What are the best areas to reside in North Cyprus?
Cyprus is not a small island by any measure. Although it is the third largest in the Mediterranean, North Cyprus occupies one-third of the island’s overall size of 3,355 square kilometers (1,295 sq mi). In a nutshell, it’s a small country with an abundance of beauties. Also, villages and towns are relatively close to each other, and nothing appears particularly lonely until you go camping on the island’s long eastern edge, the Karpaz peninsula.
What are the best areas to reside in North Cyprus? – Regions
You can rent a car and visit most locations on the island with little or no stress at all. If you want to journey around and explore the lengths, breadth, and magnificent beauties of the island properly, you will need to spend more time during your holiday.
North Cyprus has a spectacular coastline flanked by the Kyrenia Mountains, popularly known as the Five Finger Mountains. It is a long, thin mountain range that stretches for nearly 100 kilometers along the island’s northern shore. Its northern slopes cradle small beautiful settlements with views of the Mediterranean Sea.
The mountains are highly vegetated and lush in the winter and spring seasons because they receive a lot of rain. The ruins of the three spectacular Crusader castles are also situated on the tops of the mountainous hills. Those daring enough to travel up the mountain to the castles are rewarded with a stunning view of the whole northern shore.
Visitors can see as far as the Turkish shore on rare days when the weather permits. You can view all the way down the Karpaz peninsula, straight to its pointy end, and the sea on both sides if you climb to the top of the most eastern Kantara castle. The steep slopes and the lovely shoreline provide a variety of living options.
The Kyrenia region or Girne in Turkish is a prominent cultural and economic center in North Cyprus. The region is lively, bright, bustling with students and tourists, and perhaps a bit too noisy for those seeking a calm and quiet environment. If you live in North Cyprus, particularly the Kyrenia District, you will quickly notice that the city has its own gravitational pull. Residents and visitors alike go to Kyrenia Harbour on a regular basis for a stroll around the marina towards Kyrenia Castle or a leisurely lunch in one of the numerous small eateries dotted around.
Regular Sunday services are held at Kyrenia’s gorgeous ancient St. Andrew’s church, which is overseen by an Episcopal vicar who lives at the adjacent Hermitage. If you are a newcomer, keep an eye out for the British Residents Society’s weekly meetings in their Kyrenia office. They constantly welcome new members and are pleased to offer guidance on how to make the most out of living in North Cyprus.
Kyrenia is well linked to the majority of the island’s major destinations. It is also conveniently located near international airports. Driving to the capital or Ercan airport (on the Turkish side) takes around half an hour; Larnaca airport (on the Greek side) is almost an hour away.
To the east of the town is the New Harbour, from where you can take a ferry to Turkey. The town stretches out from the harbor and is home to an ever-increasing number of expats from across the world. It is witnessing a steady growth and already feels like a small city. Shops, utilities, council offices, banks, communication services, several cafés and restaurants, and recreational facilities are all available on a daily basis.
People frequently travel to Nicosia, often on the Greek side, for more refined shopping or entertainment. Crossing the border is not difficult. For many Cypriots, it is a daily routine. Another alternative is to treat yourself to occasional weekends in Istanbul, where you can enjoy a fantastic city break with world-class shopping centers and a diverse range of entertainment. If you want to live a more quiet life, you can visit one of the many little towns outside of Kyrenia, which provide just what you are looking for – peace and calmness – while yet being close to the city.
Bellapais, a small mountain town and a true spot of beauty, is located just four miles away from Kyrenia. Lawrence Durrel wrote his Bitter Lemons of Cyprus, a sad and painful narrative of the war between Turkish and Greek Cypriots, from this precise location.
Living at Bellapais means stepping away from Kyrenia’s hustle and bustle into a peaceful respite in an attractive hamlet with breathtaking views and a majestic 13th-century monastery. The Abbey, Bellapais’ pride and delight, is built perilously on a natural terrace with a steep drop.
The building is suitably regarded as one of the most magnificent Gothic buildings in the Near East, with views of the entire northern coastline. It is well-liked by residents, tourists, and expats alike. People visit to have a meal or a cup of tea at restaurants with breathtaking views, to admire the architecture, or even to exchange wedding vows.
The Abbey music hall is a popular venue for local art concerts. The Bellapais International Music Festival is held every year at the Abbey. Classical music, choirs, opera singers, and brass-band concerts are all included throughout the festival, which normally takes place in May and June.
Bellapais is an ideal place for families migrating with children since it is adjacent to The English School of Kyrenia, one of the island’s top international schools.
Other hamlets near the Kyrenia District
As you go east down the coast, you will come across a number of beautiful small settlements, most of which have stunning views and are close to the beach. For example, the Esentepe village is a popular choice among foreigners looking to buy a home in North Cyprus. It has its own beach, schools, a clinic, police station, and a variety of businesses, and it is a 10-minute drive away from an international standard golf course. The famous medieval domed Antiphonitis Church, which originates from the 12th century, is also located here.
Ozankoy hamlet is known for its olive, carob, and lemon trees, and you can see the Bellapais Abbey from there. The village is quite traditional and tranquil, with its ancient church and mosque.
