With such a diverse landscape, ideal climate conditions, abundant resorts, rich history and heritage, it’s no wonder North Cyprus attracts visitors of all ages and cultures from across the globe. Whether it’s the toddler with their swimming armbands in the paddling pool, the curious junior exploring a new environment, the teenager gifted with some free space to themselves without the parents nagging, dad having a quiet drink with his feet in the appetising waters, mum regaining some well-earned energy whilst searching for her tan, knowing everyone else in the family is safe and content, or the couple polishing their romance and intimacy in a one week island adventure, the young adults sporting the extreme at day and flashing the clubs at night, to the sweetly retired pursuing new memorable occasions in tranquil settings – NCY offers a unique blend and choice of pursuits for everyone at the same time. For
The square, together with the historical buildings around it, has become a historical center shaped by the heritage of different cultures. A Latin inscription on the body of a column found during the construction of a mosque dates back to A.D. It is stated that it dates back to the 2nd century. This is one of the first signs about the square. In the 1200s, St. The start of the construction of the Sophia Cathedral can be seen as a turning point regarding the square. St. The construction of the Sophia Cathedral was started in 1209 by the Latin Archbishop Eustorge de Montaigu. Later St. Nicholas Church and the Archbishop building were added, the square and its surroundings became a religious center. During the Venetian period, the face of the square was not changed, a guest house (Venetian House) and a meeting building (Chapter House) were built for the priests. During the Ottoman period, in 1571, St. Sophia Cathedral was converted into a mosque and minarets were added to the structure. This mosque was named after the Ottoman sultan Selim II, who conquered Cyprus in 1
Greek and Greek military vehicles captured during the 1974 Peace Operation are exhibited in the Peace and Freedom Open Air Museum, located in the garden of the Peace and Freedom Museum. As for the Peace and Freedom Museum, this building, which was the house of Makarios' dentist Yorgacis, was used as the headquarters building on the night of July 20, when the 1974 Cyprus Peace Operation started, which was a turning point in the history of the struggle of the Turkish Cypriots. However, the entrance of the building was hit by a rocket launcher bullet fired by Greek soldiers and in the violent explosion, 50th Infantry Regiment Commander Infantry Senior Colonel İbrahim Karaoğlanoğlu, Pilot Major Fehmi Ercan, who served as Air Liaison Officer, and two privates were martyred. For this reason, the house, which has become a historical document, was organized as a museum in order to immortalize the Cyprus Peace Operation and was opened to visitors with an official ceremony as the Peace and Freedom Museum on the second anniversary of the operation. The museum was built as a wealthy Greek house in the early 1970s and is located just east of Yavuz Landing Beach, where the First Peace Operation began. The place where the rocket launcher bullet hit on the night of July 20, 1974 was untouched. The maintenance, repair, landscaping and interior exhibition of the museum in its current state was carried out in cooperation with the Turkish Cypriot Peace Forces Command, the Turkish Aviation and Space Industry, the Ministry of Tourism and Environment and the Department of Antiquities and Museums. The sections of the museum are as follows. Ground Floor: On the ground floor of the museum, the events that necessitated the 1974 Peace Operation are presented with representative animations in the historical process, while the weapons captured during the operation are also exhibited here. Also on this floor, visitors to the museum are given the opportunity to watch the Cyprus Peace Operation documentary. Upper Floor: On the upper floor of the museum, the uniforms and personal belongings of martyr Colonel İbrahim Karaoğlanoğlu and martyr Pilot Major Fehmi Ercan, as well as the photographs, personal belongings and uniforms of those who were martyred during the operation are exhibited. Inner Courtyard: In the inner courtyard of the museum, there is a monumental panel with the names of the soldiers and civilians martyred during the Cyprus Peace Operation. In the open area between the museum building and the Karaoğlanoğlu Martyrdom, armored vehicles and heavy weapons abandoned by the Greek National Guard Army are exhibited. Room