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Guides > General > Border Crossings

There are nine crossing points between North and South Cyprus but if you intend to use a particular crossing, you'd be wise to check it's open before making your journey, just to make sure. West to east, these are the names of the Cyprus border crossings:

  • Yesilirmak (Limnitis/Kato Pyrgos) near Guzelyurt (Morpho) 

  • Lefke (Lefka)

  • Bostanci/Guzelyurt (Astromeritis)

  • Metehan (Agios Dometios)

  • Ledra Palace - Official cars only

  • Ledra Street - Pedestrains

  • Beyarmudu (Dhekelia) – SBA crossing

  • Akyar (Strovilia/Agios Nikolaos) - SBA crossing

  • Dherynia (Famagusta/Gazimagusa)

Border crossings are quite well signed in the north if you want to go south, but not so well in the south if you want to go north. Names above are Turkish names, those in brackets Greek. These two names aren't  

Border Crossings in North Cyprus

necessarily the same place, but the names of the nearest village or town on each side of the border, as there's often a short drive between the two.


Crossing points are mainly designed for cars, but there is one pedestrian-only crossing point in the capital Lefkosa known as Ledra Street.  It's possible to walk through some crossing points if you're being collected by a car or taxi on the other side (for example Metehan) but note some crossing points are rural with limited facilities on either side and some crossing points have a long distance between them so walking isn't allowed (for example, Yesilirmak).  All crossing points are open 24/7 but if you need to buy car insurance, you should use Metehan which offers 24-hour car insurance service.  The other border crossings tend to offer car insurance services only in-office hours. You'll need your passport as well as the car documents, insurance and driving licence if you're taking a car across. The most used crossing is Metehan which is about 20-minutes drive from Kyrenia. The Sovereign Base Area (SBA) British Army crossing point of Beyarmudu is actually nearer to Larnaca Airport but the journey to Kyrenia is longer, so it tends to be used for those visiting East Coast locations of Iskele or Famagusta. If you fly via Paphos, you'd be better to use Metehan as well. Lefke and Yesilirmak may look closer, but they're mainly used by locals, involve mountainous roads and are not really suitable for first-time visitors or new tourists, particularly at night. You can use sat nav or google maps or Waze to find the Cyprus border crossings but once through reset your device to your final destination.  If you're a first time visitor to North Cyprus and arriving at night in the South, take a taxi over the border and hire a car in the north.  This gives you fully comp insurance plus breakdown cover and stops you getting lost in the dark. You might also want to book that pickup in advance with a North Cyprus company rather than an airport taxi as many Greek Cypriot taxi drivers won't know the way on the north side.

Guides > General > Opening a Business

Foreign Direct Investment has helped develop the TRNC economy, especially in tourism, construction and services. That's why the government welcomes foreigners opening businesses and provides them with full rights to the company in many sectors with or without local partners. Businesses may be a small shop, spa salon, restaurant, investment company or a five star hotel. Many companies are foreign owned and ran for years. To open a business at least two people will be needed. They can be foreigners or partner with Turkish Cypriots. If the business is real estate or construction related, the foreigner must hold 49% shares and the local representative 51%. To set up your business you'll need to deposit US$100,000. into a local bank if you don't have local partners, and US$49,000 if you do.

Seeking advice of a solicitor is wise as there's different rules for different types of companies.  You'll also need a local accountant to make appropriate applications to the Council of Ministers.  Memorandums and Articles will specify the company’s function, management structure

Opening a Business in North Cyprus

and share information. 


You'll also need a business permit (a stamp in your passport), which is specifically issued to Company Directors, which is different to work or residency permits.  Other permits might also be needed e.g. if you're serving alcohol, a beverage license from the local council. You'll  need to register with the tax office, the social security and pensions departments.  There will be costs involved for any workers you employ, paying for their permits and their monthly state contributions.  As a Director you'll also need to make state contributions. Tax Certificates and Certificate of Incorporation have to be displayed in your premises at all times and must be kept in their original forms.

Guides > General > Places for children 

Guides > General > Climate

Climate inTRNC is “intense Mediterranean” meaning short mild, temperate winters and long hot summers.  Temperatures and rainfall vary depending on elevation. It's obviously cooler at the top of St Hilarion or Buffavento Castle than it is in Kyrenia harbour. Summer can begin as early as March, though officially it doesn’t start until June. By then, temperatures are in the 30s (around 86°F).  June to September there's no rain, days are long and hot, evenings are balmy and relaxing, though nights can sometimes be a bit uncomfortable and you'll love your air-con unit. In October the weather begins to change but you can still sunbathe.

Rains usually fall in the first two weeks of October bringing plants and trees a much needed drink.  After the long hot summer, drains are full of dust and leaves and this makes for an interesting driving experience after the first few days of rains. It doesn’t rain that much in Northern Cyprus but the rains bring greenery which soon bursts into colourful bloom.  Springtime in Cyprus is an incredible sight .  If you only ever visit in summer you’ll find it hard to believe that the sometimes desert-like interior landscape greens over and then gives birth to thousands of beautiful flowers, but it does.

Climate in North Cyprus

Officially the seasons in North Cyprus are Autumn in October; Winter from November to March; Spring in April and May; and Summer from June to September.  Average daily temperatures in July and August start in the mid 30s, whereas April, May, June, September and October start in the mid 20’s. This means an average 300 days of sunshine a year.  December and January are the worst months for weather in Northern Cyprus, night time temperatures can be very cold, occasionally dropping below freezing in the mountains.  Rainfall when it comes, can be very heavy and stormy, and if you’re lucky enough to have a sea view, you can watch incredible lightning shows out at sea.

March and April are two of the most popular months to visit the island, with warm days but not the sometimes oppressive heat of high summer. There's plenty of flowers to look at and beaches and harbour side cafes are quieter. December and January do get some warm days and some beautiful blue skies, but you also get overcast and even cold days.  If you want a heady mix of long hot days for beach flopping and long warm nights for partying then visit from May to September and you’ll be assured perfect sunny weather and plenty of fun-packed days and nights.

Hrs Sun

Guides > General > Education


Children below age 6, can attend kindergartens of public and private institutions. Kindergarten is not mandatory.

Elementary school

Provides 5 years of education for children between the ages of 6 and 11. All are public and free.

High school

High schools provide a minimum 6 years of education, where 3 years are for junior high school (Ortaokul). There are different kinds of high schools such as standard public high schools, private high schools, science high schools, vocational high schools, technical high schools and fine arts high schools.


