Forthcoming trip to Cyprus


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CaroleF
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Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by CaroleF » 21 Jan 2019, 11:17

As we're not cruising this Jan/Feb or March we decided to take a land holiday instead. We didn't want to go on a long haul trip so after some discussion decided to rent somewhere in Cyprus. Having just looked back at a report I made in 2015 about two short trips I made to Cyprus I'm wondering why we've decided on there for 5 weeks! We didn't want the Canaries and as we'd been to Cyprus before decided at least it would be a little warmer there than here - hopefully. So we've rented what looks like a very pleasant property about 45 mins drive north of Paphos. It's a property owned by a Greek Cypriot and his English wife, has a long history on Trip Advisor with several years of good reviews. We didn't want anywhere that was a white cement block with just a swimming pool outside - I wanted somewhere more homely if that makes any sense. This place has an amazing garden, with pool and old pizza oven which the owner has told me he's quite happy to come and show us how to make and cook pizzas. Hopefully although we'll be there in Spring the garden will still be as spectacular as previous visitors have described.

At the moment I'm trying to organize car hire - a minefield I've discovered and have just booked to stay at the Premier Inn Gatwick North Terminal, the night before we travel as we've an early flight. Other people who have stayed there have said that for the price it's excellent - we'll see. I'm not used to packing for other than cruises so having to pack for 5 weeks when the weather will hopefully gradually get warmer is a bit of a challenge.

So once we are there I'll try to post - we have free WiFi - or at least a report on our return. I must admit there's a small corner of me that says - it would be simpler if it was a cruise, going from Southampton, but I must relish the change - I suppose!

Carole

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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by Manoverboard » 21 Jan 2019, 11:29

I suspect that you would prefer the Sofitel at Gatwick … just saying :wave:

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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by GillD46 » 21 Jan 2019, 11:36

Your holiday in Cyprus sounds great - we are actually going there again ourselves, but in September. I have to agree with MOB that the Sofitel would be my choice for Gatwick, we’ve booked there before and after our flights in September due to the flight arrival and departure times.

Have a fabulous time x
Gill


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by Silkworm » 21 Jan 2019, 13:54

Hi Carole

We are off to Cyprus also for two weeks in May so would really appreciate
a report on what you find and what you recommend.
We are in a hotel in Paphos and will hire a car for several days.
I would really like to drive thro Nicosia and also to Famagusta where my
brother was stationed in the RAF many years ago. But I believe it is not
that simple, driving to Northern Cyprus.

However, really interested in how you find it. Look forward to a report.

Terri

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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by Onelife » 21 Jan 2019, 14:59

Hi silkworm

We've been to Cyprus a couple of times both of which were in Paphos.

I would definitely recommend a trip up the Trodos Mountains but don't go off road as we got lost up there which made it an 8 hours round journey before eventually finding our way back to Paphos.....spectacular senery though.

keith


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by CaroleF » 22 Jan 2019, 09:43

I agree that the Sofitel is far superior to the Premier Inn and we've stayed there on several occasions before flying out to the Caribbean. However, this time we just didn't feel we wanted to spend that amount of money so we'll try out Premier Inn's offering. Whether we'll do it again another time remains to be seen, however, it'll be interesting. I suppose with paying out for the house itself, the flights, the car hire we just felt we'd economise on the hotel, probably regret it but we'll see.

We have been to the Troodos Mountains and it rained so spectacularly that we soon went back to the South so we may try again. Taking any hire car into the North is very difficult. Most hire firms tell you no you can't take their car over the border. It's all to do with insurance - or the lack of it in the North.

Carole

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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by Manoverboard » 22 Jan 2019, 10:35

Taking a separate holiday in the North is the best approach, haven't been ourselves but chums thought it was a wonderful holidaying experience.

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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by GillD46 » 22 Jan 2019, 13:00

We have friends that go to the north every September. They fly into Laraca and drive up, with no apparent problem.
Gill


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by CaroleF » 22 Jan 2019, 14:44

We've driven into the north with friends in their own car so the insurance is sorted by them. It's the hire cars that people have a problem taking into the north. If any damage were to occur to the hire car the responsibility for repairs is that of the person who hired it - including damage to another car and if someone were to be injured goodness knows what would happen.


