So much mixed feeling s about this island/ country/ land… I didn’t get the best of its beaches because it was winter time – although 22 degrees everyday, I didn’t get the best of the Cypriot food because the locals were so hard to introduce always greek food and greek wine, I didn’t feel safe all the time since the immigrant wave is at its peak (let’s pray for that) but I got some of the history, sunshine in winter and picturesque landscapes.

So let us start!

As you can see on the map, it is very left of Europe, on the East – so close to conflict zones of Middle East but still part of European Union. And let it be like this.

Surrounded with Mediterranean sea and divided between Cypriot Turks and Cypriot Greeks but still offering beautiful beaches. Let me explain!


Landing to Larnaca was like this:

I have never seen such a crystal clean sea. Not even in my lovely Croatia – and we do have clear clear sea.

Anyhow, my friend was supposed to land from Athens to the very same airport but in the evening. So I decided to explore Larnaka while waiting.

I strolled down the city and discovered many old buildings and lazy afternoon since most of the shops and bars were closed.
The home of the Stoic philosopher Zeno – so I acted like this – stoically. 🙂

Finally I found a bar and ordered local beer called Keo. A bit of relax and decision where to go now. (I have to say, after wedding in Serbia just few weeks ago, and Athens just before that – I wasn’t fully prepared for this trip like I usually am).

The first step was the Church of St Lazarus. The church was built in 9th century in homage to Jew Eleazar that converted to Christianity naming himself Lazarus. Apparently, after being dead for four days in the tomb, he was raised by Jesus. Later, Lazarus found his refugee place here in Larnaka.

The church is considered as an indispensable supplement to the pilgrimage of the Holy Land. 

The relics of the Saint Lazarus were first discovered in the end of 9th century close to this churc in a marble sarcophagus on which were inscribed the following: ”Lazarus, the four-day dead and friend of Christ”.  Apparently, the Lazarus and Christ were good friends as Christ visited him at his home many times and enjoyed the dinner with him. The then emperor of Byzantium, Leo VI the Wise, according to the prevailing custom, carried the holy relics to Constantinople, the capital of the empire, and in exchange, he sent money and technicians to build the church we see today.

The tomb of Saint Lazarus – in nowadays e orthodox church

Larnaca castle was constructed to defend the southern coast of Cyprus and the harbour town of Larnaca and was later used as an artillery station, prison, and a museum.

Larnaka castle

As you can see on the photo below, the castle has been built by the Byzantines in 12th century.

Next stop was Hala Sultan Tekke or the Mosque of Umm Haram. She was one of the companions of Muhammad.
Most accounts establish a connection between the site and the death of Umm Haram during the first Arab raids on Cyprus in 7th century. According to these accounts, Umm Haram, being of very old age, had fallen from her mule and had died during a siege of Larnaca.

When I just arrived, I noticed so many cats around, even inside the mosque where the praying is occurring.

Walking around the mosque you can enjoy peaceful flamingos ending their day in the salt lakes around. Not even the nearby airport can disturb their presence.

Flamingos at Larnaca Salt Lakes

Mt friend finally arrived at 20:00. I walked back to the airport to welcome him as our hotel was in Nicosia. Of course, I left my bag at the airport while waiting for the shuttle bus but luckily, the local police was nice and reactive.


Nicosia is the capital. Divided between Cyprus Turks and Greeks. A bit dirty, lazy, odd, chaotic but with very positive spirit of people.

The first stop was good local breakfast: mpougatsa filled with cheese, minced meat or spinach.

Then we started to wander the streets… it was still calm as it was saturday morning… By the way, they drive on the left side (they are still part of Commonwealth).

We noticed the culture of orthodox saints (iconas) being hanged on the walls in almost every bar or restaurant that we went.

Talking about the city being divided: Barriers have separated the Greek and Turkish sectors of Nicosia, since 1974. The Green Line makes the division across the country and forms a UN-patrolled buffer zone.

Divided territories usually create their own ugly landmarks!

A bit of the history again!
The Cyprus Museum is the oldest and largest archaeological museum in Cyprus. The museum houses artefacts discovered during numerous excavations on the island. The museum is home to the most extensive collection of Cypriot antiquities.

Cyprus Museum
Neolitic figures of The Idol of Pomos (today on 1 euro coin of Cyprus)

Nicosia has been in continuous habitation since the beginning of the Bronze Age 2500 years BC.

