Cyprus, in the midst of two cultures

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Mixed island of Cyprus joins two countries and two cultures in one land, one third is for the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, while the southern two thirds up the Republic of Cyprus, an EU member. This attractive island is in the Mediterranean Sea, west of Syria, east of Greece and southern Turkey.

Cyprus, like all countries in Mediterranean climates, it enjoys a large number of sunny days throughout the year, making it one of the best destinations. Summers are long and dry season and during the heat may be too stifling for those who are far from the coast. During the winter temperatures remain pleasant, although it may rain and snow in the Troodos Mountains. The best times of year to visit the island are April to May and September-October.

Important Information:
When the island divided into two zones, entry requirements vary according to the origin of the visitor and the area to be addressed. Citizens of Australia, Canada, USA, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Africa and the EU have allowed a stay of three months in the Republic of Cyprus without the need for a visa. It should be known at the time of travel is not possible to pass the taste with Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot part, because it is not possible with baggage cross the green line which divides them. Those who enter the Greek area can travel north and return the same day, however, if Turkey enters the area, can not be passed to the Greek. In addition, if the passport has been marked with a stamp of the Turkish Cypriot area, then the traveler may not enter the Republic of Cyprus or Greece.

Since January 1, 2008 the official currency is the euro (EUR), travelers checks and foreign currencies may be exchanged at banks, which are open Monday to Friday. Major credit cards are accepted in most shops and a large number of ATMs across the island.

Hotels and restaurants add a 10% service to their bills, so tipping is not mandatory to leave, but will always welcome a small amount. It is customary to give a small tip for taxi drivers, porters and other staff.

Places to visit:
The city of Nicosia, in the center of the island, is the only capital of the world still remains divided in two. On the Greek side, you can visit the Old Nicosia is surrounded by Venetian walls of the sixteenth century, municipal gardens and the city center. There are interesting museums to visit like the Leventis Municipal Museum in the south, a good choice to open the visit to the city, the Byzantine Museum in the Archbishop’s Palace or the Dragoman Hadjigeorgakis. It is also a good option to visit the basement of the museum of the Cathedral of San Juan, where you can see frescoes restored eighteenth century. In the Turkish Cypriot area worth knowing Atatürk Square and then walk down the main street to the door of Girne. In the surroundings you can visit the Museum Turco, a seventeenth-century monastery that has a collection of objects of the dancers dervishes. Other places to visit are the Gothic of the twelfth century Selimiye Mosque and the famous Turkish baths Buyuk Haman.

Located on the west coast, the town of Paphos is one of the few whose original identity has not been ravaged by the passage of tourism, despite the changes in the external part of the city, the interior still has its charms. Some of the places worth visiting are the strength Saranta Kolona, which was destroyed by an earthquake in the thirteenth century. 2km north of the city you can visit the great tombs of the Kings, carved into the rock cliff. Century III are the famous mosaics, the best, dedicated to Dionysus.

Famagusta, which was the richest city in the world and the scene of the story of Othello, is now a walled city as a decrepit and surrounded by an area of modern buildings. After being ravaged by the Ottoman Empire in the sixteenth century were very few buildings standing, including a few churches that are visited in what is now the Old Town. Among the buildings that are worth a visit is the Gothic Church of St. Nicholas (Lala Mustafa). You can also visit the Tower of Othello, where according to legend, was murdered Desdemona.

On the north coast is the picturesque old quarter of Kyrenia, one of the most pleasant resorts. In addition to enjoying the outdoor cafes and the Mediterranean atmosphere, you can visit the castle of Kyrenia, built in Venetian style in Roman times. In the castle you can visit a museum ship and finds a Byzantine chapel.

The south are the incredible Troodros Mountains, the perfect place for lovers of hiking, skiing and for those who do not tolerate heat. The main resort is the ski resort of Platres. In the western part is Pedoulas, you can visit the Church of Archangel Mihail. North in the district are known Solea beautiful villages and monasteries, besides enjoying cycling.

As you can imagine, the holidays in Cyprus have different origins, from the north are Turkish, while those south are Greek. The most important of the celebrations of the north is the month of fasting, which changes according to the dated lunar calendar, which of Ramadan and Id al-Fitr, a feast that culminates with the fast. In addition, the November 15 will celebrate the Proclamation of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.

Of the major Greek holiday is Easter because, for the Orthodox Church, is more important than Christmas. This festival is marked by fireworks, processions, feasts and candles. Fifty days before we celebrate the Sunday of Lent, culminating with the carnival festivities. Finally, on October 1st we celebrate the Independence Day of Cyprus.

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