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by CaroleF » 11 Feb 2019, 11:47

An update on the car hire situation. The owner of the house we are renting told me about a car hire firm that several of his clients have used in the past so we contacted them to get a price. It turns out that the company is in the next village to where we are staying. The owner offered us a good price, including two drivers, insurances etc and said that as we are staying near his offices he's happy to pick us up from Paphos airport and take us to our house and arrange the car hire there, no charge for the pick up or for taking us back to the airport at the end of our stay. Well that was very attractive. I knew from friends who were staying near Paphos last year and had travelled to find the house where they will be joining us for a week that they had a fine time finding it, so not having to find our own way was good. I then looked up the Car Hire firm on Trip Adviser and there was nothing but good reviews, going back several years and mentioning the offer of being collected at the airport if the firm was near where people were staying. So car hire has been arranged.
The weather in Paphos is quite good at the moment, rain is lessening. February is traditionally a wet month. According to the BBC weather site the temperatures when we arrive and for the following few days are between 18-20C. So hopefully we will enjoy warmer climes than here, although today is sunny here in the south, it's only 8-9C. At the moment I'm trying to decide what to take. Obviously we are limited by weight and we need to take layers as far as clothes are concerned. Packing will be left to next weekend. It seems strange not to have to think of evening wear, dinner jacket etc. as for a cruise. Hopefully that will assist with the weight. I've told my husband that I'm not spending my time washing and ironing so he'd better take enough or he can learn to use an iron - he's never picked up an iron in his life!
I was reading an article in one of the colour supplements at the weekend about hosting a villa holiday - probably meant in the sun but we are hosting several friends coming at different times. Of the hints that the article gave were let people do what they want. Don't assume you are all going to go around together all the time. Don't offer to get everyone early morning tea or coffee, make sure they know where all the makings are and let them do their own. Let everyone get up and have breakfast when they wish. And one of the final tips was - Ban all talk about Brexit and politics! Very good idea. I'd be interested if anyone has any other tips. I think the main idea seems to be that we eat out at lunch time and then have some sort of meal in for the evening. The property has an amazing garden area with both a gas bbq and a pizza oven. We won't be able to eat outside in the evening, it won't be warm enough but the bbq can still be used. As we are shall we say of a slightly older generation, in fact when I think about it John and I will be the youngest, I don't think anyone is going to be keen to drive out in the countryside in the dark - gosh it makes me feel old!

Carole


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by Silkworm » 12 Feb 2019, 10:35

Well, have a fabulous holiday Carole, maybe you could somehow let us know the car hire firm details. We are not travelling to Paphos until May.

Maybe you could pretend you were on a cruise and still send us updates every few days, especially with recommendations for eating places!

Silkworm


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by CaroleF » 12 Feb 2019, 12:31

Silkworm, I''ll try with the updates. I'm getting a new laptop, hopefully at the weekend which will be a lot lighter than the old, heavy one I'm used to and so will take that with me and we have free WiFi in the house. The car hire firm is called Petrides Rentals if you Google them you'll get a link to their website. John contacted the owner, Yiannis, at petridesrentals@gmail.com. He told him what we were looking for and we had a response the same day.

Carole

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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by GillD46 » 12 Feb 2019, 12:41

I’ll be interested in any recommendations you may have Carole. We are staying outside Limassol in September at the Four Seasons, but on a B&B basis and will be hiring a car to get out and about a bit.

Have a great time.
Gill


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by cruisin_duo » 12 Feb 2019, 13:04

Have a great time in Cyprus.


