Where To Stay In Cyprus: The 8 Best Areas – 2023 Guide

With some of the most beautiful beaches in Europe coupled with gorgeous mountains, deeply interesting history and vibrant nightlife, the area you stay in Cyprus can help craft your holiday into one you’ll never forget.
The paradise island of Cyprus offers something for everyone! Photo: George Lemon | Unsplash

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Ah, Cyprus, a beautiful Island with glorious weather and many amazing adventures awaiting you!

Few places offer such a range of experiences in such a small area, but with each place offering unique styles of living and experiences for tourists, it’s important to know where you are heading before just jumping on a plane.

Whether you’re after a family break, a romantic getaway, or a week of partying, we’ve got you covered in this guide on where to stay in Cyprus, updated for 2023!

Sunny Cyprus, where you can explore a historic city and lie on a beautiful beach on the same day!
Photo: Secret Travel Guide | Unsplash


The eastern Mediterranean is home to many incredible islands, and Cyprus is no exception.

For anyone following the history of Cyprus in recent years, it is easy to see why there is some difficulty in choosing where to head on your dream trip to this paradise island. For those who don’t know, Cyrpus is currently a divided island, with the Southwest being the Republic of Cyprus and the Northeast being occupied by Turkey (Northern Cyprus).

Political views aside, both of these cultures provide a rich history and incredible foods to enjoy, making it difficult to decide where to make your base for your trip. Add in the incredible geographical differences between each place, and mix in microcultures of every town and city and it makes the decision even harder.

Every place on this island is a dream destination and you will no doubt love them all, but I’m here to help you find the perfect location that fits your needs exactly!

So, with no further hesitation, travel with me to the Mediterranean where we explore the eight best places to stay in Cyprus, 2023!

Whether you’re after a thrilling water park, or pristine beaches away from the tourists, we’re here to help you find your dream holiday! Photo: Ollie Craig | Pexels

Nicosia – For history and culture

Nicosia, also known as Lefkosia, is the capital city of Cyprus and so there’s no wonder that it takes its place here in our list. In fact, Nicosia isn’t just your typical capital city, it is the only capital city in the world that is divided. That’s right, the border between Northern Cyprus (Turkey) and The Republic Of Cyprus runs straight through the middle of this historic city! This means that you will see checkpoints on various streets, and even many side alleys blocked off in the center of the city.

Don’t worry though, there is little unrest in the city, the barricades are simply to stop people from crossing unlawfully, since heading from one side of the city to the other is crossing a country border. I highly recommend crossing the border during your stay in Nicosia, as the contrast between the different sides cannot be overstated, and you will find yourself amazed by the change in language, culture, food, and even architecture.

Although far away from the beach, Nicosia offers the oldest museum on the island, plus ample history as a city that has been continuously occupied for 4500 years! And besides, it is easy to rent a car to visit the beaches if you get that summer craving whilst here.

Although away from the sandy beaches, the biggest city in Cyprus offers lots of culture and history for those interested! Photo: Sergei Gussev | Flickr

Larnaca – For a city/beach combo

As the home to one of Cyprus’ two international airports, Larnaca is likely a place that you will see from the air before on foot. Not that this is a bad thing, however as Larnaca is home to the famous Salt Lake, situated in the center of the city offering beautiful views from above and on ground level.

Larnaca also boasts one the of nicest city beaches – Finikoudes, making this the perfect getaway for those wanting to relax in the sun, but also enjoy having lots of things around them. As a smaller city, you won’t be overwhelmed by busy streets, but expect a slower pace of life, full of some incredible restaurants and cafes.

Larnaca is easily accessible by foot and so you can wander the area in the afternoon sun, taking in the sites of this fabulous city. Take a stroll around the docks to experience the luxury yachts often docked here, or wander to the Salt Lake to dive into nature.

Larnaca is also a popular diving destination, with a large shipwreck just off the coast for you to explore. For those interested in culture and history, Larnaca has it all, with some of the island’s most prominent religious buildings such as the Church of Saint Lazarus being situated here! Take a walk around the old town to experience the traditional side of one of Cyprus’ oldest cities.

The city of Larnaca sits right on the edge of this beautiful beach. Photo: Sergei Gussev | Flickr

Protaras – For resort goers

Is your main goal for visiting Cyprus to sit on the beach, cocktail in hand and unwind far away from life’s worries? If so, then Protaras is the place for you! Think crystal clear waters and long sandy beaches, with many options for resorts, hotels, bars, and restaurants.

Situated on the East of the island, this sunny town gets excellent weather year-round and is even the destination that many locals visit during their holidays. With a large pedestrian street and many beaches, hidden coves and bays to choose from, you won’t be stuck for things to do in this paradise town!

Make sure to check out the world-famous fig tree bay while you are there. Protaras is also a well-known diving spot, hosting beautiful reefs with high visibility. This destination is perfect for families and couples alike.

