Kyrenia Travel Guide: Hotels, attractions, restaurants, shopping, travel, tourism and more.
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Kyrenia Travel Guide


Kyrenia, CyprusKyrenia, situated on the north coast of Cyprus island, is an enchanting Venetian harbour town with its considerable beauty, more than 5,500 year history, incomparable remains of innumerable civilisations, and it is backed by dramatic hills of Five Finger Mountains with a magnificent scenery. There are miles of natural sandy beaches and rocky coves awaiting to be discovered along the coast. With its mild climate, Kyrenia (Girne) is a charming Mediterranean town. There are a lots of nearby historical sites including castles, ruins and religious relics. Bellapais Monastery is one of the best places in North of Cyprus to visit.

But holidays in the Kyrenia area are about more than just the harbour and the castle. Wandering through the tiny streets of the old town, that has been here since before Roman times you will never be far from the ancient Lusignan towers and walls which originally created a defensive ring around the town. Have a look at the Round Tower, once a bastion on the Kyrenia walls and now in the centre of the town itself. And holidays in Kyrenia offer plenty for the keen shopper to do, with a large array of shops offering everything from Cypriot antiques to the latest designer fashions - and a truly amazing selection of restaurants, cafes and bars.

Kyrenia is also an ideal centre from which to explore northern Cyprus, and it boasts some of the best hotels on the island,and yet the serene beauty of the countryside is never more than a few minutes away...

Bellapais village, Kyrenia, North Cyprus

Bellapais village, Kyrenia, North CyprusThis beautiful, peaceful village basks in the Beşparmak (Five Finger) mountain range, about 5 km from the Kyrenia coast. With breathtaking panoramic views, tiny winding streets and beautifully, well preserved ancient buildings around every corner, this village has hardly changed since Lawrence Durrell immortalized it in the early 1950s in his book “Bitter Lemons”, which tells the story of his time in Cyprus and his experiences in buying a home in Bellapais, very near to Bellapais Abbey itself. While the abbey is certainly essential for visitors to Bellapais, there is much more to see and do here, including walking the same ancient paths as the Crusaders did in medieval times. And there’s an excellent selection of restaurants and bars for when the crystal-clear air gives you an appetite!

The jewel in the crown of Bellapais village is without doubt its imposing and impossibly picturesque abbey, it is still in use today for art exhibitions and concerts of classical music, and in fact most village life revolves around this wonderful building. But after you have spent a few hours exploring in the abbey and soaking up the breath-taking views, or you have followed the footsteps of Richard the Lionheart along one of the crusader paths, you can rest under the tree of idleness and just soak up the relaxed ambience for which Cyprus is justly famous.

In fact, right next door to Bellapais Abbey is the 'Tree of Idleness', not only a restaurant but also an actual tree made famous by Durrell. Legend says that those who sit under the tree will become so languorous and comfortable that they will not want to work any more; Durrell was impressed by how true this legend seemed to be. You may well feel it too, because after visiting his old haunts, you may find yourself strangely uninclined to get up from your seat under the tree - just happy to enjoy the sensation of living in a forgotten time that seems to be the norm in Cyprus. Just relax and watch the world go by!

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