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by CaroleF » 23 Feb 2019, 12:49

We're here - in Cyprus I mean. We stayed at the Premier Inn at the North Terminal at Gatwick and we were very impressed. I had checked in online and just had to enter details in a machine that then gave us our dinner voucher and two key cards, very slick. Yes the room wasn't as luxurious as the Sofitel but the whole check in process was much quicker. We had dinner in the Thyme Restaurant which was fine. I think in all, that's the room, dinner - two courses plus one drink each, I had Rose, very acceptable and John had a beer, then breakfast the next morning, full English if we'd wanted it and we paid £110 which was far less than the Sofitel. One thing about the Premier Inn was that the bed was incredibly comfortable.
For the first time I had checked in online for our flights - well we don't fly that much so all we had to do the next morning was to find the bag drop, which we did and horror of horrors it was all automatic. We did have some help especially as the machine told us both our cases were 'heavy'. Apparently that was ok. We had 25kg each but of course no case can be over 23kg. Ours were just a little over. The man helping us told me that as long as the combined weight wasn't over 25kg it was allowed. Over that and there's an additional charge. I'm sure this is all old hat to those of you who are frequent flyers but it's all new to us, not the flying the modern check ins etc! It was a Tui plane and boarding was on time and it looked as if we were going to take off on time but then we were told that there were too many planes trying to land in Cyprus so we could be delayed for anything up to an hour - but in the event we were only delayed for 20 minutes. Flight was fine, it was still early and as we'd had breakfast at 5.30am we succumbed to buying a Bacon Ciabatta on the plane.

Good leg room on the plane, no premium economy but far superior to the Thomas Cook plane we went on out to Valetta to join Oceana last September. A young man from the car hire people was there to meet us and drove us north from Paphos to the village where we were staying, about 45 minutes north. Dusk was approaching but it was lovely to see all the almond trees in bloom and I was so surprised to see so many orange and lemon trees absolutely loaded with fruit. Weather was sunny until dusk approached but not that warm.

We arrived at the house to be met by the owner and his wife - a charming couple. The house is, shall we say, rustic, perhaps slightly more rustic than we expected but full of character. The garden will be amazing in the summer and even now there are flowers and many shrubs. There's a lemon tree in the garden so no need to buy lemons for my gin and tonic!
The one thing that did hit us was that the house was cold, and I mean cold. There are heaters/ac in every room so it was easy to heat up the bedrooms. The main sitting room/kitchen has an open fire in addition to the convector heater so the owner showed John how to light the fire - he wasn't to know that John is an ace fire lighter. So there was soon a lovely warm glow.
We discovered that it was the owner's birthday and as it was getting late by this time and dark his wife said she would get us something for supper so she disappeared and came back with a Souvlaki - interesting little dish! Quite tasty if a little tough but it was lovely to sit and chat to them while we had supper together.
That was Wednesday and I'm now sat waiting for John to come back from Paphos Airport with three of our friends who are here for a week. Yesterday we went and explored the nearby fishing village of Latchi which is very picturesque, lots of restaurants lining the harbour. The weather isn't reliable. We walked round the harbour and it was lovely and sunny. Then we decided to go to the nearby Aphrodite's Baths and the heavens opened. By the time we got back to Latchi it had more or less stopped so we went for lunch in one of the restaurants overlooking the water. Very pleasant. On our way back to the house we made our second stop at the supermarket. We'd done a mammoth shop the day before but there were just bits and pieces we needed to get. I said I'd do a meal for tonight when our friends arrive and probably a bbq tomorrow if the weather is kind. Today we've had sun and showers and it looks as though we may have that again tomorrow although the forecast is better. I think, from what I've read that you have better weather at home than we have here.
Shopping was interesting. The supermarket - the biggest in the area - isn't huge but quite good. What is obvious is that the Cypriots use a lot more frozen meat and fish than we do. There's very little pre-packaged meat or fish. There is a butchery and fish counter though but I don't want to buy fish unless we use it that day. Some things are good value - I bought a huge bunch of parsley for 35 cents which compared to the tiny bunch I can get from Waitrose for about 79p is amazing. Cereals aren't cheap, vegetables and salads are quite reasonable. I'm afraid I've made a non Greek dish for our friends this evening - an adapted version of Nigella's Sausage and Beans from her Nigellissima book. Couldn't get jars of roasted red peppers so have used fresh. The other think about cooking in a rented property is that there's never the right equipment.
There's one thing I am proud of. Our hostess had left us a large plain madeira like cake - excellent - so I thought I might try making a trifle for our friends for tonight. I managed to buy frozen fruit - Waitrose would you believe - but couldn't find any lemoncello, nearly bought cheap brandy but John found some strawberry liqueur - goodness knows what it will taste like soaked into the sponge. Then I realised I couldn't get custard. I was going to do without but John had the bright idea of seeing if the little local mini market sold custard powder - it did, only the instructions were in Greek and I didn't have any sort of measuring jug so I guessed at all the measurements, and I made the custard in the microwave and it looks ok! The other problem was cream. I did get some whipping cream and it took a long arm aching time to whip it but it's done and hopefully will all taste ok.
It seems strange to be abroad and yet driving on the left. The morning after our arrival we went to see the car hire man Mr. Petrides. He had left us a Honda Jazz, or the Cypriot equivalent name, which really was too small to sit 5 people in. He was very amenable to giving us a larger car! So we now have a Toyota Auris which is fine. He is a very smiley, friendly guy, didn't charge any extra for John being over 70 - can't believe it, John being over 70 I mean, but then so am I. He also gave us lovely glasses of fresh lemonade - the morning was actually hot for a while. I won't drive but John's brother who is coming out in a couple of weeks will.
So now I've just heard that our friends' plane has landed so I'd better get a teapot out, if we have one! More later.