I: This is the hall where the historical development of the events that took place between the two peoples in Cyprus until 1974, maps related to the 1st and 2nd parts of the Peace Operation, pictures of armored vehicles and weapons used by the Greeks against the Turks are exhibited. II. Room: This is the room where the video trailer showing the "30 Hot Days" document flood, which describes the events in Cyprus, and newspaper news about July 20, 1974 are located. III: Room: This is the room where the biographies and uniforms of Infantry Senior Colonel İbrahim Karaoğlanoğlu and Air Pilot Major Fehmi Ercan are exhibited. IV. Room: This is the room where the pictures, weapons, uniforms and personal belongings of the martyred Cypriot Mujahideen are exhibited. V. and VI. Rooms: This is the room where the pictures of the martyred Turkish soldiers and the uniforms and personal belongings of our martyrs are exhibited. VII. Room: This is the room where the words of then Prime Minister Bülent Ecevit and TRNC President Rauf Raif Denktaş about the Cyprus Peace Operation and pictures of martyrs' cemeteries and monuments are displa
The Church, built for St. Mamas, one of the well-known saints of the Byzantine period, is located in the Güzelyurt district of Cyprus. After the destruction of the church built during the Byzantine period, the Lusignans completed the church in 1725 on the remaining ruins and built the center of the church in the form of a dome. A part of the church, which reflected Gothic architectural features when it was first built, was preserved and the church has undergone many changes until today. You can more or less see the traces of the period he went through. The relief of St. Mamas, located next to the entrance door of the church, is usually depicted on a lion, with a staff in his hand and a lamb on his lap. The reason why it is depicted this way is that Mamas tames wild animals. Aziz Mamas traveled to many places, but mostly lived in Çankırı, Cappadocia and the foothills of Mount Hasan. Although it is said that he never came to Cyprus, it is said that he lived in the Güzelyurt district of Cyprus for a while in the 12th century. The reason why churches were built in his name in many places after St. Mamas died is that his body was dismembered and distributed to the places he visited and buried there. St. Mamas' tomb is located on the left side of the northern entrance. It is known that St. Mamas died on September 2, and rituals are held in his name every year on this d
Kantara Castle, which is the easternmost of the three castles on the Kyrenia Mountains, was established at an altitude of approximately 700 meters. It is a strategic castle due to its location that can control the northern coast, the Mesarya plain and the entrance to the Karpaz peninsula. St. Although it is estimated that it was built by the Byzantines after the Arab raids, such as Hilarion and Buffavento castles, it is first mentioned in written sources in 1191, when Richard the Lionheart captured Cyprus. The name of the castle is heard most during the Lusignan and Venetian periods. It was the scene of many wars during these periods. Although the Genoese occupied Nicosia and Famagusta in 1373, the castle remained in the hands of the supporters of King Peter I. It is known that Prince John, brother of King Peter I of Cyprus, escaped from captivity in the hands of the Genoese and took refuge in the castle. The castle was surrounded by walls in 1391 by King James. After the Venetians captured the island, this castle, like other castles far from the sea, was demilitarized and lost its former importance. The castle has sections such as a defense area, soldiers' rooms, a water cistern, vaulted rooms and a signal to
Arabahmet Mosque is a Classical Ottoman work located in the Arabahmet District of Nicosia. The mosque was built in the name of Arabahmet Pasha, who participated in the conquest of Cyprus, was the Governor of Cyprus and was among the first founders of the foundation. The mosque was built in the 16th century. The end of the century and the 17th century. It is recorded that it was built on the site of a medieval cathedral and/or on the site of a cathedral at the beginning of the century, and that it was repaired in 1845. When it was first built, its floor was paved with 25 tombstones from the Middle Ages, and these were covered with a wooden floor. During the repair of the mosque between 1992 and 1996, the tombstones at the base were removed and transferred to the Nicosia Stone Works Museum. It is the only mosque in Nicosia built according to the traditional plan scheme of Anatolian