By Rosemary D. Cora
Cyprus
Cyprus
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Are you seeking some place different, a more cultural, exotic, and yet relaxing vacation in the sun?  How about a place that combines 3500-year old ruins and artifacts with modern beach resorts?  How about a place where a new experience awaits you under the sun every day?  EscapeWizard.com can take you there.

Cyprus, the third-largest island in the Mediterranean, is that place.  Its culture is among the oldest in the Mediterranean, stretching back through time to Neolithic times.  And the mild Mediterranean climate and sunshine, coupled with numerous coastal beaches and stunning mountain ranges make it a wonderful spot for tourists. In fact, Cyprus is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the Mediterranean with more than 2.4 million tourists per year, most from Britain, France, Germany, and Scandinavia. And yet it is not crowded, as the tourist season is year-long and Cyprus has abundant sunshine (almost 300 days every year!), warming its nearly 400 miles of coastline.  In fact, the prosperous economy is due in large part to tourism. So, let EscapeWizard.com take you to the Republic of Cyprus.

Where is this paradise? Cyprus is an island in the Eastern Mediterranean, south west of Greece and southeast of Turkey.  It lies at the crossroads of three continents, where East meets West and historically, it has been the site of many clashes between the many nations and cultures that vied for its location. 

A brief recent history: Cyprus became a British colony under the British Empire after World War I, when the Ottoman Empire expired.  It gained its independence from the United Kingdom in 1960 and became a Commonwealth Republic in 1961.  It is a member of the European Union and its official currency is the Euro.

The Republic has six districts:  Nicosia (the capital city), Paphos, Kyrenia, Famagusta, Larnaca, and Limmassol.  All have modern, well-appointed hotels and many restaurants and tavernas.  Let EscapeWizard.com assist you in making the appropriate accommodation arrangements.

Both Larnaca (Larnaca International Airport – LCA) and Paphos (Paphos International Airport - PFO) have international airports which are accessible to visitors with all kinds of access needs. Facilities include accessible washrooms, charging stations for electric wheelchairs at departure gates, ramps to allow a person on a wheelchair to enter or exit the buses and additional assistive services.  EscapeWizard.com can help with travel arrangements to either airport by clicking on this link (www.escapewizard.com/flight.php). Next, we can also assist with booking your hotel reservations. Just click this link (www.escapewizard.com/hotels.php?flag=htl) to start your search for low prices.

Besides the beautiful beaches, there are many wonderful historical places to see in Cyprus.  The following are just a few of the magnificent attractions:  Paphos Harbor and Paphos Castle which was originally built as a Byzantine fort to protect the harbor or Kolossi Castle, a crusader stronghold a few kilometers outside the city of Limassol.  Choirokitia is a a stone-age settlement that dates back to the sixth or seventh century BC.  The Paphos mosaics, intricate and colorful Roman mosaics in the city of Paphos.   Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love and beauty is said to have been born in Cyprus, between Larnaca and Limmassol.

Besides antiquities, Cyprus offers a great deal of natural beauty.  For example, you can visit the Larnaca Salt Lake which is a complex network of four salt lakes (3 of them interconnected) of different sizes near the city of Larnaca.

A couple of popular tourist destinations famous for their nightlife are Agia Napa and Protaras. The traditional music of the country shares many similarities with the Greek mainland and island folk music. The most common instruments used in the folk music of the country are lute, violin and the Cyprus flute called “pithkiavlin."  And, typical dances of the land include sousta, tatsia, syrtos, zeibekikos and the karsilamas.  When you go to a taverna, you will find yourself dancing one of these infectiously joyful dances. 

Cyprus is also the home of many vineyards and olive orchards.  There is nothing more enjoyable than an al fresco picnic in the countryside, with one of the wonderful local wines, olives, bread, and halloumi cheese. 

So what are you waiting for?  Let EscapeWizard.com take you to this island paradise in the Mediterranean. 
Hotels in Cyprus
By Danielle Swink
Hilton Cyprus
Archbishop Makarios III Avenue, Nicosia, 1516, Cyprus
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Overlooking the capital city of Nicosia, you will find the Hilton Cyprus. The Cyprus offers convenient access to the Central Bank of Cyprus HQ, the International Conference Center, and a variety of cultural attractions and shops. If you arrive before the 2 p.m. check-in time you can utilize luggage hold while you visiting the barber shop or beauty salon, shop in the clothing store, or schedule an outing at the guest activity/recreation desk.  If you find yourself in need of currency an ATM is available as well as a foreign currency exchange for added convenience.

