Forty two kilometres from Paphos on the northern coast of the island is Polis, a more relaxed agricultural town in a green and rural setting with many small coffee shops and restaurants which serve genuine local dishes, not always just tourist fare. The coast here, stretching from the friendly village of Pyrgos in the east to the Baths of Aphrodite and Akamas Peninsula Nature Reserve in the west, is more remote and quite different from that on the southern side of Cyprus, with a series of sandy bays, rocky outcrops and mountains plunging into the sea. Fields of pecan, banana, peach, citrus, olive and tobacco surround many villages, and generally speaking tourism has not had a marked effect on this lovely area so far, with development only in one or two areas.
The jewel of the island, the Akamas National Park is in the northwest. Ideal for walks and offering stunning views to both sides of the island it has to be the main magnet for visiting this quieter and less developed region. Development in the northwest is only about 8 years old and the area still retains its agricultural feel. Polis is much smaller and far more intimate than Paphos and the razzamatazz of mass tourism has not quite reached here yet. The northwest also gives easy access to the Paphos mountains and has some very large and interesting villages such as Droushia, Neohorio, Pomos and Pyrgos. It is an area to be explored with a great many beaches, many of them completely empty.
Well off the usual tourist circuit is Pyrgos, a sleepy uncommercialised fishing village and an ideal base from which to explore lovely unspoiled countryside, to visit Cedar Valley and (if you are lucky) glimpse the fleet and elusive wild mouflon. There are a couple of tavernas and coffee shops, banks, a post office and market. The village claims to boast the best climate in Cyprus and the sunsets here are dramatically spectacular. Very much an ethnic area with no bars or souvenir shops. Above Polis, on the way to the heavily wooded Paphos Forest are the traditional villages of Lysos and Peisterona