Carole

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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by GillD46 » 23 Feb 2019, 13:11

Pleased you are there and getting yourselves settled in. I agree that rental properties can be a challenge with regard to kitchen utensils. We don’t realise what we've got in our own kitchens until we are somewhere that doesn’t have the same. Have fun xx
Gill

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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by Kenmo1 » 23 Feb 2019, 18:26

CaroleF wrote:
23 Feb 2019, 12:49
It seems strange to be abroad and yet driving on the left
The only time we have ever hired a car abroad was in Cyprus because we thought it would be easy because of the driving on the left. However, we didn't allow for the impatient Cypriot drivers who regularly beeped at us as we dithered at the roundabouts trying to work out which way we should be going - no satnavs then. We hired the car for 3 days but it was handed back in after two and a half days. I could relax then as my tense shoulders came down from around my ears. However, we thoroughly enjoyed our trip up through the Troodos Mountains where we saw Archbishop Makarios' tomb with soldiers stood outside like statues guarding it.

Really looking forward to your next instalment.

Maureen


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by CaroleF » 28 Feb 2019, 08:50

One Week In

I had read that February is the wettest month in Cyprus - true! It's been slightly irritating to read what lovely weather you are having back home. It hasn't been raining constantly but we did have an amazing thunderstorm during the night a couple of nights ago - very loud thunder, lightning and hailstones. We have only been able to sit outside in the wonderful garden of this house once for breakfast. We have travelled around a bit - been to Polis, our nearest town with a largish supermarket - you do need to shop when you're self catering! We've also been to Latchi which is a lovely fishing village. There's also been a jaunt to a wine area which between the showers was interesting.

The oranges are amazing, so juicy, like nothing I've tasted at home. The area is surrounded by orange trees, plus lemons and grapefruits growing plentifully. Even with the little sun we've had the roses have started shooting and we feel that it would only take a few days real sun for things to really start blooming. We've had fun in the supermarket - yes it is possible to find a foreign supermarket interesting - looking for things. John has even managed to obtain a loyalty card as we're here for 5 weeks - not sure what it gives us but we're using it. One of the girls at the till has decided John has a collection of different women. For the first couple of visits I was with him, the next time our two female friends were with him - I wasn't - yesterday all three of us were with him and as our friend Geoff refuses to go near a supermarket it was just three women and John. The girl made a comment about him with his women!

Some things are incredibly cheap compared to home - vegetables are very good, oranges and tomatoes much cheaper than home. Bunches of herbs are very cheap - a huge bunch of parsley for 35cents - compared to what we pay at home for a small cellophaned packet - something like 75p. The no plastic bags rule has started here apart from when you buy vegetables, they still provide bags for those.

