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Larnaca is an easy-going city on the sunny island of Cyprus. With its lively coastal strip looking out onto glittering Mediterranean waters, it’s long been a hit with travellers. Beach lovers can spend lazy days lounging by the sea, while foodies can feast on dishes like grilled halloumi cheese and freshly caught fish. Its compact old town is filled with honey-hued buildings steeped in over 10,000 years of history. At night, a fun-loving crowd can be found partying in its energetic bars and clubs.
Hostels in Larnaca include beachside studios with sea views and sociable dorms in apartment buildings. For a traditional stay, head to the hills and bed down in a Cypriot stone house surrounded by fig and apricot trees. Many Larnaca hostels are just moments from the beach and some have pools for splashing around in. Look out for hostels serving up free breakfasts, as well as free Wi-Fi and air con in the rooms.
Dotted with seafood taverns and sorbet kiosks, Larnaca’s palm-fringed promenade is a major draw. Here, visitors will find the busy Finikoudes Beach and a modern marina. Behind Athenon Avenue lies the old Turkish Quarter, which is home to the Byzantine Church of Saint Lazarus and plenty of cafés with seating outdoors. In downtown Larnaca, the cosmopolitan square off Ermou Street has upscale boutiques and bakeries. South of the city is Mackenzie Beach, which is known for its water sports and buzzing nightlife.
A tour of Larnaca's shoreline will include tranquil Faros Beach in the village of Pervolia, as well as the golden stretches of sand in neighbouring Softades village. At Larnaca Salt Lake, visitors will glimpse hundreds of pink flamingos feeding on brine shrimp. The Zenobia Wreck is a world-renowned diving site and can also be visited on a glass-bottomed boat. Take a trip to the mountainous village of Pano Lefkara, where you'll find traditional lacemaking shops and tiny taverns lining its narrow lanes.
Larnaca International Airport is around 6km south of town. Metered taxis wait outside the arrivals hall and the journey to the centre takes around 15 minutes. Several buses also run to the city, with the 417 and 429 being the fastest routes. Most of Larnaca is walkable, but taxis can be flagged down on the main streets. Regional buses leave for the different beaches from the central bus station. Other parts of Cyprus such as Limassol, Paphos and Famagusta can be reached via intercity buses.