Yes it’s that time of the year again when we should all be getting our lovely little pooches in tip-top condition, teaching them to sit for more than a second and getting them primed for the major doggy-tastic event of the year which is Northern Cyprus’s answer to Crufts – the Kyrenia Animal Rescue Dog Show! [Read more...]
North Cyprus has a large festival scene, and there are more and more festivals being formed every year it seems! You can attend village festivals that play on the particular speciality that the village lends its name to, or you can feast on the international music and culture festivals at some of the great historical venues in TRNC.
The festival season spans roughly six to seven months of the year, with the first events being held around April time and the last ones finishing off in late October, early November. So you can try to catch one when you’re visiting, or even attend a few if you’re living here on the island!
North Cyprus is home to a really wide variety of music and musicians of various genre, and you can find some great venues across the island in which to listen to music, get involved or dance to what you hear! The island is a base for some wonderful home-grown talent in the classical music genre and in the rock world too, and there are music classes and private tuition available on the island for youngsters to learn new skills.
Restaurants and hotels are beginning to realise the benefits of having their own house bands, providing jazz, pop and Turkish music nights for example. These pull in local crowds as well as entertaining hotel guests.
There is the International Cyprus Theatre Festival for example, which is often held at one of the large university complexes but which also stages one off shows in the municipality squares and sometimes even the castles. It offers up to a month’s worth of stage plays, puppet and dance theatre.
Folk dancing has very deep roots here in North Cyprus and in fact, across Cyprus as a whole. The rich history of this island means that its culture and arts such dancing have been influenced by many centuries and the traditions of the latter are being kept alive and well with folk dancing displays being given to the pubic on a regular basis. Attend any of the yearly festivals and you will no doubt be treated to a wonderful example of traditional dancing.
Dances were usually performed on big occasions such as at weddings and harvest days, but because of their popularity with the visiting public, and due to efforts by local folk arts organisation HASDER, dancing has now become something of an international ‘sport,’ with folk dancing competitions taking place in TRNC in which countries from all over the world participate.
When we talk about cinema in North Cyprus, we don’t just mean the usual blockbuster movies that anyone can see no matter where in the world they live, we also mean that North Cyprus does have its own budding cinematic scene. So, you will find the usual cinema facilities in the city areas, but there are also a number of art house cinema venues which are popular places for people wishing to see something different.
Arts venues are host to various screenings, with offerings from local and international film makers, and you can see them in a variety of places such as at Sidestreets in Lefkoşa. Often these cinematic events are bought together by both Turkish and Greek Cypriots, who seem to thrive on working closely to provide a vibrant arts scene. [Read more...]
If you’re living in North Cyprus with children of any age you may feel that there is not a lot for them to do. This may have been the case a few years ago, but with the arrival of many younger families from all over the world, there are now many kids’ groups which are active in the community and provide great sources of entertainment for children of all age groups.
We can start by saying that North Cyprus obviously has its own strong community ties and you can always join in with groups that are particularly aimed at promoting Cypriot culture such as HASDER, but your children may need to at least know the basics of the Turkish language before they get involved. Having said that, the more the expat and local communities mingle the better, and you will quickly find that children can communicate more easily than adults these days and it’s not a big deal for them to get on and speak a mixture of Turkish and English!
North Cyprus has a healthy regard for art, and perhaps due to the island’s centuries long history, there is a surviving enthusiasm for culture that has lasted down the ages, keeping it alive and well amongst the local population. What’s more, Cypriot art and culture is equally popular and of interest to visitors, and some of this interest has resulted in foreign artists producing their own books about art in North Cyprus.
Lefkoşa is the main centre for all things art related in North Cyprus, and you will find a host of galleries and exhibitions to attend in the city throughout the year. You can also find out about what’s on in the arts scene in Cyprus Today, which has its own culture reporter Heidi Trautmann who often enthuses about several exhibitions at once! You can find art exhibitions featuring everything from painting, sculpture, ceramics and photography, often with bi-communal participation confirming that art really does have no borders.
The main exhibition centre in North Cyprus is commonly called the ‘Faur’ in Lefkoşa, it’s located on the main Lefkoşa to Famagusta road which runs past the industrial estate area on the outskirts of the city. The official name for this centre is the Lefkoşa Fair Zone, and there is only one company that has the capability to market events and stage them at the centre, and that’s Fairex Trading.