I’m on the plane, staring at the views of this weirdly wonderful world from above, listening to a beautiful I’ll be your mirror cover.
I’ll be your mirror
Reflect what you are, in case you don’t know
I’ll be the wind, the rain and the sunset
The light on your door to show that you’re home
I’m on my way to Southampton after 10 amazing days back home in Cyprus.
I wasn’t meant to go to Cyprus this summer. I went in May, for the little sister’s musical and I wanted to have a holiday somewhere else. Maybe a Greek island? Would my sisters be able to join me?
It’s not always a holiday when I visit home. And this time I desperately needed a proper relaxing break after all the stress I’ve put myself under the last few months.
I had a plan, a vague plan but it didn’t work out. They never do. So I thought I’ll go home instead for ten days, spend half of it somewhere near a swimming pool, a beach, some of the time continue exploring my little island’s beauties one by one and the rest of the time see friends and family. Will this plan work out?
Wednesday 29th of August
I finally fly home today. I’ve been looking forward to it since I booked my ticket a month ago. I can’t wait to get to the AirBnb the little sis and I chose for our mini family holidays, a modern complex with a huge swimming pool in a quiet residential area (and only a five minute drive from the nearest beach) at probably my favourite area, with the most gorgeous, unspoilt beaches on the island.
I got up early, had a cup of tea, packed the last few things, I double and triple- checked everything, an annoying habit that makes its appearance when my anxiety hits the fan and lingers for a while afterwards, and left for the airport early, in case there is any delay on the train or the bus. I may be late for most things, but not when it comes to flying, you probably know that by now.
I arrive at Heathrow well early, have a delicious halloumi and falafel wrap at Pret and sat on a bench people watching and praying for the second episode of Bodyguard to download in time so I can watch it on the plane.
It was an uneventful, smooth flight. First time I used Cobalt, a new Cypriot airline replacing my beloved Cyprus Airways and first impressions were great. Excellent service, comfortable, reclining seats and it felt great to hear some Cypriot before I even get to my little island, though I forgot how loud we are.
Sun, sea and happy parents
I spent, as planned, the first half of my holiday at Protaras, probably my favourite summer destination in Cyprus. Gorgeous, crystal clear blue water, unspoilt little bays and not as touristy and noisy as the neighbouring Ayia Napa or the centre of Protaras or commercialised as Paphos.
On our way there, I noticed a sign on the motorway, whilst I was driving, God I missed driving, of Cyherbia, a new botanical park at a nearby village. I should definitely check that out...
The AirBnb we booked was perfect. Modern, above ordinary clean, comfortable, large enough for five and it had everything we needed AND the host left a bottle of red on arrival. Ah the little touches that make a great host. You can have a peak here.
The swimming pool was just lovely. Large, clean, not too busy. We spent a large part of our day swimming, laughing, relaxing there. We had the most wonderful four days.
The first one, when all five of us, papa, mama and my best friends, my sisters were all together was my favourite. Rosie, the inflatable flamingo little sis and I picked the day before was a big hit!
Precious, rare moments, I’ll always cherish.
During our stay we went to two, Blue-Flag, organised beaches.
First, Trinity Beach. A little blue and white chapel on top of the cliff overseeing a gorgeous picturesque bay.
We spent very little time there as we went just to watch the sunset but I experienced one of those extremely rare moments when my mind completely calms down, the effect of the sea you see, the sound, the views, not thinking of anything else (that almost never happens) but looking around in awe, struggling to believe the beauty my eyes are witnessing, and for that 10 minutes I felt the absolute happiness.
(The little, rock-less, sandy bay, is on the far left, in case you look it up and my snaps confuse you).
We spent our last afternoon in Protaras at Kapparis beach, a stunning bay, perfect for a swim, and of historic or perhaps sentimental importance, or both. The nearest sea to the occupied part. If I were to swim around, I’d be in Varosia (Βαρωσια), the infamous Famagusta Ghost Town, one of the Top Europe Tourist Destinations before the 1974 invasion, which the Turks still keep sealed off since 1974.
I loved everything about it. The Beach Bar at the top that instantly reminded me of a friend who would have loved it, the crystal clear, perfect temperature water.
On one of our evenings in Protaras we walked down the main restaurant and souvenir area and after a delicious dinner (there will be a separate post on food of course) we needed a bit more walking to digest all the food so we walked by the sea. The warm breeze, the sound of the waves, the beautiful lights, how not to love summer?
If you ever decide to spend summer in Cyprus, even if you choose to stay somewhere else, I won’t blame you, it’s a tough one, there are so many great places, it’s almost impossible to make a choice, but it’s worth spending a day in Protaras. You won’t regret it.
How blessed am I to be born and raised in such a beautiful island?
PS. On our way back to Nicosia, I could not not make a stop at Cyherbia. I couldn’t stop thinking about it since I looked it up, it looked magical, and I’m glad I went, I had the BEST afternoon, I’d never expected what happened, coming up next!)