Cyprus is not only the third largest Mediterranean island, it is also quickly becoming one of the most popular destinations for cycling in Europe, mainly thanks to its wonderful year round sunshine, being compact and boasting a vast and varied range of terrain with only gently headwinds and facilities that are very well equipped.
The latest addition that has been planned for the existing Troodos routes for cyclists will soon offer visitors a whole new set of challenges. The plans are well underway for the creation of a second, fully signposted route that will start from the centre of Limassol and wind through the many picturesque village before ending in the mountains, and it is hope the route will be open by this coming autumn.
Nearly 1 million Brits alone visit Cyprus every year to experience the island’s culture, history and wonderful scenery and what better way to get under the skin of culture than in the saddle of a bike!
The sport is at its peak between November and April, particularly for professional riders who take advantage of Cyprus’ mild winter temperatures to prepare for the start of the forthcoming race season. So ideal, in fact, is the Cypriot topography and climate for cycling, that Czech, German, Swedish and Russian London 2012 Olympic Medalist’s all used Cyprus as a training haven during the winter months in the lead up to the games.
A number of bike centres are available on the island offering rental services, route information, guide assistance and support, thus providing an easy way for those who don’t want to fly over with their own kit to enjoy the Cycling offering without the extra baggage. They can also assist you in following one of the island’s 37 routes or lay out a bespoke journey to suit your requirements.
Planning a route can take you through a varied landscape combining mountain views, rugged coastlines, tranquil vineyards and olive groves and fascinatin0g ancient ruins. Travelling by bike also enables the rider to embrace the sights and sounds of nature from up close and notice things that might be overlooked inside a car, and also offers the comforting awareness that you are doing your bit to lower your carbon footprint.
For a rural excursion with the wind in your hair, Cyprus Villages in Tochni – Kalavasos offer a three days bike rental starting at€50 http://www.cyprusvillages.com.cy/ or +357 24 332998
For those with the desire to satisfy their competitive edge, Cyprus is host to various international challenging cycling events throughout the year:
The Cyprus Sunshine Cup (www.cyclingcy.com) various dates between 23 February and 10 March – one of the most famous Mountain bike Series in the UCI Calendar
Volkswagen Cyprus Tour 2013 (www.cypruscyclingtour.com) – 23 to 25 March
Tour of Cyprus 2013, Cycling Challenge – 29 March to 1st of April
Polis-Akamas Mountain Bike Challenge (www.cyclingcy.com) – September 29-30
White Rocks X-Cyprus Triathlon (www.cyclingcy.com) – 14 October
For a mixture of city cruising and countryside exploration contact www.bikeCyprus.com (http://www.bikecyprus.ch/)