Cyprus is an island of considerable contrast. It has toasty sunny beaches and cooler forest clad mountains. It has small villages giving a hint of traditional island life and larger cosmopolitan towns where you will see brand names that you might see in your home town.
The island has an abundance of varied scenery from the rocky mountains of the Troodos Massif to the fertile agricultural land and deep blue waters and coastal beaches of the Mediterranean - ah! - bliss!
Because of its strategic position Cyprus has seen many visiting powers. The Mycenaeans, Egyptians, Phoenicians, Persians, Assyrians, Byzantines, the Knight Crusaders, Venetians, Ottomans and the British have all visited and left traces of their culture and engineering. Architectural ruins or cultural artifacts from many of these cultures can still be seen and admired.
Inland you will find timeless local villages, ancient churches, abandoned villages, olive groves and much much more. On the coast - away from the tourist meccas - you will find lazy coastal towns and fishing ports.
Sun, ah the sun, nearly every day of the year, even in the winter (albeit that the temperature drops and it does rain). The food; fresh fish, vegetables and fruit so full of flavour that you can almost hear the taste fighting to get out.
The diet is typically Mediterranean with grilled meats and vegetables, lots of salads and tasty stews. To accompany your food, Cyprus wine is these days pretty good – yammas (to us) as they say here when toasting.
Aphrodite certainly knew what she was doing all those years ago when she made the island her own; this is an island fit for the Gods and such a well kept secret from most mountain bikers, roadies and walkers.
Amongst all the scenery and culture that Cyprus has to offer are endless miles of sweeping pine-clad forest trails, rocky climbs and descents, smooth dirt roads, lazy coastal paths and miles and miles of relatively deserted high quality tarmac roads.
If you are a cyclist or walker but others included in your holiday plan prefer beaches, then, Cyprus may just be the perfect place for you. As a biker you could hire a bike and explore while the others laze by a pool and soak up the sun and culture.
As walkers, enjoy a morning in the hills followed by an afternoon of relaxation. Now doesn't that sound like an ideal compromise?
Third largest island in the Mediterranean.
Area = 9251sq km
Population = 807000 (2013)
Highest bit = Mount Olympus 1952m (on a road bike you can Cycle there – with a bit of stamina)