Education in North Cyprus

You might be surprised to learn that Northern Cyprus has numerous international Universities offering world-class education, in English, to nearly 100,000 students from over 100 countries. TRNC has a welcoming visa policy and multi-cultural atmosphere which encourages students to easily utilise degree courses. and the Government has education at the top of its agenda, leading to a boom in student numbers.  For example, Eastern Mediterranean University (EMU) student numbers have grown by almost 400% in recent years. Education is contributing close to $1 billion to the government’s budget  - well over 50% of its total. Private investors include Suat Gunsel, a Forbes list billionaire, who invested into his own Near East University in Lefkosa. NEU boasts a state-of-the-art teaching hospital drawing patients from South Cyprus and internationally; a journalism department broadcasting 24-hour programs from its own tv and radio studios; and an Olympic-size swimming pool. The boom in student numbers creates demand for accommodation, attracting investors to buy rental properties close to Universities. Many families are buying properties for their student children to use with the added benefit of it being a perfect base for family holidays during university vacation times. Students at TRNC Universities are allowed to work up to 20 hours per week to help pay fees if required, and full medical insurance is included in all fees. There's also a prep year available to learn English if a student needs to improve that before starting their course. Crucial to the success of the universities is the fact that diplomas and degrees are accepted by most universities around the world. Students who've moved on to other countries confirm  they encountered few problems in the transition.

University of the West of Scotland
Netkent Research & Science University
Near East University
University of Mediterranean Karpasia
International Business Management School
Cyprus Social Sciences University
Cyprus International University
Atatürk Teacher Training Academy
Anadolu University Nicosia Campus
American University of Cyprus
European University of Lefke
Middle East Technical University
Cyprus Health & Social Sciences University
University of Kyrenia
Girne American University
Final International University
Cyprus Science University
Arkın University of Creative Arts & Design
European Leadership University
Istanbul Technical University
Eastern Mediterranean University
University of City Island
Cyprus West University

Guides > General > Embassies

Several nations have embassies, high commissions or foreign missions in Northern Cyprus and they can help with passport renewals, birth certificates, and legal advice among others. Local Turkish Cypriots wishing to travel to the countries which are represented on the island are required to visit that nation’s offices to obtain visas for their journey. You'd be surpried how much information and advice these offices can give you.  Below are the main offices available in North Cyprus, which are mostly located near to the Ledra checkpoint area in Lefkoşa.  Some of them only operate on certain days of the week so you might want to call ahead and make an appointment.


‘Australia Place’ – Australian Information Bureau
20 Güner Türkmen Street,
Lefkoşa, North Cyprus
Telephone: +90 (0)392 2277332
Fax: +90 (0)392 2285458


French Cultural Information Centre
(Association Culturelle Française Chypriote-Turc)
1, Hasene Ilgaz Street,
Lefkoşa, North Cyprus
Tel: +90 (0)392 2283328

Embassies in North Cyprus


British High Commission (North Nicosia Office)
Shakespeare Avenue
29, Mehmet Akif Caddesi,
Lefkoşa, North Cyprus
Telephone: +90 (0)392 2283861


American Embassy (North Nicosia Office)
20, Güner Türkmen Street,
Lefkoşa, North Cyprus
Telephone: +90 (0)392 2272443


German Embassy (North Nicosia Information Office)
No:15, 28 Kasım Street,
Lefkoşa, North Cyprus
Telephone: +90 (0)392 2275161



Turkish Embassy
Bedrettin Demirel Avenue,
Lefkoşa, North Cyprus
Telephone: +90 (0)392 2272314
Fax: +90 (0)392 2282209  &  +90 (0)392 2285518

Other Countries

TRNC has ‘representative offices’ and consulates in many other countries around the world.  These are sometimes useful, for example, if you need official papers such as a power of attorney notarised at their offices, to save you travelling to TRNC.  Google your particular nation to see if there's a representative office in that country.

Guides > General > Ferries

Akgünler İşletmeleri A.Ş. Ltd. has been serving the TRNC tourism industry since 1978 and continues to expand.  The company has 1 catamaran and 2 roro / passenger ships in its fleet with the largest passenger and freight capacity in the TRNC. The Company and ships conform to the International Safety Management Certificate (ISMC), the International Ship and Security Certificate (ISPSC), are constantly audited by Lloyds registered entities and operate in accordance with all international maritime rules.

Via Mare

Via Mare is a German-made RoRo / Passenger-type ship that is 118m long, 21m wide. She has a capacity of carrying 470 passengers, 46 trucks, or 260 saloon vehicles. Her max speed is 15 knots per hour. She also has 15 cabins with two beds and four beds, with private bathrooms and toilets. Via Mare makes regular trips between Taşucu aand Girne ports on 3 days a week for 12 months.

Ferries in North Cyprus

Via Famagusta

Via Famagusta is a Swedish-made RoRo / Passenger-type ship. She is 110m long, 16m wide and can carry 113 passengers, 41 trucks, or 220 saloon vehicles.

Her max speed is 12 knots per hour. She has regular trips between Mersin and Famagusta ports, 3 days a week for 12 months. Famagusta is the famous historical port of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.


Akgünler 3

Akgünler III is a Norwegian-made catamaran-type fast sea bus that is 38 meters long, 9 meters wide. She can carry 384 passengers at a speed of 32 knots per hour. This fast ferry makes regular trips between the ports of Taşucu and Girne during May and October. The journey takes only 2 hours. Akgünler III is the only fastest option for your day trips between TRNC and TC.

Ferry Schedule (Tasucu - Girne - Tasucu)
Ferry Schedule (Mersin - Mağusa - Mersin)


Can I travel with my Turkish ID?

  • Yes, unless they are taking a car in which case they MUST carry a passport as well.

What do I need to prepare when I travel from TRNC to Türkiye with my car?

  • A vehicle exit permit from the Tax Office (Motor Vehicles).

  • An exit permit from the bank if the vehicle is mortgaged.

  • G-104 form if you’ve come via South Cyprus.

What do I need to prepare before I travel from Türkiye to TRNC with my car?

  • A vehicle can only be taken out of Türkiye by the registered owner.

  • A power of attorney (POA) can be given to a third party.

  • Anyone travelling with a car requires a passport.

  • If the POA isn't a sibling or parent of the car owner, the vehicle must be <3 years old.

  • POA is not accepted for any vehicle >5 years old.

  • If the vehicle is owned by a company, all company partners are required to issue a POA.

  • If there are loan payments for the vehicle you require a letter from the bank with the content "The vehicle can leave Türkiye".

  • Vehicle owners must obtain at least 1 month vehicle insurance upon arrival at Northern Cyprus.

  • Northern Cyprus students must have the student certificate from the school, valid for 1 year from date of receipt.

  • Northern Cyprus students must obtain at least 3 months vehicle isurance upon arrival at Northern Cyprus.

  • Form "G - 104" will be given to drivers by Northern Cyprus customs upon entry and is required when leaving Northern Cyprus..

  • Traffic is on the left.

  • Local or international driving licenses can be used.

Is driver free when I book a vehicle?

  • Yes. The driver only pays the departure/arrival taxes.

I am a Turkish army personnel. Must I pay the departure / entrance tax?