Each of the Hilton Cyprus’ 294 rooms boasts a personal balcony for the enjoyment of the guest as well as high-speed internet access so you can stay connected. There are three types of lodging; the guest rooms, the executive rooms, and the suites. Bedding options range from two twins to a king as well as one or two bedrooms available in the suites. All rooms offer an easy chair for relaxing, work desk, premium television channels, and an adjustable thermostat for your comfort. The executive rooms allow access to the Executive Lounge with complimentary breakfast and refreshments as well as fluffy robes to lounge in.  If you choose to stay in one of the luxurious suites all amenities offered for the other rooms are available as well as a full size refrigerator and kitchenette.
 
Boasting four options for dining and cocktails, Hilton Cyprus ensures that you will be well fed during your stay. Relax at the large outdoor pool, play tennis on the hotel’s private courts, or get pampered at the Hiltonia Health Club. The business traveler will find services available such as office rental, equipment rental, secretarial services, and printing services. The traveling family will be pleased to find a lovely pool, playground, and even babysitting services!

Sleep in a while and enjoy a leisurely breakfast before checking out at noon. Opportunities for fun, shopping, and relaxation abound at the Hilton Cyprus. Let EscapeWizard.com help book your travel today (www.escapewizard.com/hotels.php?flag=htl)!
Hotels in Cyprus
By Molly M. Watson
the Parklane Hotel
Old Limassol Nicosia Road, Pyrgos, Cyprus
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the Parklane Hotel (formally Le Méridien Limassol Spa and Resort) is the epitomy of luxury.  Guests will be stunned by the beauty and all encompassing service available at this magnificent resort.  the Parklane Hotel is located 35 miles from Larnaca Airport and 43 miles from Paphos International Airport.  The resort staff is more than happy to assist guests with arranging a car or bus to bring them to the resort and complimentary shuttle service is available twice daily into downtown Limassol. 

Guests have numerous choices available to them when deciding on a room at the Parklane Hotel.  Standard rooms offer views of either the gardens, pools or the sea, any of which provide a gorgeous vista.  Whirlpool tubs, plasma TVs and Playstations are standard in every room as is 24 hour room service, complimentary bottled water, coffee and tea, and a mini-bar.  Should you wish to upgrade to something more, Presidential suites include further amenities such as a heated swimming pool on the terrace.  Citrus Garden Suites are available throughout the gardens, provide a private terrace and are available as a studio, one bedroom or two bedroom.  Palm Court Suites and Enalia Suites continue to offer even more luxury and are also available as studios or a one or two bedroom suite in a two story layout.  High speed internet access is available in guest rooms for a fee. 

The opulence continues on as guests at the Parklane Hotel decide where to take their meals.  Fifteen different bars and restaurants are available within the resort and each provides its own distinct charm and ambiance. 

The Entertanment Piazza provides guests with live music, movies and additional entertainment as well as drinks and snacks while the Pier Bar provides a more relaxing atmosphere for guests to sip on a drink and enjoy the spectacular views of the sea around them.  Kojima and Balthazaar Restaurant both offer delicious Japanese food and an upscale atmosphere.  Italian food lovers will enjoy Trattoria and the seaside location.  Also located on the sea is Enalia Seafood Restaurant.  The options go on and provide something for everyone. 

The resort’s offerings continue on with five pools to choose from, both sea water and fresh water, including a children’s pool.  Le Spa gives guests a chance to get pampered and massaged.  A fitness center, sauna, and steam room are located within the Parklane Hotel as well.  Those interested in shopping don’t even have to leave the resort, simply take advantage of the fashion boutiques on site as well as the gift shop.

There is truly something for everyone to enjoy at this opulent spa and resort.  Follow the link here (www.escapewizard.com/hotels.php?flag=htl) and allow Escapewizard.com to help you book your room at the Parklane Hotel.  You’ll never want to leave after a stay at this breathtaking resort on this amazing island.