mosques. It is estimated that it was built with the idea that such a magnificent mosque would be built in a neighborhood where wealthy people, high-ranking public officials and even pashas resided during the Ottoman Period. The mosque, made of cut stone, has a narthex with a transverse rectangular plan. The narthex has three arched openings on the facade and one on each side. The mihrab is made of marble, resembles a muqarnas weave motif, and is surrounded by three moldings. The entire pulpit to the west of the mihrab is made of marble. The minaret is adjacent to the northwestern wall of the mosque and its door opens to the mosque harbour. It has a stone base, polygonal body, stalactite decoration, a single balcony and a metallic cone. There is a fountain and a small cemetery in the courtyard of the mosque. There are taps in the niches formed by the baroque arches in the octagonal planned water reservoir. This structure repeats the traditional composition of Classical Period Ottoman fountains and was built in 1902. The north and northwest courtyards of the mosque were used as a hazire (cemetery) where famous people were buried. Only six of the tombs in Hazire have preserved their original features. The single-type tombs in the northwest and northeast of the mosque were built here during the renovation works of the mosque between 1992 and 1996, and the headstones and tombstones, which are based on the courtyard wall of the mosque, were mounted at the head and foot ends. Among the important people buried in the cemetery are Kıbrıslı Mehmet Kamil Pasha, who served as grand vizier in the Ottoman Empire 4 times, and Antepli İshak Pasha, the Rumelian gover
St. Hilarion Castle Located west of the main Kyrenia-Nicosia highway, in the Kyrenia Mountain range, St Hilarion castle is the westernmost and best preserved of the three redoubts built by the Byzantines and Crusaders. The legend of St Hilarion Although there is not adequately evidence, the castle is said to be called after the saint of the name. St Hilarion, a little-known hermit and monk fled persecution from Palestine during the 7 th century to dwell and die up in the castle. According to legend he was extremely deaf and resilient to the shrieks of pagan demons that had been lurking and wandering about in the mountain peak. Disgusted at their inability to make him go, they left mountain in peace. During the 10 th century a Byzantine chapel, monastery and later a fort grew around his tomb. It is known that the Byzantine fort was called Didymos , the Greek name for the twin peaks overhead. The Lusignans corrupted this to Dieu d'Amour , maybe confusing a mixture of legends and believing that this was the castle of Aphrodite . With walls and towers that appear to sprout out of the rocks almost randomly, it is a fairly-tale sight living u p to Rose Macaulay's much-quoted description ”a picture-book castle for elf-kings” and the rumour that Walt Disney used it as a model for the castle in Snow White and Seven Dwarfs. The legend that was spread locally says that St Hilarion housed 101 rooms, of which 100 could easily be found; the last, an enchanted garden with a magnificent treasure belonging to an elusive “queen” of Cypriot folklore, most probably a holdover of Aphrodite worship. How to get there If you are going from Kyrenia, take the main road out of town, directed south for Nicosia (Lefkosia). The dual carriageway leading off the roundabout climbs the Kyrenia mountain range, passing the silhouette of Atatürk high on the right. At the top of this climb, about 50 yards (45 m) before the mountain pass turn right at the sign saying St Hilarion Castle. After turning right follow the route as directed by the army signs. This is a controlled road and stopping and taking photographs are signed as forbidden. The road is narrow and twisty that is why careful driving is essential. On the right you will pass the Turkish military camp and the route continues to wind up. You can view Kyrenia harbour to the right and the route reaches its highest point with the vista towards the twin peaks of Didymos ahead. The road continues to the base of the castle walls where a car park is located with a small snack bar. Practical info During summer, come early or later in the day if you can, as climbing to the top of 730 m is tiring and can be quite a difficult work on a hot day. Make sure you wear stout shoes because the ground is often uneven. For climbing St Hilarion a walking stick, camera, binoculars and a bottle of water are recommended accessories. Be aware of many long drops everywhere, especially when taking children. After scaling the castle you can have refreshment at the café by the car p