  • If you have document "Husut Çıkış Belgesi", choose that option while buying your ticket online.

Can I change the trip date of my ticket?

  • Yes, but subject to any price difference.

I'm not going to use my ticket and want to cancel it.

  • Cancellation more than 24 hours before departure - full refund.

  • Cancellation from 24 hours before departure to  6 hours before departure - 75% refund.

  • Cancellation within 6 hours cannot be changed or converted to an open ticket unless there's a valid personal reason. The ticket can only be cancelled with a 50% penalty.

  • All unused/unchanged tickets - no refund will be made.

  • Open tickets are valid for 1 year from date of issuance.

What discounts are there?

  • There are discounts for students, soldiers, diplomats.

I bought my tickets for vehicle and passengers. Is there anything else I need to pay in and out of ports?

  • Entrance and exit taxes for passengers and vehicles are included in the price.

  • You'll have to pay for vehicle insurance upon arrival.

Can passengers under the age of 18 travel alone?

If travelling with an ID Card:

  • Passengers under 18 cannot go abroad without a "notarized or official consent" received from the notary public of the parent/legal guardian who will NOT travel with them.

  • If the minor will travel with only the mother, a notarized or official consent of the father will be required.

  • If the minor will travel only with the father, a notarized or official consent of the mother will be required.

  • If the minor will travel with someone other than the parents or alone, the consent of both parents is required.

  • If the child's custody is in a legal representative, a notarized or official consent is required indicating the consent of the legal representative.

If travelling with a passport:

  • Permission and notarized or official consent of parents IS NOT required.

Which ports do you operate from?

  • Türkiye: Taşucu Port and Mersin Port

  • TRNC : Kyrenia Port and Famagusta Port

Which port do the ships dock at in Taşucu?

  • All sea traffic from Taşucu is from SEKA port.P

  • Passengers with tickets are required to go to the Akgunler office in Taşucu city center first, 2.5 hours before the departure time.

  • After completing their boarding procedures there is a complimentary shuttle bus to Seka Port.

Do you have shuttle buses from Kyrenia and Famagusta?

  • No. You have to use taxis or local transportation.

Useful numbers

  • Taşucu Port Police 0324 741 4195

  • Taşucu Port Customs 0324 741 4039

  • Kyrenia Port Police 0392 815 1799

  • Kyrenia Port Customs 0392 815 4984

  • Mersin Port Police 0324 231 5910

  • Mersin Port Customs 0324 241 2800

Can I travel with my pet?

  • Entering North Cyprus: you can bring your pet (only cat, dog and bird) with you.

  • Entering Türkiye: You can bring 2 pets (only cats or dogs) and 10 fish. You’ll need a veterinary health report, certificate of origin and vaccines and identity document.

How many suitcases can I take with me for free? Is there a weight limit?

  • 3 suitcases or parcels with you on Roro Ships (Via Mare and Via Famagusta).

  • On the Catamaran fast ferry(Akgunler 3) - 2 suitcases and 1 handbag/backpack.

  • There is no weight limit.

Can Turkish citizens take their TRNC plated vehicles Türkiye?

  • Yes, temporarily, providing proof of residence is supplied.

What can I take with me as "duty free" when entering Türkiye?


  • Cigarettes 600 pieces

  • Cigarillos (cigars weighing no more than 3 g each) 100 pieces

  • Cigars 50 pieces

  • Chopped tobacco (with 200 sheets of cigarette paper) 250 gr.


  • Alcohol and alcoholic beverages with an alcohol degree exceeding 22% 1 lt.

  • Alcohol and alcoholic beverages with an alcohol degree not exceeding 22% 2 lt.


  • 5 skin care products and make-up materials, cologne, perfume, lavender, essence or lotion, not exceeding 600 ml

Food products

  • Tea 1 kg.

  • Soluble instant coffee 1 kg.

  • Coffee 1 kg.

  • Chocolate 1 kg.

  • Candy etc 1 kg.

Guides > General > Free Trade & Duty Free

North Cyprus Duty Free Allowances

You're allowed to bring in the following items free of any customs and duty for personal use only:

Tobacco products - 400 cigarettes or 500 grams of smoking tobacco

Alcohol - 150cc of either spirits, wine or beer

Perfumes - 100cl of perfumes and lotions

Non commercial goods - 75 EURO free, above may be charged


Controlled items

The following are controlled items & cannot be exported, nor imported

Controlled Drugs - Opium, heroin,morphine, cocain, cannabis etc

Firearms & Munitions - Including fireworks

Antiquities - Including statues

Obscene Publications

Counterfeit Money

Archaeological Goods

Animals & Birds


Duty Free in North Cyprus

Don't attempt to export antiquities or archaeological goods from Northern Cyprus. There are heavy fines and the threat of jail for removing such items.


Establishing a Free Zone Company

TRNC has become an investment hotspot with Free Zone companies (FZC) the preferred form of incorporation by both domestic and foreign investors. A FZC in TRNC offers proximity and ease of access to Türkiye, Europe and the Middle East and is particularly appealing due to tax advantages it offers.

The Free Trade Zone in TRNC is located at the port of Famagusta. Long established as the center of transit trade, import-export, warehousing and production,  today companies providing remote services such as IT, tourism and consultancy are attracted and the number of companies established in the zone is increasing day by day. Free zone companies are established in the free trade zone but carry out their commercial activities abroad. Although they're subject to TRNC Companies Law, they operate with a special company status. The biggest advantage of FZC is that since they're accepted to be outside of the customs line, they're completely exempt from all taxes such as customs tax, income tax, corporate tax, VAT etc. on income from all activities carried out with any country other than the TRNC.

Dividends are also tax-exempt and the earnings can be freely transferred abroad. Since FZC are completely legal entities, the revenue obtained from a FZC can be transferred to any other country the same way as any foreign company. As long as the transfer of income is not carried out illegally, you shouldn't expect to encounter any problems in the process. FZC can be established both in offices and/or warehouses/factories located in the Free Port Area. Mailboxes can also be used and  are the preferred method used by consultancy, software development, advertising, or companies that provide virtual services as they don't need a physical office. Many online service providers recognized in the Republic of Türkiye and around the world have established a FZC and are active in the TRNC Free Trade Zone due to its tax benefits. The minimum initial capital required for the establishment of a FZC is currently 50,000 Euros which can be used for company activities after approval for the establishment of the company. Apart from admin fees and taxes payable during establishment, FZC don't pay an annual fixed fee. FZC can use banks registered in TRNC as well as branches of Turkish banks. Banks will search shareolder's business activity, trsutworthiness and background before authorising any new bank accounts. Decisions to provide accounts are entirely at the discretion of the bank so past and/or ongoing relations with them are definitely an advantage.

