Nicosia (Lefkosia) is the capital of Cyprus. It is also the largest city. As the island’s administrative center, Nicosia is both a commercial and political hub. It is an active metropolis that serves as Cyprus’ center, but is. The northern section of Nicosia is Cyprus’ funding, while the city’s southern part is Cypriot land. After the fall of the Berlin Wall, Nicosia became, and still is, the only divided city on earth.
Nicosia has been continuously occupied since the island Bronze Age (2500-1050 B.C.) From the first century B.C., Nicosia had developed to a city-kingdom known as Ledra. Unlike the trading community of Kition (modern-day Larnaka), Ledra was an irrelevant city with the majority of its people dedicated to agriculture.
From the time Christianity had spread to the island roughly 350 A.D., the town was known as Lefkousia. In the year 965, Cyprus was incorporated into the Byzantine Empire and also Nicosia was made the funding — a name it retains to this day.
Check out our article 5 Things to Do in Limassol, Cyprus
The five decades introduced many changes . The island was captured, sold and sold to rulers including King Richard I of England, the Knights Templar and the Franks before arriving beneath the rule in 1489. On the island, infantry governors augmented every town with the ever-present danger of Ottoman invasion. The 16th century Venetian walls of Nicosia stay in good condition and are one of Cyprus’ biggest tourist attractions.
The historical center of Nicosia is a place where ancient and modern cultures coexist. Nicosia is home to pedestrian streets, fascinating museums, Byzantine temples and luxury hotels. A visit to Nicosia is a visit into the island’s long run. Listed below are the top 10 things to do in Nicosia!
The Cyprus Museum of Nicosia is regarded as the island’s number one tradition because it houses an collection of Cypriot antiquities. The Cyprus Museum was founded as a means to keep. The Cyprus Museum may not have the ultra modern amenities found in Paris’ Louvre or London’s British Museum, but its collection is nothing short of remarkable, with the earliest bits dating right back to the 8th century B.C.
The Cyprus Museum contains 14 galleries showcasing art, culture and Cypriot background in chronological order. Starting with the Neolithic Period of the island, visitors will observe tools and boats. Cruciform items from the Period are also on display. All these picrolite characters are believed to be religious amulets linked to the worship of a fertility goddess.
Replicas of these figurines are found in virtually every souvenir shop on the staircase. Each room in the museum takes visitors as they come across primitive boats, Bronze Age Jazz, clay figurines, religious items, Roman busts, silver, bronze sculptures, jewellery, lamps and mosaics.
The Cyprus Museum is a short walk from Eleftherias Square, which makes it effortless to get from everywhere in downtown Nicosia. Do not lose out on the exhibits this museum holds.
My Thoughts on Nicosia
Museum opening hours:
Additional Travel Details
Tuesday – Friday 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Saturday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Sunday 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Eleftherias Square, or”Freedom Square,” isn’t really a square in any respect, but instead a four-lane one-way road. Overlooking this nontraditional plateia, perched on one of the Venetian bastions, is Nicosia’s Town Hall. Eleftherias Square has always been the middle of the actions of Nicosia including demonstrations celebrations, activities and also the hustle and bustle of the city’s inhabitants.
In 2005, a strategy was set in place to revitalize the square foot and make it be the stunning public space that joins old Nicosia to new Nicosia (pictured above). The company was selected to redesign and rejuvenate Eleftherias Square. As of 2012, the project had been put on hold due to historical findings. The region is going to be a modern park that Cyprus can be pleased with when it’s completed. Some even say it will be the catalyst but this remains to be seen.
Famagusta Gate forms part of the Medieval Venetian walls of Nicosia.
Originally, Famagusta Gate was called Porta Guiliana and functioned as one of three major entry points to the city. Famagusta Gate offers visitors a special glimpse in the fortress that is enormous. There are 3 large halls, which are used for a variety of exhibits.
Originally, they had been used to store military ammunition and supplies. As a warehouse the gate was utilized during the days of British Colonial rule and dropped into disrepair. In 1980, Nicosia city officials started its restoration procedure. Famagusta Gate isn’t only the building in Nicosia, but also the best maintained of the three gates that are original.
Monday — Friday 9 a.m. — 1 p.m., 4 p.m. — Seven p.m.
Like Valletta in Malta, Nicosia was vulnerable to Ottoman attacks during the 16th century. Spiritual kingdoms had much to dread at time, especially since the Ottomans had proved that they were able to successfully overthrow port cities in Greece. In 1565, the Ottomans tried to take over Valletta in a conflict. The Knights of Saint John (also referred to as the Knights Hospitaller) was able to purify the invasion, however other Mediterranean nations took note and started their own preparations for a possible attack.
In 1567, the Venetians began building a fortress around Nicosia with the help of Italian engineers Ascanio Savorgnano along with Francesco Barbaro.
