A guide to things to do in Paphos

As the birthplace of Greek goddess Aphrodite, you can imagine how beautiful the city of Paphos is. Packing plenty of history, adventure and adrenaline, there’s plenty of things to do in Paphos for everyone. This slice of Cyprus is a sight to behold, so we’ve come up with our pick of the best things to do in Paphos.

Top things to do in Paphos

Beach days

With 27 beaches along Paphos’ 50 kilometres of gorgeous shoreline, you’ll have no trouble finding a spot to lay your towel and soak up some rays. Alykes beach is located right in the heart of Paphos, you can simply roll out of bed and soon be on this stunning beach.  You may need to pay a couple euros for the use of a lounger but with sand this sumptuous, it’s the perfect cushion to place your beach towel on! Alykes Beach is cleaned daily and its waters stay shallow for around the first 20 metres, making it great for those with children. There’s water sports available if you’d like to partake and lots of bars and restaurants nearby for refreshments.

Alternatively, Lara Beach is slightly off the beaten track but well worth making the journey. This unspoiled beach found in Cape Lara is not only a beautiful sight, but populated by green and leather-back turtles! You may be lucky enough to see the turtles laying their eggs or even the new babies scrambling to get to the sea!

This area is protected and there are no facilities on site but as long as you can bring your own towels, food and drinks, it’s a stunning beach well worth visiting. It’s beautifully secluded as not many tourists choose to venture this way and its waters are some of the warmest on the island.

Aphrodite’s Rock

One of the most famous of Cyprus’ beaches, Aphrodite’s Rock comes with its very own magical history. The birthplace of the legend surrounding the mythical Greek goddess of love and beauty, she supposedly rose from these waters in 1200 B.C. The legend states Aphrodite blesses those who swim around the rock for three turns with true love, eternal beauty, eternal youth and fertility.

It’s a beautiful piece of nature found along the road from Paphos to Limassol. Unfortunately, the waters around this area are a little rough, so swimming is prohibited and prevents people testing out the power of the legend, however the view from the top of the beach is reason enough for a visit!

After visiting Aphrodite’s rock you can pop along to the nearby pebbled beach to enjoy an idyllic spot for capturing the sunset.

Things to do with kids in Paphos

Adventure parks

Perfect for family days out, Paphos has many parks and sites that will keep the kids entertained – and the adults! Aphrodite Waterpark has something for everyone and will keep you cool in the summer heat. Hit the Kamikaze first to get the adrenaline pumping as you hurtle down towards the splashzone, or how about a 50ft free fall at 40 km/h? There’s plenty for smaller ones too, including the Pirate Ship, a wave pool and a kids splash park. 

Alternatively, if animals will keep them more entertained then head to Pafos Zoo where they can see elephants, giraffes, tigers, monkeys, and so many more. There’s even opportunities to get up close and personal, like feeding lemurs or elephants. It’ll be a fun-filled day for all – and even educational.

4x4 adventure

Another great day out with the family in Paphos is on 4 wheels. Travel the lengths of the Akamas Peninsula in a 4×4 to explore this intriguing wooded headland. On your journey who knows what wildlife you may come across, it’s an incredibly diverse environment and makes for some superb photo ops. There are plenty of places to rent vehicles from, allowing you to discover this intriguing landscape more closely on an off-road adventure. 

Make sure you take a trip to Akamas Gorge and the Turtle Conservation Project too – particularly if you’re a nature lover.

Things to do as a couple in Paphos

Visit the bathing spot of the Goddess of Love

The Baths of Aphrodite are one of the many hidden gems lying in the lands, most of which are dedicated to the legends surrounding Paphos. This is one of the best things to do on a couples’ holiday – not only will you have a stunning view of the Bay of Polis but this is also where Aphrodite is said to have first met her love, Adonis. Snap some impressive pictures and make lasting memories for the two of you.

If you’re less into the love story and more into nature, this spot also offers stunning views and some of the best hiking trails in the region.

Tastes and tipples

Food is an important part of Cyprus holidays, no matter which part you’re visiting. Though closely associated with Greek gastronomy, Cypriot cuisine is an exquisite entity in its own right. There are few better ways to spend some hours in the Mediterranean sun than at one of the many taverns in the Paphos region. You can put away mezze after mezze as the tiny dishes arrive in a never-ending stream of culinary deliciousness.

Make sure you try local delicacies such as sheftalia sausages and halloumi cheese, washing it all down with a lovely glass of Commandaria – purportedly the oldest wine in the world. Or if you fancy a stiffer drink, sample zivania, the grape-based brandy liquor. Go on, you’re on holiday.

After you’re suitably satisfied, you’ll be pleased to know Paphos has some of the best nightlife in Cyprus. Whether you fancy a good old traditional English pub, some classy cocktails or a wild night at a booming club, Paphos has it all.

Things to do for free in Paphos

Travel back in time

The St Paul’s Pillar archaeological site is a beauty to behold. Situated with the Agia Kyriaki Church and the Panagia Chrysopolitissa Basilica Ruins in Paphos, it’s a truly fascinating piece of history. It’s believed that St Paul was actually tied up and whipped 39 times for preaching Christianity, and that led to the naming of St Paul’s Pillar. Although a violent beginning, it’s a fascinating piece of history that you can walk right through and learn all about.

It’s completely free to enter and open between 8am and 5pm in the summer months. It’s a bit of a hidden gem that not everyone gets to see. St Paul’s Tavern restaurant is located close by and only a few minutes walk away from the column if you want to stop for refreshments!

Stroll around the Old Town

Going for a nice walk is part of many holidaymakers’ plans and it’s another fabulous free thing to do in Paphos. You can marvel over the beautiful white washed architecture before window shopping around many local stores. You may also come across some cool pieces of street art whilst wandering around. Some may overlook these as graffiti, but the talent of these artists is undeniable and they add some amazing pops of colour into the Old Town.

The Old Town area surrounds the popular Kennedy Square and the Municipal Gardens. There are many delicious restaurants and bars around the square if you want to take a pit stop or enjoy some dinner. The square has had quite a modern feel since its refurbishment but the interiors of its bars and the roman government buildings still situated there fully encompass the traditional charm.