Nicosia (Lefkosia) is the capital of Cyprus. It is also the greatest city. As the island’s administrative centre, Nicosia is both a political and commercial hub. It is an metropolis that functions as Cyprus’ centre, however, is a city which has remained divided since the Turkish invasion of 1974. The northern section of Nicosia is Cyprus’ funding, while the city’s southern part is Cypriot territory. Following the Berlin Wall’s collapse, Nicosia became, and still is, the only city on the planet.
Nicosia has been continuously inhabited since the island Bronze Age (2500-1050 B.C.) From the first millennium B.C., Nicosia had developed into a city-kingdom known as Ledra. Contrary to the trading community of Kition (modern day Larnaka), Ledra was an irrelevant city with most of its people specializing in agriculture.
From the time Christianity had spread to the island round 350 A.D., the town was known as Lefkousia. In the calendar year 965, Cyprus was incorporated into the Byzantine Empire and also Nicosia was made the capital — a name it holds to this day.
Check out our article 5 Things to Do in Limassol, Cyprus
The five generations brought lots of changes . The island was captured, sold and before coming beneath the rule in 1489. Around the island, infantry governors fortified every town with the ever-present threat of Ottoman invasion. The 16th century Venetian walls of Nicosia remain in good condition and are one of Cyprus’ largest tourist attractions.
The historical center of Nicosia is a place where modern and historical cultures coexist. Nicosia is home to Byzantine churches, interesting museums, luxury hotels and bustling streets. A trip to Nicosia is a trip to the past and a glimpse into the island’s long run. Listed below are our top 10 things!
The Cyprus Museum of Nicosia is frequently regarded as the island’s number one memorial as it houses an extensive and especially rare collection of Cypriot antiquities. The Cyprus Museum was set up in 1888 as a way to preserve the artifacts archaeologists found while excavating around the staircase. The Cyprus Museum may not have the ultra modern amenities found in Paris’ Louvre or even London’s British Museum, but its set is nothing short of remarkable, with the earliest bits dating back to the 8th millennium B.C.
The Cyprus Museum contains 14 galleries showcasing culture, background and art in chronological order. Beginning with the island Period, people will observe vessels and tools. Crude cruciform items from the Chalcolithic Period will also be on display. All these picrolite figures are thought to be religious amulets joined to the worship of a fertility goddess.
Replicas of these figurines can be located in every souvenir store on the staircase. Each room in the museum takes visitors as they come across primitive boats Bronze Age carvings, clay figurines, religious items busts, silver, bronze sculptures, jewelry, lamps and mosaics.
The Cyprus Museum is a brief stroll from Eleftherias Square, making it effortless to access from everywhere in downtown Nicosia. Do not lose out on the amazing displays this museum stays.
My Ideas on Nicosia
Museum opening hours:
Additional Travel Info
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 even”Freedom Square,” is not really a square in any respect, but instead a four-lane one-way street. Overlooking this nontraditional plateia, perched on one of the Venetian bastions, is Nicosia’s Town Hall. Eleftherias Square has been the center of Nicosia’s actions such as political activities celebrations, demonstrations and also the hustle and bustle of the inhabitants of the city.
Back in 2005, a plan was put in place to resurrect the square foot and make it be the gorgeous public space which connects older Nicosia to new Nicosia (pictured above). Reestablish and the world-renowned firm, led by architect Zaha Hadid, was chosen to redesign Eleftherias Square. As of 2012, the project had been put on hold due to findings. The area will be a modern park which Cyprus can be pleased with when it’s completed. That remains to be seen, although some say it’ll be the catalyst to reunify this town.
Famagusta Gate forms a Portion of the Medieval Venetian walls of Nicosia.
Initially, Famagusta Gate was known as Porta Guiliana and functioned as one of three main entry points into the city. Famagusta Gate offers visitors a unique glimpse in the fortress that is enormous. Once through the doorway, there are 3 halls, which can be now used for a number of cultural displays.
They were used to store military supplies and ammunition. Throughout the times of British Colonial rule the gate was utilized as a warehouse also dropped into disrepair. Back in 1980, Nicosia city officials started its restoration process. Now, Famagusta Gate is not merely the building in Nicosia, but also the best preserved of the 3 gates that are first.
Monday — Friday 9 a.m. — 1 p.m., 4 p.m. — Seven p.m.
Much like Valletta in Malta, Nicosia was vulnerable to Ottoman attacks throughout the 16th century. Kingdoms had much to fear at time, particularly since the Ottomans had proved that they could overthrow port towns in Greece. In 1565, the Ottomans tried to shoot over Valletta at a conflict. The Knights of Saint John (also referred to as the Knights Hospitaller) was able to thwart the invasion, yet other Mediterranean countries took notice and started their own preparations for a potential attack.