Pristine beaches, clear waters, and fabulous resorts! Protaras is the place for you if you’re looking to unwind! Photo: Falco Ermert | Flickr

Ayia Napa – For the partyers!

Needing little introduction, Ayia Napa is famous for its beautiful beaches, award-winning waterpark, and, of course, epic parties! Think Ibiza style, with people from all over the world coming to experience famous DJs, boat parties, and the island’s largest nightclubs!

And when you wake up from the hangover of the night before? Well, there are many incredible beaches to choose from to nap the day away before hitting up the bars again the next night. Ayia Napa also has some interesting history to offer its visitors, with beautiful buildings and even a monastery to visit. Not to mention the countless sea caves dotted along the coast, perfect for exploring on a day off from the parties. It is also the perfect springboard to explore parts of the beautiful National Forest only a short drive away from the town!

Famous for its parties, Ayia Napa also has an incredible rocky cost to explore! Photo: Datingjungle | Unsplash

Paphos – Historic town with access to hiking

Another popular destination is the city of Paphos, famous, again, for its beautiful beaches (okay, so it turns out most places in Cyprus have beautiful beaches). Aside from the incredible beaches, Paphos is rich in history, containing a large archaeological site with ancient tombs, old temples, and the Odeon Ampitheatre, dating back to 2nd century AD!

Head down to the lower town to enjoy romantic restaurants and chill but exciting nightlife. From Paphos, you can also easily explore the surrounding Troodos Mountains, one of only two mountain ranges on the island. These mountains are known for their breathtaking views and high-up monasteries.

Don’t forget to check out Coral Bay while you are here, known to be the finest sand beach on the island!

Known for beautiful beaches, historic monuments, and hiking opportunities, Paphos really has it all! Photo: Sergei Gussev | Flickr

Kyrenia – For mountains and Turkish culture

As the only location on this list entirely on the Turkish side of the island, this is a must-see for anyone wanting to explore Turkish culture, markets, and excellent food. Think tiny winding backstreets, with colorful vendors and flavourful aromas. Kyrenia hosts multiple castles, an incredible harbor, and, of course, beautiful beaches; this means you will never be stuck for something to do in this northern city. If shipwrecks are your thing then you can also visit the shipwreck museum, located inside Kyrenia castle itself!

Located at the foot of the Kyrenia mountains, this is also an excellent base for those wanting to spend their time hiking and enjoying some of the less-explored nature of the island. The town itself is also beautiful, offering cobbled streets and a historic horseshoe-shaped harbor.

With the balance between nature and rich traditional culture, Kyrenia is one not to be missed for anyone wanting to get the most diverse experience from their holiday.

The famous horseshoe bay of Kyrenia! Photo: Serkan Pulat | Pexels

Limassol – The all-in-one city

As the second biggest city on the island, Limassol really holds up to its end of the deal by being one of the most developed cities also. Limassol is one of those cities where you can wake up with an idea in your head, and find a way to do that very thing! It seamlessly combines ancient ruins with trendy cafes, bustling beaches with tree-lined promenades, local culture with foreign ideas.

The city boasts one of the largest old towns on the island, as well as the largest population of foreign workers. The result? A beautiful blend between the old and the new. This city is the perfect destination for those who want to experience everything that Cyprus has to offer, but only want to stay in one place. It has great local nightlife, as well as being close to the mountains and hosting beautiful sandy beaches (of course).

Make sure you check out the Medieval Museum and take a stroll around the incredible marina, which feels like a separate town floating on the water!

You can find everything in this beautiful city, and is one you could easily spend a long time enjoying! Photo: Sergiy Galyonkin | Flickr

Pissouri – For a more relaxed, local feel

Located just 30km west of Limassol City, this sleepy village is perfect for those wanting to get away from the hustle and bustle, without being surrounded by other tourists. It is known for its stunning coastline with pebble beaches (although the classic sandy beaches can be found too, of course).

Here you will feel a more traditional side of Cyprus, untouched by tourists. You’ll meet local farmers and winemakers, and the local council have vowed to preserve the traditional lifestyle of the village, meaning it is perfect for those wanting to experience the local ways of life. You can imagine tiny winding alleys, cute stores, and lots of local produce.

The village is also close enough to Paphos and Limassol that you can stay in the tranquil village, and visit the cities for just a day. Make sure to head down to the village square in the evening to experience the locals enjoying the many restaurants overlooking the ocean.

The quiet streets of Pissouri village. Photo: elPadawan | Flickr


So by now you probably realize that no matter where you go in Cyprus, you will experience beauty, culture, and relaxation, but be sure to make your base in whichever place fits you the most! The wonderful thing about Cyprus is that it is relatively small and so I would always recommend hiring a car for some or all of your trip, this means you can explore many or all of the locations on this list, whilst always returning in the evening to have dinner in your favorite town.

So pack your bags, put on your sun cream, and head out to enjoy the beautiful island of Cyprus!


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