Paphos is one of the top holiday destinations in Cyprus, boasting a wide range of beaches, historical sites and year-round sunny weather. It’s also known for its delicious seafood and meze dishes.
If you love history then you’ll want to make a visit to the UNESCO-listed Tombs of the Kings. These underground tombs date back to the 4th century BC and are carved out of solid rock.
Tombs of the Kings
Tombs of the Kings is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most fascinating archaeological sites in Cyprus. These tombs are carved into cliffs overlooking the sea and are worth adding to any traveller’s itinerary!
The tombs are built from solid rock and follow the ancient Egyptian belief that tombs should be as impressive as homes. Some even imitated houses, complete with atriums.
Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa
Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa is one of the most important churches in Paphos. It is a Greek Orthodox church built in the 1500s on top of earlier shrines.
A pathway leads through this archaeological site, which includes the ruins of an early Christian Basilica (4-7 century AD) and a medieval Franciscan Church. The complex also features the pillar of St. Paul’s, a medieval ottoman bath and the Agia Kyriaki Church.
It is a historic site that attracts thousands of visitors each year. It is a popular stop on multi-day tours of Cyprus.
Kato Paphos Archaeological Park
The Kato Paphos Archaeological Park is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Cyprus. This open-air museum includes many monuments that date back to prehistoric times, the Middle Ages and the Roman period.
It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is considered to be of outstanding universal value. The ruins of villas, palaces, fortresses and rock-hewn peristyle tombs reveal the beauty and splendour of ancient Paphos.
Another must-see monument is the Tomb of the Kings, a necropolis. This cemetery was used by the Ptolemaic high class and their families during the Hellenistic and Roman periods.
St. Paul’s Pillar
The Pillar is an important historical landmark in Paphos. It is believed that this was the location where Saint Paul was scourged when he first arrived in Cyprus to preach Christianity.
It is located in the Chrysopolitissa archaeological site, just a few minutes’ walk from the port.
The Archaeological Park includes a number of Roman villas, the Houses of Dionysos, Theseus and Aion. A theatre and an Agora have also been discovered.
One of the most popular archaeological attractions in Paphos is the Odeon, which is a magnificent 2nd-century amphitheatre. It has been restored and is often used for theatrical performances and open-air concerts.
The odeon is situated within the Paphos Archaeological Park, just next to the picturesque harbour of Kato Paphos. It is a semicircle theatre built entirely out of limestone blocks.
According to folklore, Adonis and Aphrodite used to swim at the Adonis Baths Waterfalls – a gorgeous natural pool close to Paphos. A wispy waterfall enters one side of the leafy pool, creating a picturesque setting.
The ancient ruins inside Paphos Archaeological Site are also worth visiting, including remnants of an Odeon, Agora, and Asklepion from the Roman period.
If you’re into folk art, you can also explore the Ethnographic Museum in Geroskipou village, a short drive from Paphos. Here you can learn about traditional textile weaving and see some fascinating displays of everyday life in Cyprus from the previous centuries.