Nicosia or Lefkoşa (depending on whether you are a Greek or a Turkish Cypriot) is the capital of the island of Cyprus. Unfortunately it is a divided capital and has been since 1963. A narrow band of no-man’s land, known as the “green line” separates the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot sections of the city. The same “green line” extends east and west from the city forming a boundary buffer zone patrolled by the UN between the northern and southern parts of the island.
The old city is surrounded by walls, built by the Venetians, with the gates into the city at strategic points. This shot was taken near the Costanza gate.
much of the northern part of the city is in a bad state of repair
small old mosque
interior courtyard of the büyük han, formerly the main trading and staging post and now a cultural centre
the forbidden zone – it is hoped that at some point in the future this area can be restored, repopulated and rejuvenated
sculpture, south of the Ledra Street crossing point
shade sails provide welcome shade in the heat of the summer
the Phanorameni church in the south part of the walled city
fountain in the more affluent South, outside the walled part of the city
in the south
5th century sculpture of lions attacking a bull
female figurine found in one of the ancient sites
modern reproduction of a bronze age ceramic vessel
If you are interested in learning more about Nicosia, Wikipedia has a fascinating article
Discover more history with Ailsa and followers
We recently visited the Turkish sector of the divided city of Nicosia/Lefkosa in Cyprus. An unusual art form is practised here: the creation of pictures using silk worm cocoons
Nicosia/Lefkosa (Nicosia is the Greek name and Lefkosa is the Turkish name) is unique in that it is the only (apparently) existing divided and occupied city with the UN holding the limbo section in the middle. At the crossing point is this sculpture.
It’s easy to cross from one part of the city to another but you have to go through passport control on both sides each time. I am always struck by how different the two sides are. The Greek side (perhaps due to its EU membership) is much more modern, affluent (and expensive) while the Turkish side retains an older, timeless quality. But both sides have their charm and some very interesting buildings – still to be explored.