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Cyprus- Everything You Need to Know

Cyprus is a popular tourist destination known for its beautiful beaches, historic sites, and pleasant Mediterranean climate. Some popular tourist attractions include the ancient city of Paphos, the Troodos Mountains, and the coastal city of Limassol. Tourism has increased in the country due to its calm weather and vibrant culture that captivate the hearts of travelers. Although it is a small island, you can surely find the best attraction site to enjoy during the trip. In this guide, we will provide details about Cyprus. 

About the Country

Cyprus is an island located in the Mediterranean Sea. It is inhabited by mountains on the north and south, and the south coast is covered with plains. The temperatures are really hot, indicating a Mediterranean climate. Winters are cooler. Nicosia is the capital city of Cyprus. The currency used here is the Cypriot Pound.

Currency of Cyprus

The currency of Cyprus is the Euro (€), abbreviated as EUR. Cyprus adopted the Euro as its official currency in 2008, replacing the Cypriot Pound. This change has made travel and financial transactions in Cyprus convenient for visitors from Eurozone countries, as they can use the same currency. ATMs are widely available, and credit cards are accepted in most businesses, making it easy for tourists to manage their finances while exploring the island’s diverse offerings, from historical sites to beautiful beaches and vibrant cities.

History of Cyprus

Cyprus has a rich history and a mix of different cultures over the years. You can experience the influence of different regions, such as Greeks, Venetians, and Ottomans. This history is still visible in the way people live, build things, make art, and cook. In recent times, Cyprus was divided into two parts in 1974, one mostly Greek and the other mostly Turkish. This added a new layer to its history, where you can see a mix of Eastern and Western traditions, languages, and religions.

Culture

Greek, English, and Turkish are the languages spoken here. There is a mixed culture of Greek and the Middle East. The locals are very friendly and welcome outsiders with an open heart and make them feel at home by offering them something to drink. To greet someone, a handshake will do. When invited for dinner, it is customary to offer the guest a small gift. One can dress casually, but the swimsuits must be confined to the beaches only. Social functions call for formal dressing.

Site Seeing

The country is full of vineyards, 12th-century buildings, orchards, and monasteries. Be careful when photographing outside. It is forbidden in military areas, and special permission must be taken to take pictures in museums and art galleries. Most of them do not allow flash photography. Taxis can be hired to move around the big towns in Cyprus, which charge according to the government-regulated meters. Tipping the drivers is customary.

Charming Villages of Cyprus

Beyond the bustling city in Cyprus, there are many beautiful and cultural villages that captivate the hearts of tourists. You can explore the old-fashioned streets and buildings that make you feel like you’ve stepped back in time. Villages like Omodos, Lefkara, and Kakopetria have kept their traditions alive for centuries. They have unique stories, like Koilani’s winemaking or Lefkara’s lacework. When you visit these places, the friendly locals will make you feel at home. You can enjoy delicious Cypriot food in cozy restaurants and experience the relaxed way of life in these villages.

Cyprus and Aphrodite

The legendary figure of Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love and beauty, intrinsically links Cyprus to the mythological world. According to ancient mythology, it was on the shores of Cyprus that Aphrodite emerged from the sea foam, born from the waves crashing against the island’s beaches. The myth has left an indelible mark on the island’s identity, as Cyprus is often referred to as the “Island of Aphrodite.” Visitors can explore the ancient temples and sanctuaries dedicated to the goddess, like the stunning Aphrodite’s Rock, where legend has it she was born.

Getting There

Port of Famagusta at Ammochostos, Port of Kyrenia, and the airport of Ercan, have been declared as illegal ‘ports of entry’, so check them out while planning to get there.

The national airline is Cyprus Airways. It connects most of the major cities of Europe. Other forty airlines, too, serve at the airport of Larnaca, which is 5 km away from Larnaka and 50km away from Nicosia. You can hire taxis to reach any destination from there since there is a lack of buses and train services at the airport. This airport offers duty-free shops, banks, tourism and hotel information, restaurants, car hire, a post office, and a reservation office as its other services. The other airport, Pafos, is 15km away from the city, and it takes about 35 minutes to reach the city from the airport. It provides the same facilities as Larnaca Airport.

The major ports of Cyprus are the Limassol port and Larnaca port, which connect other ports of the Middle East and Greek. Not only ferry services are provided here, but even cruise services are also provided here.

Transportation and Roads

Roads to other countries do not connect Cyprus Island, but roads run across Cyprus, connecting all the cities and villages. Buses run on roads except on Sunday, but they run late in the morning during summer. Tourists can get on to rural buses to surf through the remote villages, but they are very slow. If you plan to hire a car, advanced booking is recommended, especially in summer, as the booking is usually full. Do remember to carry a National driving license or International driving permit.

Duty-Free Items

  1. 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars, or 250g of tobacco
  2. 1l of spirits (over 22 percent volume) or 2l of fortified wine or sparkling wine
  3. 2l of still wine; 50g of perfume and 250ml of eau de toilette
  4. 800 cigarettes 200 cigars, or 1kg of tobacco
  5. 10l of spirits, 20l of fortified wine, 90l wine, 110l beer

Most of the food items and items relating to agriculture are prohibited. Explosives and firearms are a strict no-no.

Conclusion

Cyprus is a unique destination where ancient history and beautiful landscapes come together. You can see old things from the past and enjoy the beaches. The people are friendly, and there are many things to do. Cyprus has a lot to offer, and it’s not just a regular trip but an amazing experience waiting for you. You can explore this unique island with its history, nature, and culture all mixed together. Take some research and learn about the destination before starting the journey.

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