Lefkara has been recognised as one of the “Best Tourism Villages” by the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO).
The initiative was launched to advance the role of tourism in safeguarding rural villages, along with their landscapes, natural and cultural diversity, and their local values and activities, including local gastronomy.
A total of 44 villages from 32 countries across the five world regions were granted the recognition in 2021.
All of them stand out for their natural and cultural resources as well as for their innovative and transformative actions and commitment to the development of tourism in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Lefkara scored highly in all the categories and is an exciting destination for tourists. Tourists visiting Lefkara will find many small shops selling beautiful embroidery in the traditional style. They may even be able to watch local residents as they work on the intricate lace work, known as ‘lefkaritika’. Wandering the village’s limestone cobbled streets offers a snapshot into traditional Cypriot life.
The enchanting village takes its name from the Greek words ‘lefka’ which means white and ‘ori’ which means mountains.
Lefkara mayor Sofoclis Sofocleous accepted the award along with House President Annita Demetriou in Madrid, during the UNWTO General Assembly.
“This award means a lot for our small island,” Sofocleous said. “What pushed us to submit Lefkara for an award as one of the best villages worldwide is its uniqueness”.
He said Lefkara has successfully retained its authenticity and continues to cherish and promote its traditions, such as Lefkaritika hand embroidered lace and filigree silver works.
“The award is a prize to the success in keeping the village’s traditions alive, as they are passed on from one generation to another one,” Sofocleous said.
“We will continue our efforts to maintain Lefkara in the preferences of both local and foreign visitors,” the mayor added.