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Experience in Nicosia, Cyprus by Raphaella

What is it like to live in Nicosia? Would you recommend it? What is the city like?

Nicosia is the capital city of Cyprus and so the largest one, in which you can find much about Cypriot culture, history and traditions.

Many conquerors have passed through this island and in the capital city, you can find many residues like the Venetian wall.

Nicosia is also the world's last divided capital, as a result of the Turkish occupation in Cyprus in 1974. Since then, Turks are illegally settled on the island. So, you can find two different ''worlds'' in just one city. The developed South Nicosia, where greek-Cypriots live and the North Nicosia where Turkish-Cypriots live. Today North Nicosia is an illegal ''state'' recognized only by Turkey.

The free region of Nicosia has many museums, traditional taverns, cosy neighbourhoods, parks and gardens, the Mall of Cyprus, old buildings with great architecture in the old city, churches and monasteries. It is also a business centre and at the same time, a student city since the University of Cyprus is located in Nicosia's region which makes the city an attraction for all students and young people, especially in winter.

Ledra's street is the central street where you can find plenty of shops, cafes, restaurants, bars etc. Filled with students, it's suitable for all tastes.

Nicosia has the best nightlife during the academic year, just because of the students of the University of Cyprus. In summer, coastal areas are preferred.

I recommend Nicosia for students who love history and prefer calmly and friendly places.

How much does it cost to live in Nicosia?

Not very expensive, neither too cheap.

Is it difficult to find accommodation in Nicosia? Is there any advice you can give?

You can find many flats around Nicosia. If you are going to stay near the University of Cyprus, try finding accommodation in the places of Aglanjia or Latsia. These are the closest to the University. Although you can find an apartment in Central Nicosia to be closer to the city centre. Central Nicosia is a 10-minute distance - by car - away from the university and 20 to 30 minutes distance by bus.

What is the food like? What are your favourite dishes?

In Cyprus we love meat! Most dishes have meat in them.

Don't forget to taste souvlaki, the most traditional Cypriot food.

Also try koupepia, of kleftiko, halloumi, and of course traditional Cypriot sweets like shoushoukko etc.

You'll love all of them!

What places would you recommend visiting in Nicosia?

Mall of Cyprus, Ledra's Street, Makariou Avenue, Nicosia old city, Tower 25 (to see Nicosia from above), Faneromeni square (mostly visited by students and young people), Athalassa Park, museums.

What advice would you give future students heading to Nicosia?

Cyprus is a small island. So you can visit many places during your stay, by using just a bus. You can visit all Cypriot provinces, such us Larnaka, Limassol, Pafos, Famagusta. Larnaka is the closest province to Nicosia.

You can also visit very beautiful villages in Cyprus, where you'll get to know more about Cypriot traditions.

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