As I mentioned in my previous post, we recently attended my cousin’s wedding in Protaras, Cyprus. We were there for a week and the wedding was the day after we arrived, so we did have a lot of time to enjoy the area we were staying in.
I visited Cyprus as a toddler but can remember nothing about it except a lot of cats (I’m slightly terrified of cats), so I was super excited to experience it as an adult. Chris had never visited either and was really looking forward to spending a week in the sun with good food and good company.
We Flew: Jet 2
I’ve flown with most budget airlines, but Jet 2 wasn’t one of them until this holiday. Honestly, I can’t say a bad word about the airline, both on the way there and the way back. We’d pre-booked meals which was really bloody handy, and they turned out to be extremely tasty too (if a little small – I like a big portion 😉 ). The staff were also great too, even when a woman behind us announced she’d taken too many Valium, couldn’t sit down and was feeling light-headed and their grandson would not stop screaming and kicking my chair. Delightful, but not the airline’s fault in the slightest. Chris and I are actually planning to book a package holiday with Jet 2 so we really hope we continue to be impressed.
We Stayed: The Alva Hotel Apartments
After reading a lot of reviews of accommodation in Cyprus, Chris and I decided to treat ourselves and book a suite at the Alva Hotel Apartments. The apartment was gorgeous, with a large bedroom leading on to a good-sized living room/kitchen. The bathroom was very modern with a fantastic shower and there was a lovely balcony to sit out on at night. There weren’t a great deal of facilities at the hotel, which didn’t bother me and Chris but might be something to consider if you are travelling with children. There was a good sized pool, but it was pretty basic and although there was a pool bar and dining facilities inside, we never saw anyone using them at meal times. The hotel is smack bang on the strip however, with restaurants and bars galore, so there is plenty to choose from if you don’t want to go completely self-catering.
What We Did:
I’m not going to lie, if it wasn’t for my lovely family being there too Chris and I would have been a lot more lazy! Obviously we had the wedding on our first full day there, but they also had us over at their villa for dinner, dragged us along to some great restaurants and bars (where I may have made some people listen to me sing karaoke… I can’t help myself) and took us along on a speedboat ride, during which I was both thrilled and absolutely effing terrified.
Our hotel was a five minute walk away from Fig Tree Bay, which is a beautiful, if exceptionally busy, beach. My family got there in the morning to grab some sunbeds which we were very grateful for as we watched it fill up over the course of the day.
Protaras is a great place for families and couples and is very touristy, but Chris and I did feel it was lacking a tiny bit of personality. While we’re not big clubbers or even party-goers, we found the atmosphere completely changed when we went to Ayia Napa for the evening. There were similar bars and restaurants to those in Protaras, but it had a little more life and was filled with various age groups enjoying themselves. Maybe it was just the time of year we went, but I think next time we visit Cyprus we will stay in Ayia Napa for a change of scene. Those of you who know me will know how much I enjoy soaking up the real culture of a place, but you really can’t beat a good, touristy beach holiday sometimes (there – almost justified myself).
For those who want the best of both worlds – the slightly quieter atmosphere of Protaras and the liveliness of Ayia Napa – there is a regular bus service from Protaras to Ayia Napa that costs only €1.50. Bargain.
Bit useless with the camera this holiday I’m afraid! Will do better next trip!