Agianapa

Half-a-day Guided Tour from Agia Napa: Famagusta, Orange Orchard, and Donkey Farm (Cyprus)

Although we rented a car in Cyprus and could easily move around, we agreed for a guided bus tour and did not regret it afterwards. The bus tour in English covering Famagusta cultural center, Lisa’s grove orange farm and donkey farm lasted from 10.00 to 13.00 and cost only 5 euros – an incredible price for 3 hours of tour by bus with a guide. The tour was provided by Cyprus Tourist Organization, we booked it in Paralimni tourist information center, and took a bus in Agia Napa (excursions start from McDonalds almost every day at 10.00). At first, we were a bit sceptical: all the passengers were pensioners, and we were the only two young people. But eventually it turned out that the tour can cater all interests.
Agia Napa

Agia Napa

The guide Olga told a lot about Agia Napa and surroundings. Agia Napa is translated from Greek as “holy forest”, and it received its name due to the holy icon as if found here; the monastery which arose to keep the icon. The monastery was built around the spring on the expenses of the aristocratic young lady. The lady had been in love with a poor man, it had been impossible for them to be together, so she preferred to be a nun and her family could afford building a monastery for it. Her grave can still be found next to the fountain in the center of the monastery yard.
Agia Napa

Agia Napa used to be a fishing village: it has so many stones in its soil that agriculture was not quite possible. When the owner of Agia Napa tavern Vassos once mentioned that they might make a resort out of the village, everybody laughed at him. Agia Napa was just next to Famagusta, the most vibrant resort in Cyprus, and could not compete with it in infrastructure. However, in just several years, Famagusta got occupied by Turks, and Agia Napa substituted it. Fishermen became millionaires: their previously useless houses became extremely expensive.
Agia Napa

Famagusta

The story of Famagusta is told very well in the Famagusta cultural center built next to the current Turkish border. They show a film about the tragedy.
Famagusta cultural center

After the Turkish occupation, every 3rd dweller in Famagusta became a refugee, they lost their houses and all other properties. They had to move to Southern Cyprus and start from a scratch here.
In addition to the movie, you may see actual Famagusta from the upper level of the cultural center: Turkish flags, deserted houses, and what was previously a great beach.
Famagusta

Orange orchard

The next stop was at Lisa Psalti citrus orchard. For 2 euros, you receive a plastic bag, into which you may collect oranges. There are several kinds of them, and there are lemons as well, so this is up to you what to collect.
Orange orchard

Orange orchard

The oranges are very sweet and juicy, so make sure you buy a juice press or borrow it from your hotel. Later in Cyprus we noticed that oranges grow everywhere, and nobody really wants them. We also bought excellent strawberries, only 2 euros per kilo, and there are many jams and other goods to purchase here in addition.
Orange orchard

Donkey farm

This last stop was the best. Donkey is a symbol of Cyprus, and this is why there are quite some donkey farms on the island. Did you know that donkeys outlive horses twice: while horses live for 20 years, donkeys can live for 35-40 years? The reason might be that donkeys are so much calmer than horses: not stressing out about everything might help 🙂 Also, donkeys cannot swim, and they are really afraid of water: even a paddle can be an obstacle for them.
Donkey farm

At the farm, there are several enclosures for donkeys and other animals, and the farm is more like a park: you can walk around it and pet almost all of the animals.
Donkey farm

Donkey farm

Donkey farm

Donkey farm

Also, you may have vegetarian cabbage soup for 4 euros in the farm, although this was not the best soup we have ever tried 🙂
soup

This is how three hours passed. We really enjoyed the tour although we are not big fans of organized excursions. There is, however, even more to see in Agia Napa and around as well as in Kavo Gkreko.
Kavo Gkreko