Nicosia Divided Capital & Khirokita Archaeological Site
Local Sightseeing, All
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Approximately 5 Hours
The last divided capital city in the world, after the fall of Berlin Wall, is the city of Nicosia -- right here in Cyprus. The Green Line has divided north from south since 1974. Nicosia is the largest town on Cyprus and has been the capital of the island since medieval times (11th century AD). The history of the city is interesting and adventurous and the place itself is of great character, circled by old city walls and criss-crossed by winding streets.
Your first stop is at the Neolithic archaeological site of Khirokitia (7000 BC) on the way to Nicosia. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is the best-preserved of its kind in the Eastern Mediterranean. Five dwellings in close proximity have been reconstructed following the Neolithic model, using the traditional methods and materials. They have been furnished with copies of objects actually found inside the houses during excavation, offering a terrific impression of the layout and lifestyle of the village as it was in antiquity.
Driving through some typical Cypriot scenery you'll arrive in Nicosia and start with a visit to St John's Cathedral built in 1662 by Archbishop Nikiforos. Admire the 18th-century frescoes embellishing the walls, depicting colorful biblical scenes.
You'll stop at the Green Line checkpoint at Ledra Street, from where you will have the opportunity to view the Turkish half of Nicosia and northern territory of Cyprus. You'll pass through the impressive Venetian Walls that encircle the old city via the Pafos Gate.
In the Old Town of Nicosia, there is free time for shopping or browsing in the restored 19th-century neighborhood of Laiki Yitonia. Traditional houses, craft shops, taverns and galleries all line the narrow pedestrian streets within the walled city.
Wear comfortable walking shoes.