious wine for free, learn about its fascinating history, how it’s made and even take a few bottles home with you. Trust me, you’re going to want to!
Okay, so Paphos is technically a city but I think it deserves a place on the list for its ancient history alone. The entire city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and it has been inhabited since the Neolithic times.
Located on the southwest coast of the island, the city is divided into two sections: Old Paphos, also known as Kouklia which was settled by the ancient Greeks and New Paphos which became the administrative capital during the Roman era. Across the city, you can discover several ancient sites relating to the cult of Aphrodite as well as ancient tombs, theatres and fortresses.
Planning a trip to Cyprus? Check out my Cyprus travel guide below which tells you how to spend three days or longer on the island. Cyprus has a wealth of amazing things to do and see and its villages are a huge part of its cultural identity. I hope this roundup inspires you to visit some of these stunning villages in Cyprus.
- The Best Cyprus Itinerary for a Long Weekend (Or More!)
- 11 Hidden Gems in Cyprus You Need to Discover
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