My Two Favourite Things For March: Cyprus And Citrus

Cyprus

I have been lucky enough to visit Cyprus recently. Whilst there I had time to ponder my wellbeing journey and consider my previous post about the Blue Zones – areas of the world with the longest living people.

Cyprus surely must be near the top of the list of those health and wellbeing zones. There is an amazing abundance of freshly grown organic fruit and vegetables, a strong sense of connection within families and communities, and, of course, a wonderful Mediterranean climate.

There was so much more to Cyprus than I ever realised. It is an amazing outdoor or Nordic walking destination. Whether you choose the meandering coastal pathways or, for the more adventurous and fit, hikes up and around the scenic Troodos mountains.

Then there are the family owned vineyards that grow native organic grapes such as “Mavro” or “Maratheftiko”. These make the most delicious wine -rarely exported to the rest of Europe – the sort of wine that has the tannins and health benefits that are often talked about. These vineyards offer a wonderful simple lunch on patios overlooking the mountains and sea. The one I visited was www.vounipanayiawinery.com 

Then there are the archaeological sites to visit such as the house of Dyonisis and the mosaic ruins in Paphos, which is a world heritage site.

Up in the mountains we visited an old Greek taverna and ate the most delicious food grown on the terrace’s of the Troodos  mountains – the Greek yoghurt and honey is just to die for.

A trip to Cyprus at this time of year is a delight to all the senses. You leave feeling refreshed and recuperated after a long hard British winter and ready to embrace Spring back home.

A personal recommendation would be to stay at the Cypriot family owned Kanika Hotels, www.kanikahotels.com They really are excellently well run and your every need is catered for without being too expensive.

Citrus

Whilst I was in Cyprus I also noticed that in every garden or smallholding you’ll see citrus trees. Even in February the trees were abundant with ripe, juicy fruits.

The one citrus fruit I was most interested in was one we rarely see in the UK – bergamot. The produce from the bergamot tree is often used in aftershaves and perfumes and, of course, Earl Grey tea. It has the most incredibly fresh smell.

Bergamot is used in Cyprus as an essential oil and is believed to have many medicinal benefits. These include relieving depression, lowering blood pressure, reducing stress and anxiety. It also works as a natural deodorant.

Of course there is also an abundance of the most familiar citrus fruits – oranges, lemons and limes. Cypriots use these daily in their diet and for beauty treatments.

So a trip to Cyprus and consumption of citrus fruits packed full of vitamin C to fight away winter colds at this time of year is a real treat.

It’s left me eager to embrace Spring and look forward to the unfolding events of the year. I would personally rather holiday at this time of year when the weather’s bad and the nights are long and then enjoy the delights and events of a quintessential English Summer.

Have a wonderful week ladies and remember take time to smell the bergamot!

Did you see Lesley’s post on decluttering? Read it now