Guides > General > Practical Information


IDD Code – International Direct Dialling Code is +90
Landline numbers start 0392
Mobile numbers start 0542  (KKTC Telsim) or 0533 (Turkcell).


Public Holidays

Ramadan &  Kurban Bayram (Feast of the Sacrifice) -Varies annually

New Year’s Day - January 1st

Children's Day - April 23rd

Labour Day - May 1st

Youth and Sports Day - May 19th

Peace and Freedom Day - July 20th

Communal Resistance Day - August 1st

Victory Day - August 30th

Turkish National Day - October 29th

Independence Day (Proclamation of TRNC in 1983) - November 15th


Practical Informtion for North Cyprus


Winters - Wet & mild with temperature from 6°C-18°C

October - First rains

October to April - Rainy season

April to June - Greenest months with bright displays of wild flowers

July to August - Hot & humid with highs of 40°C+ and little relief at night.

September - Humidity starts to drop and days are still hot

October - Cool breezes, lightning displays over the sea

Christmas - Visitors will typically swim until Christmas



The currency is the Turkish Lira, with a constantly fluctuating exchange rate. Shopkeepers and restaurant owners are fully conversant with all major currencies and bills can be paid in UK Sterling, Euros, Dollars as well as local currency. There are many exchange bureaux in all the major towns and money is changed with little problem. Major UK Credit and Debit cards are widely accepted and can be used in ATMs, but you should inform your bank before you travel so they don’t block your card. You should also enquire about charges to use your card abroad. Travellers Cheques and Scottish banknotes are not widely accepted.



Unless you intend to take up residency it’s unlikely you’ll need a bank, unless it’s to make a money transfer.



Supply is 220/240 volts and is provided via three-pin plugs as in the UK.


Medical Care

In the case of accidents and emergencies, all hospitals will provide medical care. Minor cuts and bruises will usually be treated free. Major medical treatment can incur a hefty bill, so you need comprehensive insurance to cover your holiday period, making sure any pre-existing health conditions are notified to your insurance company prior to travel. The GHIC (Global Health Insurance Card) and EHIC (European Health Insurance Card) are NOT accepted in Northern Cyprus.



TRNC has rules and laws that are there to be obeyed. Drugs are absolutely not tolerated and possession of even a minute amount will result in a hefty prison sentence. Although North Cyprus is a safe country, care should always be taken with personal belongings, and important items should be kept in a safety deposit box.



Drive on the left, the same as UK. If you have a paper licence you must bring all parts to be able to hire a car. Minimum age to hire a rented vehicle is 25. You must carry your driving licence, insurance, and rental agreement at all times when driving. Visitors, if stopped by the police, will be treated kindly but driving under the influence of drink and/or drugs, as well as dangerous driving, is an offence, not tolerated, and heavy fines are imposed. Parking restrictions are evident by the painting of black and white on the kerb stones, or double yellow lines and should not be infringed. There are plenty of car parks and the fee isn't expensive.



The language spoken in Northern Cyprus is Turkish, however many of the older Cypriots will speak English and are proud of the fact that they can. Hotel staff will usually speak a certain amount of English and are always happy to improve it. Visitors that attempt some Turkish, even if only to say Please (Lutfen), Thank you (Tessurker Ederiz) and Hello (Merhaba) will be rewarded with a beaming smile.


Business / Shop Opening Hours

Due to the heat of summer, most civil service offices will work from 0800 to 1400. Winter opening hours, can and do, vary from department to department but usually they're operational from 0900 to 1230 and 1400 to 1730. These hours will apply to most of the retail outlets with supermarkets staying open until quite late.


Time Difference

North Cyprus is GMT+2 hours in winter and GMT+3 hours in summer. There’s always 2 hours difference between UK time and TRNC time as clocks are altered on the same days of the year.


Passports and Visas

It's your responsibility to ensure that you're in possession of a full and valid passport/visa for travel. Please note if you're traveling into Larnaca (LCA) this is in Southern Cyprus, if you are travelling into Ercan (ECN) this is in Northern Cyprus, which could have different immigration.

For more information before traveling to North Cyprus, please contact Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus Representative Office in London, 29 Bedford Square, Bloomsbury, London WC1B 3ED, UK. Phone: +44 20 7631 1920.

For more information before traveling to South Cyprus, please contact High Commission of the Republic of Cyprus in London, 13 St James's Square, St. James's, London SW1Y 4LB, UK. Phone: +44 20 7321 4100.


Airports and Border Crossing Points

The two airports of Ercan and Gecitkale (Military Airport) and all crossing points on the border that divide the island, are legitimate points of entry. They’re subject to passport control regulations and whatever restrictions are in place regarding the importation of goods. It’s always advisable to check duty-free allowances for alcohol, perfume, and tobacco, and the monetary value of goods for personal use before travelling. These restrictions apply equally to crossing the border from north to south and vice versa.



It’s not advisable to drink tap water, bottled water is best.



You should take care whenever you’re in a foreign country. If you’re going out on your own, let someone know where you’re going and what time you’ll be back. Store important items in a safe. Don’t carry large amounts of money or your passport with you unless necessary. Always keep a small amount of money in case of emergencies and ensure you have the contact numbers for police/ambulance/embassy etc if you need them.


Emergency Phone Numbers



Forest Fires:177

Ambulance Emergencies:112


General (State) Hospital Phone Numbers

Nicosia/Lefkosa0392 2285441

Kyrenia/Girne0392 815 2226/8152254

Famagusta/Magusa0392 3662876/3665328

Guzelyurt0392 7142125

Guides > General > Govt Departments

TRNC Presidency
+90 392 228 3444
TRNC Prime Ministry
+90 392 228 3141
TRNC Assembly Presidency
+90 392 227 4656
Deputy PM & Ministry of Foreign Affairs
+90 392 228 3241
Ministry of Interior
+90 392 228 3213
Ministry of Finance
+90 392 228 3116
Ministry of National Education & Culture
+90 392 228 3136
Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry
+90 392 228 3735
Ministry of Public Works and Transport
+90 392 228 3666
Ministry of Labor & Social Security
+90 392 228 3213
Ministry of Health and Social Aid
+90 392 228 3173
Ministry of Economy and Tourism
+90 392 228 6838
Ministry of Youth and Sports
+90 392 228 2172
Turkish Court of Accounts
+90 392 228 4128
Public Service Commission Presidency
+90 392 228 3247
Personnel Department Directorate
+90 392 228 6947
TRNC Attorney General
+90 392 228 4691
State Printing House
+90 392 228 2285
State Department of Real Estate & Materials
+90 392 228 5940
Public Hospital
+90 392 228 5441
Police Headquarters
+90 392 228 3411
Post Office
+90 392 228 5982
Flag Radio & Television Corporation
+90 392 225 5555
Electricity company
+90 392 228 3648

Guides > General > Cyprus History

Humans were in Cyprus In the Stone Age along with dwarf elephants, pygmy hippos, dogs, sheep, goats, cattle, pigs, foxes, and deer. By 6,000 BC cattle had disappeared, deer were still hunted, but the economy was based on sheep, goats and pigs. 10,000 years old water wells have been discovered. In 2004, a cat was discovered buried with its human owner and was estimated to be 9,500 years old - older than Egyptian civilization. The first cities were built in the Bronze Age when copper was mined and traded. Buildings were used to process and store olive oil, a product the island is still famous for today. Copper ingots recovered from shipwrecks show widespread metal trade.

