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Cyprus is surrounded by stunning beaches and topped with spectacular forest-coated mountains. At its heart is the lively capital of Nicosia...
Due to the beautiful scenery, balmy weather and sights around the area, this is a very popular tourist destination.
As such, for those considering holidaying in Nicosia, flights should be booked well in advance. Flights to Nicosia are reasonably priced and land in Ercan International Airport (ECN), as they operate via the Turkish mainland. Those looking for flights to Nicosia could also consider arriving at the airports of Larnaca and Paphos, in the Greek southern part of Cyprus. These can be reached directly from many UK airports.
The city houses a wealth of fascinating historical attractions that will keep history enthusiasts entertained for days. You can visit Cyprus Museum, which showcases a collection of Cypriot artefacts dating to the ninth millennium BCE.
Leventis Municipal Museum is also worth visiting; here you'll find exhibits that date as far back as 2400 BC, housed inside a beautiful two-storey building. This museum has been awarded the title of European Museum of the Year. If you visit these two and find yourself hungry for more history, take a stroll around the Byzantine Museum, which contains an incredible collection of Orthodox artwork and coins, ranging from the ninth to the 16th century.
Buyuk Han is another interesting sight. This is the largest Cypriot caravanserai – a roadside inn – and is thought by many to be one of the island's finest pieces of architecture. It was constructed in the year 1572 by the Ottomans.
For those who enjoy fine architecture, the cathedrals of St Sophia and St John's (known as Agios Ioannis) must be visited, as should the beautiful medieval town centre and the Roman ruins. The city is an ideal base from which to explore other resort areas such as Kyrenia and Famagusta, both of which have fantastic beaches and hiking trails.
No man's land is another interesting spot in Nicosia. This is a space which is frozen in time, with every slab of pavement, beam, window and brick exactly how it was during the Turkish invasion of 1974. This area is protected by UN soldiers.
As a final tip, if you cross the border to Cyprus at Ledra Street, remember to have your passport ready for inspection.
You have plenty of options for reaching the island from the UK – it’s easy to get here...
Paphos (PFO) is served from airports all over the UK with easyJet, Ryanair, British Airways, Cyprus Airways, Monarch, jet2 and the holiday airlines of Thomson and Thomas Cook offering flights.
The Cypriot capital Larnaca (LCA) is served by flights from British Airways, Cyprus Airways, easyJet, Monarch, Jet 2 and the holiday airlines, albeit not as frequently as Paphos.
All flights to Cyprus take around four hours.
If you want to reach Ercan (ECN) in Northern Cyprus you can fly from Stansted, via Istanbul, with Pegasus Airlines – a total flying time of around six hours. Turkish Airlines also flies from London, Manchester, Birmingham and Edinburgh via its home base.
Nicosia is fairly central for most destinations throughout the island and is easily reached from the airports...
Cyprus prides itself on its public transport system and its modern fleet of buses operate from all airports into Nicosia. Buses are also fantastic value, with day tickets available for just €1. Some private shuttles also operate and are marginally more expensive than the national service.
A taxi from Larnaca into Nicosia will set you back about €50 (£40), with a rate of around €20 from Ercan, while you’ll pay in the region of €100 from Paphos.
Car hire is a useful option when you fly to Nicosia. Car rental is reasonably inexpensive and you can collect a pre-booked vehicle either from the airport or a convenient downtown location in Nicosia itself. Be aware that you’ll need your passport close at hand if you intend to cross the border between northern (Turkish) and southern (Greek) Cyprus.
From Larnaca, Nicosia can be reached in under 40 minutes. Paphos, in the west, is just over an hour and 30 minutes away, while Ercan is half an hour from Nicosia.
You’ll find something for every taste and pocket in Nicosia...
Most hotels in Nicosia are quite smart and upmarket – especially around the Old Town district, where style seems as important as the history surrounding it. But luxury doesn’t necessarily mean expensive. You’ll find plenty of smart boutiques as well as well-known luxury brands at reasonable rates.
Away from the walls of the Old Town, chain brands such as Holiday Inn operate hotels in the busier parts of the city. Around the grand and well-known hotels, you’ll also encounter dozens of small, boutique hotels offering low room rates.
For a peaceful spot, yet still within touching distance of the shops and bars of Nicosia’s vivacious city centre, look to the northern and southern outskirts of the city, where you’ll discover several spa hotels.
Make sure you get the best deals on flights and accommodation by using TravelSupermarket. Once you’ve found cheap flights, Nicosia hotels can be located throughout the city.