In 1567, the Venetians began building a fortress with the Support of Francesco Barbaro and engineers Ascanio Savorgnano around Nicosia.
In under three decades that they were able to finish the enormous job, which had 11 bastions, two public gates, one military gate (Famagusta Gate) plus a moat. But despite their efforts, the town was captured on September 9, 1570, by Ottoman forces. Nowadays, five of the bastions have been at southern Nicosia, the following five are located in northern (Turkish) Nicosia and one is inhabited by the U.N. buffer zone forces.
Ledra Street, named after the early city-kingdom of Ledra, is Nicosia’s most important shopping street. It starts with a portion of it located over Turkish-occupied Nicosia and runs from south west, in Eleftherias Square. Ledra Street is buzzing with action. Restaurants, boutiques, bookstores and coffee shops line this boulevard in the center of the city’s advantages.
Than Taverna Siantris, look no further for the home cooked food in Nicosia. This modern restaurant, located in the center of the town, is a culinary stone because of the Siantris family. The décor might be contemporary, but the recipes have been tried and true dishes that are traditional. Daytime brings in lunching hungry businessmen ladies and inquisitive tourists. Everyone comes to sample the yummy specials.
Here, 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 changes daily. Taverna Siantris functions the type of food you would find in a normal Cypriot household — rabbitbeef, pasta and legumes. Taverna Siantris’ dishes are varied and of premium quality. This location is a must!
Recommendations: Lentils, koupepia (stuffed grape leaves), bunny, everyday specials ~ Dishes $10 — 25 ~ Open Monday — Saturday 11:30 a.m. — 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 and contains. General manager Mr. Phakoukakis and his staff conceptualized the distance as a New World meets Old World refuge. Even though the building itself is impressive, what’s being produced inside is even more exciting.
Once through the main entrance, visitors are given the opportunity to find the rooms where Dafermou wines are processed and obsolete. Hundreds of enormous barrels are on display from the ground floor room that is aging. The wines create aromas that are different and their flavors. Visitors may sample the wines, which can be made by mixing varieties like Syrah and Sauvignon Blanc with Greek varieties like Assyrtiko, and Cypriot wines like Maratheftiko. The combo of these yields Dafermou’s three signature combinations: rosé, red and white.
Visitors are welcomed to have a tour and enjoy the uniquely crafted wines from the space — a distance that’s also ideal for parties and private events of Dafermou. Make sure you phone ahead to schedule your visit and tasting. The Dafermou Winery is all about a 30-minute drive from Nicosia about the Nicosia-Limassol Highway, making it an ideal day trip from the capital. Remember to designate a sober driver!
Fifty-five Km west of Nicosia lies the pleasant village of Kakopetria.
Greenery surrounds this quaint village also contains two lakes, the Kargotis and Garillis, operating through it. Both lakes intersect in Kakopetria that is older to make the Klarios River, which goes through the Solea Valley and empties into Morphou Bay.
Kakopetria attracts visitors with its original architecture and forest landscape. Archaeological evidence indicates that the area has been inhabited since the seventh century B.C. Pieces discovered here include religious pieces and objects, all of which are on display in Nicosia’s Cyprus Museum. Old Kakopetria retains much of its character with its narrow cobblestone streets and homes.
Near the older part of town is your 11th century Byzantine church, Agios Nikolaos tis Stegis. The church is all that remains of the monastery. Inside it’s frescoes depicting the Virgin Mary, Jesus Christ and Gabriel, Saint Lazarus, Archangels Michael and Saint Nicholas. Agios Nikolaos tis Stegis was recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its value. It is available to the public every day. Entry is free of charge.
Aside from meandering around the older town, the most popular pastime in Kakopetria is… you guessed it… eating! The village has a couple of bed and breakfast hotels and restaurants that are tavern-style. For there are campgrounds, biking and hiking trails around Kakopetria village.
For quite a few, Kakopetria provides much needed respite from the hustle and bustle of town life. The village setting and pace that is slower make it a day escape from Nicosia.
The Tamassos site is located about 20 kilometers southwest of Nicosia. Historical Tamassos inhabited a place where Pera Episkopio and Politiko’s cities are now. Clues that indicate that it had been more industrial than cosmopolitan have been unearthed by archaeologists, although little is understood about the way the early city-kingdom of Tamassos was set up. Unlike Kition, Tamassos’ market depended heavily upon copper mining. Lots of the mines are located making it impossible to excavate and learn more about them.
