If you are thinking of taking the plunge, getting hitched, tying the knot or making it ‘official’ so to speak, then there are places of romance all over the world where you can do so, but a great option and perhaps possibly the only option, being the birthplace of Aphrodite, would be North Cyprus! Add to that the sunshine, the stunningly scenic and panoramic backdrops and you can’t go far wrong!
To get the legalities over and done with first – all marriages are legal and legitimate internationally so it doesn’t matter if you come from such places as the UK, Russia, Canada, America or the rest of Europe, you can legally wed here in North Cyprus.
As the law in Northern Cyprus is based primarily on English law it makes the marriage process much simpler to follow and understand as well as meaning that wedding services and marriage documents are all in English. There are certain legal requirements that have to be fulfilled for a wedding to take place which include the bride and groom having to stay in TRNC for at least 6 days before their wedding, providing copies of passports and birth certificates, a form completed for submission to the District Officer and a decree absolute if previously married and subsequently divorced.
There is also a requirement for bride and groom to have a declaration signed and authorised by a local Notary which confirms each parties status as single and able to marry. This will then need to be verified by the TRNC Embassy in London where you will need to have two witnesses attend with you to confirm your identity and they will also need their passports for this.
Once all that has been completed (it does sound a lot, but its not too bad!) and you have your authorisation to wed then you just need to ensure that the ceremony takes place within 3 months of the authorisation date.
You should now be able to breathe a sigh of relief as you don’t have to feel concerned about the all important arrangements from venue to menu either, as there are plenty of locations and organisations that can help you with your big day, and below we will try to help by detailing some of things can be managed for and even by you, without too much stress!
There are plenty of swanky 5 star hotels on the island now that can cater for weddings and receptions and they will often have their own wedding co-ordinators that can help organise a wedding package to suit a budget and who will be on hand to help plan everything from the wedding breakfast, accommodation, special music and features of the ceremony etc. Some of the top hotels for wedding functions seem to be the Jasmine Court, Rocks Hotel and Colony Hotel, all in Kyrenia, with the latter offering a horse drawn carriage service to make things really special!
Alternatively, you can often have your wedding ceremony at glorious venues such as the stunning Bellapais Abbey offering one the most memorable backdrops to any wedding. Or perhaps, as this is the Mediterranean, you may prefer a beach location in which case the likes of Escape Beach or the Acapulco in Kyrenia, Salamis Bay or Kaya Artemis in Famagusta would fit the bill nicely.
If you prefer a traditional wedding, St. Andrew’s Anglican Church in the heart of Kyrenia overlooking the fortress and harbour can also be used for the wedding ceremony (tel: +90 (0)392 815 4329). Other religious denominations are based in North Cyrus too with a Catholic church in Kyrenia (tel : +90 (0)392 815 2285) and the Nestorian Church of George of the Foreigner (tel: +90 (0)392 815 4329). Churches may have certain stipulations to enable you to take your vows, so make sure you investigate these options before you commit.
There are also a number of boutiques and tailors that can help make that dream dress and wedding suit, with designers such as Mehmet Ismail offering a bespoke service (tel : +90 (0)533 866 7078) amongst other specialist wedding outfitters. If you wanted to do something a little cheaper perhaps then there are plenty of high street tailors who make good quality garments at reasonable prices.
If you are looking for those all important wedding rings then again there is so much choice, with jewellery shops dotting the high streets and with tax free shopping here in North Cyprus it can be very cost effective to purchase your rings here. Again if you wanted to have a more personal touch then most shops can cater for custom designs.
Not forgetting the wonderful addition of bouquets and poseys – these can be arranged from any number of florists in major towns and cities around North Cyprus with some excellent arrangements made to your own preference of flowers.
To capture the special occasion you may want to organise a photographer to be on hand during the ceremony and reception to take those all important pictures, and there are some very experienced people on hand such as Jean Clark (tel: +90 (0)392 8222901 or +90 (0)542 857 4914) who has several years of wedding photography in her portfolio (and is also internationally published may we add!). All the photos used in this article are by Jean and you can check her specifically tailored wedding website www.wedding-photos-northcyprus.co.uk for more information and also to have a look at her wonderful portfolio of wedding photography.
Wedding cakes can be bought and ordered just a few days in advance from most bakeries, made to your own design or selected from a standard choice. However, some would say that perhaps the extravagance that some supermarkets go to with their cakes would make them ideal for a wedding feast!
Finally, if you want to feel completely at ease with the whole life changing experience (and it can be stressful!) then there are such things as wedding co-ordinators! If you would like further information or to be put in touch with one of these angel-like creatures, then please drop us a comment below and we will be in touch!