Sights in Nicosia

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Helene Black at hellenic bank

Helene Black at hellenic bank

The island nation of Cyprus offers visitors so much to enjoy. From the beautiful sandy beaches, azure blue waters to the historical sites and lush scenery, Cyprus is a vacationers paradise. The city of Nicosia is one of the most visited locations in the country. Anyone making the journey will be amazed at the abundance of Nicosia Sights.

Selimiye Mosque(St. Sophia Cathedral)

This was once the main cathedral of the city until 1570 when it was turned into a mosque. The Selimye Mosque is one of the best preserved buildings in the country and still offers Muslim prayers. It is one of the finest examples of a Gothic structure in Cyprus. Visitors are welcome to explore the church except during the time of prayers.

The City Walls of Nicosia

Before Cyprus was conquered by the Ottomans it was under the control of the Venetians. The Venetians began construction on the city walls to replace the Lusignan walls. The walls have a circumference of 3 miles and 11 bastions. They give the appearance of a castle with 3 gates built within the walls. It is quite an awesome site to see for lovers of ancient history.

Mevlevi Tekki

Mevlevi Tekki is an old building constructed in the 16th century by Arap Ahmed Pasha. It once served as a lodge for for members of the dervhises. Inside the building are tombs and the dervish meeting house. It remained as a lodge until 1920 when Attaturk banned lodges throughout the country.

Cross the Green Line

Although technically one nation Cyprus is divided into 2x halves. The south side of the island is Greek while the other is Turkish. Crossing from the Greek side to the Turkish side is quite complicated and brings back memories of the former Eastern block nations of Europe. Crossing over into the Turkish side has become slightly more relaxed in recent years but you must present your passport and purchase a day visa to enter. Greek passports are allowed to enter without the visa. Although the exact law on this is unclear, visitors are advised to avoid Turkish stamps in their passports. There are some stories of visitors being denied entry back into the southern section with Turkish entry stamps. Once you are over, make sure you allow plenty of time to return to the Greek side of the island. Late afternoon is the latest recommended time. Resist the urge to purchase anything as it might be taken when you cross back over.

With all this many may wonder what the point of seeing the Turkish side of Cyprus is. The Turkish side does offer some spectacular scenery that is untouched and unspoiled. Although the border crossing might be a bit of a nightmare, the people are very warm and welcoming to tourists.


 

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February 20, 2010 change by ladyhawk1218

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Cyprus Museum

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Near the Pafos Gate (west of the old city), opposite the city municipal gardens, you will find the Cyprus Museum. Built in 1908, the Cyprus Museum is the most important archeological museum on the island, and it is highly recommended. It exhibits stone jars of the 6th millenium BC, a marble statue of Aphrodite (from Soli, 1st century BC) and a gold sceptre (11th century BC).  

Address:

Stylianos Lenas Square, corner of Museum Street and Homer Ave.

Tel. 02 - 302 189

Opening Hours:

Mon - Sat 9am - 5pm and Sun 10am - 1pm.

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Panagia Phaneromeni Church

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Situated in Onasagoras Street this fine Orthodox Church will draw your attention. It was rebuild on ancient remains (1300 AD) at the end of the 19th century (1872/73). In 1938 a new bell tower was added and its bells were brought from England in 1940/41.

The church was named after a nunnery of the same name, which once stood on this spot. It belonged to Panayia (Virgin Mary) Phanoromeni and the nuns were silk weavers who were engaged in charitable works.

After the ottoman occupation of Cyprus in 1571, the turks attempted to turn the church into a mosque. They were more..

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Museum of National Struggle

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Within the Cultural Centre you will find also the Museum of National Struggle, dedicated to the war of independence against the British. Opening Hours: Mon - Fri 7.30am - 2.30am and 3pm - 5.30pm. Entrance fee. Tel. 02 - 302 465

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Liberty Monument

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i
photo by: Hans Meex, NL

This monument on the corner of Nikoforos Phokas and Koraes Streets commemorates the release of EOKA (People's Army for Enosis) Cypriots patriots in 1959.

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Laiki Ytonia

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Nicosia the old city Laiki Geitonia
Nicosia the old city Laiki Geitonia
photo by: Hilda Osinga

This restored area of the old city is the pride of all Nicosians and the center of the capital’s life. Restoration began in 1981, and included renewal and reconstruction of all structures within the target area. Now the streets are lined with small art-and-craft shops, boutiques and galleries. The project won 1988 the “Pomme d’Or”, a prestigious biennal international prize.

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Agios Ioannis Cathedral

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Photo of the Agios Ioannis Cathedral
Photo of the Agios Ioannis Cathedral
photo by: Johan Meuwissen

North of the Bishopric Palace you will find this Greek Orthodox Church. Built in 1662 on the foundations of a 15th century Beneductine Monastery, its impressive interiors house a series of reproductions of 18th century works of art. Open Mon - Sat 8am - noon and 2pm - 4pm. Entrance free.

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Archbishopric Palace

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Not as its name assumed, the Archbishopric Palace is a modern, impressive mansion, built in Byzantine style (1955 - 60). Corner of Kyprianos and Zenon of Kitium Streets.
Inside  you 'll find  the Byzantine Museum with an impressive collection of Cypriotic Icons.

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Sculpture at Hellenic Bank

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Helene Black at hellenic bank
Helene Black at hellenic bank

Situated in the entrance of Nicosia, The hellenic Bank offices is not a building one would want to write home about. It is built in a post modern pastiche style, mimicking the grande orders of commercial classicist architecture of the 80s. On second look though, there is a public sculpture by, I found later, the star of the Cyprus artistic avant guarde, Helene Black. The sculpture consists of 12 stainless steel overcalled flowers with a 13th giant flower situated in the centre of the square. the flower is a joy to investigate in different times of the day as it slowly opens and more..

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Byzantine Museum

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The Byzantine Museum is housed by the Centre of the Archbishop Makarios III Foundation east of Laiki Ytonia. It exhibits a very rich collection of statues, paintings and fragments. They date from a period ranging from the 8th to the 18th century. It depicts the development of decorative arts in Cyprus from their crudest Early Middle Age expression to their 12th century peak. The influence of European Crusaders, and later of Venetian traders, is evident. During the Ottoman period (16th - 19th century) the figurative arts, and specially sculpture, were neglected and practically more..

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Museum of Modern Art

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Open from June to September.

Address:

Corner of Evagorou and Themistokli Dervi Aves.

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Leventis Municipal Museum

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At 17 Ippokratous Street you will see this museum, which is resident in a very accurately restored 19th century building. It houses an interesting presentation of daily nicosian life throughout the ages. The museum is open Tue – Sun 10am – 4.30pm. Free entrance.

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Museum of Folk Art

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This museum is accommodated in a 15th century Benedictine monastery. Its halls contain a collection of Benedictine relics, ancient farming tools, religious art objects, Lefkaritika and other lace and Foini aerthenware.

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Ledra Museum & Observatory

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This museum combines a modern museum with an unhindered and beautiful view of the entire city. It can be found on the 11th floor of the Shacolas Tower. The exhibition - a cooperation with the Leventis Museum of Nicosia and the Woolworth Group - shows photographs and desciptions of Old Nicosia, a multilingual taped history and telecopes.

Address: Corner Ledras & Arsinoes Streets, Tel. 02 - 369 369, Opening Hours: daily from 10am to 8pm. Admission fee of 25 cents required.

type:Museums
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