The history of Cyprus dates back to 11500 years BC. Hellenistic, Roman and Byzantine influences shaped ancient Cyprus. The excavations and buildings bear extensive witness to this. Other major periods include Frankish, Venetian and Ottoman rule. The British influence since the end of the 19th century is still noticeable today. Cyprus became officially independent in 1960. However, the hoped-for unification of Cyprus and Greece did not take place. Another drastic experience in the eventful history is the occupation of a large part of the north of the island by Turkey. The division of the island still exists. The Republic of Cyprus has been a full member of the European Union since 2004. The first official language on the island is Greek. English is spoken as a second language.
The island is divided into six districts (boroughs):
In these six districts the largest cities: Kyrenia in the north, Famagusta in the northeast, Nicosia in central Cyprus, Paphos in the west and Limassol and Larnaca in the south. Kyrenia and part of Famagusta are located in the Turkish occupied part of the island. Northeast of Larnaca in Dekeleia and on the Akrotiri peninsula in Paphos are two military bases under British sovereignty.
Nicosia is the last divided capital in the world. The history of Nicosia is as eventful as the history of Cyprus. It is the cultural and historical center of the island and has been the capital of Cyprus (formerly Ledra) since the 11th century. The townscape is characterized by historical buildings. Palaces and sacral buildings bear witness to the changing ruling dynasties. Historic Nicosia is surrounded by a city wall in the center of the city. Modern and bustling Nicosia joins outside the walls. There is a possibility to visit the Turkish occupied northern part through border crossings. As a constantly growing capital of Cyprus, a great potential for buying real estate is developing there. As brokers with local knowledge, we can present interesting properties for sale.
The port city of Famagusta, located on the east coast of the island, today represents the only cargo port in the northern part of the island. Around 1200 Famagusta became a Catholic episcopal see. As a result, merchants, noblemen and knights settled on the island and provided an economic boom. Famous are the beaches such as Nissi beach near the village of Agia Napa. There is also the monastery of Agia Napa in the city center. It was built in the Venetian style. Other well known places besides Agia Napa are Protaras, Paralimni and the sights “Sea Caves” and “Blue Lagoon”. There are also the beaches Fig Tree and Konnos Beach, which are among the most beautiful on the island.
South of Famagusta begins the district of Larnaca with the capital Larnaca. Larnaca has received a large number of refugees with the division of the island. The residential buildings erected for this purpose partly characterize the townscape in the hinterland. Among other things, Larnaca is famous for its salt lakes. Every year in the spring come numerous migratory birds, including pink flamingos. They need as a basic component of their diet the brine shrimp, which they find here. Larnaca offers besides a lot of nature and landscape a small old town with the Byzantine church of St. Lazarus. On the promenade lined with palm trees, the urban beach of Finikoudes is adjacent. The city is a popular place. Thanks to the airport, Larnaca is easily accessible. From there the island can be explored in all directions. Larnaca is one of the up-and-coming cities on the island. The planned expansion of the current marina to become the largest marina on the island and the recently reopened largest shopping mall on the island, as well as an urban development plan until 2035, records an interesting architecture and infrastructure. Larnaca is particularly suitable for the purchase of real estate in Cyprus due to its perspective development. Proximity to the sea has been taken into account in many buildings already in the planning stage. Modern architecture in Cyprus also takes into account energy requirements. Buying a property in Larnaca is an investment in the future.
Along the southern coast you reach the district and city of Limassol. Limassol is the second largest city with an important financial center. With the division of the island in 1974, there is a rapid economic upswing. The port city is located on the Akrotiri peninsula. The salt lake located there is also home to many migratory birds that move on from Larnaca and then to Africa. Limassol is metropolitan in character. Modern high-rise architecture and urban design alternate with historic buildings. Classical, Byzantine, Venetian and British influences are also noticeable here. Like Larnaca, the city grew with the reception of refugees from the north. Limassol has the most important port and goods handling center on the island. The port also includes a cruise ship terminal. Another defining feature of the city is its Russian influence. Since the dissolution of the Soviet Union, many Russian businessmen have invested and established companies in the city. The proportion of administrative and commercial buildings that have been and are being built with modern materials is correspondingly high.
According to legend, the famous birthplace of Aphrodite is located on the district border with the adjoining Paphos. As a visitor, you have a breathtaking view of the sea with scattered rocky islands. The city of Paphos is fully included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. The royal tombs at Coral Bay are impressive. They date back to the economic boom of the 2nd century B.C. The city, then moved to the coast, experienced a rapid rise through trade and seafaring. The mosaics are among the most beautiful ground monuments in the world. The district capital Paphos is the cultural, agricultural and tourist center of the Paphos district. Paphos became European Capital of Culture in 2017. Careful renovations and redevelopments characterize the image of the old town today.