Ayia Napa Cyprus (Agia Napa)
About the Resort
The holiday paradise of Cyprus, with its lovely golden beaches, clear sea waters, wonderful dreamy nights and its pleasant and warm-hearted inhabitants has maintained a simplicity of life which is in full accord with the historic traditions of Cyprus. Geographically, Ayia Napa is situated near Cape Greco, just south of Famagusta, and forms part of a larger area known by the name of "Kokkinochorgia" (a name derived from the red-color of its soil). Before it developed into a cosmopolitan tourist centre with its majestic beach Cyprus hotels and holiday apartments, Ayia Napa was a purely agricultural village. Today, despite its enormous development, its people still find time to engage in their old occupations, namely farming and fishing.
One may wonder where the name Ayia Napa is derived from. As far as we know there is no saint that bears this name. The word Napa is archaic and it means woodland. In ancient times this area was uninhabited and was covered with a thick forest, visited only by hunters from the neighboring villages.
According to a local tradition, one day a hunter who happened to be in the area, was greatly astonished when a hare, which was being chased by his dog suddenly disappeared. The dog kept up the hot pursuit and followed the hared to his refuge, which was none other than a cave. The hunter, guided by the dog's persistent and excited barking's soon located the mouth of the cave.
On entering, he gasped with surprise, because before his very eyes was the icon of Virgin Mary which was soon to become famous all over the island. It appears that during the persecutions of the Christians in the 8th and 9th century A.D. some Christians carefully selected this cave to serve as a hiding place for the Virgin Mary of Agia Napa, which was later shortened to Agia Napa. The inhabitants of the neighboring villages, in honor of Virgin Mary, conducted liturgies in the cave itself. This location continued to be inhabited until the 15th century. Tradition has it that when this location became renowned and important as a holy shrine, it attracted the attention of a young, noble lady from Venice who then lived in famagusta. Her father had strictly forbidden her to marry the man she loved on the pretext that he was a commoner and so she left home and found refuge in Agia Napa. She soon had a church and some monastic cells built and in this way the monastery came into being. The present monastery was built around 1500 but inside the church there is a cave which suggests it may have been used as a place of worship in a much earlier period. During the latter part of the Venetian rule (1489-1570) the monastery became quite famous, acquired extensive wealth and even survived the persecutions by the Turks during the Ottoman rule.
In 1668 Ayia Napa Monastery changed from a women's convent to a men's monastery From 1758 onwards, organized monastic life in the monastery was disrupted and monks lived there only on an occasional basis. According to local tradition, until 1790 no one lived in the close vicinity of Agia Napa . The first inhabitants who actually appeared and settled there were 20 men from Salonica and from their offspring the village of Ayia Napa came into existence. Informal monastic life continued throughout British rule. The buildings were restored in 1950. Ayia Napa Monastery was first considered as a possible centre for an ecumenical conference in 1971. By Spring 1978 all plans for the preparation of the Monastery to take up its new role had been completed. The centre was inaugurated on 21 st May 1978. Ayia Napa Conference Centre was established to serve and strengthen the work of all churches in Cyprus as well as those in the Middle East. The innate simplicity of the Ayia Napa people has not died with the passage of time. In spite of the enormous tourist development, an intense community spirit and mutual understanding characterizes these people, a spirit which is reflected in their attribute towards foreign visitors. The locals here are genial, outgoing and hospitable.
From the very first moment, the visitor to Ayia Napa feels a sense of belonging, at home in this welcoming environment. Here, Cypriot hospitality is an accepted part of everyday life.
Beaches & Sports
The coast of Ayia Napa is considered as the finest regarding beaches in Cyprus. The Ayia Napa hotels and holiday apartments offer superb sea views and spectacular accommodations for every occasion. Extensive silvery, sandy beaches cover the area which attracts the majority of holiday makers. The average sea temperatures (C°) in Ayia Napa throughout the year are as follows:
All along the beaches of Ayia Napa facilities for all sea sports are provided including water-skiing,wind-surfing, sailing canoes, pedals, motor boats, scooters, speed-boats, parachutes, scuba-diving and more.