The white colonial town of Karmi, up in the mountains, is a genuine expatriate haven, located just underneath St. Hilarion Castle. It is a lovely place to live, with a tavern and a restaurant, a small gallery, and a church in the center, all wrapped up in bougainvillea and guarded by solemn Cypress trees.
Other coastal communities, including Alsancak, Lapta, and Karsiyaka, are also popular with expats and have a lot to offer their residents.
A city on Cyprus’ east coast, Famagusta is just about an hour drive from Kyrenia and is another favorite expat destination. It is the capital of North Cyprus’ Gazimağusa District with an amazing blend of an ancient walled city and modern constructions.
Famagusta has the island’s deepest harbour, allowing it to receive the largest ships. Famagusta will steal your breath away because it is a lively town with a fortified city at its core. There are several businesses, restaurants, pubs, and cafés in the town.
It is worth noting that the townhouses are part of the Eastern Mediterranean University’s campus and are often rather busy, with the entire student population enjoying themselves.
The beaches surrounding Famagusta are regarded as some of the best on the island, and they serve as a fantastic starting point for visiting the Karpaz peninsula, which is a wild and unpopulated area with beautiful beaches and wild donkeys.
İskele and Boğaz
You will travel through the town of Yeni İskele, also known by its Greek name of Trikomo, on your trip from Famagusta to Karpaz. The village is a favorite destination for British expats and a major tourist attraction.
İskele is also known for its yearly festival, which takes place in the first two weeks of July, and the Mehmetcik (Galateia) grape festival, which occurs in the first week of August. Both of these festivals are important regional cultural events that draw people from all around the island.
The lovely village of Bogaz, about 4 miles northeast of İskele, is a traditional fishing community with the wild Karpaz Peninsula on its doorstep. It is known for its harbour, which includes a dozen fish restaurants where seafood is cooked and served fresh from the sea. There are a lot of expats here, and there are a few expat-owned bars in the vicinity.
The village is fairly relaxed, with some wonderful restaurants. It is close enough to Famagusta for daily transit, yet far enough away for relaxation. The beaches in the area are beautiful. Bogaz is quite peaceful in the winter, but it comes alive in the summer.
Expats are less enthusiastic about living on the Turkish side of Nicosia, or Lefkosa. It is understandable that when you move to Cyprus, you want to have sea views from your terrace, which Nicosia does not provide such comfort. What are the best areas to reside in North Cyprus If you are wondering about the subject, let us state that there is no sea in the Nicosia region. If you like the sea, you can choose a region with a sea view.
There are, however, some benefits to living a little further inland since there are fewer tourists, and as a result, fewer service sectors (such as stores, cafés, and restaurants) increase costs during the tourist season.
The old walled city of North Nicosia is home to the charming Sarayönü Square in the heart of the city. The city’s walls remain medieval, but the colorful pubs, restaurants, and stores provide plenty of modern touches. It is a terrific area for a city walk because it is so compact.
The entire area is a beautiful combination of historical eras and architectural styles. Christianity and Islam coexist beside each other, with Venetian, British, French, and Genoese elements strewn around.
Business centers and modern recreational centres may be found in the Dereboyu region of North Nicosia, which is a more modern location. With regular street parties, festivals, and performances by local musicians, the region has become an entertainment hub.
North Nicosia, while being part of a divided city, nevertheless has a capital city atmosphere when it comes to cultural events. The city hosts a number of events on a regular basis, including major theatrical and music festivals. The Near East University hosts an annual spring festival that features famous Turkish Cypriot, Turkish, and international artists, singers, and bands. The annual international Cyprus Theatre Festival is held in the university’s Atatürk Culture and Congress Centre.
The summer temperature is a major disadvantage of living in Nicosia. In the metropolis, the summers are scorching. With summer temperatures exceeding 40 degrees, it is the hottest spot in Cyprus. The city is also densely populated by students, since it is home to multiple universities, with a total student population of more than 34,000.
Another thing to keep in mind is that the majority of Nicosia’s people are Turkish, thus understanding the language might be really useful. Because public transportation is ineffective, possessing a car will go a long way. The nearest beach is 50 kilometers distant, so you will need a car.
Why you should consider relocating to North Cyprus’ most beautiful cities
North Cyprus has a lot to offer those who enjoy being active, from mountain hikes to boat cruises to paragliding. The 18-hole Korineum Golf & Beach Resort, which has an immaculately maintained course with spectacular mountain and sea views, is one of the many options for golfers.
The ancient Kyrenia harbour, the new Delta Marina in the New Kyrenia Harbour, and the brand new Karpaz Gate Marina are all available to yacht lovers to enjoy. A variety of diving and watersports clubs are also available.
Expats can also meet up and socialize through the various expat clubs and groups. Expat bookshops, cafés, and even weekend markets abound. Passports may be renewed and all the regular official information and assistance for expat residents can be received at the British Consulate in Nicosia, which is located in the northern part of the city.
After you decide to live in the city, you can reach more different and all information about the island by clicking here.