Paphos, Cyprus in 4 days (April, 2018)
The whole thing started with my decision that I wanted to see the sea before I was 30 years old. I finally turned 30 and in half a year my dream came true.
First steps to Paphos
I found cheap tickets from Budapest to Paphos, did only a few minutes of research when I decided that it would be perfect! Paphos is a small city with about 35,000 inhabitants, has amazing archaeological sites and wonderful coastline and it was enough.
Of course we made some mistakes (walk all day because we “must” see everything not enjoying a lot of things just hurry up, buy a lot of totally unnecessary souvenirs…) but we learnt from it and despite all this we really enjoyed it and that is the most important thing if you travel. Make your mistakes but still enjoy the adventure!
From the airport it’s very easy to get to the city by bus. You just walk out from the airport and in front of us there are the bus to the city. You can purchase your ticket from the driver, it costs few euros and the ride takes about 20-30 minutes to the main bus station in Kato Paphos District.
Our accommodation (called Georgia Apartments, you can easily find them on Booking.com) was located at the northern part of Paphos near the Tombs of the Kings. It was funny to check-in because there was no people around so after a few seconds of despair we went into the restaurant in the neighbourhood to ask for information and it turned out there that the owner of the apartment and the restaurant is the same. A sweet old lady finally gave us the keys so we put down our bags and started looking after some lunch.
We found a restaurant nearby (called Karlina Restaurant) which we highly recommend! The staff is extremely kind and helpful and we had a really memorable lunch there (lunch… it was about 6 p.m. but never mind :)) If you get there you must try the souvlaki which means that you will get small pieces of meat on a skewer that had been grilled. You will get salad and fries on your plate too. The other thing you must try here is kleftiko which is a really soft and amazing piece of lamb usually with jacket potato which will melt in your mouth… Yum! 😛
And when (we thought that) we finished the meal and wanted to pay our waiter appeared with a huge bowl of fruits and we got two shots of some kind of fruity liqueur (I don’t remember the name) and all of this were completely free. So if you got to Paphos we would recommend this place wholeheartedly.
Day 2 – Tombs of the Kings and the Sea Caves
We got up early to avoid the crowd (it always works) and visited a UNESCO World Heritage Site called Tombs of the Kings. This place is a large necropolis with tombs carved out of the rocks. You can walk into these tombs and the caves. It was very hot outside so we were glad to feel a little cool breeze as we went inside the caves 🙂 Don’t miss it!
We spent a couple of hours there and then we caught a bus to Coral Bay which is a few kilometres north from the Tombs of the Kings. Coral Bay is a very popular coastline among Cypriots (inhabitants of the island) and tourists too but it’s not yet crowded in April. The water was a bit cold for us so we only just walked into but we saw people swim so only we weren’t brave enough 🙂
We had lunch in one of the very touristic restaurants nearby (avoid these! I’m sorry, I don’t remember the name of the restaurant. It was more than 2 years ago…) and after that we started thinking about what to do in the afternoon. We decided to visit the Sea Caves! We had romantic thoughts about getting into these caves and taking the most wonderful photos of our lives… Hah!!!! Not exactly happened this way 😀
The first mistake we made here was not researching enough. We only asked the taxi company there about the prices and it was too much for us so we decided to go there by foot. We weren’t prepared enough. Later we realized that we could have gone by bus or other cheap transfer… I don’t even understand how we could have thought of this but it didn’t matter, we took it as an adventure.
So we started walking… It was about 3 o’clock in the afternoon, it couldn’t have been warmer while we were constantly walking on the side of a road. On the one hand it was funny and cool because that was the first time in my life I saw banana on it’s tree, we saw amazing villas and beautiful plants. But. At the end of just an hour’s journey we were exhausted of the warm weather and when finally reached our destination, the caves, we were disappointed.
Why? Because we didn’t know how to get down into the caves! Do you understand? We didn’t even do it to research a little bit after that how we could get down there! Amateurs… 🙂 We saw a few people down there, swimming in the water but the narrow road down seemed dangerous and it wasn’t what we expected. Nevertheless, the caves are amazing and a must if you get there! Just do your research.
Okay, so we took wonderful photos of this wonderful place, and what’s next? There is a shipwreck about 20 minutes walk from there. This is called The Edro III. Edro ran aground in 2011, the crew were rescued successfully. Nobody is allowed now to the ship but you can admire from a few meters. An amazing sight from such close up.
After visiting the wreck it was about sunset so we decided to go back to the accommodation. We found a business card at the desk of a restaurant nearby that offered cheap transfers and we could order it by using Whatsapp. Excuse me? No phone calls (I was afraid in that times to talk in English on the phone), no difficulty, just a text message? It was unusual to us first travelers, but we tried it and it worked. There are a few companies that offer private transfer services at a reasonable price. I wish we had known about this sooner.
Day 3 – The Paphos Mosaics
On our last full day we visited the Paphos Archaeological Site near to the city center. This is another UNESCO World Heritage Site, here you can see the famous Paphos Mosaics.
They were discovered in 1962. The mosaics are made from small cubes of marble stones along with glass paste. You will see a lot of amazing mosaic floors which are depicting scenes from Greek mythology. In that time of the year (in April) you will see a lot of poppy flowers everywhere which color the landscape.
Heading back to our apartment we decided to have a lunch near the coastline at the Kefalos Beach Village. This place is amazing. The Beach Village offers a lot of small apartments with terrace, a lot of swimming pools and restaurants as well.
So we had our lunch there and we didn’t regret it at all. One of us had souvlaki (again!) and one of us tried the moussaka. The moussaka is a traditional greek dish, which contains a lot of eggplant and ground meat and on the top there’s a milk-based sauce. Incredible.
On the last day we were just hanging around the bay, collecting a generous amount of souvenirs (especially me… Why???) and then we had to go to the airport from Kato Paphos main bus station. We loved this small airport because it offers a terrace (that is not so common) and it makes waiting time more pleasant at all.
Every night we sat down on the beach to admire the sunset. Unforgettable moments. You can catch the lights of the setting sun like this:
Or like this:
And this (with a bonus bird):
We loved the city and the surroundings, decided to go back and discover the whole island as much as possible. But. We will do the research…
About the costs
It could have been solved cheaper but also more expensive so I was proud of ourselves 🙂 This list reflects our costs in 2018, per person:
– Return flight ticket from Budapest to Paphos, only with handbag: 65,2€
– Insurance: 7,6€
– Accommodation for 3 nights: 48,5€
– Food, drink, entrance fees, public transportation, souvenirs (…): 122€
Total cost: 243,3€ per person