Tuesday, 20 January 2009

Larnaca, Cyprus

Let friendly people, ancient history, peaceful beaches and family-friendly tavernas woo you to lively Larnaca. Enjoy the thrill of a banana boat ride, learn to sail or simply relax on a beach sunbed. Fancy a change from sea and sand? Head into town and enjoy an iced coffee at a cafe on the modern seafront promenade, or a refreshing brandy sour with lemon at a swish piano bar. Join a free tourist-office walking tour to see the sights and don't forget to visit 18th-century Hala Sultan Tekke mosque and the ninth-century Agios Lazaros Church.

The third biggest town in Cyprus, Larnaca is both a commercial centre and a holiday resort. The beach and tourist area lies outside the town to the south along Larnaca Bay. Here, dotted along the coastline, you'll find a range of Cypriot and international restaurants, trendy bars and clubs as well as tourist hotels. In the town centre, the cafe- and bar-lined promenade is where the locals gather.

Close by, you'll find most of the historic sights including 17th-century Larnaca Fort and the Agios Lazaros Church with its mix of styles from the ninth to 19th centuries.

After a day on the beach, head to bustling Phinikoudes promenade and people-watch over an iced coffee or freshly squeezed orange juice as the locals do. Browse leather bags, hand-sewn lacework and ceramics at nearby shops. Admire cannons and sea views at Larnaca Fort, built in 1625, before wandering around the traditional Turkish quarter. Watch local artisans craft candles and colourful ceramics in their studios there. A short drive away is Hala Sultan Tekke mosque, with the tomb of Hala Sultan, a relative of the Prophet Mohammed.

The ninth-century Agios Lazaros Church houses a beautiful gilded iconostatsis altar screen and the sepulchre of St Lazarus, who Jesus raised from the dead. Glimpse into the past at the privately owned Pierides Museum, housed in a 19th-century mansion, where archaeological artefacts from the Stone Age to Roman Empire are on display. Take your kids to the nearby water park and beach, as well as exploring the world of dinosaurs at Larnaca's Municipal Museum of Palaeontology.

1 comment:

  1. There are numerous hotels in Larnaca,but the better option is their inexpensive Cyprus apartments. Hotels often don’t offer as many home comfort amenities as apartments. In an apartment,your sleeping and living areas are set apart and you can cook your own meals in the kitchen,or kitchenette.


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