If you’re looking for the best beaches in Cyprus to swim or get your tan on then Cyprus is your country! The small island country is full of beautiful beaches and undiscovered coves.
Cyprus boasts a warm Mediterranean culture that is sure to welcome you to their gorgeous sandy beaches and rocky coves. We ventured around the country for a month in search of the very best beaches in Cyprus. It’s a stunning part of the world and you’ll want to be sure to pack a great travel camera in your carry on bag and get ready for some fun in the sun.
The Best Beaches in Cyprus
Nissi Beach, Ayia Napa
Nissi Beach is probably the most well-known beach in Cyprus, and justifiably so. The beach has a bit of notoriety for being a wild party, and it is. The beach bars blast music while serving drinks to a young crowd in the peak season. It’s actually miserably packed until November, and I would avoid it at all costs until it starts to die down. There are simply too many people for such a small beach.
In the off-season, the beach slows down and, at least for us, starts to shine. Nissi Beach is essentially a long sandy bay with shallow and crystal blue water; it’s beautiful and has a distinct shape to it. The bay is a wonderful place to take a dip in calm waters.
Cape Greco, Ayia Napa
This may not exactly be a beach, but for the anyone wanting to beat the crowds of people sweating it out in beach chairs, this is the place to go. The cliffs around Cape Greco are perfect for lounging in the sun and on calm days you can climb down to go swimming in the sea caves. There’s no actual place to sunbath or set out a towel, it’s all limestone rock and cliffs.
For the adventurous beachgoers, you can also take leaps off the cliffs into the water from about 10 meters up. Jumping from the cliffs is my favorite thing we did in all of Cyprus. Once you’re in the Mediterranean waters at the base you can enjoy cooling off.
Aphrodite’s Rock, Paphos
Known as Petra Tou Rominou. Legend has it that the rock formation just off this Cyprus beach is the birthplace of the goddess of love, Aphrodite. The beach itself is made of smooth stones and can be a nice change of pace from the typical sand beach.
The water can be a little rough so swimming may not be the best idea for all, but sunsets here are spectacular. We traveled here just to catch it at sunset, and the whole experience here was breathtaking and certainly worthy of being the best beach in Cyprus.
Coral Bay, Paphos
Just outside of Paphos this long sandy stretch has something to offer all. Waves here can often be wavy, but a blast to swim in for those capable. The strip also offers plenty of water sports to keep the adventurous entertained for hours. This is the perfect beach for families with plenty of space gets away from the areas crowded below the cafes/bars.
Konnos Bay, Ayia Napa
Ever imagined soaking up the sun in a moon-shaped beach hidden at the bottom of a forested hill? At Konnos Bay, that dream can become a reality. It is a picturesque beach quickly gaining the attention of tourists and locals. It’s perfect for a day at the beach with family or loved ones.
The water in the photo? It truly is that color – you don’t need to spend a fortune on a vacation in the Seychelles or French Polynesia to enjoy this. However, during the summer season and UK holidays, this is another Cyprus beach that gets horrendously packed. It will be hard to find space in the sand to set your towel on. Or you can fork over the €3 for a beach chair. The café overlooking the beach is also a must; it’s a terrific place to enjoy a nice cold Frappe.
Fig Tree Bay, Protaras
In strong contention for being one of the best beaches in Cyprus, Fig Tree Bay is no doubt a popular one. On our first visit to Cyprus in late October we found Fig Tree Bay all to ourselves and it was wonderful. However the second time we visited in early October the place was so crowded it was unenjoyable (see photos above).
Despite being so crowded, Fig Tree Bay is often overlooked by the purpose-built town of Protaras and is much quieter than Ayia Napa. If you hit it in the right season with no one around it may be a contender for the best beach in Europe. The town of Protaras itself may not be as wild as its neighbor Ayia Napa, but it still has seedy bars and draws in crowds during the summer.
Lara Bay, Akamas Peninsula
This beach is not an easy one to get to, but the journey is worth it. Lara Bay is set out far onto the Akamas Peninsula, an undeveloped part of the island. You’ll likely need a high clearance vehicle to get out to the beach, or just brave it in a rental car like us (wouldn’t suggest that one). The drive itself meanders along the coast giving a glimpse of the undisturbed regions of Cyprus. If you’re lucky you may even spot some wildlife. We caught a glimpse of some wild mountain rams!