Cyprus was part of the Hittite empire governed from Northern Syria.  Achaean Greeks settled from the 1400 BC and Dorian Greeks arrived around 1100 BC. Pottery indicates early trade with Crete. In the 8th century BC the number of settlements increased significantly and monumental tombs, like the 'Royal' tombs of Salamis appear for the first time. This is likely the start of what is known as the Cypriot kingdoms

North Cyprus History

10 kingdoms are listed in an inscription from 673 BC - Salamis, Kition, Amathus, Kourion, Paphos and Soli on the coast and Tamassos, Ledra, Idalium and Chytri in the interior. Cyprus gained independence around 669 BC but was conquered by Egypt and then by Persians around 545 BC. At the beginning of the 4th century BC, the King of Salamis, took control of the whole island and tried to gain independence from Persia, but was crushed by Artaxerxes in 344 BC. During the siege of Tyre, Cypriot Kings sided with Alexander the Great, then in 321 sided with Ptolemy I. Ptolemy lost Cyprus briefly, but it remained under Ptolemaic rule till 58 BC and was ruled by a governor from Egypt.


Strong commercial relationships developed with Athens and Alexandria. Full Hellenisation took place under Ptolemaic rule, as Phoenician and native Cypriot traits disappeared, as well as the old Cypriot syllabic script. Cyprus became a Roman province in 58 BC. Mark Antony gave the island to Cleopatra of Egypt but it became a Roman province again after his defeat at the Battle of Actium, in 30 BC.  A Jewish uprising of 115/116 AD led to great losses and it was placed under the control of and governed by a proconsul. Several earthquakes led to the destruction of Salamis at the beginning of the 4th century, at the same time drought and famine hit the island. After the Roman Empire, Cyprus came under the rule of Constantinople. The Arabs and Muslims invaded in the 650s, but in 688, Emperor Justinian II and the caliph Abd al-Malik reached a remarkable agreement where, for 300 years, Cyprus was ruled jointly by both the Arabs and the Byzantines as a condominium, despite almost constant war between the two parties on the mainland.


In 965, Cyprus was conquered by a resurgent Byzantium. In the 12th century Cyprus was targeted by crusaders. Richard the Lionheart landed in Limassol on 1 June 1191 in search of his sister and his bride Berengaria, whose ship had become separated from the fleet in a storm. Richard married Berengaria in Limassol on 12 May 1192 and continued to occupy Cyprus and raise taxes until he sold it to the Knights Templar.

Soon after, the French arrived, establishing the Kingdom of Cyprus. Latin, then French, become the official language, with Greek as a second official language. In 1196, the Latin Church was established, resulting in the Orthodox Cypriot Church being persecuted. Maronites from Syria settled on Cyprus during the Crusades and still maintain some villages in the North. A small Roman Catholic population was mainly confined to coastal cities such as Famagusta as well as Nicosia, the traditional capital.  The independent Eastern Orthodox Church of Cyprus, with its own archbishop and subject to no patriarch, was allowed to remain on the island, but the Latin Church largely displaced it in stature and holding property.


The Cathedral of Saint Nicholas was consecrated in 1328, and is the largest medieval building in Famagusta, where the Kings of Cyprus were crowned also as Kings of Jerusalem. In 1571 having fallen to the Ottoman Empire, it became the Mosque of Mağusa, and remains a mosque today.


In 1268, Hugh III of Cyprus claimed Cyprus and its territory of Acre as well as Jerusalem thus uniting the kingdoms. Like Jerusalem, Cyprus had a High Court. The island was richer and more feudal than Jerusalem, so the king had more personal wealth and could afford to ignore the court. Cyprus became the centre of European trade with Africa and Asia after the fall of Acre in 1291 and became dominated in the 14th century by Genoese merchants. In 1489 the last Queen, Catherine Cornaro, was forced to sell the island to Venice. Ottomans started raiding Cyprus immediately afterwards, and captured it in 1571. This is the historical setting to Shakespeare's Othello, the play's title character being the commander of the Venetian garrison defending Cyprus against the Ottomans.


Turks and Cypriots coexisted harmoniously on the island which was rich in salt, sugar, cotton, grains, and other export goods. It was also a centre of Syria-Venice trade and served as the eastern Mediterranean's main emporium for Venice's maritime trade.  The Ottoman Empire was predominantly Muslim, so there was a cultural and religious clash when it conquered Cyprus. More Muslims came to Cyprus, mixing in with the Orthodox Christian Greek population of the island and led to the Millet System, which allowed authorities to rule over their religious minorities to keep peace in the Country.


The 1878 Russo-Turkish War ended Ottoman control with Britain taking over who annexed the island unilaterally in 1914, after it declared war against the Ottomans during the First World War. Under British rule, the island enjoyed increased freedom of speech, something which allowed development of Greek Cypriots' ideas of enosis (unification with Greece). In the 1920s, representatives were repeatedly sent to England to request union with Greece but to no avail. In 1925, following the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire, Britain declared the island a Crown Colony, and made it clear that unification  was out of the question.


In October 1931 the October riots resulted in autocratic rule known as Palmerokratia ("Palmerocracy"), named after governor Richmond Palmer, which until the start of World War II. In 1950, the Orthodox Church of Cyprus organized a referendum on union with Greece, but the international community showed no desire to support their request. In 1960, a new constitution createdpower-sharing, where the vice-president and at least 30% of members of parliament would be Turkish Cypriots. Archbishop Makarios III would be the President and Dr. Fazıl Küçük would become vice president. The constitution also created separate local municipalities so that Greek and Turkish Cypriots could manage their own municipalities in large towns.


In 1964, the United Nations were forced to send peacekeeping forces to protect the vastly outnumbered Turkish Cypriots from Greek Cypriot attacks and they remain on the island today. In 1974, the Makarios Government was planning to eradicate Turkish Cypriots completely, but a military coup with the support of the junta in Greece led to Turkey intervening in the north of the island to protect Turkish Cypriots. In 1975 the Turkish Federated State of Cyprus was created. The name was changed to The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, on 15 November 1983.


In 2002 the UN started negotiations for unification. In 2004 a plan for unification emerged, supported by the UN, the EU and the USA. Turkish Cypriots accepted the plan, but Greek Cypriots rejected it. After Cyprus joined the EU in 2004, the euro replaced the Cypriot pound in 2008 while Northern Cyprus continued to use the Turkish lira.

