Located east of Agia Napa and southeast of Protaras, the beautiful and protected National Forest Park and conservation area of Cape Gkreko is a Natura 2000 site that unfolds across 385 hectares of stunning, unspoiled natural landscape.
The park incorporates a network of nature trails – lined with Calabrian pine trees and Phoenician junipers – as well as specialist cycling paths, with benches along the way. The two kilometres Aphrodite Nature Trail runs through the southeast coast of the Cape Gkreko promontory, and is part of the Aphrodite Cultural Route that commemorates the island’s link with the Ancient Greek Goddess.
Rich in indigenous fauna and flora, approximately 400 different plant species grow in Cape Gkreko. Out of these, 14 are endemic, and another 14 are extremely rare.
The forest was once abundant with trees, but is now covered with low vegetation, making it home to many mammals, such as foxes, hares and hedgehogs; reptiles such as snakes and lizards, and a large number of birds. The majority of birds are migratory, with five varieties and two endemic species – one of which is the Cyprus wheatear ‘Oenanthe cypriaca’, a migrating bird that breeds on the island.
The general views from the limestone sea cliffs are spectacular and overlook the crystal clear waters of the region. The area is also highly popular for diving and boat trips to the many caves, where an underwater world awaits discovery.
The tiny, whitewashed church of Agioi Anargyroi is also a lovely place to visit, with steps that lead down to a cave by the sea.
Courtesy of the CTO