Visitors to North Cyprus will find an array of dining options, ranging from basic tavernas to international-style restaurants during their holiday. Fresh food, pleasant service, and good value are also classic Cypriot virtues.
Best North Cyprus cuisines to try during your holiday
No trip to North Cyprus would be complete without at least one meal at Kyrenia Harbour, which comes alive in the evenings as locals and visitors promenade – but don’t overlook some of the smaller restaurants in the towns and back streets of Kyrenia, as well as down the coast. Under the floodlit magnificence of Bellapais Abbey, an evening meal in Bellapais Village.
North Cyprus cuisines are diverse, with numerous meat and vegetable-based meals that adhere to the Mediterranean diet. You should taste some of the wonderful cuisines in North Cyprus, such as: Lahmacun – a type of Turkish pizza; Yalanci Dolma – vine leaves stuffed with rice; Sigara Borek – feta cheese wrapped in filo pastry and deep-fried; Kofte – minced lamb and herb patty; Kleftiko – lamb in the oven; Meze – a variety of hot and cold appetizers; Mousakka – layers of potatoes, mince, and aubergines; Shish Kebap – skewered marinated lamb; Simit – a sort of Turkish bread used as a snack; Ayran – a fresh or chilled Turkish yoghurt drink.
North Cyprus is situated at the crossroads of three continents, and its rich history has impacted Cypriot cuisines. Although it owes much of its legacy to Mediterranean and Middle Eastern roots, European settlers have had a significant influence as well – however, you will be hard-pressed to find a burger joint here. North Cyprus is an interesting place to eat because many recipes differ from region to region. Each meal has its own distinct flavor and is presented in a way that reflects the Cypriot way of life. ‘Molohiya,’ an Arab meal, has a well-developed taste, preparation, and presentation that appeals to Cypriots. Other popular dishes include ‘yalanci dolma’ (vine leaves packed with rice, onions, and tomatoes); ‘shish Kebap’ (marinated lamb skewered and barbecued over charcoal); and ‘sigara borek’ (feta cheese rolled in filo pastry and deep-fried) as well as ‘mousaka’ (layers of mince, potatoes, and aubergines baked in the oven with cheese topping). ‘Meze’ is a traditional appetizer to a Cypriot dinner.
This specialty includes a wide variety of cold and hot hors d’oeuvres, as well as salads, meats, vegetables, and seafood. It can be served as a starter, but it can also be consumed as a whole meal due to the seemingly endless supply of dishes. Local desserts are largely from the east and are generally quite sweet; examples include ‘lokum’ (Turkish Delight), ‘halva’ (slices of crushed sesame seeds and sugar), and ‘baklava’ (mille-feuille pastry, almonds, honey, and syrup), although there is also plenty of fresh fruit and many more European cuisine. No meal is complete without a cup of rich, robust Turkish coffee. It was brought to the West by the Ottoman Turks in the fourteenth century and is now a daily part of life in North Cyprus. It is now widely consumed around the world and is regarded as a delicacy in trendy circles. Turkish coffee is made by grinding the coffee beans into a fine powder and then boiling it in a little quantity of water with or without sugar, resulting in a thick ‘cream’ on top. Turkish coffee comes in three flavors: ‘sah-de,’ which is unsweetened, ‘ortah,’ which is moderately sweet, and ‘shekerli,’ which is very sweet. Before the coffee is prepared, you will always be asked which of the three you would like.
A refreshing cocktail is ideal for pre-meal beverages, and the local ‘Brandy Sour’ is worth trying. Although imported wines, beers, and spirits are freely accessible, the locally manufactured ‘Efes’ beer is of great quality and value. The most popular local wines are ‘Chankaya’ (white) and Kavaklidere (red). North Cyprus has a fantastic assortment of restaurants serving cuisine from all over the world, in addition to the numerous local establishments. There are several restaurants serving French and Italian food, as well as a handful of great Chinese and Cantonese specialties.