There are about 300.000 inhabitants living in Nicosia and that is almost a half of the islands population. The city is still divided on two parts, much like Berlin was in the time of the Cold War. The northern part of the town is the Turkish part. Crossing from one to the other part is much easier then it was years ago. Nicosia is not a tourist resort like Ayia Napa or Protaras, so it’s not so crowded and not so tourist orientated. It has it’s own life style and tradition.
The capital of Cyprus
Nicosia (in English) or Lefkosia (in Greek) got its name after a siren. The city is also the Islands capital. It is full of ancient architecture and has a lot of different buildings from different time periods. Most interesting are the Arch Bishop’s Palace, Kyrenia Gate and Venetian Walls. At the end of the 15th century the Venetians ruled Cyprus. That is still present in architecture style and in food. Old Nicosia Aqueduct is also worth checking out and many museums like Archeological Museum. Also very interesting are the Cyprus Classic Motorcycle Museum and Folk Arts Museum. They will give you a look into the old crafts.
Best place to start exploring the city is in its old part which is surrounded by 500 year old Venetian Walls. If you like horse racing then here and then some racing happen at the Ayious Dometios racing track. The smaller streets of the town can be explored on foor. You can find many caffee bars here and also few nice restaurants. The city is best known for its great choice of dishes from Turkey, Arabia and Greece. There are also many souvenir shops that offer wood carved items which are in close relation to sea, Cyprus or religion.
Traveling between the two halves of the city has gotten much easier in recent times. Nicosia is full of attractions that mostly reside inside the city walls. The inside of the city is usually warmer than the coast, so make sure to drink plenty and to explore the city at your own pace.
Best Nicosia attractions
Byzantine Museum, Cyprus Classic Motorcycle Museum, Archaeological Museum, Museum of Natural History, Ethnographic Museum of Cyprus, Museum of National History, Venetian Walls, Kyrenia Gates