Guides > General > Internet & TV

Northern Cyprus Internet connectivity is generally fast and good quality, with monthly packages low cost compared to western Europe or the UK. If you’re coming for short periods on holiday, you may be happy to use mobile broadband via your own mobile phone on roaming, or by purchasing a local sim card and data package, but if you’re purchasing a property you’ll more than likely want to have your own Wi-Fi installed.



All of Northern Cyprus, apart from very remote country areas, has good mobile signal reception and high-quality internet operates via the mobile broadband system. Some apartment sites offer free internet restaurants or reception areas and if your property happens to be near to these, you might just get get free internet by virtue of your property location, but in most cases you'll want to have your own installed.



Internet & TV in North Cyprus

Contact one of the service providers and give them your address and they’ll be able to give you the best package for that location, arrange a time to come and fit your router, and give you all the price details. You’ll need to pay monthly in advance.



Exchange rates vary but broadband in Northern Cyprus is typically around half the cost of most European countries.


Internet/Broadband providers

Turkcell Superonline



Satellite Internet

The Starlink satellite internet system, provided by Elon Musk's company. has scheduled TRNC coverage from late 2023.


Mobile broadband

It’s a good idea to purchase a local Telsim or Turkcell sim card upon arrival (they’re sold at the airport), and get the package which offers the best amount of data included. You may be able to use this to tether to your laptop or tablet too and this may suit you for short visits.


English language TV

You can receive local TV channels with a normal antenna, a few of which are in English. All English language TV is now accessed via the internet in Northern Cyprus. You can get quite a bit of TV from your own country using a VPN (virtual private network), and accessing TV via your own mobile data, but if you’re moving here or spending extended times in the country, your Internet/Broadband provider or the Satellite TV companies, listed here, can assist you.


Satellite TV providers

All North Cyprus English language TV is now accessed via the internet. Around the island, you'll see lots of places showing English Premier Leagure football. BEIN sports is very popular and this allows you to watch pretty much every EPL game live. Firesticks are also popular, and there are a number of providers who can set these up for you. Netflix is also popular in TRNC.

Digiturk – Satellite TV
Satellite Cyprus TV


Local TV

You can receive local TV many channels with a normal antenna.

Guides > General > M.I.C.E. Tourism

Climate, natural beauty and state-of-the-art facilities are making Northern Cyprus one of the fastest growing destinations for MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, Exhibitions) tourism, attracting businesses from far and wide.


Pretty much all 5-star hotels cater for conferences and exhibitions, whether it be small seminar halls, or large convention centres. There's plenty of choice for business of all industries and sizes.


As an incentive, business can now offer employees a safe, multicultural island, in the Mediterranean, with 10 months of sunshine, sandy beaches, spectacular mountains, superb hospitality, international entertainment and bundles of exquisite cuisine.


Ancient civilisation sites; cultural tours; a championship golf course; spa treatment; Turkish baths or simply a dip in the pool or sea, ensure everyone will enjoy their time away from the meeting rooms.

MICE Tourism  in North Cyprus

Guides > General > New Year

Guides > General > General Overview

Guides > General > Mobile Phones

Mobile Telephone Operators

KKTCell - Commonly referred to as Turkcell. (0533 / 0539 numbers)
Telsim - part owned by Vodafone. (0542 / 0548 numbers).


You shouldn’t experience any issues in North Cyprus because both firms use GSM, which can be found on most modern mobile phones. GSM bands include 850, 900, 1800, and 1900. Both have agreements with all major international networks, so you shouldn’t have any trouble connecting after you arrive if you wish to use your usual mobile number while you're here.


Coming from the UK

Vodafone O2 offer unlimited call and text roaming in North Cyprus &Türkiye at a cost.  Vodafone also roams without additional charges in the South. For other networks, check with them before travelling to see what packages they’re offering.  If Türkiye isn’t included, you’d be better to bring a second phone with a pay as you go Vodafone sim card in it. Alternatively, you can buy a sim card from Turkcell or Telsim.  Offers available include pay as you go data packages as well as calls and texts.  The larger supermarkets, including Lemar, generally have stands for both networks. There’s also one at Ercan Airport so you can buy a sim card immediately on arrival.

Mobile Phones in North Cyprus

South Cyprus

If you have a mobile phone registered in Europe, roaming is free for South Cyprus whatever your network at home, although charges are higher in the North, unless you’re on Vodafone or O2. If you want a south Cyprus sim card, corner shops have a wide range of sim cards available.


Using Turkcell or Telsim in South Cyprus

Before crossing to the south:

TURKCELL – text "GUNEY"(South) to 1717 to start roaming in the South. Text "KUZEY" (north) to 1717 to stop.
TELSIM – text "AC" (open) to 7075 to start roaming in the South. Text "KAPAT" ( close) to 7075 to stop.


Text before you cross the border, or you’ll be hit with different rates.  Be careful when close to the border as you could roam accidentally.


Using South Cyprus mobile phones in North Cyprus

Contact your service provider to see if you need to activate roaming for the north before crossing the border. It may well be automatic. Charges for South Cyprus users visiting the North, are generally cheaper than for North Cyprus users visiting the South.



  • UK visitors: if you're coming for short periods to North or South Cyprus, a UK Vodafone or O2 pay as you go sim card or contract will include your usage on both sides of the border.

  • European visitors: North Cyprus counts as Türkiye.  South Cyprus is Europe.  Your mobile phone will roam without additional charges in the south.  It’ll incur costs in the north unless your provider includes Türkiye . Check with your provider.

  • Buying local sim cards:  Available at supermarkets and allow roaming on both sides of the border for a cost.

  • Turkcell or Telsim sim card users need to activate roaming before they cross the border to avoid higher charges.



WhatsApp is very popular in Northern Cyprus and many individuals and businesses use it.

Guides > General > Police

North Cyprus has a modern, well-equipped police force that carries out not just crime fighting, but traffic, immigration, drug and fraud divisions for example. They also assist other countries when they're investigating their nationals who may be residing in North Cyprus. They're very quick to deal with any crime committed against tourists, as infrequent as they are. The police report to the Security Council and Ministry of the Interior, with the Commander in Chief sitting on the Council along with representatives from the Ministries of Interior and Defence and the President.  There are police stations in all main cities and towns, although villages usually have to rely on their nearest town for a police station and service.  If you’re in any situation which requires the assistance of the police, you can rest assured that they will do all they can to help you.  You may also find that local Turkish Cypriots will try to help you as well, translating and accompanying you to a police station if necessary for example.