The sandy beach has turquoise waters, an abundance of vegetation, and turtles. The entire beach is actually dedicated to the famous loggerhead turtle so be careful not to disturb the nests of the turtles while enjoying the beach. If you’re looking for a little beach time without disturbing the turtles the beach right before the bay is a great spot to take a dip and make a tower of rocks.
Paramali Beach, Limassol
Just 25 kilometers from Limassol at Paramali Village is the beautiful Paramali Beach. The winds at this beach are strong and water is deep, making it a great place to go kitesurfing at.
This beach is less known that many of the others on this list, but that doesn’t mean it’s not one of the best beaches in Cyprus. Its desolation makes it ideal for a day of peace and quiet with the ocean. Since it’s not a destination beach it’s recommended to bring your own food and beverages to Paramali as there are no beach huts or nearby restaurants. If you’re feeling peckish and are in an explorer mood be sure to walk through Paramali village.
Mackenzie Beach, Larnaca
Palm trees, sunshine, clean water – what’s not to love? Just 15 minutes away from the city of Larnarca is Mackenzie Beach. It’s very much a locals beach for the residents of Larnaca, so you may see more Cypriots there than vacationers which is always a nice feeling.
The water is shallow, meaning children and families can feel safer. Being near the city this beach can get busy, but it’s also a great place to walk along the promenade and grab some ice cream while overlooking the beautiful ocean.
Makronissos Beach, Ayia Napa
Makronisso Beach is actually three small bays with perfect soft white sand. It’s the perfect spot for some adventure activities like paragliding, water skiing, and diving. All the while, the water is clear, calm, and shallow so it’s great for sunbathers and families who just want to relax. The beach is clean and well cared for.
There is also a tasty snack bar on the beach with great beer choices for the adults. Sun beds and loungers can be hired out for the like many of other beaches in Cyprus. Most visitors note that it is less crowded than other beaches in Ayia Napa, which is just the way we like it! For a fun day I would recommend bringing some snorkel gear – you may spot a sea turtle!
Kalamies Beach & St. Nicholas Church, Ayia Napa
Kalamies Beach is another gem loved for its warm, clear water and unspoiled sandy shore. However, it has a little something extra: the St. Nicholas Church sits along a spit of land that extends out; its whitewashed walls and turquoise-domed roof give the area a distinctly Greek feel.
The area is backdropped by a line of palm trees from a nearby hotel, so there’s a bit of a tropical vibe to the area as well. Starting to get a little hungry? Stop by the Kalamies Beach Restaurant for something to eat; the restaurant has long been loved by locals and tourists alike for its seafood. Its lobster, oysters, and mussels are amazing, or try the feta-stuffed calamari for something truly Mediterranean.
While this beach is pretty packed on weekends through July and August, weekdays tend to be quiet, so try coming by when it’s a little more mellow for a more relaxing stay.
The Blue Lagoon, Ayia Napa
The Blue Lagoon is exactly what it sounds like an is one of the best beaches in Cyprus. Welcome to cloud nine; the clearest water you’ve ever seen, rock formations that keep the waves gentle, and hot sun that makes you feel like you’ve just entered paradise. Because of the perfect conditions, this is a hotspot for snorkeling, diving, and swimming. Come here if you want to be in the water and not sunbathing, there aren’t many places to lay a towel and get comfortable. It’s all rock and limestone.
Visitors can hire motorboats or open air go kart buggies to take them to the best spots, but if you’d rather go it alone, there’s always the option to rent bikes and take the scenic route, as you can still access the lagoon from land. We rented a car in Cyprus and it too got us everywhere we needed to go. Though the water is clear enough to see the bottom, goggles will help you to spot all the little signs of sea life to make the most of your experience.
Edro III Shipwreck Beach, Paphos
If you’re into seeing shipwrecks and getting some cool photos head to the Edro III shipwreck. The Edro met an unfortunate fate not long ago in 2011 when a storm swept it into the rocks. Thankfully no one died and fuel was removed from the wreck fast so that pollution was avoided.
Now it’s becoming a popular tourist attraction for those wanting to see a relatively new shipwreck. It’s not really a beach you will relax at, but rather one to stop at if you want to indulge in history. It’s well worth the journey and is nearby to the Paphos sea caves!
Any visitor on their way to Cyprus they can expect to find a long history, friendly locals, delicious food, and some of the best beaches in all of the Mediterranean. So what are you waiting for?
