In this post, we will look at 4 things you must do in Nicosia, Cyprus on your next visit. Nicosia is the capital of Cyprus. Cyprus is an island country in the Mediterranean Sea, south of Turkey. It is a country with a rich history as thanks to its great location many powerful empires have tried to take control of it over the centuries. Nicosia is the capital and largest city of Cyprus. It is located near the centre of the island, on the banks of the River Pedieos.
Why Visit Nicosia, Cyprus
Nicosia is a city where a great number of tourists choose to go, especially in the summer, thanks to the millions of opportunities for awesome things to see and to do. The climate in Nicosia can be classified as ‘Mediterranean’, with a cool and wet winter and a hot summer. The average temperature ranges from 7 to 23 degrees Celsius in January, while it ranges from 25 to 34 degrees Celsius in July.
Nicosia, or Lefkosia, is the last divided capital city in the world. To be more exact, it is divided into a Greek and a Turkish sector, which is the outcome of the Turkish invasion in 1974.
Nicosia has been continuously inhabited for over 4,500 years and has been in continuous use since then as a major trading point because of its location between Europe and Asia. The medieval city was built on top of ancient Nicosia, with many Byzantine churches and houses still intact today. Nicosia’s old town is one of the most well-preserved in Europe.
Lets see the 4 things you must do in Nicosia, Cyprus
#1. Walk along the Green Line
In 1974 Nicosia was divided into two parts following an invasion by Turkey; only Turkish Cypriots were allowed to live on the northern side while Greek Cypriots were confined to the south where they remain today.
The Green Line is the barrier that divides the city into two zones: the southern Nicosia, where Greek Cypriots live, and the northern Nicosia, where Turkish Cypriots are. In Ledra street, there is an entry point so that people can go from one side of the city to the other.
Whilst most other fortified cities such as Dubrovnik, Croatia or York, UK, are defined by their historical fortress-like walls, this isn’t the defining feature in Nicosia. Whilst Venetian bastions do still enclose the old part of the city, rather it is the Green Line which is a demilitarised buffer zone patrolled by UN Peacekeepers. However, nowadays, thanks to more relaxed border controls when visiting the city it is possible to explore both sides of the divide on the same day.
#2. Learn about the history of Cyprus
There is no better place to learn about the history of a country than a museum. In Nicosia, there are two amazing museums that will help you learn about the country and understand the significant role this little island played in world history. These two museums are the Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia and the Cyprus Museum.
If you want to keep the memories of everything you’ve learned fresh, you should hire a car to take you quickly from one museum to the other. You can find a car to hire on Enjoy Travel, as you will not need to waste time and energy learning timetables and bus itineraries.
#3. Visit Laiki Agora
Laiki Agora is a neighbourhood where no cars are allowed to enter and there are many small shops that sell souvenirs and other local products, like olive oil, alcohol drinks, embroidery, small statues or religious images, and other goods created and produced in Cyprus.
The sellers are friendly locals who are happy to talk with tourists about their life on the island and give them tips for the places that they should visit next. A visit to Laiki Agora is an excellent way to soak up the ambience of Nicosia.
#4. Enjoy Cypriot Food
Cyprus is famous for its delicious cuisine, and you can’t leave the island without having tasted some of the most popular foods there. In Nicosia, there are numerous restaurants and fast food shops that make high-quality food. Some of the things that you must try while you are there are halloumi, which is a type of cheese, sheftalies, which are a lot like meatballs; louvi, which is a dish consisting of black-eyed beans along with vegetables, baklava and loukoumades, which are small balls of fried dough sprinkled with honey.
Nicosia is home to many of Cyprus’s most famous attractions and historical sites. I hope these few ideas of things you must do in Nicosia entice you to visit this bustling and lively city.