Things to do in Cyprus when it's raining.

Close your eyes and imagine you are in Cyprus. What can you see? I'm guessing blue skies, a beautiful ocean view and your own feet at the end of a sunbed.

Well unfortunately if you'd visited this week that is not what you would have been seeing. Unusually there have been several days of heavy rain accompanied by spectacular thunder and lightening!

The road outside my mum's villa in a little village near Paphos was transformed from a dusty thoroughfare into a fast-running river. A neighbour commented that the level in their swimming pool was rising. The lizards hid and even the tree frogs fell silent through the worst of the rain. Puddles formed in the fields without one drop coming from the irrigation system.

So, my plan of sunbathe, swim, soak in the jacuzzi (repeat as necessary) went out of the window.

What can you do instead in Cyprus if rain is on the cards?

Find a taverna with indoor shelter.
Life goes on in Cyprus out of tourism season with lots of expats and of course the Cypriots still wanting to enjoy life through the mild but occasionally often rainy winter. Many tavernas and bars have indoor areas, and some have wood burners so even on chilly days you can get out and about.

Don;t want to lose that sea view by eating indoors? Never mind the weather -you can still eat out and enjoy magnificent views. Many restaurants and tavernas now drop down transparent blinds so you can experience outdoor eating without getting drenched!

So, during my visit, gone were the planned long meals on sunny terraces but food and drinks under the shelter of the grapevine at Yianni's taverna (The Klimaratia in Mandria) is still an option - they have a large indoor area too and lots of activities like Bingo nights, and Karaoke.

I prefer  watching the sun sink and be replaced by an impossibly bright starry sky above the jolly strings of lights decorating the town square but when it rains I'll happily take the alternative view of a Brandy Sour and a giant pork chop on my plate instead.

Yiannis Klamataria Taverna Mandria, Paphos, Cyprus
Even on dull days I love sitting at Yiannis
I had hoped to spend a day at the Aphrodite Water Park in Paphos. To be fair I had no intention of sending my tubby middle aged body down the many slides - No, I'd leave that the the thrill-seekers - but I did fancy whiling away a few hours jammed into a rubber ring floating round the long lazy river ride followed by some gentle exercise jumping about in the wave pool and a bit of a lie down in one of the many sunbathing areas.

We usually fit in a game of crazy golf in Paphos and that still is on my list of stuff to do when the rain downgrades from Biblical to showery - It's not cold even with the rain so I reckon if I put my trainers on and hide in the cafe during the showers we could still have some fun there!

Relax and Read
I have rediscovered my love of my Kindle - I found some great new authors browsing the daily deals, free books and "suggested for you" categories and as a bonus got a reward of Amazon credit for downloading a murder/mystery ebook! And of course there's always the back up of the internet via phone, tablet or laptop -I guess most people take at least one of these away with them nowadays (or if you are a blogger like me, probably all of the above!)

Indoor Fun
However if you are determined to get out there is still loads to do even in less-than perfect weather.
All over the island there are bowing alleys and cinemas showing films in English and if you check out the expat's boards online  there are often local events organised by them which you can join in with.

Find out what the locals are doing
For instance on Wednesday I went along to a fund-raising BBQ and dance organised by the St Andrews Society at a lovely little taverna in Paphos and despite feeling like I was in Scotland with the rain and the accents I was made to feel incredibly welcome and even got a cheer when I won a raffle prize!
food at Cyprus taverna
St Andrews Society BBQ - yum!

Check the internet and local "what's on" boards to find art exhibitions, concerts, fashion shows and even dog shows - invest in a cheap brolly (check out the Euro shops or Sports Direct which has branches in Cyprus) and get out and about!

Or head for the shops
 I heartily recommend Greek-owned Jumbo which has branches in Paphos and Limmasol for a bit of everything and great for pressies for people back home.

You can pick up beach bags and bras, shampoo and seashells, lanterns and lilos, pens and party supplies, shoes and shower mats, barbecue tools and bedclothes, nail varnish and nutcrackers - you get the idea?

Yesterday I came out with solar lights, toys and clothes all at bargain prices. Or head for Ikea, M&S, Debenhams, Next and Mothercare and marvel at how they are both the same yet different to "ours".

That's my plan for today - internet and reading this morning, an afternoon Frappe under cover at my favourite taverna in the world Yianni'sthis afternoon then a lovely dinner later at another taverna a short drive away known for having a cosy indoor restaurant and fabulous food.

It never rains for long in Cyprus, short sharp showers are the usual experience so panic not if you are on your hols - the sun is sure to return very soon!