Monday, January 8, 2024

Dining Our Way Through Larnaca

Larnaca, Cyprus is a great place to be a tourist, and a fine place to possess a healthy appetite.

From the time George’s Taxi picked us at the airport to our final day, we’ve encountered friendly people, a beautiful Old Town with a touristy but still attractive beachfront promenade, and quality food and services priced reasonably.

The Hotel Indigo, an IHG property, was an excellent choice.

The included breakfast was of high quality and we enthusiastically suspended our usual no-breakfast routine.

Most mornings we lingered long enough to enjoy a second Cappuccino,

Other than one intensive day of touring with Helena of Cyprus Taste Tours, we spent our time idly wandering around the neighborhood between our hotel and the beach.

We admired one of the local landmarks, the Church of St. Lazarus, by day and by night.

We strolled along narrow little sidewalks, but didn’t have to worry. Having recently visited Athens, we can confirm the drivers here are thankfully much more sedate than their Greek cousins.

It was fun to see the Christmas decorations still up, as Christmas on the Greek Othodox Calendar carries through the first week of January.

We utilized TripAdvisor (about which we have mixed feelings) to choose our restaurants and hit the jackpot every time. No doubt there are many other excellent eateries in Larnaca. The portions are large, or as one British tourist wrote with a mixture of scorn and envy, “American size.”

Take the Mediterranean Platter for two at

Care for more meat?

With a “barrel” (a half carafe) of the house red, that meal set us back about USD $30.

Saturday night we dined in at the Indigo, which featured a singer and pianist.

They were good, but the meal was scrumptious. We started with shared Carpaccio and mussels appetizers.

Tasty but a mistake in retrospect, because we hadn’t left enough room for Kathy’s Tomahawk Pork Chop and Brian’s Chicken Souvlaki.

We enjoyed some more singing before returning to our room sleep.

Before we knew it, it was Sunday evening and our last night in Larnaca. Where to dine? We took a chance on Mystic, an Asian and Italian restaurant that only opened last August.

Our two favorite cuisines bundled into one: what could go wrong? In a word, nothing! It was outstanding. The owner himself served us, and it was quiet enough on our early visit to discuss mushrooms and wine and his relatives in the US.

We chose Duck Bao Buns and Spring Rolls as appetizers from the Asian menu.

We then ventured into the separate Italian menu to choose Beef Rigatoni and Chicken Alfredo, which to Kathy’s pleasant surprise tasted more like her own Porcini Pasta.

We showed the owner pictures of our 2021 Colorado mushroom-foraging expedition with Tom and Ellyn.

In return, he insisted on treating us to a dessert of which he’s 
justifiably proud, ice cream surrounded by some chocolate and spun sugar (hummus-flavored cotton candy) that he imports from Lebanon!

Isn’t that something? Yes, we ate it all, bringing back childhood memories of having a second stomach reserved for was yet another great dining experience in Larnaca.

After a fitful sleep (we get jet lag even when we’re at home), we’re more or less ready to face a long day, a 4:00 PM taxi to LCA, a 7:35 PM departure on BA 663, and a five-hour flight to LHR, where we will stay at the Terminal 4 Hilton. 
Our non-stop flight to YVR (Vancouver) doesn’t depart until 5:40 PM tomorrow, giving us an abundance of time to explore a couple of amazing lounges in Terminal 3.

While our outbound YVR-DFW-LHR-LCA totaled 8,530 miles, our LCA-LHR-YVR trip is a mere 6,750 miles.

The only catch will be whether or not we have the energy to visit those lounges and board our BA flight to YVR.

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