The EUC is located at one of Europe’s most ancient and historic capitals, that is unfortunate enough to carry the “last divided capital in the world” title after the Turkish invasion in 1974. Still, Nicosia is renowned for combining harmoniously, a vibrant nightlife -that has evolved greatly during the last 5 years and an unparalleled cultural heritage that reflects the stigma of its rich -and tumultuous- past. Wine and cocktail bars pop up around the city’s ancient walls whilst coffee houses, bruncheries and fancy restaurants are found next to museums and historic monuments. You will surely discover the must-go places to have fun but make sure to pay a visit to these outstanding landmarks!
One of the first things you owe to do when you first visit a city, is to learn about its past. That way you will decode its identity and be able to adapt to it easier. At the Cyprus museum, you will go back in time, from the Neolithic era to the Byzantine years to discover how a small island made a mark to the world.
The Venetian walls used to be the capital’s sword and shield to hopeful invaders, only to fail Nicosia in 1570, when the Ottomans attacked Cyprus. To this day, this iconic, ‘snowflake’ shaped sight is the most popular touristic attraction of the city, its signature to the world! You must go for this walk, that’s for sure.
Famagusta Gate is the most prominent ‘door’ of the Venetian walls. It was designed by Michael Sammicheli back in the 16th century as a tribute to Rome’s Pantheon. Important cultural events, concerts, exhibitions and other activities take place regularly, almost weekly at ‘Famagusta Gate’ and if you take a walk around the area of Taktakalas, where’s it’s cited you will find yourself intrigued by the diverse architectural character that was Nicosia just some decades ago.
Though it recently opened its doors to the public, the Center of Visual Arts and Research will astonish you with its collection of paintings, antique costumes and memorabilia related to Cyprus and its neighbors. You will leave with a much better understanding of how an island that was always a target of conquerors, created and maintained a unique cultural mark, with many intellectual achievements.
Finally, Cyprus’ capital has its own Liberty monument, as an honor to the EOKA heroes that stood up to the British Empire in the 50s (1955-1959). It portrays Madame Liberty, two fighters that carry chains whom she protects and four figures, that symbolize the people of Cyprus. Nine of these modern day heroes, Michail Karaolis, Andreas Dimitriou, Iacovos Patatsos, Andreas Zakos, Charilaos Michail, Stelios Mavrommatis, Andreas Panagides, Michail Koutsoftas and Evagoras Pallikarides rest at Filakismena Mnimata, the central prison of the British establishment that used to convict and hang EOKA fighters.
Nicosia will wow you and we are sure you are going to fall in love with your new home city, as much as locals are! Make the most of it!