Time to discover Cyprus: no visa, currency, foreign language required

Next to us is Cyprus, the island of Aphrodite, the goddess of beauty in mythology. It’s time to explore this beautiful island! Selim Sayarı wrote down the secrets of Cyprus known only to an islander. (Photos: Alp Galip)

Even appointments for Schengen visa applications are given a few months later, the number of visa rejections has increased, foreign exchange is known. It is also necessary to know a foreign language for a holiday outside Türkiye. So what are we going to do? Next to us is Cyprus, the island of Aphrodite, the goddess of beauty in mythology. Now is the time to explore this beautiful island. Cyprus is a magical geography with the cleanest beaches in the Mediterranean, where the mountains and the sea are intertwined. I am sure many of you have visited Cyprus, but have you discovered the island yet? You have to discover the beauty of Cyprus on this island, nothing comes your way, you have to go and find it. If you come to a 5-star hotel famous for its casinos and occasionally step outside the hotel for a week, it is impossible to discover Cyprus. In this article I will tell you a bit about what we should do in Cyprus.
Since we are going to explore the island, instead of an ultra-luxurious casino hotel, let’s choose a more local, modest hotel that we do not have high expectations of itself. This hotel does not necessarily have to be by the sea. There are extremely comfortable boutique hotels in Bellapais and other areas near Guinea. In addition, they all also have swimming pools. We plan to go for a swim on a separate pristine beach every day anyway, the hotel’s beach doesn’t catch our eye. It turns out we are exploring the island… Staying in the Kyrenia region means being close to city life whenever you want. In this regard, it would be correct to choose the Kyrenia region for the first reconnaissance visit. In Cyprus you can’t do anything if you don’t have a car under you. Traffic is on the left as in England. The exact opposite of the decisions you make while driving in Turkey is valid, so you need to be very careful while driving. Hire a car knowing that the way is unconditionally given to those coming from the right, especially in circles. Remember, there are no taxis on the road, also taxis are very expensive, public transport is also very bad.
We arranged the hotel and rented a car, now we can go exploring. On the eastern side of Kyrenia, Alagadi beach is worth exploring, two coves next to each other. Alagadi is one of the largest protected breeding grounds of Caretta Carettas, there is not a single building nearby. Swimming on a pristine beach is something you haven’t done in a long time. Alagadi is worth seeing for its virginity. Bring basic things like umbrella, water, towel when you go to deserted beaches. There are showers, toilets, etc., but you still need to be safe. Remember the Cypriot sun is glaring, it’s like you’re nowhere. If you continue east after Alagadi, you will come to the north coast of the island’s jagged tip. During the trip you can see the northern half of the Karpaz Peninsula.
There is Esentepe down the road. It is a developing area. There are many beaches, tourist facilities, golf courses, restaurants and cafes. After passing Esentepe, the village of Kaplıca is on the road. The village is on your right, the beach on your left as you head northeast. There is a beachfront resort with the same name as the village. The place of Black Sea citizens who settled on the island after the 1974 peacekeeping operation. The biggest feature is that they only offer their own caught fish. It can be nice to have lunch in the restaurant there with local fish from the sea, not from the farm. It also has a beach. Suitable for the other swimming session of the day. Continuing in the northern half of Karpaz, beyond the 80 km long peninsula, there is the legendary beach of Ayfilon. You’ll get there if you keep going, but save that for the next day as the day can get tiring. If you go to Ayfilon on another day, you will see Dipkarpaz on the same day and meet the wild donkeys of Karpaz roaming freely. If you bring apples and carrots, they’ll eat from your hand, don’t think of them as game.
In Dipkarpaz you will discover another largely untouched area. Also stop at the Monastery of Apostolos Andreas in Dipkarpaz. It is built on the place where St. Andrew, one of the apostles of Jesus, set foot on the island. On the way back, there is the Monastery of St. Barnabas, which brings together the original version of the Bible. Icon Museum now, include it in the program. It has a small garden next to it instead of the icons, it can be very nice to have a Turkish coffee there. Do not forget that the island is bigger than Konya. Although it may look small on the map, the distances are quite long. So you are not on a small island that we can explore one day where the sea can be seen from everywhere, like in the cartoons. You will have to come back several times to discover everything.
Let’s continue on the road after the spa and change our direction towards the town of İskele. So let’s head south from the north side of the Karpaz Peninsula. Iskele is a beautiful region that has developed rapidly in recent years and is especially favored by foreigners. Many families from Turkey also buy apartments from the new homes there according to their budget. While you’re at it, you’ll have the chance to research investment opportunities as you tour the Iskele. Let’s reach Famagusta after Iskele, because a sea pleasure that we have never seen before is waiting for us. Let’s spare Famagusta for another day, today we are only interested in the coast of Covered Maraş. The city is known for its many historical sites, you can easily find it on Google. After passing the intersection in the closed Maraş, we go to the beach from the first street on the left. A beautiful beach awaits you there, you may have never seen it before. The color of the sea is turquoise and the hues are beautiful enough to make the beaches of the Maldives jealous. You’re swimming on a pristine beach, in an abandoned town from 1974. I’m sure it’s something you’ve never experienced before. Enjoy the sea or even stay until sunset.
Save the day you visit Famagusta to discover the covered city of Maraş, whose Greek name is Varosha. Don’t forget that before 1974 that natural beach of more than 5 kilometers where you can swim in Maraş was one of the 3 most popular tourist regions in the world. You are on the same beach as Hollywood stars and I think you have met the most beautiful beach in the Mediterranean. Where space permits, I have tried to offer you an exploration plan for a full day and an idea for other days. These rules can serve as a simple template for exploring the island. You can expand your exploration by spreading it to the west, center and north of the island. Maybe from time to time I will write other articles giving you tips about Cyprus, who knows? While exploring the island, I advise you to also discover the Turkish Cypriots.
There is a misconception that “Cypriots don’t like us”; you also discover that this is not true. Once they see that you respect their culture and the tone of the Turkish they speak, they will cherish you. Remember that every Turkish Cypriot is a lover of Turkey and sympathetic to those who come from there. The point is to discover it… As long as you don’t compare the possibilities in a gigantic country like Turkey to a humble island like Cyprus, as long as you don’t disdain the Turkish they speak and respect their Mediterranean culture, you become the crown jewel . While you’re at it, I’d say explore this warm-blooded Turk, as I’m sure you’ll have some very enjoyable conversations and learn many things you didn’t know.

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