Plan and Pack for Cyprus
Travel Water Bottle
Plastic pollution is a problem in Cyprus so it’s best not to contribute to the problem buying plastic water bottles everywhere – plus the water from the taps here is perfectly safe to drink. We’ve shifted to using an insulated aluminum water bottle as it handles the hot sun well.
However, we also love filtered water bottles in areas we’re uncertain of the water supply. Read more about favorite water bottle for travel in our post.
A cover-up is one of those beach vacation clothes you should always travel within your luggage. When packing for a day at the beach, make sure you don’t forget one. Not only do they look cute, but they will also protect you from the suns harsh rays.
Many establishments don’t allow beachgoers to wear just a swimsuit, so this is where the cover-up is essential. Most of my cover-ups come from Pitusa.
This all depends on where you’re heading to the beach, but a portable Bluetooth speaker is great to have when you’re in a group. We travel with a small BOOM speaker and take it with us when it feels appropriate. We say this because it’s often best to leave it at home on small secluded beaches so not to annoy anyone else with your music — no one’s that good of a DJ.
Of course, what you wear all depends on where you live! For those heading to Cyprus in the Spring or Fall, you may want something a little warmer. For those days we always reach for a warm fleece jacket.
Patagonia’s Synchilla Snap T Pullover fleece is the best fleeces for the beach in our opinion. The fleece has a classic relaxed cut that has a timeless look for a walk on the beach or evening bonfire. It’s a double-sided fleece that provides plenty of warmth while remaining soft and comfortable.
If you’re wondering what travel necessities to bring to Cyprus then good walking shoes should be your top concern.
No matter what you will need a beach bag when heading to the beach. This is to throw in anything like towels, a book, a speaker, sunglasses, snacks, and sunscreen. As full-time travelers, we often use our daypacks for trips to the beach since a tote is unnecessary.
However, a classic tote that everyone has in their closet is a great option for those on short trips or live close to the beach. They also travel well as they can fold flat and lie in your luggage. For family beach goers I recommend a large yet durable beach tote like this one.
Skin cancer is for real! Don’t forget your SPF when traveling around Cyprus. We recommend ordering some online before leaving the house as you will need it underneath the sun in the summer.
We highly recommend getting an eco friendly sun cream that does not contain harmful chemicals.
Make sure to protect your eyes from the sun. There are a lot of options for sunglasses and everyone should own at least a pair. It’s best to make sure they do have UV protection for the health of your eyes.
We made our first investment in quality polarized sunglasses with a pair of SMITH Optics Lowdown 2. Truthfully, not everyone needs to invest $150 in a pair of sunglasses, but they do make a huge difference from the crappy $10 ones.
Most hotels will provide you with a towel, but they often aren’t suitable or allowed on the beaches. I like to travel with a microfiber towel because they are light and fold up small, and they also don’t cling on to sand our dirt. Here are a few of our favorite travel towels.
Get Around Cyprus
Getting to Cyprus from mainland Europe has never been cheaper with budget airlines such as RyanAir servicing the island. Paphos city buses run €1.50 one-way. While long distance buses to another city typically cost around €7.
An automatic rental car can go for €15 a day in the low season up to €35 a day in the higher seasons (automatic) and will ensure you get to all the best places in Cyprus. Knowing how to drive a manual car will get you better prices in Europe.
If you’re traveling as a group it is worth your while to hire a car for your trip. We traveled around Cyprus for one week last time and paid about €25 a day in the high season, which was a pretty decent deal in my opinion! I generally like to check comparison sites so I can get the best prices. My favorites to look at are:
- RentalCars.com: Provides comparisons for car rentals in Cyprus.
- AutoEurope: I can often find deals here for car rentals in Europe.
- Discover Car Hire: Searches rental car prices around the globe.
Where to Stay in Cyprus
Rododafni Beach Apartments
This is our favorite place to stay in all of Cyprus. Rododafni apartments is run by a local Cypriot, Costas. Costas goes out of his way to make sure all guests are comfortable in his rooms. His apartments are well equipped and extremely affordable. Plus, the balcony in each room provides stunning ocean views. Don’t take my word for it though – check the reviews!
Villa Grand Zeus
If you are traveling with a group to Cyprus a villa is definitely the way to go. Villa Grand Zeus is only a 10-minute drive from Pissouri Beach, but if you don’t feel like leaving it also has a free form pool and large terrace for everyone to relax at. With all the amenities you could possibly need for a vacation a villa is not a bad option especially for families in Cyprus.
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