In less than three years that they managed to finish the enormous undertaking, which had 11 bastions, two public gates, one army gate (Famagusta Gate) along with a moat. But despite his efforts, Ottoman forces captured on September 9, 1570, the town. Now, five of the bastions have been in southern Nicosia, the following five are situated in northern (Turkish) Nicosia and one is inhabited by the U.N. buffer zone compels.
Ledra Street, named after the early city-kingdom of all Ledra, is Nicosia’s main shopping road. It begins using some of it and runs from south west, in Eleftherias Square. Ledra Street is always humming with activity. Restaurants, boutiques, bookstores and coffee shops line the pedestrian-friendly boulevard in the heart of the city’s advantages.
For the very best home cooked food in Nicosia, look no farther than Taverna Siantris. This modern restaurant, located in the heart of the town, is a culinary gem as a result of the hardworking Siantris household. The décor might be modern, but the recipes have been tried and true dishes that are conventional. Daytime brings in lunching hungry businessmen women and tourists. Everybody comes to sample the tasty daily specials.
This diners find nontraditional Cypriot dishes such as spaghetti with steak and hearty bean stews. A lot of the clientele has not altered much as the restaurant opened in 1969, although the menu varies daily. Taverna Siantris serves the kind of food one would find in a normal Cypriot family — bunny beef, legumes and pasta. Taverna Siantris’ dishes are diverse and of premium quality. This place is vital!
Recommendations: Lentils, koupepia (stuffed grape leaves), bunny, daily specials ~ Candles $10 — 25 ~ Open Monday — Saturday 11:30 Gamble — 4 p.m., 7 p.m. — 10 p.m.
The Dafermou Winery is the perfect place to channel the internal Dionysus. This estate is located high above the Lefkara Valley and features an ultra building that contrasts with the green hills. General director Mr. Phakoukakis along with his staff conceptualized the distance as a New World meets Old World sanctuary. Although the building itself is very impressive, what’s being generated inside is even more exciting.
After through the principal entrance that was colossal, visitors are given the opportunity to observe the different rooms where Dafermou roses are processed and obsolete. Hundreds of barrels are available from the ground floor room that is aging. The wines create their perfect flavors and aromas. Visitors can sample the various wines, which are made by mixing varieties like Syrah and Sauvignon Blanc with varieties like Assyrtiko, along with wines like Maratheftiko. The combo of these yields Dafermou’s three touch combinations: rosé, red and white.
Visitors are welcomed to have a tour and savor the uniquely crafted wines from the elegant tasting area — a space that’s also perfect for private events and parties of Dafermou. Make sure you phone ahead to schedule your visit and tasting. The Dafermou Winery is about the Nicosia-Limassol Highway, which makes it an ideal day trip from the capital about a 30-minute push from Nicosia. Don’t forget to designate a sober driver!
Km west of Nicosia lies the village of Kakopetria.
Lush greenery surrounds this quaint city and contains two lanes, the Kargotis along with Garillis, operating through it. Both rivers intersect in old Kakopetria to create the larger Klarios River, which drains into Morphou Bay and goes throughout the Solea Valley.
Kakopetria attracts visitors with forest landscape and its architecture. Archaeological evidence proves that the area has been inhabited since the twentieth century B.C. Pieces found here include religious objects and pottery, all of which are available in Nicosia’s Cyprus Museum. Old Kakopetria retains much of its medieval character with its narrow cobblestone streets and pastoral houses.
Near the old part of city is the 11th century Byzantine church, Agios Nikolaos tis Stegis. The church is all that remains of this monastery. Inside it has frescoes depicting the Virgin Mary, Gabriel and Archangels Michael, Saint Lazarus, Jesus Christ and Saint Nicholas. Agios Nikolaos tis Stegis was known as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its important value. It is open to the public every day. Entrance is free of charge.
Apart from meandering round the old town, the most popular pastime in Kakopetria is… you guessed it… eating! The village has quite a couple of bed and breakfast resorts and restaurants that are tavern-style. For you will find campgrounds, biking and hiking trails from the Platania Forest near Kakopetria village.
Kakopetria supplies much needed respite. Slower speed and the village setting make it a day escape from Nicosia.
The Tamassos site is located about 20 kilometers southwest of Nicosia. A place was inhabited by ancient Tamassos where the cities of Episkopio, Pera and Politiko are now. Little is known about the way the early city-kingdom of Tamassos was founded, but archaeologists have discovered clues that suggest that it had been more industrial. Unlike early Kition, Tamassos’ market depended on copper mining. Many of the mines are located which makes it impossible to excavate and find out more about them.
