The Karpaz Peninsula is one of the last remaining true sanctuaries of peace and calm, it’s a place littered with historical sites and stunning views where everyone should visit at some point whilst on the island of Cyprus.
To get to the Karpaz you can go either via Famagusta on the south-east coast and turn inland heading north, or you can now take the coastal road via Esentepe and Tatlısu where a new road has been constructed over the last few years.
Once one of the world’s richest cities, Famagusta is an oasis of history, and you would be wise to either make a weekend of it, or visit several times to give yourself enough time to explore this wondrous and historical gem.
During the Lusignan period from 1192-1489, Famagusta became a very prosperous place with many residing academics, meaning that plenty of money flowed to this part of the world, and subsequently the homes and buildings were opulent and plentiful too. Today you can see ruins, museums, churches, mosques, basilicas and much more. We will list a few of the major sights and places of interests to get you going, but there is certainly more to be seen!
If you’re considering taking a break in North Cyprus why not spend some time exploring North Cyprus’s ancient castles? Even if you aren’t a keen walker or you’re coming to the island in the heat of the summer sunshine when walking too far is pretty impossible, you can still get close enough to each magnificent castle to be impressed – we promise you!
North Cyprus is home to a trio of Lusignan Gothic Crusader castles: St. Hilarion, Buffavento and Kantara, as well as the Byzantine built Kyrenia Castle. Each dominates its location so that you can’t miss them really! A word of warning though, there are steep climbs at fairly high altitudes to the Crusader castles, and parents need to keep a close eye on children, and those who suffer vertigo should hold the hand of someone they trust! Another tip would be to have fluids readily available and to not visit in the heat of the midday sun in the summer time, as it can get a little too hot for many!
Another major site to see in North Cyprus is the ruin of Vouni which is closely linked to the nearby ruins of Soli on the west coast of the island. Yes, there are many ruins in North Cyprus – which is why, for those of us who love history in any shape or form, it’s a great place to visit!
You may be best advised to visit the two sites on the same day, as Vouni’s sole reason for being built in the first place was to spy on the daily goings on in the city of Soli. Its location is actually one of its main features, sitting atop a lone plateau with a sheer 250 metre drop to the sea with nothing else around it, leaving you wondering about the amount of time and effort it must have taken to build it in such a remote but commanding place!
When visiting or indeed living in Northern Cyprus, there is so much to see in the way of historical sites, and there are some sites which are an absolute must see. In this article we will detail the delights of Soli, a fascinating site in terms of world history.
Soli is located to the far west of North Cyprus beyond Güzelyurt, it’s just past the village of Gemikonağı along the coastal road. There is a sign for Soli just after Gemikonağı that indicates that you should turn left, but for some reason the sign’s not particularly big so look out for it carefully as people have been known to completely miss it! From the turning follow the road up and you will come to the site located on the lowland slopes where there is ample parking and a ticket office, (cost of a ticket at time of writing is 10tl), where you will be given literature about the site.
The Mavi Köşk is an almost secretive place that we had been seeing the odd snippet about in the press for ages. It’s a place hidden away in an army camp belonging to the Turkish Peace Forces and located out towards Güzelyurt. There is not much to read about it officially to be honest, so we thought we would go and see if we could expand on that which has been written a bit!Now we can safely say, if you are looking to have a day out in North Cyprus then we would recommend you go and see it, it’s fascinating.
To get to Mavi Köşk, take the coastal road out to the west, working your way up through the landscape continuing towards Camlibel where you will see signs to turn right for Guzelyurt, Çamlibel and Mavi Köşk.From here it’s not far and is signposted well for visitors.You then turn
Recently when thinking about going for a day out, and then finding that it was the afternoon before we actually committed to doing something, a friend suggested we take a trip to the Lambousa tombs and the surrounding areas, which are still very much intact and an interesting site to spend some time exploring.
You can find the ruins of Lambousa by taking the main coastal road from Kyrenia to the west towards Lapta, and upon seeing the signs for the now closed
If you’re going to Lefkoşa for the day then perhaps you might consider visiting the Mevlevi Tekke Museum which is one of the city’s quieter and more peaceful places to enjoy.
It’s a landmark that has stood for thousands of years and which is a site you may well have missed whilst negotiating your way around the city, such is its unassuming location.The Mevlevi Tekke Museum is a place of contemplation for many, and it was used for just that purpose in its past form by the Mevlevi religious order in Cyprus.