The ocean has been central to the history and culture of Larnaca since the city was first founded in ancient times. Fast-forward to today, and you'll find it's the coastline of the city that's proudly home to many of the most exquisite beaches in Cyprus. Best of all, holidays to Larnaca's beaches cater to every kind of holidaymaker, from partygoers to couples to divers. Almost every strip of sandy shoreline is framed by gorgeous towering palms and amenities within easy access.
Separated from mainstream tourism by dirt trails and dramatic rock barriers, Alaminos Beach is perfect for those wishing to sample Cyprus off the beaten track. A harbour and hotel stand ready to cater to the needs of adventurous spirits, while the nearby village of Mazolos welcomes those seeking a break from the challenging landscape.
Also known as Palm Tree Beach, Larnaca's main coastal region is the tourism centre of the city, with towering hotel resorts and plentiful resources available to visitors.
The restaurants and bars on this side of town are more international than local, with sprawling complexes catering for every taste. Easy access to watersports, diving excursions, sunbeds and shops makes for a fun and safe environment, with frequent supervision by lifeguards. Many visitors to Phinikoudes often remark that, even if it's the beating heart of Larnaca's beach choices, this is a quiet, down-tempo place that's never too crowded.
Located outside Larnaca's city centre, with exciting views of visiting aircraft, McKenzie Beach is one of the most famous in the country – a must-visit if you've already sampled the delights of more serene coastal locations, such as those of Nissi Beach. McKenzie Beach offers a host of amenities, and you'll likely already have heard the locals recommend its seafood restaurants, which are plentiful. And for divers, there's plenty of action to be had, with the famous Swedish Zenobia shipwreck waiting to be discovered beneath the waves – the perfect opportunity for both expert scuba fans and those who want to try it out for the first time.
The serenity and soothing blue sea of Yannathes Beach is around 15 minutes' drive from Larnaca. Famous for the gorgeous floral path leading to a sumptuous Blue Flag beach lined with huts and storefronts, Yannathes Beach will let you unwind after an active day of fun. The shallow water will allow the kids to splash and play without any hassle, and there's volleyball and watersports to keep you active if the temptation to recline and sunbathe on your Larnaca holidays somehow isn't enough.
Just 15 minutes' stroll from Larnaca city centre is the sundrenched beauty of Castella Beach, whose soft sands and shimmering marina are flanked by shops and apartments. The beach gets its name from the famous Larnaca Castle, which is around a 10-minute walk away, and has the full suite of shops, watersports and activities you'd expect from a safe and sunny family beach.
The gazebos and umbrellas will give a welcome reprieve from the sun on especially hot afternoons, and the private nature of the place makes it an ideal retreat, with no need to sacrifice your creature comforts.
If you're looking for a more rugged experience away from the crowds, you'll delight in the isolation and natural splendour of Meneou Beach. Most visitors come here for the views of the salt flats, the peace away from the city bustle, and the chance to reflect on their Cyprus adventures in a stunning, untouched natural environment. There's a small store selling basic provisions, and a few sunbeds.