Northern Cyprus: Facts and Information

Here are some facts about Northern Cyprus.

  • Northern Cyprus is the name given to that part of the island of Cyprus occupied by Turkey. Turkey occupied the northern part of the island in 1974, following an invasion.
  • Almost no other country recognizes Northern Cyprus as its own country. Ongoing attempts by Northern Cyprus and the Republic of Cyprus to resolve the dispute have been unsuccessful.

  • Northern Cyprus occupies about 40 percent of the island, and has a population of about 300,000. Its capital is North Nicosia, the northern section of the city of Nicosia.

Flag of Northern Cyprus

  • Nicosia’s Selimiye Mosque took 150 years to build and parts of it date from the 12th century. Other landmarks in Nicosia include the 500 year old Turkish baths and the Bandabulya bazaar.
  • Northern Cyprus is known as the Island of Sun and enjoys about 340 sunny days every year. The country has been voted one of the healthiest destinations in Europe.
  • The beautiful and rugged Karpaz Peninsula is one of the island’s most scenic spots. It is home to several rare animal and plant species, as well as about 500 wild donkeys.
  • Famagusta is an ancient city, almost completely enclosed by thick stone walls. St. Paul once preached nearby and the city once had 365 churches, one for every day of the year.
  • Near Famagusta are the ruins of the Roman city of Salamis. The site has the island’s largest ampitheatre, which could seat 15,000 people, as well as baths, villas and temples.
  • Northern Cyprus was once a major centre of silk production, exporting it as far as the Middle East. Some older residents still make silk, and a silk festival takes place each summer.
  • The flag of Northern Cyprus is based on the flag of Turkey, with the colours reversed.
  • A 420 metre wide painted flag can be seen on the Kyrenia Mountains.