What’s understood is that the folks of Tamassos worshipped early deities. The Tamassos site has a ancient temple dedicated to the goddess Aphrodite. Visitors may go to aluminum workshops and the tombs. Lots of the artifacts unearthed in the Tamassos site are on display from the Cyprus Museum in Nicosia.
Monday – Friday 9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday closed
*Website is Available with a telephone appointment only
The Troodos Mountain range is one of Cyprus’ wonders. Who knew that you could go snowboarding on a Mediterranean island? Until we watched the snow for 11, we didn’t. The Troodos Mountains are located in Cyprus. Mount Olympus is the mountain with the maximum peak.
The Troodos Mountains are well famous for vineyards , Byzantine churches, charming villages, nature paths, ski resorts and their pristine forests. Based on what it is you are looking for, the Troodos Mountains have possibilities for outdoor pursuits, family fun and cultural admiration. The mountain range has been split into these regions: Lemesos mountain resorts, Pitsilia (east), Solea Valley (north), Marathasa Valley (west) and wine area (south west ). Each area holds expanses and villages of natural beauty.
The Troodos National Forest Park covers an area of about 35 square miles around Mount Olympus. This is the very ideal location in Cyprus to camp, hike, ski and also have picnics.
The great thing about the Troodos comes from fauna and its flora. With different accommodations, which range from village apartments that are basic to four-star hotels, there’s absolutely no explanation as to.
As capital city of the Republic of Cyprus, Nicosia doesn’t disappoint with its various museums, restaurants and monuments. Old Nicosia has a different design and is a terrific area to stroll around on foot. The neighborhood in which the tourism office is located, laiki Geitonia, is attractive. The cafés here offer views of the district, though more costly than other regions of the town. The majority of the restaurants and companies in Laiki Geitonia operate out of homes that are renovated.
Saturday evenings bring sellers from the neighboring villages. The town will show markets with local crafts, produce, honey, milk and desserts. The Municipal Market, the marketplace in the Constantine Bastion and St. Anthony’s marketplace will be the city’s main markets. Getting from Nicosia provides travelers the opportunity to find the countryside of the area. The Troodos Mountains are a must-do! You can ski, camp, bike and hike, making it the ideal location for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. The streets are reasonably easy to navigate and the pine forest views are stunning.
Nicosia is a funding that is hectic, but is fairly pedestrianized. The Cyprus Museum and Leventis Municipal Museum are regarded as two of the best in the island. Do not lose out on both of these treasures! Nicosia is a town of opposites — new and old, Turkish and Greek. It’s loads do, to see and eat considering it’s the city on the planet! This top 10 things will date to pay.
Time zone: GMT +2
Shopping: For high fashion, head to Makarios Avenue and Stasikratous Street.
Here, high-end stores and big name fashion brands provide trends and the most recent fashions. Popular stores comprise Ermenegildo Zegna, Fogal, Gucci Mango Mara Amicci Boutique, Replay, Tiffany Louis Vuitton and Zara. Additionally is your City Plaza Mall.
For souvenir shopping, browse around Laiki Geitonia. This neighborhood is packed with shops selling crafts and keepsakes. It is a pedestrian-only area with narrow, winding streets and renovated 18th century houses, so there’s a great deal of architectural charm and shaded walkways.
The Mall of Nicosia
3 Verginas Street
Shacolas Emporium Park
2025 Nicosia, Cyprus
+357 77 776 255
Hours of operation: Working hours May be a Tiny challenge in Cyprus, but as a general Principle:
Currency: Euro (€)
Currency converter: XE
Best time to visit Cyprus’ Mediterranean climate means dry, hot summers (mid-May through mid-September). May and June are pleasant weeks with little to no rain. You can anticipate warmth and crowds.
Crossing into northern Cyprus
Here are some things to consider if you Intend to cross the border into northern Nicosia:
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) offers complimentary guided walking tours on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
Tours start in the tourism information office in 10 pm and continue about two and a half hours with a half-hour break. The CTO office is located in 11 Aristokyprou Street, Laiki Geitonia (East of Eleftherias Square).
Segway Tours are a terrific way to make the most of your time in the older town of Nicosia. Tours cover all the main sights and last two and a half hours. Price is $44 per person.
Cyprus Taste Tours is a business which operates in Nicosia, Limassol and Larnaka. Two entrepreneurial girls who wished through cuisine made cyprus Taste Tours. Tours, which can be all-inclusive, continue three to four hours and take folks to five restaurants for ouzo, wine and food samplings. Price is $75 per person. Discount available for groups of four or even more.
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