The forecast for next week looks better, apart from Sunday so we're hoping that we are able to make more use of the garden then. Our first lot of friends leave us on Saturday so John is making the trip to the airport again. We have 4 friends arriving on Sunday but they are hiring their own car thank goodness so they will make their own way up here. One of the couples knows Cyprus pretty well and have been up to this village before so they should be able to find their way without any trouble. The sausage and bean casserole is having another outing and I may even make another trifle as the first one was so well received. After that it's eating out! We had a wonderful meal out last night in a restaurant in Polis - The Old Town Restaurant if anyone comes this way. It was wonderful surroundings, and the food was excellent. Four of us chose Wood Grilled Lamb with Rosemary. This comprised three pieces of rack of lamb, two chops in each piece, all of us asked for it pink and it was juicy and delicious on a lovely sauce, served with crispy potatoes, green beans, mange tout and baby corn. John had a grilled salmon steak which he said was really good. We all had starters, John had Belly of Pork which looked huge, more like a main course. Two of us had Prawn and Scallop Ravioli which was delicious and our friend Ann had a carpaccio of fish with seaweed which I wouldn't have liked but she said was very tasty. We had the house wine which was very reasonably priced. It's probably not the cheapest restaurant if Polis but certainly not hugely expensive but the food, surroundings and service mean we will definitely go back. Worth looking at the Trip Advisor Reviews if you are going to be in that area.

Hopefully my next report will include mention of sun!

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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by GillD46 » 28 Feb 2019, 10:03

Sorry you’ve not had the best weather Carole. It has indeed been truly exceptional, though here in South Wales it is back to rain today. Typical as we have a funeral to attend!

It is very interesting reading your reports as it feels different from a holiday, more as if you’re living there - which I suppose you are really, albeit only for a month or so.

I hope the sun makes an appearance and that you are able to enjoy “your” garden. And that John will continue to enjoy his harem!
Gill


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by CaroleF » 07 Mar 2019, 16:21

We've been here just over two weeks now and at long last the weather has improved. Today we were able to go to the port of Latchi and sit outside a restaurant and have a lovely lunch with sun shining and hardly a cloud in the sky. This week we've been able to have breakfast outside twice but the weather fools us - the sun shines so we get everything outside ready for a lovely breakfast and then the clouds come and everyone is looking for a fleece! We did have breakfast outside on Shrove Tuesday as one of our friends was determined to make pancakes which were delicious. Yesterday some of our party went up towards the Troodos Mountains and found some amazingly twisty roads which left one of our party feeling decidedly queasy!
Some of the views from this part of the island are stunning, especially when the sky is blue. It still seems amazing how many flowers and shrubs are in bloom. The oranges are plentiful and we've been buying them regularly from our local restaurant - at a huge bag full - about 12 incredibly large oranges for 2 Euros! Apparently it's getting towards the end of the orange season as soon the trees will need to have their flowers to form the fruit for the next season.
The local people around here are incredibly friendly and our attempts even to say please and thank you in Greek have them smiling. Most of the local people speak very good English and many of them have been to England at various times. The owner of our house - a Cypriot - has lived in the States for a while. I'm not sure doing what. He and his wife pop in to see if there's anything we want. Yesterday they arrived with a large box of Baklava. I expected that it would be sickly sweet but it wasn't. We had it for dessert last night and all thoroughly enjoyed it. My husband's brother and wife are coming out next Sunday for two weeks and I think they're going to have the best of the weather. My sister-in-law, who I've known longer than I've known John, we shared a house together when we were both young teachers, keeps telling me that the weather forecast shows the Cypriot weather is definitely improving and it seems that for once the forecast is right.
I hesitate to mention the word 'Brexit' but it was mentioned by our host. As I said he lived in the States for a while and seems to love everything American. He said he didn't understand why Britain didn't want to join with the rest of the European Countries and have one President of Europe like American is formed of all different states under one President. We found it difficult to know where to start in answering him. I wonder how many other people of various European countries think the same!

