About Northern Cyprus A hidden pearl in the Mediterranean
Northern Cyprus has an area of 3,355 km² which extends from the capital city of Nicosia to the tip of the island known as Karpaz. It benefits from a wealth of history and culture, which has been touched by many civilisations over thousands of years. This has resulted in a country which is open and welcoming to people from all over the world.
The island has been divided into two parts (North and South) since 1974 with a soft border which runs through the city of Nicosia, however since the border opened in 2004 many crossing points across the island have opened allowing free travel between the North and the South of the island.
Since 2004, North Cyprus has seen fantastic growth and expansion particularly in property investment, tourism and education as property prices and cost of living are considerably cheaper in the North than in the South.
With six major districts, namely Nicosia (capital), Kyrenia, Famagusta, Iskele, and Güzelyurt, and many small villages in between, Northern Cyprus is a perfect example of urban life with the charm of a small island.
In general, travel distances between locations are short and easily accessible. For example, to travel from Kyrenia to Karpaz takes approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes
Taxis are plentiful, as well as local bus services known as a ‘dolmuş’. It is also easy and relatively inexpensive to hire a car during your stay, there are many rental car companies who will rent you a car for 3 days to long term rental.
Prices are usually around £10 a day in low season and £20-25 a day in high season, these prices include your insurance and the car will be bought to you wherever you are.
There are three airports in Cyprus, Ercan Airport (ECN) in the North, located near the capital city, and Larnaca(LCA) and Paphos (PFO) Airports in the south. You can fly from all over the world into Larnaca and Paphos airport, and via Istanbul if you choose Ercan.
The NEW Ercan airport is completed and is almost ready for its launch which will include larger runways and a bigger terminal building to international standards, which we are sure will ensure a further increase in tourist numbers from the exisitng 3 million travellers already using these 3 airports.
Access to Northern Cyprus via ferries from Turkey is also possible, into Kyrenia or Famagusta ports, as well as access to Kyrenia Harbour and Karpaz Gate Marina international ports with sailing and motorised boats.
The climate in Northern Cyprus offers warm and sunny weather, typical of the Mediterranean offering around 320+ days of sunshine a year. If you are visiting from countries where you seem only to see grey skies or feel like you always need a jumper then visiting North Cyprus is a must as you will free and rejuvenated.
You will understand that walking around an ancient castle with the warm breeze on your face or enjoying a meal outside even in October is a pleasure and makes you feel alive and free.
May to October are considered to be the summer months, and are characterized by increasingly higher temperatures and clear skies, with July and August often reaching 40-45°C.
Winter is between December and February, but still daily temperatures can often reach 20°C.
Our sea temperatures do not generally go below 20°C throughout the year ensuring that visitors can swim year round in our beautiful clean Meditteranean sea.
The last official census in Northern Cyprus was carried out in 2011, and according to these numbers, the population of North Cyprus was 286,257.
However, with increasing demand for higher education in North Cyprus from overseas students, as of 2017, this number is estimated to be around 380,000 which excludes tourists. This number in high season can increase to around 1 million.
The official language of Northern Cyprus is Turkish Cypriot, however, English is very widely spoken.
Driving in Northern Cyprus is on the left hand side, and drivers must be over 18 and in possession of a valid driver’s license. You may use your foreign driving license in TRNC for up to three months, after which time you will be required to get a TRNC driving license
Without a valid driving license, the car insurance will be void, and in case of an accident, you will not be covered.
The standard and availability of medical care in Northern Cyprus is fantastic, there are a number of private clinics and hospitals as well as state run surgeries and emergency medical facilities, there are also care homes and a wide choice of well-equipped dentists.
Many of the hospitals and clinics are like 5 star hotels offering a full range of treatments from IVF to plastic surgery with highly trained and skilled doctors and nurses.
Furthermore the cost of receiving medical treatment in Northern Cyprus is far more cost effective than expected in European private hospitals, and free at state hospitals.
Useful contact numbers are
- Ambulance: 112
- Kyrenia Hospital: +90 392 815 2266
- Nicosia Hospital:+90 392 228 5441
- Famagusta Hospital: +90 392 366 2876
- Guzelyurt Hospital: +90 392 714 2125
All the main cities like Famagusta, Kyrenia, Güzelyurt and Nicosia have their own state run hospitals.
Northern Cyprus uses Eastern European Time which is 2 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT+2).
In Northern Cyprus, the official currency is Turkish Lira (₺), however Euros, British Pounds and US Dollars are also widely accepted. The British Pound is the dominant currency for purchasing properties.
There are three main leading sectors in Cyprus, namely tourism, higher education and construction. These all have a multiplier effect on the economy, as well as add value to your potential investment opportunity.
Hotels and tourism are a major part of Northern Cyprus from small boutique hotels nestled in the foothills of small villages to the large five star exclusive luxury resorts by the sea.
Hotels are open to anyone and there are really no rules of entry, everyone is invited for breakfast, lunch and dinner and to use all the facilities for small fees. You can opt to purchase a beautiful cabana on the beach for 4-6 people where you pay a one off daily price which includes fresh fruit, soft sun loungers and all the food and drink included.
There are miles of golden sands and small remote coves to explore and discover on our beautiful island.
Along the coastline to the west of Kyrenia, you will find small coves with sandy/pebbly beaches which are a mix of busier beach clubs where you can try scuba diving or kayaking to quiet local beaches. To the east of Kyrenia, you can visit Alagadi where you can watch baby turtles hatching and assist in releasing them into the sea for their new life ahead.