Emergency Police Number - 155

Police Karpaz
+90 392 381 2325
Police Guzelyurt
+90 392 714 2140
Police Famagusta
+90 392 366 5310
Police Kyrenia
+90 392 815 2014
Police Nicosia
+90 392 228 3311
North Cyprus Police

Guides > General > Postal Services

The postal service here is run by TRNC Postal Office which has branches in all major cities, towns and villages. Be aware that branch opening hours may not be the same as branch parcel acceptance & delivery hours. Contact your local branch to find out more.



When sending letters from abroad it’s important the address includes “Mersin 10, Turkey” and the postcode should also be included. These are not individual address codes, but relate to fairly large areas. This add-on routes post to Türkiye, where the “Mersin 10” lets them know it needs to come to Northern Cyprus. The postcode then tells the TRNC post office which area o it needs to go to. Make sure you don’t include ‘’Cyprus’’ in the address, or it’ll be sent to the South of the island, who'll just return it to you. 

Example address with postcode:
123 Abc Sokak
Karakum, Girne
Mersin 10

North Cyprus Postal services

Post can be collected from your local post office, who also have yellow PO Boxes in many branches, but there’s often a waiting list for renting them.  You can rent one between a few families if there’s a limit on boxes available.



Post offices sell stamps which you’ll need for posting letters, as well as any official documentation such as work and residency permits, taxing cars etc.  If you’re buying stamps for official document purposes, buy plain stamps, not special edition stamps, as these are often not accepted by Government Departments.


Special Edition Stamps

The postal service often releases Special Edition Stamps such as in the spring, or before particular bayram holidays etc. The Postal Department also has a Philatelist Section which collectors can contact to receive limited editions and special first day covers. Private purchases can also be made.

Postal Charges

Current postal charges - Prices are in Turkish, but your local postal office can advise you regarding prices.

Post can be sent on standard or registered/tracked mail. TRNC Post Office Service has an online “Track and Trace” service to allow you to check the delivery status of any items ordered simply by entering the barcode number shown on an order receipt.


Domestic Post – letters can be delivered throughout the island


​Surface Overseas Mail (by land & sea) - done by ferry from Famagusta. Divided into two groups: Türkiye and other countries.


International Air Mail - Via Ercan Airport.  Overseas air mail transportation to Turkey is sent to Adana, Ankara and Istanbul Postal Directorates. Post to the rest of the World is provided through the TC Post Directorate in Istanbul (European Side Postal Processing Centre).

​Postal fees are set according to criteria accepted by the International Postal Union.  Countries are in four charge groups based on distances. The groups are:

  1. Türkiye

  2. Middle East, Europe, North Africa, India, Pakistan

  3. US, African Countries outside North Africa, China, Japan

  4. Far East, Australia.


Small Package Service - shipping of items <2 kg in weight
Parcel Service – shipping of items >2 kg in weight
Rapid Mail Service (APS) –  reach recipients quickly, usually within 3 days
Remittances - domestic and international postal remittance services
Registered Mail Service - extra cost and the recipient must sign to receive it
Express Courier Service- extra cost but delivered urgently via courier.
Return Mail Service - Returned to the sender if not delivered and a return address has been provided. Reasons for return of letters are usually: Incomplete/Incorrect address, rejected letters, recipient has died, defective packaging, missing stamps (even if the sender's address is known), recipient or sender has moved to a new address.


Sending mail to the TRNC from the UK

If you want to send a letter or parcel from the UK, visit They offer 3 main international services; Standard, Tracked, and Tracked & Signed. Tracked/Tracked & Signed, supply a tracking number, which you can use to follow your delivery until it gets to Istanbul. After it reaches Türkiye, you can view progress on the Turkish Tracking System in Turkish or ask your local post office and they’ll check it for you. Tracked Mail usually takes roughly 10-15 working days to arrive and are generally a more reliable method of ensuring your post arrives safely in TRNC.


Cargo Companies

Cargo companies that offer domestic and international post/package shipment.

Yurtici Kargo  
MNG Kargo  
TNT Kargo  
UPS Kargo  

DHL Kargo  


​All have offices in Lefkosa, some in Girne and Famagusta. Branch addresses are available on their websites.

Guides > General > Religion

Northern Cyprus is a completely secular state, with therefore no official religion, although it's predominantly populated by people of Islamic faith.  There are other religions and ethnic groups active on the island, some of whom are descendents from the various cultures that make this place such a mixed and special place to be. 


Islam was introduced when Uthman the 3rd Caliph conquered Cyprus in 649.  Turkish Muslims settled during Ottoman rule between 1571 and 1878.  The Ottoman Empire gave land to its soldiers provided they and their families stayed permanently. During the 17th century the Turkish population grew rapidly, and Islam is now the main religion practised in North Cyprus.  You can hear the call to prayer five times a day from most places on the island, but the faith is not practised to such an extent that women cover themselves, nor do people abstain from alcohol in North Cyprus.

Maronite Cypriots

North Cyprus Religion

The Maronite community is based in the north-east of the island in Kormacit/Koruçam. They're of Christian origin, descended from those who came from Lebanon and Syria around 1200 years ago.  They speak in an Arabic dialect, although many Turkish and Greek words are used. The Maronites belong to the Greek Cypriot community to which, owing to similar religious, linguistic and cultural bonds, they are much closer.  They have a Maronite Archbishop who is elected by the Holy Synod of the Maronite Church in Lebanon and confirmed by His Holiness the Pope.



A large number of Church of England expats and foreigners attend Anglican churches in North Cyprus.  There's St Andrews Church in Kyrenia which holds services on Sundays and Thursdays, and St Marks which has services on a Sunday both at the Boğaz Hotel and St Georges Chapel in Famagusta.


Roman Catholic

There are also Roman Catholics in North Cyprus, with mass held at  St Elizabeth of Hungary Roman Catholic Church in Kyrenia near to the Dome Hotel every Sunday.


This religion is based upon the spiritual and is an independent religion practised worldwide with a small group in North Cyprus.  Its principles are to bring about the oneness of humanity as there was only one Creator, the spiritual truth of all religions is the same.


There are also smaller religious and ethnic groups, such as Armenian Cypriots who first arrived on the island in around 1915, Latin Cypriots who practise Catholicism, as well as Romany Gypsies who are reported to have arrived in Cyprus at the time of the Lusignans.

Guides > General > Relocating

If you’re thinking of relocating to Northern Cyprus here’s a guide to moving your possessions, car, family and pets to your new property.


Importing furniture & possessions

You can easily import them using an international removals company. They’re free of tax if they're all over 12 months old. If you’re moving from South Cyprus, you can bring one car or vanload of household goods. You should allow at least 6-8 weeks for items to arrive and you must be in Northern Cyprus to receive the goods in person. Alternatively, you could buy a fully furnished property and just ship or bring your most precious personal effects with you. If you’ve decided to import furniture, try EuromedOlaytransBritannia MoversAspin International and Emel Shipping or search for others online. Some companies visit your home to review what you wish to ship and give a customised quotation. The quote will depend on how much of a 20- or 40-foot container your possessions will occupy. Some companies will also come and pack for you, at a cost, and offer a full door-to-door service; others will offer a door-to-Famagusta dock service. The company you choose should keep you updated on progress and inform you of the likely time and date of arrival. 

