Eco-friendly travel guide to Kyrenia advises how to be a responsible tourist. Learn how to explore the attractions in a sustainable way and how to respect the local people and culture. Make your trip green by supporting locally owned hotels, organic restaurants and other businesses. Read more on how to protect the environment by making conscientious choices and how to travel green in Kyrenia, Northern Cyprus.
- Air quality:3.5 / 5
- Exploring by foot: 2.5 / 5
- Exploring by bicycle: 3 / 5
- Public transportation: 3.5 / 5
- Parks: 2.5 / 5
- Outdoor activities: 3 / 5
- Locals' English level: 2.5 / 5
- Safety: 3 / 5
- Accommodation: US$70 - $150
- Budget per day: US$200 - $400
- 1 Responsible Travel
- 2 Air Quality and Pollution
- 3 Respect the Culture
- 4 Top 10 Places to Visit
- 5 Explore
- 6 Eat
- 7 Drink
- 8 Activities
- 9 Accommodation
- 10 How to Get There
- 11 Moving Around
- 12 Sustainable Shopping
- 13 Recycling
- 14 Work and Study Abroad
- 15 See Also
Kyrenia (Girne) is a city on the northern coast of Cyprus. When you travel to Kyrenia, you will want to get the best experience out of your travel to be worth all the money you spend. To have a fantastic trip, you need to travel responsibly. Responsible travel refers to traveling in such a way that your actions don't cause any harm to the local communities or the environment. In the current scenario, you must follow various eco-friendly measures and participate actively in protecting our earth. To help you travel responsibly and get the best out of your trip, here are some tips and advice that you can choose to follow accordingly:
Your responsible travel measures need to start way before you visit the country. After booking your flight, you need to do extensive research about the current country scenario, the culture, things you need to avoid, and the laws you have to follow as a tourist. If you ignore this vital step, you will be clueless about your environment and not get the best experience.
After landing in Kyrenia, you will want to stay at a 5-star hotel with a good reputation and luxury facilities. But, in reality, these hotels are not the best choice if you are a foreign tourist as they will provide you with world-class facilities but will fail to give you proper exposure to the local Cyprus culture. Instead, it would be best if you preferred opting for eco-hotels, hostels, guest houses, and apartments to get the right amount of exposure to the local culture.
The next thing you need to keep in mind while traveling in Kyrenia is minimizing your carbon footprint. The carbon footprint refers to the number of greenhouse gases released into the local environment by your activities. If you want to travel to Kyrenia's city in the best way possible, you need to avoid any activities that will harm the local environment. You should make use of public transport and avoid using plastic containers at the most. While exploring the local culture and food in the city, I prefer local businesses over big business chains as they serve better quality dishes that are sourced locally. These local businesses offer the same services as the big business chains at a lower rate and better quality. Doing so will help you maintain your budget and support these local businesses to grow.
Similarly, try and explore local food at simple restaurants to enjoy the legendary local cuisine. Avoid big food chains and global brands at all costs. The smaller bistros, restaurants, and even food carts shall serve you some of the most authentic dishes; more so, if you plan to cook your own Cyprus meal, make sure you get the ingredients from local food markets and not supermarkets. The freshest produce, including vegetables, seafood, and all kinds of meats, shall be found at these markets; they shall be priced appropriately and often serve to be the difference between a good home-cooked meal and a great one.
Air Quality and Pollution
As a tourist, you must keep this in mind when visiting the city and taking precautionary steps accordingly. The monsoon season is also relentless and could contribute to increased pollution levels because the suspended particles tend to hang on to the heavy atmosphere. However, one thing that should be kept in mind is that the city is infamous for its bad air quality. People love to make inquiries before they visit any city as they would not want to compromise their health despite having fun during the holiday.
Therefore, it would be better to visit the city during the summer months when the climate is good. The humidity levels are also low if you plan for a long trip or visit the city as a tourist, infamous for its unhealthy and poor air quality. It could lead to breathing problems, burning and itchy eyes, and other such complications. The air is fresh and crisp at this time of the year, and you will enjoy bike rides and walking in the city quite a lot. After all, health is wealth. Air quality and pollution play an important role while visiting a new city.
