Charmingly sleepy, the little village of Bellapais (Beylerbeyi) sits snugly into the mountainside, offering spectacular views of the Mediterranean coastline below. The impressive remnants of Bellapais Abbey are positioned on the village’s lower flank, where narrow lanes rimmed by potted-plant-festooned houses creep up the hill. Just past the monastery there is a large car park on the left, so you can avoid stopping in the main street.
Bellapais found literary fame after being immortalised by British writer Lawrence Durrell, who lived here during the Ethniki Organosi tou Kypriakou Agona (EOKA; National Organisation for the Cypriot Struggle) uprising against British rule. His entertaining memoir of his time here, Bitter Lemons of Cyprus, is a love letter to the village and a way of life now long gone.