Cyprus is an incredibly beautiful island, and we discovered more of the beauty of the island by spending a week in Ayia Napa. In our opinion, Ayia Napa is one of Europe’s best-kept secrets. While you may not have heard of it, Ayia Napa is a beautiful resort destination in Cyprus. It’s also a top beach destination in Europe, but little known to ‘outsiders’. With beautiful beaches, a booming nightlife, plenty of accommodations, gorgeous landscapes, and tons of history, it’s not hard to see why!
With all these beautiful places to visit, it can be hard to pick the best spots to spend time and, of course, take pictures. The good news is that we have you covered with everything we suggest doing during a week in Ayia Napa.
A Week in Ayia Napa
There are so many great options on how to spend your time in Ayia Napa that it can get a little overwhelming when picking where to start. So I will start with the most picture-worthy spots in Ayia Napa to get the ball rolling. While these places are great for pictures, they are also full of activities in their own right. Swimming, hiking, taking in the sights. If you roll up, take a picture and leave, you’ll be doing yourself a disservice.
#5 Lovers Bridge
The Lovers Bridge is a beautiful natural land bridge just outside the main area of Ayia Napa. Legend has it that if two lovers kiss on the bridge while making the same wish, it will come true. All we know is that we love it as an incredibly photogenic spot.
Be warned though, this can be a VERY popular spot at times. We suggest going to take pictures early in the morning, or you’ll have to crop some assholes out of your photo. It’s a short walk down the beach and a nice beach-side trail that is very easy to get to.
#4 Sea Caves
The Ayia Napa Sea Caves are another must-see. After turning onto the road that leads to the sea and pulling up to the caves, you might wonder if your maps have steered you wrong. But after a few steps to the magical coastline, you’ll find a natural tunnel carved out of the rock, which makes it the perfect photo spot. The crystal clear waters make for an excellent backdrop for photos.
When the tide is low, cool off with a dip in the sea and a little exploring in the sea caves down below. Or sunbathe along the cliffside with the sound of the water hitting the rocks and a view you can’t beat.
#3 Bridge of Koraka
The Bridge of Koraka is third on our list of best photo-worthy spots. This natural land bridge is the most well known in Cyprus. Unfortunately, it has been fenced off from crossing. It likely couldn’t hold the many people who would try to stand on it. But, it still makes for incredible photos. Also, it’s part of the Cape Greco National Park and ‘Trail of Sea Caves’ so there’s plenty of beaches and sights around it so you can spend more time in the area.
Google Maps is going to be your best friend when trying to find these spots. While this one may be a little more remote, it’s only a few minutes from a main road, and maybe a 10 minute drive from the center of Ayia Napa.
#2 Agioi Saranta
The Agioi Saranta is off the beaten path, and it’s uniqueness and exclusivity is what appealed to us. This island is littered with churches everywhere, but none quite like the ‘Cave Church’. The whitewashed stone and blue door are the perfect backdrops for a photo. With no light other than the open space above the ‘wall’ and the dome on top of the cave, interior pictures can take some effort. However, if you’re feeling adventurous, you can climb up the hill outside. There you can take pictures on top of the church at the dome and bask in the wonderful views of the beach and city below.
You’ll need a car or ATV to get here, but the exclusivity is part of the appeal. The Agioi Saranata is located up some big hills, and the roads leading here are pretty rough. However, it’s definitely worth the trek as it’s one of the best spots in Ayia Napa to check out on vacation.
#1 Nissi Beach
A beautiful beach, a sand bridge, and a small island off the coast with great views. It’s impossible not to mention Nissi Beach. It’s the perfect location for not only photos but also to have a relaxing day at the beach. Ranked #18 on Best Beaches in Europe by TripAdvisor it’s a hot destination for young party-goers, but it is also family-friendly and a great place to swim.
With plenty of bars, cafe’s, and restaurants just a beach-ball’s throw away Nissi Beach can be a great place to spend a day in the sun. It’s also in the heart of Ayia Napa so walking along the beach to get here is an easy way to get in some exercise while also taking in the beautiful views of the coastline.
Where to Stay in Ayia Napa
Much like the abundance of beautiful landscapes, lavish hotels and resorts are everywhere. It can get a little overwhelming trying to pick out where in the city to stay, what hotel has the best rating, and who has the best views.
However, you don’t need to look too hard because we suggest the Grecian Bay Hotel. The Grecian Bay Hotel is a luxury 5 Star hotel right on the beach of Ayia Napa. They have incredibly comfortable rooms, a delicious and massive breakfast spread, a gym that has all of the essentials, the most helpful & friendly staff, and an enormous pool that will make you never want to leave.
Did we mention the views? Or the tiki hut covered beach steps away from the pool & restaurants? Centrally located close to the best beaches, nightlife, and restaurants in Ayia Napa, this hotel is perfect for everyone. It’s a great place to stay for a wonderful experience and as a headquarters for the amazing adventures you’re going to have.
Also, for our travel hacking friends, this is property is a great value when redeeming Chase Ultimate Rewards Points at around 7,000 points a night. Interesting in travel hacking and traveling the world for free? Check out our Travel Resources for the cards we recommend to get started!
Things To Do in Ayia Napa
There are so many great things to do during your week in Ayia Napa, that it’s easy to keep yourself occupied. Given the location, the beach is probably a primary reason you’re visiting Ayia Napa. You’ve picked the right place then because the city offers 14 beautiful beaches to choose from. Most of the beaches have a boardwalk along the sea, so you can get in some extra steps while plotting which place to stop and take a swim.
All of the picture-worthy spots mentioned above, except the Agioi Saranta Church, have beautiful swimming locations. You can spend plenty of time cooling off in the crystal clear blue water while taking in the breathtaking sights of the coastline. The church, on the other hand, is more suited for a hike, or some off-road adventures. However, it’s home to equally beautiful sights.
If a lazy day at the beach does not appeal to you, then there are plenty of other options to choose from instead. There are options all over Ayia Napa for day-trips on a boat, water sports excursions, and ATV rentals. We chose a sunset cruise, which included a large meal, unlimited drinks, a few stops at swimming spots, and amazing views. Each cruise excursion offers something different and costs vary however, it’s a fun experience! Just don’t forget to stay hydrated if they have an open bar!
A week in Ayia Napa is the perfect amount of time to spend at this tropical paradise. We can’t suggest visiting here enough. Whether you’re looking to just relax on the beach, or have an adventure-filled vacation, this is the place to visit.
We visited Ayia Napa at the beginning of October, and it was the perfect time to go. The weather was still warm, without being excruciatingly hot, the water was refreshing, and it wasn’t over-crowded with tourists. If you need tips on how to pack light, read how we survive abroad with only a carry-on. What are you waiting for? Book a week in this magical location today!