Respect the Culture
It is not out of place that one of the first things you would hear when visiting a new place is that you should respect the culture if you want to flow well with the locals. However, some people might be lost if they do not know the traditions of the city. If you are having lunch with your local friends, then it is proffered if everyone pays for what they ordered or can offer to pay for everyone if you are hosting. Do not wait for others to pay your bill and always offer to pay for your own food.
If this city is your chosen city for a holiday, have no fear as we would give you some tips on respecting their culture. You should know that the people of this city love it when the atmosphere is relaxed. Thus, they would not jump into any business topic. Always talk about something simple and allow the host to start the conversation. You must show respect towards the local communities, landmarks, culture, and local environment. By indulging in cultural or recreational activities, you can learn a great deal about the city's culture and history.
Top 10 Places to Visit
- Kyrenia Castle: Kyrenia Castle is an archeological site in the city of Kyrenia. The castle is located at the east end of the old harbor in the city of Kyrenia. It was built in the 16th century by the Venetians.
- Shipwreck Museum: Shipwreck Museum is a famous museum in the city of Kyrenia. It is located in Asagi, Kupdemir Sk, Kyrenia, Cyprus. It was built in the 4th century BC.
- Saint Hilarion Castle: Saint Hilarion Castle is a castle in the city of Kyrenia, Cyprus. It was established in the 10th century. It is one of the famous places to visit.
- Bellapais Abbey: Bellapais Abbey is a monastery in the city of Kyrenia. It is located in Kyrenia, Cyprus. It is the ruin of a monastery built by Canons Regular in the 13th century.
- Bufavento: Bufavento is a castle in the city of Kyrenia, Cyprus. Nowadays it is becoming one of the famous tourist attractions in the city.
- Kyrenia Harbour: Kyrenia Harbour is a marina in the city of Kyrenia, Cyprus. It is located on the northern coast of Cyprus. It is under the de facto control of Northern Cyprus.
- Icon Museum: Icon museum is one of the famous museums in the city of Kyrenia. It is located in Kyrenia, North Cyprus. It is a former Greek Orthodox church of Archangelos Mikhael.
- Vela Yachting Ltd: Vela Yacht is one of the famous tourist attractions in the city of Kyrenia. It is located in Kyrenia, Cyprus.
- Archangels Michael Church: Archangelos Michael Church in the city of Kyrenia, Cyprus. It was established in the 19th-century greek church.
- Aphrodite Boat Trips: Aphrodite Boat Trips is one of the famous tourist attractions in the city of Kyrenia. It is located in Kyrenia, Cyprus.
The city has many things to offer apart from the many historical and culturally renowned places packed with tourists. The various parks, beaches, museums, and landmarks will help you get deep insights into the local culture and its beauty. People say that all work and no play would make one dull. This city ensures that it has places that play roles in calming and relaxing the mind. Thus, it is not surprising that people always want to visit this city.
There is so much to do in this city, so tourists should have a schedule plan ready so that activities will not be jumbled.
The city is big, and it has a big collection of parks and other such places. It has big open spaces and greeneries where you can spend time with your children and other family members. The views are one thing you cannot take away from parks.
Here are some famous city parks in the city:
- Peace Park
- City Park
- Ayios Andronikos Park
- Park Rinti
- Ankara Caglayan Park
- Park Valentin
- Park Sofia
The country has always been famous for its beautiful and graceful natural resources, and so that this city has a wonderful collection of national parks and a zoo. We are listing down a few of them that may not exactly be located in and around the city but are not very far away from the city.
