Entry Requirements: A valid passport. Children up to the age of 16 should be inscribed on the passport of either parent.
Currency: North Cyprus currency is the Turkish Lira (TL). All foreign currencies as well as traveller cheques are accepted in banks, hotels, and exchange offices. Most of the credit cards are accepted in international hotels,in some restaurants and shops and you can withdraw money from certain banks. The cost of living in North Cyprus is very much to the advantage of the European tourists. There are no limits for foreign exchange imported to North Cyprus.
Language: The official language is Turkish, but English is commonly spoken.
Time Zone: GMT + 2 in winter. GMT + 3 in summer.
Electricity: 240 Volts, 50 Hz. Plugs are in English standards. It is advisable to have an adaptor.
Cuisine: As its Turkish, Greek and Lebanese neighbours, the Turkish Cypriot cuisine is rich and varied. 'Meze' is starter and consits of a variety of hot and cold appetizers, salads, meats, vegetables and fish dishes. Variety of 'kebabs' can be found including lamb dishes such as shish kebab and doner kebab. If you prefer white meat then we recommend chicken shish or doner kebabs. 'Sheftali' kebab is a local dish that you should try. Kofte - meat balls with spices are very popular too. 'Mineri', 'Lahos', 'Orfo' and 'Barbun' are the best fresh fish dishes that you might try. Make sure you ask for 'kalamar' (squid) as starter at local fish restaurants. You will love the famous Cypriot cheese 'hellim' (halloumi). Tasty and juicy are also all the citrus fruits: oranges, grapes, peaches, melons, water melons, graperfruits etc.. At the end of a good meal a food Turkish coffee is recommended. 'Sade' means without sugar, 'orta' is medium sugar and 'shekerli' means with sufficient sugar (sweet). 'Raki' is the local tequila - drink carefully!
Area: 3,354 km².
Population: 313,626. (2014)
Climate:North Cyprus enjoys the benefits of the Mediterranean climate. Long hot summers and short winters with little rain. The temperature in summer reaches 30/35 degrees Centigrade. Winters are mild.
Major Towns: Lefkosha (Nicosia), Girne (Kyrenia), Gazimagusa (Famagusta), Guzelyurt (Morphou) and Lefke.
Car Rental: Car rental prices are very reasonable. An International driving licence is sufficient to rent a car. Cypriots drive on the left just as the British do. Traffic signposts are international. Roads, in general, are in a good state. Seat-belt is obligatory.
Transport: Taxi prices are reasonable despite the fact that there are no counters. Ask for the price before departure. There is also a collective-taxi system mainly using minibuses. Bus departures are frequent between big and smaller towns during the day. However, the departure times are not fixed. Public transport service is reduced after 05:00 pm and during the weekend.
Telephone: + 90 392 followed by your number in Cyprus. (Town codes: Lefkosha: 22, Girne: 81, Gazimagusa: 36). If you want to call home from North Cyprus, you will need to dial 00 - your coutry code followed by your number.
Hotels and Villas: North Cyprus has a limited but rather varied infra-structure of hotels. Most of the touristic places are, for the time being, concentrated around Girne (Kyrenia) and Gazimagusa (Famagusta), but it must not be ignored that the magnificent Karpas peninsula will be developed as well in the coming years. There is a choice between five, four or three stars hotels and holiday villages, comfort of which correspond to the European requirements.
Inns can be found, in the old part of Girne (Kyrenia), for example. Flats and traditional villas can be found by the seaside or in typical Cypriot villages.
Museums: During the summer period (May to September), the museums are open between 09:00 am to 01:30 pm and 04:30 pm to 06:30 pm. During the winter months, the opening hours are as follows: 08:00 am to 01:00 pm and 02:30 pm to 05:00 pm. The museums are closed on sundays and on national and religious holidays.
