Facilities for the Disabled Persons
The Cyprus’ towns are mainly flat, though fairly accessible with a wheelchair due to pavements that are usually blocked by shrubs, trees or cars, uneven paving and ramps that are not always properly designed. But there are a lot of useful ramps being build, street blind routings being implemented and a lot of work being carried out to improve the infrastructure and provide better facilities for the disabled people. At the moment, for a person using a wheelchair it is advisable to be accompanied for assistance in inaccessible areas.
Airport Facilities for Disabled People
Both Larnaka and Pafos international airports are properly equipped to ensure easy access and good traveling conditions for people with all kind of needs. These facilities include wheelchair ramps to allow easy access when entering or exiting the buses, available washrooms, charging stations for electric wheelchairs at departure gates, blind routes inside the airport, and other assistive services which meet the European Regulation 1107/2006 concerning the right of disabled travelers.
Transportation around Cyprus
In Cyprus, the buses’ exits are generally unsuitable for hindered, old or disabled people. Disabled people who plan to travel around the island should give prior notice to the transportation companies. These companies can then arrange special buses with low gradient ramps, safety belts and a/c. There are also special taxis designed to carry disabled persons who use wheelchairs.
View the list of companies and taxis that can provide transportation for disabled people around Cyprus. The fees depend on the routes and distances that are required.
Blue Card and Parking for Disabled
The European Blue Badge was introduced in Cyprus in 2007 to allow parking for disabled people in designated places all over the island, both in public roads and parking areas.
According to the laws in Cyprus, parking places with a capacity of up to 100 vehicles must provide 10% of the total spaces for disabled people. The parking spaces for disabled people must be properly marked and build to fit vehicles adapted for disabled people. When the number of parking spaces exceeds 100 vehicles then the rate is 5%.
Find out more information about the Blue Badge here.
Hotels for Disabled Persons in Cyprus
More and more hotels and tourist apartments around Cyprus have been adapted to provide special facilities to the disabled. To identify these hotels one should look for the relevant symbols which correspond to the facilities offered such as:
- Parking places for the disabled;
- Entrance Ramps;
- Rooms specially designed for the disabled;
- Accessibility to the hotel’s communal areas;
- Public toilets for disabled etc.
A center of holiday apartments exclusively designed for the use of the wheelchair visitors and people with different disabilities was establishment in Polis (Pafos District):
C&A Tourist Apartments
3, Megalou Alexandrou str., 8820 Polis
Tel. 00357 26 32 18 81, Fax: 00357 26 32 28 56
Other hotels and tourist apartments which offer special facilities for the disabled can be found on the Cyprus Tourist Organisation website.
Access to Hospitals and Health Centres
All hospitals and health centres in Cyprus should provide wheelchair ramps and other facilities and services for the disabled people. General information about the health system in Cyprus can be found on the health and medical care scheme page.
There are a number of archeological sites that are partly accessible to wheelchairs users:
Choirokoitia Neolithic Settlement (Larnaka District)
People using wheelchairs can only visit the area of the reconstructed dwellings due to the natural sloping of the hill.
Amathous Archeological Site (Lemesos)
Only the lower town can be accessed by people using wheelchairs.
Kato Pafos Archeological Park
This site is partly accessible to wheelchairs. The visitors that are using a wheelchair must follow the directions given by the site’s staff as the route is not marked. There are also special parking spaces available and rest rooms (marked).
Tombs of the Kings (Pafos)
The ticket area is accessible by wheelchair and the archeological site can be viewed only from above.
Kourion Archeological Site (Lemesos)
Almost the entire site can be accessed by wheelchair. There are a few small bridges and passageways that might be difficult to visit. The site’s western part can be accessed via a special entrance, opened by the site’s guards upon request. There are several parking spaces available for disabled visitors and special rest rooms marked.
Wheelchair Access to Museums
Cyprus Museum (Archeological), Lefkosia
The Cyprus Museum in Nicosia has a special ramp at the entrance. The access to the museum rooms can be done by chair lift. There are a few available parking places (not marked) and the access to the rest room is temporarily difficult for the disabled.
Lemesos District Archeological Museum
There is a chair lift at the entrance of the museum. There is no wheelchair accessible toilet and no special parking space.
Larnaka District Archeological Museum
There is a chair lift at the entrance of the museum. There is no special rest room for the disabled and no special parking spaces.
Other Monuments Accessible by Wheelchair
- Agios Nicolaos Church in Stegis, Kakopetria village;
- Archangelos Michail Church, in Pedoulas village;
- Panagia Church (Our Lady) tis Asinou, in Nikitari village;
- Panagia Church (Our Lady) tis Podithou, in Galata village;
- Panagia Church (Our Lady) tou Araka, in Lagoudera village;
- Panagia Church (Our Lady) tou Moutoulla, in Moutoullas village;
- Monastery of Agios Ioannis (St John) Lampadistis, in Kalopanagiotis village;
- Timios Stavros Church (Holy Cross) tou Agiasmati, in Platanistasa village;
- Timios Stavros Church (Holy Cross), in Pelendri village;
- Panagia Church (Our Lady ) tis Aggeloktistis, in Kiti village.
- Hala Sultan Tekke, in Larnaka (partly accessible by wheelchair). The entrance is accessible only in the garden but not inside the mosque and it is not marked.
Hiking Trails Accessible by Wheelchair
There are two hiking trails available for disabled people in Cyprus:
- The Livadi Trail which starts and ends at the ‘Kampos tou Livadiou’ picnic site in Trodos, at about 1.5 km before Troodos Square (Plateia Troodous). It is a 1.5km circular trail through the pine forest and offers good views to Solea Valley.
- The Mandra tou Kampiou Trail which starts and ends at the ‘Mantra tou Kampiou’ picnic site in Machairas forest. It is a 1km circular trail through Machairas forest.
Wheelchair Access to Beaches
Cyprus offers a number of beaches that can be accessed by wheelchair users through special ramps over the sand to the sea. The ramps are usually placed in the summer and removed during the winter time. The beaches that can be accessed by disabled people are:
- Akti Olympion Beach
- CTO Beach Dasoudi
- Foinikoudes Beach
- Municipal Beach of Agia Napa
- Fig Tree Beach
Special wheelchairs to access these beach ramps may be provided free of charge by the lifeguard.
Libraries for Disabled People
The Calibre Audio Library is a UK charity organisation which provides free audio books on cassettes or disks for its disabled members. All the books are in English. Membership registrations can be made through the Calibre website. The organization can arrange free postal service to any destination in Europe.
The English Library for the Blinds in Paris sends taped books in English by post to disabled people all over the world. The library has a wide selection of audio books.
English Language Library for the Blind
At: 35 rue Lemercier, 75017 Paris
Tel: +33 1 42 93 47 57
In Cyprus most of the malls, shopping centres, restaurants including fast food places, cafes, and bars have available parking places, lifts and wheelchair ramps for the disabled persons. Also, the banks’ branches in general offer easy access for the disabled clients.