- Kyrenia Animal Rescue
- Kyrenia Harbour
- Alagadi Turtle Beach Park
- Gecitkoy Dam
- Green Heights Park
- Besparmak Cruise Place
Kyrenia, as a city, does not have beaches right in the heart of the city. However, you certainly can find a few beaches at a short distance, and some of these are listed below:
- Lara Beach
- Alagadi Turtle Beach
- Vogue Beach Club
- Shayna Beach Club
- Beach Camelot
- Sunset Beach Club
- 'Escape Beach Club
The city of Kyrenia also has its share of memorable landmarks and monuments. You must try and visit as many as you possibly can. While the list is quite long, we are mentioning a few of them for our readers' benefit.
- Icon Museum
- Liman Hotel And Casino
- The Round Tower
- Aga Cafer Pasha Mosque
- Aphrodite Boat Trips
Visiting museums would be the icing on your holiday package, especially if you are in this city, as it shows that you have adequately explored the city. Here are some of these museums given are as follows:
- Shipwreck Museum
- Icon Museum
- Museum Of Folk Art
- Peace And Freedom Museum
- Karaoglanoglu Muzesi
- Museo De Cyprus
You will find that the locals prefer to eat healthy and nutritious food with lots of vegetables and meats. Apart from these traditional and modern cuisines, the local street food is a must-try one that will leave your mouth lingering with their flavors. You will find that vegetarian, and non-vegetarian dishes are popular, and you will not find much trouble conveying your food preferences. Here are some famous local restaurants, vegetarian and vegan, and street foods are given below.
Traditional Local Restaurants
These restaurants are some of those restaurants in the city that continue to serve traditional Kyrenia food made in traditional ways. Here are some famous local restaurants which serve their authentic traditional foods are given below:
- Kibris Evi
- Beyti Restaurant
- Archway Restaurant
- Ezic Premier
- Ezic Peanuts
- Valley View Restoran
- Courtyard Inn
Vegetarian and Vegan
Sometimes the habits of two people are different. Thus, everyone does not have the same eating habit or love the same pattern when it concerns food choices. If you are a vegetarian, you do not need to worry when you are in this city as there are many restaurants to attend to your needs. With these places, you will get to enjoy traditional meals properly with your regular choices. Some of these vegan restaurants are:
- Limos Breakfast / Café / Bar
- Zeenee Italian And American Restaurant
- Café De Liman
- Mazende Ocakbasi Restaurant
- Gloria Jean’s Coffees Girne, Kyrenia
- Evergreen Vegan And Vegetarian
Different cities have various food they classify as street food. Suppose you are a street food enthusiast and would want to try some in this city. You know those foods you can easily get at the roadside without the need for a fancy restaurant? Those are classified as street food. The preparation time for them does not take long, and it is something you can eat on the go. One thing about street food is that you can try out varieties at the same time.
- Koupepua (Stuffed Vine Leaves) And Gemista
- Souvlaki And Sheftalia
- Kolokouthkia Me Ta Afka (courgettes with eggs)
- Makaronia Tou Fournou
The Kyrenians are known to be a very particular breed when it comes to their drinking habits. Here we just aren’t talking about alcoholic drinks, but we are also referring to the non-alcoholic ones. In this section of the article, we shall discuss some of the popular drinks you can enjoy on your trip to Kyrenia. To begin with the non-alcoholic drinks, it is an absolute no brainer that the various kinds of coffees that Italy has given to the world are popular here, right from Espresso to Cappuccino and even the Macchiato. The Kyrenians are known to be very particular about their alcoholic drinks and the time they consume it. There are different types of alcohols to be consumed at different times, even before and after meals; if you consume the wrong one at the wrong time, you certainly shall be warranted to a few stares.
Even the water that is available in hotels and street-side food joints may be unsafe to drink. Hence, carrying bottled water is a good suggestion. Unlike many Western countries, tap water may not be safe to drink, but the locals do drink after boiling it. Water is unstable even to the small majority who have a direct connection to tapped water. Different areas of the city receive water on specific days of the week, some for a few days and others for just a few hours.