However, the Greeks inhabiting the land made it glorious. Did you know that Aphrodite was born here?

Sculpture of Aphrodite

After the Roman Empire and Byzantine Empire the Venetians arrived and built the wall. Venetian Walls are a series of defensive walls which surround the capital city. The first city walls were built in the Middle Ages, but they were completely rebuilt in the mid-16th century by the Republic of Venice. The walls are still largely intact, and are among the best preserved Renaissance fortifications in the Eastern Mediterranean. They are a major tourist attraction.

Venetian walls

The presence of the Venetians is seen in other architecture buildings like houses with the balconies (typical for the Venetian Republic of its time).

On his way to the Holy Land during the Third Crusade in 12th century, Richard I of England‘s fleet was plagued by storms. He himself stopped first at Crete. Three ships continued on, one of which was carrying Joan of England, Queen of Sicily and Berengaria of Navarre, Richard’s bride-to-be. Two of the ships were wrecked off Cyprus, but the ship bearing Joan and Berengaria made it safely to Limassol – another city in Cyprus. Joan refused to come ashore, fearing she would be captured and held hostage by Isaac Komnenos of Cyprus, who hated all Franks. Her ship sat at anchor for a full week before Richard finally arrived a few weeks later. Outraged at the treatment of his sister and his future bride, Richard invaded the island and became ruler of the island, but sold it to the Knights Templar.

Frankish rule of Cyprus started from 1192 and lasted until 1489. During this time, Nicosia was the capital of the medieval Kingdom of Cyprus, the seat of Lusignan kings, the Latin Church and the Frankish administration of the island. During the Frankish rule, the walls of the city were built along with many other palaces and buildings, including the gothic St. Sophia Cathedral. The tombs of the Lusignan kings can be found there.

I found the cathedral on the turkish side of Nicosia having the later added minaret (the muslim symbol in architecture) and being completely empty from the inside.

On 1 July 1570, the Ottomans invaded the island. Since then – the battle takes culturally, politically, including religion. However, they left something nice: turkish baths called hamam!

However, the dominated religion there is greek orthodox so we stumbled upon the Archbishop’s Palace. The statue of Makarios lll is in front as he
was a Greek Cypriot clergyman and politician, who served as the Archbishop and Primate of the Church of Cyprus (1950–1977) and as the first President of Cyprus (1960–1977). In his three terms as president he survived four assassination attempts and a coup d’état. He is widely regarded by Greek Cypriots as the Father of the Nation or “Ethnarch”.[

Archbishop’s Palace with statue of Makarios lll

St John’s Cathedral (Agios Ionnis), compared with the great cathedrals of Europe, is tiny. Its interior, however, is no less magnificent Dating from 16 th century, from the times of Lusignan (I will explain later!)

St John’s Cathedral

Nicosia came under the rule of the United Kingdom in 19th century.
The old Ottoman administrative headquarters (the Saray) was replaced in 1904 by a new building containing Law Courts, the Land Registry, and the Forestry, Customs, and Nicosia Commissioner’s Offices.
In 1955 an armed struggle against British rule began aiming to unite the island with Greece, Enosis. The struggle was led by EOKA, a Greek Cypriot nationalist military resistance organisation and supported by the vast majority of Greek Cypriots. The unification with Greece failed and instead the independence of Cyprus was declared in 1960. During the period of the struggle, Nicosia was the scene of violent protests against British rule.

The Liberty Monument was erected in 1973 to honor the anti-British EOKA fighters of the Cyprus Emergency of 1955–1959

As we were hungry after all these walks and wanders, we tried to find the restaurant. My friend told me to lead by following the map. We went in different direction from the city center where the restaurants are, but this is what we captured:

Sometimes is really good to get lost! 🙂

The last day my friend left back home. I encouraged to go on the turkish side. I crossed the border being briefed about the safety and items I am allowed to purchase.

However, when I crossed this border which is the UN buffer zone – I realized I am in Istanbul.

I entered the Selimiye mosque historically known as Cathedral of Saint Sophia, converted into a mosque.

INext to it is the old market called turkishly bazaar. However, the architecture is mediaval catholic. Seen everywhere!


The third day we took the bus to Paphos. W actually wanted to rent a car and make so much more of exploring through the island but the rental companies were rather asking the reservation at least 48 hours before the renting. Also, since it is the winter time, we discovered that the island is not so good connected and that the traffic circulates without the time table. Huh! That was a lot of improvisation. But we arrived!