Shopping: Shopping in North Cyprus is very enjoyable. Salesmen are welcoming but discreet. Objects made of copper, silver, bronze and onyx, Turkish dolls, meerchaum pipes, local embroideries of Lefkara and backgammon (tavla) boards are easily found in souvenir shops. Gold jewellery, leather clothes and textiles are sold at reasonably cheap prices. Prices being fixed there is no bargaining in North Cyprus. The majority of shops are open between 08:00 am - 01:00 pm and 03:30 pm to 08:00 pm, except the market places which are open only in the mornings. Attention: Export of antiquities is illegal!
Nicosia Shopping Guide - Cypnet, January 2017
Nicosia is a great place to shop. There are many popular Turkish brands for clothing, shoes, jewellery and much more. Turkish brands offer good quality at affordable prices. Many international brands are also available. Mango, Nike, Adidas, New Balance all have chain stores on the Dereboyu high street.
Where to Buy
Dereboyu is a very popular destination. Even though traffic is a major problem and parking is limited, it still attracts most of the shoppers. You can shop at popular Turkish stores such as Koton, Inci and Collins and when you need a break from shopping, you can enjoy a coffee at Gloria Jean's, Sego Fredo, Rendo Coffee, Café Pascucci or Tezgah Café. There are many restaurants serving both Cypriot and international flavors. It’s a bustling, trendy high street with plenty to do and see.
Metropol Yolu is another popular shopping area. Although there are not as many chain stores here, it is very popular with the locals. There are plenty of boutiques selling affordable goods. If you are looking to buy jewellery Metropol Yolu is the place to go.
1001 Airport Mall is situated about 15 minutes from Nicosia. It is very close to Ercan Airport hence the name. There is a good selection of Turkish brand stores, restaurants and coffee shops. It has a huge hypermarket and a children’s play area, making it very popular with families.
What to Buy
If you are looking to buy gold look no further thanAltinbas.They have many stores across Nicosia and North Cyprus. The jewellery range is extensive with contemporary and classic styles to suit all budgets.
Turkish fashion brand Mavi is another great place to shop. It offers fashion-forward designs with innovative fabrics. The great quality in denim products makes it one of Turkey’s favorite brands. Stores around North Cyprus with the main store (and largest) in Nicosia close to Metropol yolu.
Terranova is an Italian fashion chain with a large store in Nicosia. Popular with the teens, offers a great range for kids too.
Bayramoglu is a local shoe store. It has a great selection of stylish shoes for all ages. Also stocks Clarks and Birkenstocks. Located close to Dereboyu.
Koton is another popular Turkish brand. It offers many collection; everyday, business range, sportswear, lingerie and sleepwear. The children’s collection is fun and colourful. Located on Dereboyu.
LC Waikiki is a much loved Turkish brand. Affordable basics for men, women and children of all ages. In particular, the children’s range is very good. Offers lots of choice, lots of colour at affordable prices. Located on Metrepol yolu.
Leather goods are very well made in Turkey and Derimod is a great place to shop for shoes, jackets, bags and belts. Quality, well made goods and great design, Derimod is located close to Metropol yolu.
Super Computers is your number 1 choice for computer, mobile phone and IT products in North Cyprus also offering repair services for your smart phones, laptops and tablets. The company is HP's Gold Partner in North Cyprus. A wide selection of ink cartridges, toners and ribbons is available. Internet connections from all well-known local comanies can be purchased from here and mail order (you can make your purchase over the phone with your credit card) and delivery can be arranged to all major towns.
Sports: The island enjoys one of the best and most pleasant climates of the world. Water sports can, therefore, be practised nine months out of twelve. Hotels cater for sports such as windsurfing, sailing, water skiing and diving; tennis courts, too, are open to residents of different hotels. Beach volleyball can be enjoyed and has recently become very popular at many tourist resorts. Clubs offer services for horse-riding, gymnastics, or golf (Korinieum Golf & Beach Resort in Esentepe or CMC Golf Club, 9 holes, near Lefke).