The cathedral is noted as being the largest and the finest temple, and the most important Gothic structure in Cyprus. It is said to have been constructed over a Byzantine church called Hagia Sophia on the same site. The construction was started by the Latin Archbishop Eustorge de Montaigu in 1208. It was consecrated in 1326 and opened to religious service. As it was the most important church of Cyprus the coronation ceremonies of the Lusignan kings were held here. The cathedral was restored by the Genoese in 1373, and by the Mamluks in 1426; it was damaged in several earthquakes. The eastern section of the cathedral was destroyed in eathquakes in 1491 and as it was being restored by the Venetians, the grave of an old Lusignan king (Hugh II) was uncovered. The corpse was well preserved with a crown on its head, and items made of gold and documents on it. The cathedral was constructed by French architects and craftsmen and it is a beautiful eaxample of medieval French architecture.  The cathedral has a monumental entrance. The carved windows above the entrance are examples of unequalled Gothic art. The Ottomans have built minarets over the two unfinished belfries on either side of the entrance. The inside of the cathedral comprises three aisles, six side sections and little chapels. The chapel to the north was dedicated to St. Nicholas, the ones to the south to virgin Mary and St. Thomas Aquinas. The part of the mosque reserved for women used to be the treasury. Many Lusignan nobilities and kings are buried inside the cathedral.  The marble grave stones of these graves still constitute part of the floor tiles. The inscriptions and drawings on these have been well preserved since they are covered with rush mats, and people are not allowed in with their shoes
This is a sixteenth century inn, the name meaning, great inn. It is situated in Asmaaltı Street and is classified by the Department of Antiquities as an ancient building. The view of the inn from the rear, and so much of its appearance is like a grim fortress, that in the old colonial days, the British used this khan as Nicosia Central Prison. Windows were always high up, and small because of marauders (rich merchants at the inn were inevitably a source of great temptation) and in the Middle Ages, glass was very expensive. In the interior courtyard is a picturesque octagonal tower used for prayers and is therefore a miniature mosque or masjid, with a picturesque fountain below. Around the court and downstairs are the stables, while the merchants had their bedrooms upstairs. The building has curious octagonal chimneys; perhaps guests were allowed to have small charcoal braziers in their rooms. In all, about 67 people were accommodated, but without hot water, TV or electric blankets. The main entrance to the Great Inn is in Asmaaltı Street, but you would hardly notice it, as it is so cluttered up with shops and stalls. This inn was built about 1570 A.D. by Muzaffer Pasha, so it is not a mediaeval building. If you really want to see mediaeval inns, you must go to Tripoli in Lebanon, while in the old Persian towns of Isfahan and Shiraz you can actually see the old customs lingering on. "Caravans" come into the khan yard at night, cook their meals in the open, wash, pray and "bed" down the donkeys for the night. That's the place for a TV documentary film. For some time the Great Khan was used as a builders' yard, but now all this paraphernalia has been removed and the khan awaits restoration. Since this article was written by the William Dreghorn, the Great Inn has been restored to its former glory. It now houses ats and crafts workshops, galleries, caffe and a lovely inner courtyard restaurant, frequented by artists, locals and tourists alike. It sometimes feel like a oasis in the hustle and bustle of the c
This shipwreck, which was first detected at a depth of three meters by a sponge diver in 1965, was brought to the surface by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania as a result of studies carried out between 1968 and 1969. The 15-meter-long hull of the ship, exhibited at the Sunken Ship Museum in Kyrenia Castle, is made of Aleppo pine. Around 400 amphorae found on the ship were of Rhodian production and probably contained Rhodian wine. The fact that plenty of carbonized almonds were also found in the shipwreck shows that almonds were an important nutrient for the crew. It is accepted that this ship, which had loaded goods from Rhodos from the west, sank while it was about to stop at Kyrenia on its last voyage towards the e