The city has stood up to the task of catering for all segments of the population, including those with a preference for organic foods. Since some people would prefer eating organic, it is not out of place to have organic cafes in different cities. While they are not as obvious as the mainstream restaurants, the city has several organic eateries:
- Gloria Jean’s Coffees Girne, Kyrenia
- Café Grumpy – Chill’inn
- 3Rd Generation
- Harbour Café
- Azra Claire’s Asian Restaurant
- Coffeehouse Tastehabitat
- Babil Bahceleri
If you love alcoholic drinks, you will have a swell time in the city as there are many fabulous options for you. Have a look at some of its breweries:
- Oo’s Brewing Co
- Pivo Microbrewery
- Beer Point
- Threeb Cyprus – Burger, Beer, Bar
- Ego Bar
- Bar Duck
- Murfy’s Restaurant And Bar
The museums and art exhibitions are always there for you to explore, making you appreciate art. Even if you are not a lover of artwork, something in you will be compelled when you see them. The city is best known for its art and culture in tourism, and it has many places to explore. However, this is not the case for people who wish to visit Kyrenia, as there is always something to do. Foreigners hate getting bored when in a new city, so you would see those seeking locals' recommendations. If there is not much to do in a city, then what is the point of visiting there? It would be best to make friends with the locals to have an epic experience in the city.
Yoga and Retreats
You will find that young people are the ones that like to participate in such fitness exercised. There are many yoga institutes in the city where you can train under a qualified and experienced yoga teacher. With increasing awareness of the need for a healthy and fit lifestyle, the local people are gaining interest in yoga, an ancient Indian practice for maintaining the health of mind and body.
Some of the renowned yoga centers are as follows:
- Shivani Life Center Girne
- Enso Yoga Cyprus
- Kibris Yoga, Pilates Ve Yasam Koclugu Merkezi
- Yogakioo Institute Kyrenia
- Saucha Fitness And Wellness Studio
We would not say that accommodation in this city is cheap, neither would we say that it is expensive. The price you would get depends on your accommodation option. It may not be as low as what you would get in some cities, but it is not the most expensive in the world. With this clear, we know that the next question concerns the pricing as people want to know to plan their budget. The city has many options when it comes to accommodation, so foreigners are not stranded. These accommodation options range from hotels to apartments, and much more. You can either make accommodation plans when you are in the city or before you arrive. It would be best to do whatever works best for you.
Many foreigners fail to realize that they have a role to play in protecting the environment, and it does not matter if it is your place of origin or not. If you are an environmental enthusiast, we know that you would search for green hotels in Kyrenia to ensure that you have an eco-friendly stay in the city. You should play a role in any place you find yourself.
Here are some of the green hotels in the city given below:
- Green Holiday Village
- Kyrenia Palace Boutique Hotel
- Grand Center Boutique Hotel
- Elexus Hotel And Resort And Spa
- Sofia Boutique Hotel
- Oscar Resort Hotel
Hostels and Guest Houses
Here are some comfortable and affordable guesthouses as well as hostels in the city. They are given below:
- Costas Hostel Action 2
- Campus Cyprus
- Be Garden Villas
- New Hostel
- Socrates Hostel
- Best Kyrenia Hotel
- Babil Bahceleri
Renting apartments in Kyrenia is known to be quite an easy option. However, rental rates are known to be quite high. As tourists, you may want to consider the option if you are living for long periods of time, or if you value your privacy, or if you have a couple of friends living with you, that way you get to avoid the exorbitant rates and rigid rules and regulations of hostels and hotels.
There is an online community known as couchsurfing.com, and if you are a part of it, you will be able to come across dozens of CouchSurfing mates and companions. The perk of Couchsurfing is that it is free. As a foreigner, you do not need to pay your host. However, it is your responsibility to be respectful and abide by the laws of the city. It is a new concept but has taken off quite well in the city. The idea surrounding Couchsurfing is that locals of the city offer hospitality by opening their homes to foreigners. It is usually voluntary so that there will be no complaints. Thus, anyone who signs up to accommodate people through Couchsurfing is expected to treat them right as they were not forced to do it.
