Specialist Tour Operators for North Cyprus

If you are looking for something different whilst planning a trip to North Cyprus and you enjoy the great outdoors, then there are a growing number of specialist tour operators adding itineraries to accommodate the likes of the walkers, bird watchers and divers amongst us.

North Cyprus has so much to offer those who love an environment orientated holiday, and the world seems to be taking a stand of sorts against mass tourism these days, so it’s nice to see that there are companies who are grasping all that is beautiful about this part of the island and promoting its unique qualities in terms of nature and the environment.

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North Cyprus Package Holidays

Package holidays are a relatively new but developing business in North Cyprus.  With this side of the island mainly a destination for the independent traveller until recently, holiday companies are now offering attractive packages to suit most budgets and requirements.

Due to the embargoes and restrictions placed upon North Cyprus you probably won’t find much in the way of glossy marketing material in your local travel agent, but there are plenty of dedicated companies offering package deals over the internet, so this is probably the best place to start your research.

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Tourist Information Offices in North Cyprus

There are plenty of places in North Cyprus where you can find information on what’s available to see and do here, although we at Essential Cyprus of course provide just as much information if not more!

Each major tourism area has its own government run Tourism Office, and you can find them at the following addresses:

Kyrenia

30, Kordonboyu Sokak (western end of the Old Harbour), Tel: +90 (0)392 8152145

Famagusta

5, Fevzi Cakmak Bulvari (eastern side of the city walls next to the hospital), Tel: +90 (0)392 3662864

Ercan Airport

Terminal Building, Lefkosa, Tel: +90 (0)392 2314737

Lefkoşa

Girne Caddesi (Kyrenia Gate building at entrance to old city), Tel: +90 (0)392 2275051

These offices can provide you with maps of the particular area, brochures and pamphlets about the things to see and do, as well as recommending any tours that may be running at the time of your visit.  Please note that at the time of writing the areas of Güzelyurt, Karpaz and Iskele do not have tourist information offices.

North Cyprus Tourism UK

Prior to a visit to North Cyprus you can always contact the Northern Cyprus Tourism Office, which is based in London, via their website www.simplynorthcyprus.com where you can request a brochure or visit their offices which are normally open Monday to Friday with normal office hours: 29 Bedford Square, London WC1B 3ED.

Another alternative source for information are bookshops, with the trusty Rustem Bookshop on Girne Caddesi (main road from Kyrenia Gate into the old city in Lefkoşa) selling guides books, information booklets and maps as well some excellent pictorial hardbacks.  Also the Deniz Plaza shops in Kyrenia and Lefkoşa sometimes have useful guide books too.  Hotels usually have plenty of pamphlets that you can take as well, with some of the tour companies displaying boards with tours and activities available.

Alternatively you can always swot up before you arrive and there are numerous books to help you with that.  Why not have a read of our Books on North Cyprus article which should prove helpful.

Castles in North Cyprus

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!

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Activities on the Water in North Cyprus

Considering North Cyprus is surrounded by water, it comes as no surprise that there is a wealth of water activities and sports to participate in, and in this article we will give a brief summary of what is available and some of the companies that can offer a variety of facilities to ensure you have a great time, whatever you choose to do.

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Activities on Land in North Cyprus

There’s plenty to keep children and adults busy when visiting or living in North Cyprus, and whilst researching this article we were pleasantly amazed at the amount of activities that you can get involved in – we never knew there so much to do before!

In this article we will give you an A-Z selection of some of the more land based activities and sports available for everyone to participate in – and they range from activities suitable for thrill seekers through to those that might appeal to the more subdued among us!

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North Cyprus Festival Scene

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!

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Come to North Cyprus in 2012!

Feature photo (Escape Beach) courtesy of Jean Clark –

What with the world’s current financial ‘crisis’ and the wobbly euro, North Cyprus might just be the perfect place to come for your holidays this year.  For savvy holidaymakers eager to make the most of their precious pounds, it is definitely a place well worth considering.

For those of you who don’t know, North Cyprus is not part of the eurozone (yet!), even though it’s just a short hop from most European countries which use the euro as their currency –  therefore it’s not suffering the same problems as other typical holiday destinations such as Spain, which are caught up with bad exchange rates and rising prices.  You will find that prices are always quoted in pounds sterling here in North Cyprus, so people who are looking for holidays that can be bought and paid for in their own currency could benefit and get a much better deal for their money.

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North Cyprus Taxi Services

You can find taxis anywhere and everywhere in North Cyprus!  They are often to be found dropping off their previous fare, waiting at taxi ranks, at Ercan airport, hotels or casinos, and you can also hail them on the road.

In recent years legislation has required the metering of taxis in the major towns, so you should always feel comfortable that you are being charged the going rate.  Some of the smaller towns and villages don’t have meters though, so you should always agree a price before departing.  Taxi drivers also need to hold a valid license to carry passengers, and they often belong to a private taxi company.

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North Cyprus by Plane

There is only one airport in use in North Cyprus and this is Ercan Airport, located on the outskirts of Lefkoşa.  There is one other airport called Geçitkale which is located near to Ercan, but this has not been in use for passenger flights since 2004.  In 2008 there were rumours that Geçitkale was due to become a potential operation centre involved in the exporting of North Cyprus products, but this has idea has since stalled.

Ercan serves North Cyprus with flights to most major European destinations, but due to embargoes and restrictions, flights to and from Ercan can only legally fly via Turkey.  Flights are frequent and at the time of writing the main carriers only appear to be, Turkish Airlines and Pegasus AirlinesAtlasJet and Onur Air will apparently be starting flights in 2012, but on researching they are not quite there yet.  Cyprus Turkish Airlines, the state airline stopped flying in recent years and despite numerous attempts to reinstate the airline, nothing has come to fruition yet, which is real shame indeed.

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