Carole

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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by GillD46 » 07 Mar 2019, 16:25

So pleased the weather is improving for you.
Gill

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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by Suekersh » 08 Mar 2019, 17:16

Hi Carole just caught up with your adventure. Very interesting read. We visited Paphos many years ago in February and yes the weather was mixed. I got in the pool once. Our visit to the mountains was curtailed because of rain.
We had a great time though and one day will go back.
We have a family villa in Spain which I visit frequently with my father but the utensils I take/ buy there for cooking are always disappearing. Usually find them somewhere else once I have ‘made do’ .
I love my cruise holidays but my villa holidays show me the real Spain and culture.

Keep enjoying.

Sue


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by CaroleF » 13 Mar 2019, 14:43

We've had some wonderful sun and been able to have breakfast outside each morning. We knew today - Wednesday - was going to be rainy but this morning the sky was still blue and again we ate outside for breakfast. Now, mid-afternoon we've had thunder and lightning but no rain! Tomorrow looks good, then a couple of possible showery days but from Sunday on full sun! It's been hot enough to need sun cream and we've had some lovely lunches outside too. We've now got my husband's brother and his wife staying with us which is lovely. The two men went off hiking this morning armed with water and miniature Twix bars - for energy apparently! My sister-in-law and I let them go and they eventually returned after about 3 hours with wet feet! Apparently what looked like soft grass was wet mud! They met a shepherd who gave them a friendly greeting and using sign language encouraged them to avoid going across a particular field - he just said, "Water!" Our village is quite high up so there are amazing views, particularly on a bright and sunny day.
We've been back to our favourite restaurant in Polis again and had another lovely meal. We also had a dreadful meal in another restaurant also in Polis one evening. We decided to just go out for something simple, like an omelette. I didn't think it was possible to burn an omelette - it is! Mine host seemed only to have one word in his vocabulary - "Please?" He said this when asking what someone wanted to order, then turned to the next person and again, "Please". He did get the orders correct though, even though the food wasn't great - or in my case, awful! We shall not be going there again. We visited a restaurant in the main square in Polis where we'd had a drink one lunch time. The friends who were staying with us went off on a drive and then later on John and I went to get petrol and just have a wander round the old town. Our friends were sat outside one of the restaurants and had ordered lunch so we joined them just to have a glass of fresh orange juice which was delicious. Their lunch arrived while we were there and looked good - nothing special just pitta bread with various fillings, salad and fries. So this week we thought we might try eating there. This was Monday night so some restaurants were closed but this one called The Chix Chox was open. When we went inside we were quite surprised as it looked quite upmarket with crisp tablecloths and napkins. What was important was that there was a log fire too! It gets very chilly in Cyprus in the evenings at this time of the year! I had a wonderful starter of large prawns in a tomato, basil and cream sauce - delicious. Three of us had scampi for a main course - not particularly traditional but there is very good fish in Cyprus. The scampi were huge and very scrummy! My brother-in-law had grilled salmon which was very large. The Cypriots certainly seem to serve large helpings. We had the house wine which was cheap. We will certainly go back there but not the burnt omelette restaurant as it has come to be known!
When my brother-in-law, Alan arrived he and John decided it would be good if he was to be a named driver so we went back to the hire car place and there was no charge to add his name!
As we will have been here for 5 weeks and there will have been a lot of planning, shopping and cooking done, I decided I would have earned a short cruise in May! We haven't been on Arcadia since, i think it was 2013, before it went adults only, and I know it's changed since then. So we've booked just a 7 night cruise on her in May - J905. It takes us to St. Peter Port (if we can get in), Santander, Le Verdon, Cherbourg and back to Southampton. It's really to see Arcadia and convince John that it's a ship we can add to our preferred list, my way of getting him to think of a World at some time!
We're hoping we can have some bbqs next week if the promised sunny days arrive - fingers crossed!

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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by GillD46 » 13 Mar 2019, 18:14

Sounds good Carole - apart from the burnt omlette that is!
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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by cruisin_duo » 14 Mar 2019, 14:57

Hello Carole,

Thank you for your report about Cyprus. Enjoying reading about your trip.