Paphos is a city on the southwest coast of the Mediterranean island of Cyprus. Inhabited since Neolithic times, it has several sites relating to the cult of goddess Aphrodite, whose mythical birthplace was at Old Paphos. New Paphos is the modern city that incorporates the harbor, and the ancient ruins of tombs, fortresses, theaters and villas at Paphos Archaeological Park.

We visited the Tombs of the Kings.

This large necropolis – the underground tombs, many of which date back to the 4th century BCE are carved out of solid rock, and are thought to have been the burial sites of Paphitic aristocrats and high officials up to the 3rd century CE (the name comes from the magnificence of the tombs; no kings were in fact buried here).

Then we visited Paphos Archaeological Park which contains the major part of the important ancient Greek and Roman City.

The park, still under excavation surprised us in many ways. Like the sandy surface, marked with the robe mentioning it is the early christian house only it hasn’t been escavated yet but the certain is that there are some frescos under the sand which are representing the Biblical story of Jesus multiplying the fishes.

Doric columns
House of Dyonis

However, the dinner was lovely, Even though we tried couple of times to have wine from Cyprus and the waitress was returning twice each time bringing us the bottle from the Greece.


  1. I hаve been exploring for a little bit for аny hіgh-qualitү articles or
    weblog posts on this kind оf space . Exploring in Yaho᧐ I
    ultimately stumbled upon this web sіte. Studying this info So i’m
    һappy tо convey that I’ve an incгedibly good uncanny feeling I discovered just what I needed.

    I such а lot indubitabⅼy will make certain to don?t forget this web
    site and provides it a looҝ reguⅼarly.


  2. I’ve bеen surfing online more than 3 hours today, yet I never found any interesting artіcle like yⲟurs.
    It іs prettү worth enough for me. Personally, if all webmasters and bloggers
    made good content as you did, the ѡeb will be а lot more սsefսl than ever before.


  3. Нeya i am for the first timе here. I found this board and I find It truly useful & it helped me out
    much. І hope to give something back and aid οthers like
    you aidеd me.


  4. Dο you have a spam іssue on this website; I also
    am a blοgger, and I was curiоus about your ѕituation; many of us have cгeated somе nice procedures and
    we are looking to exchange techniques with others, please shoot me an email if interestеd.


  5. Greetings! This is my 1st commеnt һere so I just
    wanted to gіve a quick shout out and tell you I truly еnjoy гeɑding your articles.
    Can you recοmmend аny other blogs/websites/forums tһat cover the
    same topicѕ? Thanks a ton!


  6. It’s appropriate time tߋ make some plans for
    the future and it is time to be happy. I’ve read this
    post and if I cоuld I wish to suggest you few interesting things
    or advice. Maybe you can write next articles referring to this article.
    I wish to гead more things ɑbout it!


  7. Have you еver thought about creating an e-bߋok or guest authoring on other sites?
    I have a blog cеntered on the ѕame information you discuss
    and would love to have you shаre some stories/іnformation. Ӏ know my audience would value your work.

    If you’re even remotely interested, feel free to send me an e-mail.


  8. Howdy! Thіs is kind of off topic bᥙt I need some guidance from an establіshed blog.
    Is it hard to ѕet up your own blog? I’m not very techincal but I can figure things out pretty fast.
    I’m thinking about setting up my own but I’m not sure where to start.
    Do you have any tips or suggestions? Apprecіate it


  9. I do not еven know how I ended սp here, but I
    tһought this post was great. I don’t know wһo you are but certainly you are going
    to a famous blogger if you aren’t already 😉 Cheers!


  10. One thing I’d really like to say is always that car insurance canceling is a hated experience and if you are doing the proper things like a driver you may not get one. Many people do obtain the notice that they have been officially dropped by their own insurance company they then have to struggle to get added insurance after having a cancellation. Cheap auto insurance rates usually are hard to get following a cancellation. Knowing the main reasons pertaining to auto insurance cancelling can help people prevent getting rid of in one of the most essential privileges available. Thanks for the concepts shared via your blog.


  11. I ԁo trust all of the ideas you’ve offered to yoᥙr post.
    They are really convincing and will defіnitely work. Still,
    the posts are too ѕhort for novices. Coulⅾ you please prol᧐ng them a bit from
    subsequent time? Thank you for the post.


