It is officially August holiday season and that can only mean one thing: a complete getaway from the bustle of the outside world. The My Cyprus Insider team love a good challenge and we’re delighted to have discovered 5 hidden gardens off the beaten path, where you can wind down with a cold refreshment in hand and escape the stifling heat.
1. Secret Garden, Pano Panayia
Hidden away from the main road, this botanical gem is the perfect spot to relax after a long drive up through the scenic Paphos mountains. Located in the backyard of a refurbished, traditional home in the lovely Paphos district village of Pano Panayia, Secret Garden successfully fuses modern and traditional aesthetics into one.
Kick back to enjoy an ice-cold coffee or refreshing cocktail while tucking into traditional Cypriot orange-cake. Or enjoy the feeling of time pausing moment as you sip on a glass of wine from a local village winery. The warm atmosphere and staff’s hospitality add to the fee-good vibes, and if you’re lucky, you may even experience a night of live music under the glistening moonlight.
2. Kivotos 3000, Tina’s Art café, Polis Chrysochous
If you want to gaze at local art while sipping on fresh orange juice, or indulge in mouthwatering homemade lemon pie, Art Cafe Kivotos 3000 is a must-visit. Just off the central square of the west coast village of Polis Chrysochous, this enchanting garden creates the perfect atmosphere for one to read a book, admire the artwork adorning the walls, or simply appreciate an afternoon of calm.
The indigenous trees and flowering foliage ensure that your coffee is enjoyed in the shade. And if you’re looking to disconnect from the outside world and escape reality for a while, this cafe will only individually provide wifi to those who ask for it; a rather refreshing approach in a word inundated with technology. Although easily missed because of the flowering shrubs that gate the entrance, this oasis of calm is truly worth the hunt.
3. Secret Garden Wine & Coffee Bar, Larnaca
This little botanical hideaway in the heart of Larnaca is a firm local favourite, providing peace and tranquility a world away from the main street. The vine-covered archways and luscious bougainvillea at Secret Garden Wine & Coffee Bar, coupled with the iridescent lighting and flowing water fountain, will leave you feeling overwhelmed with serenity.
Beat the heat with a freshly brewed cold coffee or satisfy your sweet tooth with the mouthwatering carrot-cake that this hideaway is known for. There are also plenty of vegan options to tempt you, making this the ideal spot for those who enjoy a healthy meal. And do take the chance to pass take a look at the historical St. Lazarus Church located right opposite the establishment, even if it is just to admire the stunning architecture and intricate detailing on its exterior.
4. Vivliopoleion-Kafeanagnostirion- To Erma, Nicosia
In keeping with the traditional style that defines the old town of Nicosia, To Erma provides a little getaway in the back garden of a renovated home, perfect for one to enjoy a refreshing lemonade or cold beer while diving into the fascinating world of Cypriot literature.
Travel back in time and enrich your knowledge as you immerse yourselves in the hundreds of books located in the shop; from Cypriot history books to literature by local poets and writers. When you feel like taking a book home, you can make a purchase on the spot or make an inquiry about home deliveries. And while you’re there, take note of the establishment’s weekly live music agenda, giving you the chance to enjoy some melodic acoustics by the greenery of sprawling sweet-scented jasmine.
5. Kafeneio o Tempelis, Limassol
Given the hectic lives we’re all leading, finding the perfect spot to wind down and escape the busy quotidian is essential. Looking to satiate the taste buds while you’re at it? From fresh lemonade and decadent desserts to local tapas and Greek Raki, this hidden haven right across from Limassol’s Rialto Theatre, serves it all.
How about some music while you unwind? Enjoy the live Rebetiko beats by local musicians come evening at Kefeneio o Tempelis as you are simultaneously taken on a traditional, gastronomical experience beside thriving foliage.