Autumn in Limassol can be a slightly surreal – or possibly, spooky experience! Visitors on a mini-break are often from countries where a chill in the misty air and damp, curling leaves underfoot more than set the scene for Halloween celebrations. With typical temperatures currently at 27C in Limassol, it feels more like high noon at midsummer than the bewitching hour for tricking and treating.
A still molten-hot sun heating up an autumn day is why more than 433,000 visitors were in Cyprus in October 2018 compared to nearly 407,000 in 2017 – up by 6.5 per cent (CYSTAT). For the cultural adventurer and their loved ones, October in Limassol offers as much authentic personal experience to be engaged with as in the summer months – including family friendly activities!
3rd Annual Halloween Festival
With the mercury still riding as high as a witch flies her broomstick, the 3rd annual Halloween Festival takes place at Limassol National Forest Park, Ekali, Sat 26 – Mon 28 (10:00 – 19:00). Over three days, there’s a non-stop treat (no trick!) of fun-filled Halloween games, competitions and activities for all the family including, ‘scary’ stories told by ‘favourite’ actors!
Among the many events planned are Halloween “Zumba” parties, pumpkin decorating and modelling, candy making, sugar sculpting, bumper boats, horse & pony rides, bungee jumping, trampolines, and even a funfair plus more surprises! Part of the €2 per person entrance fee will be donated in support of the Karaiskakio Foundation, a non-profit group that runs a volunteer Bone Marrow Donor Registry.
As the witches, spirits and ghouls return to the underworld, hopefully, for another year, even the thermometer seems to follow. Dipping slightly to a typical 22C, but still around 10 degrees warmer than many western countries beyond the Mediterranean Sea edge, it’s no surprise that November is declared “Wine” month in Cyprus.
November declared “Wine” Month In Cyprus
There are some 20 wine-making villages surrounding Limassol itself and more than 40 wineries operating right across the island. The “Wine Routes” programme, which was introduced by the Deputy Ministry of Tourism presents seven classic wine-growing regions to explore. From the high southern slopes of the Troodos mountains, and the stunning scenic villages en-route between Limassol and Paphos, to the rural hinterlands of Larnaca and Nicosia. The seven routes include: The Commandaria, Diarizos Valley, Krasohoria, Akamas-Laona, Pitsilia, Vouni Panagias – Ambelitis.
At the same time, November also sees a number of wine festivals to be held in the most well-known Cyprus winegrowing regions, which always attract ardent devotees of the sacred vine!
Zivania Festival at Pelendri and Alona
Throughout the year, Cyprus wine-making villages regularly stage festival events to celebrate the island’s own native grown grape and its uniquely fermented wine. The Zivania Festival 2019 will once again be held at the traditional villages of Pelendri and Alona, below the Troodos mountains in Pitsilia area (Wed 9 Nov 17:00 – 21:00 | Thu 10 Nov 12:00 – 21:00).
Zivania – a pomace brandy – is a traditional alcoholic beverage produced on the island for centuries by the distillation of the leftover grape skins and residue (pomace) from the Xynisteri and Mavro grape, exclusively grown on Cyprus. The colourless, sugarless, non-acidic Zivania possesses the light aroma of raisins and a typical alcohol content of 45 per cent by volume.
Over the two days of the festival, a lively and informative programme includes live traditional music, Cypriot dances, local delicacies and traditional craft products to accompany the distillation and tasting of Zivania, and a tour around the village churches.
‘Open Doors’ at Oenou Yi – Vasiliades
Wine culture lovers are sure to be up for allowing their walking shoes and taste buds roam further – all on the same day (Sat 10 Nov) – by hotfooting it over to the Vasiliades Winery for the annual ‘Cyprus Wineries Open Doors’ event (10:00 – 18:00). The Oenou Yi – Vasiliades Winery is a traditional family-run producer of fine Cyprus wines, which teamed up with Londa in February to present an ‘eclectic wine-pairing’ dinner at the Caprice restaurant.
It is in the exceptional terroir region of the Omodos, rising up to an altitude of 1,060 metres, where the stepped vineyards of “Oenou Yi” are to be found. Occupying more than 1,000 hectares of white limestone, rocky soil of medium consistency the tenth generation of the Vassiliades family continue to practice their wine-making art.
This annual Cyprus Tourism Organisation event offers visitors a unique opportunity to not only explore the vineyards and modern winemaking facilities – in Greek, English and Russian language – but also participate in wine tasting and winemaking masterclasses.
Exclusive Dinner at Caprice Pairs Londa With Cyprus Fine Winemaking Family
Cyprus Wine Museum – satisfy your thirst for knowledge, insight and unique island varieties
Limassol Wine Festival 2017 – dance with Dionysus in the “Wine Capital of Cyprus”