The Cyprus Tourism Organization supervises
the beaches and are responsible for protecting the interests of all
tourists. Traveling from west to east one comes across the following
Agia Thekla: Situated six kilometers west of Agia Napa is petite Agia Thekla. It has a small island within its grasp and is within walking distance from the main road taking you to Agia Napa. It has taken its name from a tiny old church in that area bearing the same name.
Makronisos Beach: A cluster of bays forms Makronisos beach. The three bays stretch out in different directions, one to the west, the second to the southwest whereas the third one stretches in a south-easterly direction resulting in well sheltered beach areas.
Nissi Beach - Nissi Bay: Only three kilometers west of Agia Napa. These closely connected twin beaches attract thousands of tourists every year. Nissi, which in Greek means a small island, gives a new dimension to the beauty of the landscape. It is well sheltered from the wind and facilitates all sea sports. There are also cafes, pubs and restaurants in the area.
Sandy Bay: Sandy Bay Beach is found 400 yards or so east of Nissi Bay. The beach is also fully protected from winds. Facilities for sea sports are provided for and as is the coast with most beaches, catering facilities are also offered.
Kryo Nero Beach: This beach stretches from the fishing harbor of Ayia Napa for more than 1 km and follows an easterly direction. Thousands of tourists visit it every year. Facilities for all sea sports are provided for and cafes, snack bars and restaurants abound in the area.
The fishing harbor of Agia Napa with its small colorful boats adds character to the view and is a happy reminder of the past.
Palaces: In between Limnara Beach and Cape Greco stand the Palaces. They do not constitute any particular structure but instead are named for the admirable formations on the rocks. The rocky beach has been sculptured by the sea waves which gives the impression of being a fine work of architecture. The reflected light together with the crystal waters form a dreamy picture. This site can only be reached by boat.
Limnara Beach: About four kilometres east of Agia Napa the visitor comes to Limnara Beach. Though small it is one of the loveliest beaches, and is well-protected from the wind.
Konnos Beach: It is situated two kilometres east of Agia Napa on the road between Cape Greco and Protaras. It's one of the most picturesque beaches on the island, well sheltered from the prevailing winds.
Out in the town
When the sun goes down in Agia Napa there is a special ambience that attracts people of all ages and persuasions. On every narrow street of Agia Napa the visitors discovers scores of interesting restaurants, pubs, taverns cafes and discos. If variety is the spice of life, than Ayia Napa has something to satisfy everyone's taste. The Cypriot's appreciation for the good life and his innate love of fine simple foods is reflected at his table and in his leisurely style of entertainment. Dining out in a very popular and pleasant pastime in Ayia Napa. Apart from the typical Cypriot "meze" which is comprised of about 15-30 traditional island dishes served in colorful charming taverns, there are also countless restaurants that specialize in French, Italian and Chinese food. For a quick snack there are always Cafes and Pubs that will welcome you. Bars, Discos, Night Clubs and Bouzouki Clubs are open till the early hours of the morning. Most hotels and holiday apartments have nightly entertainment with a resident band where there are Greek nights and Greek Folk dancing for your enjoyment. This bright, cosmopolitan town has it all. A vibrant, lively and in many ways, extraordinary place with a magnetism all its own, Agia Napa enthusiastically invites locals and tourists alike to merge as one and to participate in the excitement of her surroundings. Fine casual atmosphere, atmosphere, live music, good food and warm hospitality make anywhere you choose to spend and evening a memorable occasion. Agia Napa by night is sensational. Enjoy!
Ayia Napa Cyprus hotel guide. Apartment in Cyprus Ayia Napa accommodation. Budget Cyprus holiday
Ayia Napa hotels
Grecian Bay hotel
Ayia Napa hotel apts
So Nice Beach apts