KALOSORISATE • WELCOME TO CYPRUS
Since earliest times the beautiful Mediterranean island of Cyprus has welcomed visitors to her shores and today is one of Europe's most popular holiday and conference destinations. The island is a unique blend of stunning scenery and a rich archaeological inheritance that is intrinsically interwoven with the myths and legends of the beautiful goddess Aphrodite whose legacy was to earn Cyprus the name Island of Love.
It is a colourful and sometimes turbulent history that stretches back 10,000 years. Since 1200 BC the island embraced the Hellenic culture which prevailed ever after. Phoenicians, Persians, Romans and Venetians have all left their footsteps on the island's soil. Chalcolithic pottery and Roman mosaics, Byzantine churches and Venetian fortifications are just part of the island's rich cultural inheritance.
Today Cyprus is a unique blend of European culture and the mystique of Levant. The major towns offer bright modern shops, international cuisine and all types of leisure facilities, whilst in complete contrast, life in the villages is still interwoven with the passing seasons and continues at leisurely pace.
Cyprus, an independent republic since 1960, is situated at the eastern end of the Mediterranean and is a natural stepping stone between the continents of Europe, Asia and Africa.
It is the third largest island in the Mediterranean after Sardinia and Sicily, and covers an area of 9,251 square kiliometres, (3,572 square miles) and has a population of 740,000. The main language is Greek but English is widely spoken.
It is an island of colourful contrast between old and new, seascapes and landscapes, the bustle of the towns and the tranquility of the villages, and for more than 330 days each year it is bathed in glorious sunshine. Each year the island welcomes visitors with special interests in walking, cycling, archaeology, Byzantine art and much more.