Things to do in Coral Bay, Cyprus

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The day after running my third half marathon, I found myself unexpectedly running again, this time through Luton airport in a crazed rush to ensure we didn’t miss our flight. Where were we heading you might ask? Well, I’m glad you did as we were off seeking sandy beaches and sunny days at Coral Bay, near Papthos in Cyprus. 

Within a few hours on the plane and a few coffee’s later, we were landing in the warm breeze of Paphos and our holiday had officially begun. Even though I’ve been to Cyprus several times over the last few year’s this was my first ever visit in May and my first ever visit with Graeme. I’d packed my shorts, bikinis, sun tan cream and I was ready for some relaxation and adventures.

Once I’d reacquainted myself with my family and our room at the villa, we unpacked, ate a light snack and headed off for a walk to shake out and to look at the waves crashing about, whilst displaying ombré shades of blue.

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It felt like a huge weight had been lifted, no work to worry about, no housework, commuting or rushing around like a wild thing trying to fit everything in. Sometimes, it takes a holiday to make you realise, just how much you really do need a holiday.

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For me, It’s all about balance on holiday, some day’s we got up early and ran before 8am and other day’s we would lay in bed until 9am. For me, some mornings were spent giving into a  leisurely breakfast on the patio in the sun.  I planned my day around meal’s (no change there). Primarily we ate in, favouring buffets of fresh deli produce; Greek salads, ripe apricots, lashings of hummus, olives, Waldorf salads and glossy cherries.

Where is the best Deli in the Coral Bay area? Well, ‘The Blue Olive’ comes very highly recommended or you can nip into the local supermarket and pick up a selection of meze according to your tastes. 

What is meze? – putting together a selection of small dishes of food, not unlike tapas or building your own mini buffet. Think feta cheese, garlic olives, hummus, ripe peaches served with honey, salads and cold meats. 

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In my opinion, Cyprus is most beautiful when you leave the tourists on the beach, avoid the beaten track and spend time exploring the road less trodden. Whilst it may not be lush and green, we spent our time exploring sea caves and paddling in rock pools. On our travels (mainly by foot) we introduced ourselves to the local wildlife of lizards, bearded dragons, goats, baby pigs and even a brief sighting of a turtle.

Tip: Walk along from the Coral Bay beach and spend an afternoon exploring the sea cliffs and dipping into rock pools. 

Where did we stay? In a villa a few miles away from the centre of  Coral Bay’ in a rented villa, one thing I would recommend is spending a little extra and hiring a car if you fancy seeing more of the area. 

Where should I eat in Coral Bay/Paphos Area?  For casual outside dining with fresh flavours, incredible smoothies and salad’s I recommend ‘Oniro by the sea’.  Just down from Oniro is an old ship that beached itself during a storm, this always makes a good photo opportunity. Does hand cut chunky chips, salad and a huge plate of barbecued meat sound good? If so, head to ‘The Last Castle’, no menus, a set price and no fuss, just simple great food.

The best Italian is – Trattoria La Vigna

For a greasy but fulfilling breakfast – Frog & Toad

The ‘Hidden Jem’ is – Sidayes

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What activities are there to do in the area? We noticed that many people were renting quad bikes for a more adventurous way of exploring the area, I would recommend searching for the best deal online first. For shopping, I would recommend Paphos centre which has a Thursday market, new shopping centre and the normal array of seafront shops if that tickles your pickle.

A walk I firmly recommend is the Avakas Gorge, I do thoroughly suggest that you wear sensible shoes and clothing that you aren’t worried about getting dirty. There are points where you have no choice but to scramble and I did get muddy, also if there has been a lot of rainfall this may not be the safest choice of walks.

Make sure that you visit the sea caves, this is one of my favourite places in the area and we go every single time we are in Cyprus. If you fancy cycling, there’s plenty of options to hire a bike or explore the area by foot, due to the hot weather we mainly ran from 6-8am or from 5-7pm. 

Alongside the glorious sandy beach, there’s a standard mix of tourist amenities, including places where you can sip cocktails or book a trip to the zoo, rent a dune buggy and you can even play crazy golf. Why not spend an afternoon horse riding? Or jump into a car and explore some of the historical sights in the area as the ‘Tombs of the Kings’

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Have you ever visited Cyprus before? Where are you heading on your next holiday? Or where would you like to visit?

Katie

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10 Comments

  1. June 7, 2016 / 9:48 am

    I’ve never been to Cyprus, or considered it really. It’s so beautiful!
    I have a feeling my next holiday abroad will be when I go to Jamaica to get married in 2018. I’m really looking forward to it for so many reasons.
    I hope one day I can go back to Budapest – my fiancé and I had 10 days there back in 2011, and it still wasn’t enough time to do everything we wanted to! I also dream of visiting New Zealand and seeing the beautiful sights there. And I’d like a couple of months to travel around the USA because there are so many places I’d like to visit.
    In the meantime, I have a couple of weekend breaks in West Wales this summer (one for a 10k and one to go zorbing) and I’m hoping that next summer we can visit Snowdonia again, which is where we got engaged.

    • June 8, 2016 / 6:18 pm

      I must be honest, if my family didn’t have a place there it wouldn’t have been on my agenda but I honestly felt so refreshed after our break. It sound’s like you have so many incredible holidays planned, Budapest is DEFINITELY on my ‘To Visit List’ and I do fancy seeing parts of the USA also. Ahhhh I love Wales, I am heading there next month to climb Snowdon for the 5th time with 60(!) other women – Really looking forward to it! 🙂

  2. June 8, 2016 / 9:49 am

    I’ve actually stayed in the hills just outside Coral Beach town! Its a nice area of the world, quite nice running though a lot of the paths are prone to sudden disappearance…

    Looks like a wonderful break 🙂

    • June 8, 2016 / 6:22 pm

      I am constantly surprised by how popular that area is 🙂 Oh the paths are strange, you think you’re on track and then suddenly you have to have a complete ‘re:map’ 🙂

  3. June 8, 2016 / 3:29 pm

    We stayed just outside of Coral Bay in the hills for my parent-in-laws wedding and I absolutely loved it. You’re so right that you do need to head out of the tourist areas and away from the hustle and bustle. I’d love to go back at some point soon. We went in the September, and it was glorious!

    • June 8, 2016 / 6:23 pm

      Once you break away from all the crowds it’s really beautiful, if we’d had time I’d have loved to have taken a picnic down to one of the tiny beach area’s in the sea caves and just relaxed and paddled. I hear September is always generally really good for weather, I’d only been in November before which is warm but the May temperatures were certainly a lovely surprise 🙂

  4. June 11, 2016 / 7:36 pm

    I have never been to Cyprus but it looks wonderful- a break like that with a balance of being active and relaxing sounds perfect.
    I would love to go to New Zealand but as my main holiday is in the summer (their winter) other places with warmer weather have won so far, but one day…

    • June 12, 2016 / 1:23 pm

      Oh I totally understand, I have a list of places I’d like to see and thing’s I’d like to do but something always get’s in the ways. I hear consistently good things about New Zealand though 🙂

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