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by CaroleF » 14 Mar 2019, 17:41

Our meal last night was an interesting experience. It was in a very small taverna very near to our house. We knew it would be very traditional and it was. My sister-in-law and I chose Grilled Chicken, my brother-in-law pork on a skewer and John Peppers stuffed with pork mince and rice. Michelle and I shared a half litre of Rose wine, John and Alan both had a small beer. The first thing to come was a plate of very nice chips, then a huge bowl of salad beautifully dressed. We weren't sure if the chips were with the salad or were they for our main course. Then four beautifully ripe Avocado halves dressed with olive oil and something else we couldn't decide appeared. So we ate the avocados and the salad - with an occasional pick at the chips! Then our main courses appeared - all beautifully cooked. After all this was cleared away the owner's wife appeared with plates of some Pomelo - we'd never eaten this before and she showed us the best way to get the flesh of the fruit from the very thick pith - a bit like a grapefruit but not so tangy, really nice. Then plates with an orange tasting sweet - a bit like crystallised fruit but so soft and tasty. At the end of the evening the owner appeared with two Pomelos for us to take home. Neither the owner nor his wife could speak much English. The bill for this little feast was 36 Euros - including wine!

Today we went to meet friends in Paphos itself - a very busy place compared with the peace of our little village in the hills. We took a roundabout route to get down to Paphos and saw some amazing scenery. We stopped at a Winery as John had been there before and wanted us to see it. It had a new Visitor's Centre with restaurant and an amazing patio looking out over the sea in the distance. I'd like to go back there for lunch one day. We met our friends by the harbour in Paphos and had lunch in one of the harbour side restaurants. We then went back to the villa where they were staying - one in a group, white concrete, marble floors, very stark. This was just the sort of place I didn't want for our 5 weeks here so it was interesting to have the comparison. The next two days are predicted to be wet so not sure what we'll be doing. Next week, however, looks really good!

Carole


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by Whynd1 » 14 Mar 2019, 18:44

You sound to be having the most lovely time.

I am really enjoying breading your most interesting reports.

Lindsey


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by CaroleF » 22 Mar 2019, 15:32

The last two weeks have been, as promised a lot better with many more sunny days. For the last two days it's been what I call hot during the day. I'm not a great one for sitting in the sun - I like sitting in the shade in the sun if you see what I mean. Today it was forecast to be 25C and I'm sure it was earlier in the afternoon. It's now 5pm and still warm enough to sit outside. We have noticed that the garden has really responded to the increased sun and there are some roses about to burst into bloom. The grape vine over where the seating area is has started to shoot and I'm sure in the forthcoming weeks will provide a wonderful shaded arbour. We have been having a really good time with John's brother and wife, the two men often setting off with maps and bottles of water to go and find nature trails. Today they've been on a second leg of a trail they found a few days ago but someone forgot to put sun cream on his face and now looks a bit like a beacon! That shows how hot the sun has been.

A few days ago we discovered a really lovely restaurant in Polis. I'd read about it but hadn't worked out where exactly it was but eventually we found it and decided to try it. It's called Moustakallis, run by a family headed by Papa Moustakallis who has the most wonderful moustache I've ever seen. It's been brilliantly thought out, a mixture of blue and white with yellow napkins on the tables. I think the sides of the restaurant open up in the summer so it would be a lovely place to be on a summer evening. At the moment it's still dark when we go to eat and there was a lovely fire going last night to take the evening chill off. The staff consists of Papa, his son and grandson plus a grandaughter who runs the kitchen and has a degree in food science. It's not expensive and the food is great - a mixture of really Cypriot dishes together with more European dishes. My brother-in-law had a pork chop which was huge - very tasty he said and he managed to eat it all - so the waiter brought him a quarter carafe of wine as a prize! We've been there twice now and each time it's been buzzing, Greek music and lots of very happy customers. If anyone is anywhere near Polis it's certainly worth going to.

I've just been looking at pictures John had taken of the abandoned village he and Alan found today. It's got quite a history
It's called Evretou and was the home of some Turkish Cypriots but after the troubles the people living there either escaped or were escorted to safety by the UN. If you look on Google Streetview you'll see what an amazing place it is. John said that a lot of the buildings on the pictures on Google are now underwater.

