Kyrenia (Girne) -


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The City of Kyrenia, Cyprus

Kyrenia (Girne)

Beautiful Kyrenia harbour against the backdrop of Beshparmak Mountains
Situated on the north coast of Cyprus, Kyrenia, with its 6,000 year long history, unique remains of countless civilisations, miles of natural beaches, calm sea, and mild climate is an idyllic Mediterranean town. 

Bounded to the north by the sea and to the south by the greenery of the Beşparmak (Fivefinger) Mountain range, it offers the most magnificent scenery on the island.

Kyrenia's charming and tiny harbour, full of yachts and fishing boats, is framed by the colossal hulk of its Crusader castle. With the backdrop of the jagged mountains behind and the calm sparkling sea in front, the harbour has an intoxicatingly serene atmosphere.

Kyrenia is an easy place to while away any time of the day, exploring shops, markets and local cafés in late morning, strolling in the narrow cobbled alleys behind the harbour in the afternoon, or stepping out for a brisk walk along the promenade and sea wall in the evening.

Kyrenia Castle - The Venetian Tower

The beautiful harbour is dominated by the majestic Kyrenia Castle which houses a museum containing the remains of the one of the oldest ancient ships salvaged from the sea.

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Overlooking the entrance to the harbour is Kyrenia Castle. Dating from the time of the Byzantines, its massive defences surround a complex mixture of building styles from centuries before and it is likely that there was a Roman fort here originally. Subsequently enlarged and strengthened by the Lusignans and then the Venetians, the castle is now home to many historical artefacts and is the current resting-place of the world's oldest shipwreck.

As the sun sets, Kyrenia harbour again becomes the focus of activity as the locals take their evening stroll and the cafés and bistros that face the sea prepare for their nightly trade. Crisp white linen and small vases of local flowers are lovingly arranged on tabletops to welcome the evening's guests to wine and dine in the cooling breeze.

Just a few minutes drive away, lies the  fairy-tale castle of St.Hilarion. Rumoured to be the original inspiration for Walt Disney's 'Sleeping Beauty', St Hilarion was built during the crusades and those intrepid enough to brave the long walk to its battlements will be rewarded with stunning views of Kyrenia and the whole of the island's northern coastline..

The enchanting village of Bellapais overlooking the town with its ancient abbey offers a peace and quiet for and is ideal starting point for hill-walking.

              Bellapais Abbey 
Bellapais AbbeyThe beauty of Bellapais is legendary. Set in the mountains, just ten minutes above Kyrenia, a visit to this 14th century Lusignan abbey with its fabulous location and pervasive atmosphere of calm is a must. 

When Lawrence Durrell, famous British author, bought a house in the village of Bellapais, he felt 'guilty of an act of fearful temerity in trying to settle in so fantastic a place'.


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