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Makenzy Beach on the southern fringes of Larnaca

Squeezed into the stretch of coast between Larnaca and its international airport, Makenzy* is all about fun in the sun. Unashamedly brash, it is very much one of the region's playgrounds.

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Makenzy is bursting with a wide variety of entertainments

 
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From Lebanese restaurants to gay bars, Makenzy pretty much offers visitors a taste of whatever they happen to be into.

Here we find a stretch of lovely beach that's over a mile long. The downside is that it's right next-door to the glide path of Larnaca's international airport, and basically runs up to the fence at the end of the runway. You could say it gets a little noisy at times, at least when the wind is in the wrong direction and planes are taking off towards Makenzy, instead of landing from there.

Let's face it a second, this is the sort of location that either remains deserted altogether, or turns into a unique kind of holiday destination.

 

The northern end of Makenzy beach, with a plane taking off in the background

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And a unique kind of holiday destination it has indeed become...

The Makenzy Promenade (Pile Pasha Street)

 

Once a quiet little coast road, the transformation of Makenzy's promenade** began in the wake of the Turkish invasion of 1974, with the hasty construction of Larnaca's international airport and a string of beachfront hotels along the coast to the town's north, in an effort to revive the Republic's shattered tourist industry.

Nowadays the promenade, which runs for well over a mile between the old Turkish quarter and the airport's outer perimeter, is lined from one end to the other with fish restaurants, bars, an assortment of ice cream parlours, juice bars, and a wide variety of other tourist-orientated amenities.

The northern end of the beach is marked by a sizeable fishing harbour and marina, which is home to around a hundred and fifty commercial and pleasure craft. Unsurprisingly enough, most seafood restaurants around here are supplied by the local fishing fleet, and Makenzy does in fact hold something of a reputation as one of the best places around to get a fish Meze.

It is this part of Makenzy which is most popular with tourists, as this end of the beach is furthest from the airport. Venture but a little inland from here, and you'll find a veritable forest of holiday apartment complexes, as well as more than a few hotels, testament to the simple fact that Makenzy is a popular little resort despite its somewhat noisy location, or perhaps because of it.

 

Makenzy's fishing harbour and marina

Southern end of Makenzy beach, adjacent to Larnaca international airport

 

Indeed, during the height of the Cyprus property boom between 2004 and 2008, holiday apartments in Makenzy were widely considered to be a prime investment by many. And while real estate prices in this area may not have reached the dizzy heights promised by many estate agents, anyone owning a rental property around here will normally still get occupancy rates far above average even .in the current economic climate.

Things tend to get noisier as you head south alng the coast, and the southern end of Makenzy beach runs right up to Larnaca international airport's outer perimeter fence. Consequently it features no multi-storey apartment complexes; instead, this stretch of sand is home to a mutitude of beach-bars and restaurants, and boasts an odd popularity with local Cypriots who seem utterly indifferent to the noise levels at this end of the resort.

Makenzy is certainly not everyone's idea of an ideal holiday destination; it has, however, proven to be a consistently popular little resort during the past couple of decades. And whichever way you choose to look at it, there's a lot to be said about the fact that you can get from the airport to an excellent beach within just five minutes.

* As with many other foreign words in Cyprus, there are numerous ways to spell Makenzy. For the sake of uniformity we have stuck to the one used on local road signs.
**Piyale Pasha Street, named after the Ottoman admiral who commanded the fleet which conquered Cyprus in 1570/1571

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The Larnaca Area

Whicle most British expatriates moving to Cyprus have traditionally ended up in the Paphos area, Larnaca's lower property prices and less touristy nature have also attracted a fair number of immigrants from the UK. Most of these have settled in villages around the town, from Pervolia to the south, to Oroklini and Pyla to the north.

 

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