What is known is that early Greek deities were worshiped by the individuals of Tamassos. The Tamassos site has an ancient temple dedicated to the goddess Aphrodite. Visitors can visit the royal tombs and copper workshops. Many of the artifacts unearthed at the Tamassos site are on show from the Cyprus Museum in Nicosia.
Monday – Friday 9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday closed
*Website is accessible with a telephone appointment only
The Troodos Mountain range is one of Cyprus’ wonders. Who knew that you could go snowboarding? We did not until we saw the snow. The Troodos Mountains are located in southwestern Cyprus. At 1,952 meters over sea level, Mount Olympus is the mountain with the highest peak.
The Troodos Mountains are well known for vineyards , Byzantine churches, enchanting villages, nature trails, ski resorts and their woods. Based on what you are searching for, the Troodos Mountains have endless possibilities for family fun, outdoor pursuits and cultural admiration. The mountain range has been split into the following areas: Lemesos mountain resorts, Pitsilia (east), Solea Valley (north west ), Marathasa Valley (west) and wine region (south west ). Each area holds expanses and villages of pure beauty.
The Troodos National Forest Park covers an area of about 35 square miles around Mount Olympus. This is the best place in Cyprus to camp, ski, ski and have picnics.
The Troodos’ beauty stems from the flora and fauna. With different accommodations, which range from village apartments to four-star resorts, there’s absolutely not any reason.
As capital city of the Republic of Cyprus, Nicosia doesn’t disappoint with its museums, monuments and restaurants. Old Nicosia has a distinct architecture and is a wonderful area to stroll around on foot. Laiki Geitonia, the area where the tourism industry is located, is captivating. Though more costly than other areas of the town, the cafés here provide stunning views of this district. The majority of the restaurants and businesses in Laiki Geitonia operate out of houses.
Saturday evenings bring in vendors from the surrounding villages. The town will reveal outdoor markets with local crafts produce, honey, cheese and desserts. The Municipal Market, the market at the Constantine Bastion along with St. Anthony’s market will be the city’s main markets. By getting from Nicosia, travelers are offered the opportunity to observe the countryside of the region. The Troodos Mountains are an must-do! It is possible to ski, hike, bike and camp, which makes it the perfect spot for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers. The streets are easy to navigate and the forest views are magnificent.
Nicosia is a funding, but is rather pedestrianized. Leventis Municipal Museum and the Cyprus Museum are considered to be two of the best on the island. Do not lose out on both of these treasures! Nicosia is a town of opposites — old and new, Turkish and Greek. It’s plenty, considering it’s the city on earth! This top 10 things will date to cover.
Time zone: GMT +2
Shopping: For high fashion, head to Makarios Avenue and Stasikratous Street.
Here, big name fashion brands and high-end boutiques deliver the latest fashions and trends. Popular stores include Replay, Ermenegildo Zegna Gucci Mango, Max Mara, Amicci Boutique, Tiffany Louis Vuitton and Zara. Also is the City Plaza Mall.
For entertaining shopping, browse around Laiki Geitonia. This neighborhood is packed with shops selling crafts and keepsakes. It is a pedestrian-only region using narrow, winding streets and renovated 18th century homes, thus there’s a whole lot of architectural charm along with shaded walkways.
The Mall of Nicosia
3 Verginas Street
Shacolas Emporium Park
2025 Nicosia, Cyprus
+357 77 776 255
Hours of operation: Working hours can be a Small challenge in Cyprus, However as a general Principle:
Currency: Euro (€)
Currency converter: XE
Best time to visit Cyprus’ Mediterranean climate means hot, warm summers (mid-May throughout mid-September). May and June are comparatively months with little to no rain. On the beach it is possible to expect less warmth and crowds In this period.
Crossing into northern Cyprus
If you Intend to cross the border here are some Items to consider:
Larnaka International Airport (LCA)
+357 24 643633
Pafos International Airport (PFO)
+357 26 007 100
Anemayia Rentals (Larnaka) +357 99624726
Europcar +357 22878380
Sixt Rent a Car +357 25312345
Tours: The Cyprus Tourism Organization (CTO) Provides Free guided walking tours on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
Tours start at the tourism information office at 10 pm and continue about two and a half an hour using a half-hour break. The CTO office is located at 11 Aristokyprou Street, Laiki Geitonia (East of Eleftherias Square).
Segway Tours are a wonderful way to maximize your time in the old town of Nicosia. Tours cover all the key sights and last two and a half an hour. Price is $44 per person.
Cyprus Taste Tours is a business that operates in Nicosia, Limassol and Larnaka. Cyprus Taste Tours was made by 2 entrepreneurial women who wished throughout local cuisine. Tours, which are comprehensive, choose individuals to five local restaurants for ouzo, wine and food samplings and last a few hours. Price is $75 per individual. Discount available for groups of four or more.
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