Campers describe the experience as exciting, and it lures those who have never been camping before. It helps you meet new people, and you get to do things you have never done before. If you a lover of nature and the outdoors, we know that you would wish to experience camping in whatever form when you are in a new city. The thing with camping is that there are particular areas for it; else the whole purpose is defeated. Thus, it is right to know the camping sites.
- Eco Camp Indigo
- Onur Camping
- Kocareis Karavan Kamp Alani
- Platania Camping Site
- Molo, Flasou
- Camping Site Polis Chrisochous
How to Get There
Reaching Kyrenia's city is not known to be too difficult, and some of the most sustainable ways to reach are the railway and the buses. Given in the sections below are more details about the different ways in which you can reach the city.
Many people would agree that using air is the fastest means of transportation to anywhere, so we know that this would be the top option on the mind of some people when they want to visit Kyrenia. If you desire to travel to the city by air, you need to check your home city for the available flights. More Cyprus flight options are available worldwide, so it should not be a hassle finding one that operates from your current location, especially if you are within the Country.
The bus terminuses are chaotic, and you may have to take some local help to determine which bus to choose for your requirements. This is because the intercity bus terminus is located around one hour from the city. The city has reasonably advanced local bus transport services, but intercity bus services are not very comfortable.
The process of taking a train to the city is almost similar to using a bus. Both are forms of land transportation, but using a train is usually slower, and many people agree with this. However, you would get more time to appreciate the views and nature when you use a train as your desired means of transportation. The best thing for anyone to do when using a train is to engage in other activities like reading a book or playing games to whirl away time.
While the locals are quite friendly and hospitable and hitchhiking is a common practice in many parts of the world, it is not common to encounter hitchhikers in Kyrenia. Hitchhiking is very much in vogue in the city, but you have to be careful when choosing the right person. Most drivers are naturally wary of picking up strangers, fearing carrying robbers and carjackers. While there are exceptional cases of drivers who would be okay with offering one a lift, most of them would not, especially when driving at night.
We usually see this when a group of tourists decides to visit the city. In such cases, it would be that they have a tour guide waiting for them, and they are ready to have an adventurous experience. If you have never been on a ferry, it may be time to check for those who wish to visit the city of Kyrenia around you so that you all would use it as a means of transportation to the city.
These modes of transportations are efficient in helping you move around the city and discover the city's hidden gems. If you wish to travel, then the best option at your disposal is public transports such as subway trains, available buses, and electronic vehicles. Walking is an alternative mode of moving around but is the healthiest and cheapest mode.
Despite numerous attempts to decongest the city, including increasing the parking cost in town and banning public service vehicles from accessing certain parts of the town center, the streets have continued congested. Away from the city and into the residential suburbs boasts of many trees along many avenues that provide shade and fresh air as you stroll along. Walking is the most eco-friendly means of transport but also because of the traffic jam. As the city has rapidly grown, Kyrenia has become known for its unending traffic jams.
If Kyrenia is your destination city, you should have no worries about cycling around in the city as the roads are in an excellent state, assuring you of your safety. As a plus, you should also rent helmets when you are renting a bicycle as one can never be too safe. There are many bicycle rental shops in the city, so it is easy to get a bicycle and ride around. Once you have paid the rental fee, you do not need to bother about transportation as the bicycle would help you out.
The process of using an electronic bike is almost similar to using a bicycle as the excellent roads assure you of your safety. This does not mean that you should go around on top speed as you always need to be careful. As part of safety procedures and guidelines, anyone who desires to use an electronic bike should always ensure that they are wearing a helmet as it is better to be safe than to be sorry. The feeling you get while moving around on a bike is soothing and one of a kind, making it understandable why many people desire to use one. It will help if you have a map with you while using a bike not to lose your way while moving around.
Using a public bus is the most standard means of moving around in Kyrenia, and the advantage is that it is cheaper than other forms or means of transportation you would find. However, it would help if you understand Cyrillic as most bus signs are written in it, making it confusing for foreigners. Tourists usually depend on the locals' help for understanding when it comes to languages and signs that they do not understand.