Yesterday we visited the Adonis Baths - not a trip I recommend, certainly not the route we took which scared me to death. It was travelling along what I suppose was a road but not what I'd call one. The route was signposted to the Adonis Baths and said - Suitable for all vehicles! Well maybe if you had a four wheel drive it might be ok but in our Toyota Auris it was not a sensible thing to do. Once we got there there were a large number of very unsteady steps to climb to see the Baths - and they were charging 9 Euros to go in. Well some people might think it was worth it but I didn't, especially as the only way out was the hair raising route we'd been on!

Hopefully the fine weather is set to continue until we leave for home next Wednesday. Would I consider Cyprus again for a winter get-away - no not really. The evenings in February and the early part of March are cold, often wet and long. I think April and May would be a good time to come when the flowers and trees really would be worth seeing. We have a few days to go yet and my brother-in-law and his wife go back home on Sunday so not sure what we'll be doing for the last couple of days - no more white roads that's for sure!

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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by Kenmo1 » 22 Mar 2019, 16:48

CaroleF wrote:
22 Mar 2019, 15:32
've just been looking at pictures John had taken of the abandoned village he and Alan found today. It's got quite a history
It's called Evretou and was the home of some Turkish Cypriots but after the troubles the people living there either escaped or were escorted to safety by the UN. If you look on Google Streetview you'll see what an amazing place it is. John said that a lot of the buildings on the pictures on Google are now underwater.
Thank you, Carol, for your detailed reports.

What a difference it makes when you have time to really explore a place instead of the few hours you spend in a place from a cruise ship.

Maureen


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by CaroleF » 23 Mar 2019, 08:03

That's true Maureen but take it from me five weeks self-catering with people coming and going and all the planning of food etc. is exhausting. Even with eating out quite a lot there's still things to get for breakfast, lunches etc. Days like this morning are lovely - we've just had breakfast sitting out in the garden in the sun. I am really looking forward to our week away in May on Arcadia when I don't have to do anything!


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by Whynd1 » 23 Mar 2019, 10:46

Although ts lovely to entertain family and friends it's always a lot of work for the hostess.
The planning and shopping etc.

Enjoy the rest of your stay Carole.

Lindsey


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Re: Forthcoming trip to Cyprus

Post by CaroleF » 11 Apr 2019, 12:29

It's now just over two weeks since we returned home. Looking back over the whole holiday is it something I'd do again - no. I really enjoyed seeing that part of Cyprus and the area around Polis and Latchi is beautiful and well worth visiting. It was really only the last two weeks that the weather really had a great improvement and we were able to sit outside most of each day until about 5-6pm when the temperature really dropped and it was dark by about 7pm. We knew that the early weeks we were there would not be good weather wise and weren't expecting warm, sunny days. I think if we were ever going to do it again - which we won't - I would make sure that the property was big enough inside to make sure that it was spacious enough to enjoy evenings spent in. We did find that a property which would be absolutely delightful in the summer months was somewhat crowded if there were 6 people in the winter months. The final two weeks when there were only 4 of us was much better.

As I think I said previously to have 5 weeks self catering in the winter time is hard work when you can't spend all day outside in the sun using the bbq. We did use the gas bbq quite a bit in the final two weeks. I hoped after that that John would be open to the idea of buying a gas bbq but no he's really traditional and prefers the charcoal one. I said that we would use the bbq much more if we would just turn it on to bbq a couple of steaks for example. The time it takes a traditional one to be laid, lit and come up to temperature, seems ridiculous when the steaks would only be cooked for perhaps 3 mins each side.

This holiday hasn't put me off having a self catering summer holiday in say a lovely villa in Majorca for example, we've done that several times. I don't regret the holiday in Cyprus and I did really enjoy getting acquainted with the country and the specific area. We had some lovely meals in the various restaurants I've mentioned previously - well apart from the Burnt Omelette one! The couple who owned the property couldn't have been more hospitable, it was lovely to meet them and hear about their lives. They were so kind and took us out to lunch at one of the local restaurants the day before we left. The holiday was an experience. I'm not sure what we'll do next winter, John doesn't want to do another Caribbean cruise so we'll have to see what comes up!

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