Friday, 10 August 2012

Captivating Cyprus

Howde Folks,

Sofia here again. Lady M is letting me escort you, this summer.

Sunset from her hotel room!
Geriskipou Church
Memorial at Coral Bay

St. Barnabas Monastery at Famagusta

"Wow, wasn't Malta beautiful? Donald and I certainly enjoyed it and we will be returning many times. Anyway, our next island is only a short flight eastward to Cyprus. Well, at least we are only getting five of her holiday photographs! Remember, she spent her 60th birthday there? Whether she remembers or not after drinking so much champagne is another matter. So, fasten those seatbelts and have a quick snooze while our pilot hits the skies and we fly to Pafos.

Cyprus, the third largest island in the Mediterranean Sea lies between Turkey in Europe, Israel/Syria towards the east and Egypt in Africa to the south. It is a divided island, with Turkish occupation in the north and Greek Cypriots in the south. The Attila Line, also known as the Green Line, so called because it was drawn on the map in green ink, divides the island through it's capital Nicosia.

The Greek (Southern) area is in the EU and has the Euro as its currency. However, the Turkish northern part is, like Turkey, not a member of the EU and still has Turkish Lira as its main currency although Euros are accepted.

The main religion in the south is Greek Orthodox and in the North, Islam.

The major towns are Limassol, Larnaca and Paphos in the south; Famagusta, Morphou and Kyrenia in the north. Limassol is the main shopping and industrial area on the coast with a long promenade; it has very few historical or archaelogical sites. Only a small area on the western side of the town has the old fishing port and a mediaeval castle which houses a museum. Larnaca has the main airport and also the Church of St Lazarus, which is where Lazarus sailed to after being raised from the dead by Jesus; the church is built over his tomb. Paphos is a popular tourist destination having a small domestic airport, beautiful harbour and old market town as well as numerous historical and archaelogical sites. In the Turkish area, Famagusta, on the east coast, is known as the ghost town as part of it is still unoccupied after the Greek Cypriots fled during the uprising in 1974. It does have the St. Barnabas Monastery nearby. Morphou and Kyrenia are on the west side of the island.

Cyprus, due to its location, has been occupied by many different countries throughout the years; it is steeped in history and has numerous archaelogical sites. It is the island of Aphrodite, the goddess of love. Her birthplace is a rock on the south west coast, a few miles from Paphos; her baths are on the north coast near to Polis.

Okay, Donald, I think that's enough information for this week. After all, Lady M has posted about Cyprus on several occasions. As it is the island of love, where shall we go? How about Afrodites Baths?"

"Sounds good to me, Sofia."

"So, we're signing off now and going to enjoy this beautiful island. Next week, we are going to Bali. Fortunately, Lady M visited it before she had a digital camera so we do not have any of her holiday snaps for you."

Mantra for the week: TAKE IT EASY!

Love to you all, Sofia

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