Tram, Train and Subway
People use these transports for a faster way of moving around the city. You will find that trains help you reach destinations inside and outside the city as they have a more comprehensive range than trams. On the other side, trains work only in some particular areas inside the city and are a great way of experiencing the local culture.
Sustainable shopping refers to buying products that have less impact on the environment and society. This type of shopping is done to promote eco-friendly and recyclable products while emphasizing local businesses' use. These businesses sell a wide range of everyday items that are cheaper and environmentally friendly.
Kyrenia's food markets are popular amongst the locals and the tourists as they are packed with fresh and high quality produce. These places provide visitors with an authentic taste of local food while promoting local businesses.
- Nusmar Market
- Sah Marketplace
- Ertan Market
- Kar Market
These markets consist of local businesses and people that sell second-hand products that are reusable. These markets are run by local people and the best places to find local art and craft items. You can find these markets fill with handmade products and represent the local culture and people. These are must-visit markets where you can buy souvenirs for your trip.
- Kyrenia Harbour
- Typical Turkish Flea Market
Second Hand Stores
These stores are some of the most common places for shopping for lower-income groups and budgeted travelers. These stores sell second-hand products that possess the potential for reuse. You can find many antique items at low rates as well. These stores sell used items at a lower rate and are popular amongst inferior income group peoples as they cannot afford them at their retail price. These stores sell a wide variety of items such as clothes, furniture, books, and other reusable items.
Eco-fashion is a means of making clothes that are helpful to the environment. Everyone is always trying to be eco-friendly in different capacities, and designers make their effort in the clothes they make. However, it is left you to buy it and also play a part in the system. We always encourage foreigners to play a role in being eco-friendly when they visit any city and subscribing to eco-fashion is one way for anyone.
You will find many recycling stores in various districts where you can take your recyclable waste and get it appropriately recycled. These stores offer various monetary or store voucher services that you can use for buying other recyclable items and services. The government has also provided multiple incentives to people following various recycling waste measures and saving natural resources.
Kyrenia is undoubtedly one of the cleanest cities globally, and the waste collection method is quite strict, with residents having to adhere to specific methods of segregation, packing, points of disposal, and even time of disposal.
Work and Study Abroad
You will find that as the financial hub, the educational and career opportunities in Kyrenia. All you need to do to get admission is apply to the various institutions and meet their requirements. The education system is one of the best, and you will be able to learn a lot about Cyprus culture, history, heritage, and people. If you are an international student who wishes to work while studying in Kyrenia, it is possible. The government advocates that you do it during your free time, not to affect your studies. Also, the locals do not discriminate and are willing to pay international students adequately if they effectively render their services. It is left to you to know how to balance your school and work schedule so that none is affected. We advocate that your studies should be the main priority
Many universities in Kyrenia partner with schools in other countries to have a student exchange program. Thus, you should check if your school partners with anyone in the city if you desire to visit the city. During the student exchange program, you can learn local culture thoroughly and is a plus as you also get to explore the city.
If you are studying in Kyrenia, it is understandable if you want to get a job to argue your finds. We also understand that it is not always easy to find these jobs, and this is where the idea of au pair comes to play. For cities that subscribe to the au pair idea, there is usually a website or forum where people can register and get paired with localhost whom they can work for. This exists in the city of Kyrenia, so you should jump on the opportunity. Au pairing is a relatively new concept in some countries where a foreign couple helps out a family meet their responsibilities and manage a household. The couple helps the family members in education and career to help them build a better life with lots of potentials. You will hardly find an Au Pair or a family participating in such activities as they are accustomed to managing by themselves or with the help of their close relatives or neighbors.
Kyrenia is a city where people are socially responsible.You, too, could give back to society by joining hands with these socially responsible people and organizations that work selflessly for the people. Be a volunteer for a cause that you truly believe in; finding this gig isn’t too difficult as you could rely on online postings or words passed through your social circles. We do not think that any city is not open to volunteers' ideas, and it happens in the city of Kyrenia. You can volunteer in many areas while in the city to research and choose a focus. By volunteering, you are playing a role in being eco-friendly.