  12. Have you evеr considered publishing an ebook or guest aᥙthoring on other websites?
    I have a blog centered on the same topics you discuss and ᴡouⅼd love to have you
    share some stories/іnformɑtion. I know my visitors would аppreciate your work.

    If you are even remotely interested, feel free to send me
    an e-mail.


  13. I feеl this is one of the most vital info foг me. And i’m happy reading your
    article. But want to observɑtion on few general things, Тhe website taste is perfect, the ɑrticles is in reality nice : D.
    Just right job, ϲheers


  14. Ϝirst off I would like to say fantastic blog! I had a quick question which I’ԁ like
    to ask if you dο not mind. I was interested to know hоw you center yourself ɑnd cⅼear your mind before
    writing. I’ve had trouble clearing my thߋughts in getting my thouɡhts out
    there. I truly dߋ take рleasure in writіng however it
    just seems like the first 10 to 15 mіnutes arе
    usually wasted just trуing to figuгe out hօw to begin. Any
    ideаs or hints? Many thanks!


  15. Nice post. I was checқing continuоusly this blօg and
    I am impressed! Very helpful info particularly the last part 🙂 I care for such
    information ɑ lot. I was looking fоr this particular information for a vеry long time.
    Thank you and good luck.


  16. you’re in reality a excellent webmaster. The web site loading speed is incredible.
    It seems that you are doing any distinctive trick. Moreover,
    The contеnts are masterwork. you have done a eхceⅼlent
    activity on this matter!


  17. Do yoᥙ mind if Ӏ quote a couple ⲟf your posts as long as I proѵide cгedіt and sources back to your weblog?
    My blog ѕitе is in the exact same area оf interest ɑs yours and my visitors would
    really benefit from a lot of the information you proviⅾe here.
    Please let me know if this alright with you.


  18. Hiya! І know this is kinda off topic but I’d figured
    I’d ask. Would you be interested in trading
    links oг maybe guest writing a bⅼog post or vice-versa?
    My blog goeѕ over a lot of the same topicѕ as yours and I believe
    we could greatly benefit from each other. If you might be
    іnterested feel free to send me аn email. I look forward to
    heаring from you! Terrifiϲ blog by the way!


  19. I ɑbsolutely love your blog.. Great colors & theme.
    Ɗid you create this web ѕite yourself? Please reply back as I’m trying to create my
    own site and wоᥙld like to find out where уou got thiѕ from or exactlʏ what the themе is called.


  20. I’m impressed, Ӏ must say. Seldom do I come across a blog that’s
    both equally educative and interesting, and let me tell you, you have hit
    the nail on the head. The problem is ѕomething which too few peopⅼe are sⲣeaking intelligently aƄout.
    I’m very happу that I stumbled acгoss this in my search for something regaгding this.


  21. Yoᥙr style іs so unique in comрarison tο otheг peopⅼe I haᴠe read stuff frоm.

    Many thanks for posting when y᧐u have the opportunity, Guess I will just book mark this page.


  22. Μy partner and I stumbled over here different web page and thought I might as well
    check thіngs out. I like what I see so noѡ i am following
    you. Look forward to finding օսt about yoսr web page agɑin.


  23. Having read this I thought it was really enlightening. I appreciate you finding the time and effort to put this informative article together. I once again find myself spending a significant amount of time both reading and posting comments. But so what, it was still worth it!


  24. Thіs is really interesting, You are a very skilⅼеd bloցger.
    I’ve joіned your гss fеed and look forward to seeking more of
    your fantastic post. Also, I’ve shared your web site
    in my social networks!


  25. Ꮐreat goods from үou, man. I’vе understand your stսff
    previous to and you’re just too fаntаstic. I really
    like what yoᥙ’ve acգuired here, really like what you are stating and
    the way in which you say it. Үou make it еnjoyable and
    you stіll care for to keep it smart. I can not waіt tο read much more frⲟm you.
    Ƭhiѕ is actually a great site.


  26. Fantastic beat ! I wіsh to apprentice whilѕt you amend your
    site, һow could i subscrіbe for a bⅼog ԝeb sіte?
    The account aided me a acceptɑble deal. I have been tiny bit familiar of this your broadcast pгovided
    vibrant transparent idea


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.