On the Famagusta coastline, you can experience long sandy beaches with a variety of activities such as children's play areas and on the beach cafe/bars or visit the beaches in Karpaz which are usually empty and will leave you feeling relaxed and like you are on a desert island.
With an array of colour and fragrant smells, Northern Cyprus has some of the most stunning flora and fauna. Throughout the different seasons there is always an amazing show of vibrant colours.
During the winter season you can see the vivid green trees and many varieties of orchids nestled quietly in the mountains to the most amazing coloured bougainvillea which are blooming for around 10 months of the year.
Towards the late summer the orange, lemon and olive trees are beginning to bloom producing delicious fruit just waiting to be picked.
The wildlife on the island is just as varied with donkeys roaming freely in the Karpaz waiting to be fed apples and carrots to the occasional dolphin sighting off the coastline.
Early morning tuna fishing is a popular activity for many tourists who enjoy watching the sun rise whilst floating calmly on the Mediterranean Sea.
Food is an integral part of the Northern Cyprus culture as you would expect with the natural availability of extremely fresh fruit and vegetables.
Restaurants are many and varied from traditional Meze style meals which consist of many, many small plates (similar to tapas) and leading to hot dishes of either meat or fish as well as other local traditional food such as dolma (vine leaves stuffed with rice), lahmacun (traditional Turkish pizza) and kleftiko (lamb in the oven) to name just a few.
However, North Cyprus is also known for worldwide cuisine and has restaurants serving Sushi/Chinese, Italian, Mexican, Indian, French and even a traditional English Sunday Roast.
Northern Cyprus is a country of many aspects and although we are a relatively small island do not assume that there is nothing to do here except sunbathe - nothing is further from the truth. If you enjoy activity, adventure and getting out and about - North Cyprus is just for you!
The fun and options are endless from hiking or biking along the mountain tops to paragliding off the mountain.
Northern Cyprus has a vast and colourful history dating back to the Stone Age and has been under the rule of many including the Venetians, the Romans and the Ottomans throughout the years. So as you can imagine the historical sites are many and for those of you who enjoy history - here is a short list of the most recommended but remember there are so many more to explore!
- *Kyrenia Castle
- *Bellapais Cathedral
- *St. Hilarion Castle
- *Othello's Castle
- *Nicosia and Famagusta Walled Cities
- *Salamis Ruins
- *St. Barnabus
Over the last ten years, North Cyprus has increased its student numbers year on year due to an explosion of universities and private schools offering education from 2 year olds to mature students.
Primary and secondary education in North Cyprus includes state based education where children are taught in Turkish to private schools who teach in English. Three of these private schools offer the same curriculum as the UK leading to IGCSEs, AS and A levels.
The number of overseas university students has also increased because of the affordability of studying in a private university as well as knowing that they will be living in a safe environment.
Our universities offer Undergraduate programs to Master degrees to PHDs in a wide range of subjects including architecture, enginnering, medicine, business and management, education and many, many more.
The foundation of the legal system was made during the British Empire rule between the 1940s and 1950s, which is why the law system largely follows English law and principles.
There are many reputable, independent lawyers in Northern Cyprus who are internationally educated and are multi-lingual to assist you. Freedom will connect you with lawyers who are independent of Freedom and the developers we work with to ensure that your property investment is safe and secure, even when you can not physically be on the island.
There are a large number of local and foreign banks all of whom are multi-lingual, often with specific services and dedicated staff for ex-pat clients. In order to open a bank account, you only need your passport and a copy of your sales/rental agreement.
Unlike many other countries around the world, you do not need to purchase a property which is worth more than €150,000 to start the residency process. In Northern Cyprus, even studio units from £50,000 enables you and your immediate family to take up residency. The system is online and only has a few requirements such as health checks and police checks and takes approximately 6-8 weeks to complete.
Visa / Passport
You may obtain a tourist visa with no extra cost once you arrive at the airport. With this visa, you may stay in Northern Cyprus for a period of three months.
The citizens of Turkey, Canada, Mexico, USA, Switzerland, Japan, Israel, Norway, Azerbaijan, Pakistan, New Zealand, Australia and countries of the European Union do not need a visa to enter the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. Citizens of the remaining countries must find out about passports and visa requirements from the nearest Representative or Embassy of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.
Visitors to Northern Cyprus must have a passport that is valid for at least six months with at least two clear and free pages. Passports are stamped on arrival, at the Ercan airport, military airports, and at the Kyrenia and Famagusta sea ports. Visitors arriving from South Cyprus also need to have their passports stamped at the checkpoints along the border. On arrival, visitors are issued a tourist visa that is valid for three months.
Inspection Trip Northern Cyprus
Private inspection trip
Your Private Inspection trip is a wonderful 3-day personal guide to the local area tailored for your needs and your selected property interests.
About private inspection trips
These tours are intended for maximum of 5 people, and are organized on request. More intimate compared to the group tours, private inspection trips allow serious buyers to contribute to their tailor made schedule based on the information they receive about the island and our portfolio prior to arrival.
We also take into consideration their budget and requests to have the most efficient inspection trip possible. Whether you are on the market for a small investment apartment or a luxury villa for full time living, our experienced staff and local affiliates are there to show you the best properties that suit your taste and budget.
Similar to group tours, the inspection trips also offer the same things free of charge:
What's not included
Due to the small size of the guests and custom made schedules, there is no structured content to the inspection trips, however we will be introducing you to at least 3 developers/projects, to ensure that you have seen a variety of locations and products to allow you to make the soundest decision.
Contact our North Cyprus office
We’d love to hear from you! Send us a message using the form opposite, or email us.