Relocating to North Cyprus

The quickest period from overseas is likely to be a month but you should allow longer. Once your goods arrive at the dock, it can take 5-10 days for customs clearance. The time can be affected by x-raying, physical inspection, volume of traffic at the port and the levy of any import duties or taxes. At the port you’ll need:

• A complete inventory list of the contents of the container (in English and Turkish).
• A letter from the Muhktar (Mayor) of your TRNC village confirming your address (you may need a rental or sales agreement to get this).
• An “in and out” letter from a police station (details your trips in and out of TRNC to date).


Once you have these, you'll be advised to visit the customs office in Lefkoşa where they'll be stamped and authorised. Take this completed paperwork to your shipping agent offices in Famagusta. When packing, create an inventory of everything English and Turkish (the customs official checking it upon arrival in TRNC might not speak English). When the container finally arrives at your house, a local customs official will arrive with it to check it contains what you say it contains. At last, you're reunited with your possessions in your new home.


Importing a car

You can officially bring one car in if it's under 3 years old (or over five years old with you as registered owner for the last five years) but experienced ex-pats generally recommend against importing a car to TRNC due to the bureaucracy. You’ll also have to pay import duty of 40-60% of the Glasses guide mid-range value within 12 months of the car arriving. You may also find it more difficult to get comprehensive insurance, face restrictions on its resale for periods of time, and face difficulty sourcing spares and parts. General consensus is it’s not worth the effort or hassle, unless you really can’t be separated from a particular car. Second-hand cars often cost more in Northern Cyprus than other European countries due to import taxes, so it may be more sensible to shop around for a good second-hand car or long term car rental once you’re here. You can drive initially on your driving licence from your own country, but if you become resident in North Cyprus, you'll need to apply for a TRNC licence.

Importing Pets

The first thing you need to ensure is that the property you buy does allow pets, because some complexes don’t. You’ll ideally need some private outside space with a ground floor apartment or a villa set in a private plot. The British run KARS (Kyrenia Animal Rescue) charity in Karakum, Kyrenia, can help you organise the import. Not only do KARS rescue and care for stray and unwanted animals in Kyrenia, it has become THE  information centre for cat and dog import and export to Northern Cyprus. TRNC isn’t in the EU, hence not part of the Pet Passport Scheme so you can import an animal but not bring them for short term visits or holidays. Before you move to North Cyprus, book an appointment with KARS. Your pet will need a current ‘Pet Passport’ with the Rabies vaccination done no less than 30 days prior to entry and the Serology Test being done no more than 12 months prior to entry. There are requirements for vaccinations for both cats and dogs which KARS has full details of. Quarantine is no longer required, but an import licence is. This will be issued in Lefkosa if the paperwork is in order. KARS can tell you how to organise this and can also advise on the export procedure.


Importing family

Many ex-pats move to Northern Cyprus with children or older relatives. There are excellent English-speaking junior schools, high schools and Universities for young people, and you might want to take into account driving time to school when choosing a property. When you apply for residency, you must prove you can support relatives who come with you who are under 18 and older relatives will need to prove a source of income or pension. There's excellent and affordable private health care in North Cyprus. With the growth of English education and increasingly sophisticated health care in North Cyprus, it’s becoming far more common for ex-pat families to arrive who have younger, and older, family members. Gone are the days when the only ex-pats relocating to North Cyprus were retirees, with facilities available for family members of all ages. The two main English speaking schools in Northern Cyprus, which cater for children from as young as 3 right up to 18, are the Necat British College in Alsancak (west of Kyrenia) and the English School of Kyrenia in Bellapais (East of Kyrenia). These excellent schools have affordable fee structures and are now attracting ex-pats to relocate to North Cyprus purely for the excellent quality of the education. If you’re a working age couple with elderly relatives, you might consider bringing them to live with you as the Mediterranean climate is ideal for older people and tends to lead to improvements in health. The main consideration at this point is health care as there's no free healthcare in Northern Cyprus. There is, however, excellent and affordable private dental and healthcare with many visitors coming especially for surgery, dental work and other procedures and with all pharmacists and doctors/specialists generally speaking English. Excellent and affordable pharmacies can fulfil prescriptions from elsewhere and are usually cheaper.

Guides > General > Residency

There is no automatic right to reside and work in the TRNC for EU citizens. If you want stay in TRNC longer than the period of a tourist visa, you have to get a residency permit. The first port of call is the local police station’s immigration department. You’ll need to produce to the police the following documents:

  • Passport original and photocopy

  • If you have the title deeds to property in your name, the title deeds (original) and photocopy. If you have purchased a property under Contract of Sale, but have not yet received the title deeds to the property, the Contract of Sale (original) and photocopy. If you are living in rented accommodation the Tenancy Agreement (original) and photocopy.

  • A letter from your local village chief (Mukhtar) to say you reside in his village. This letter is called Ikametgah Belgesi in Turkish. You can usually find your Mukhtar in the centre of the village where you live, near to the local municipality (Belediye) building or the post office

Residency in North Cyprus
  • Bank documents showing that you have a TRNC bank account which has sufficient funds or a regular income to enable you to support yourself in the TRNC without working.

  • 2 passport photos

  • 6YTL stamps (Damga Pulu in Turkish). The amount required is constantly changing, so take spares in case more are required.

The police will then refer you to the Lefkosa State Hospital, or a licensed clinic, for a health test. The test will check for infectious diseases such as HIV, hepatitis and TB. After you’ve had the health test, take the results, unopened, to the immigration office in Lefkosa for the residency permit to be stamped in your passport. The immigration office is called the ‘Muhaceret Dairesi’ in Turkish.

A residency permit only entitles you to live in the TRNC, not work or set up a business. It’s valid for 1 year and must be renewed every year by following the same procedure (except for the hospital check).


Children under the age of 18, don’t require residency permits so families moving to TRNC only need apply for residency for the adult members of the family. Non-citizens who give birth to a child in TRNC, need to notify their embassy or consulate of the birth. Once this has been done and a letter to this effect has been obtained from the embassy or consulate, you apply to the District Office (Kaymakamlik) in the area in which you live, to register the child’s birth.

Becoming a citizen of TRNC is more complex. Citizenship is granted to all whose mother or father is a Turkish Cypriot or to those married to a Turkish Cypriot. Presently, there is a new law in Parliament to allow foreign nationals to become citizens of the TRNC after 10 years of residence in the TRNC.

This guide is intended for general information purposes only and does not constitute legal or professional advice. The information provided is on the basis of current law at the time of writing.

Guides > General > Retiring

“We only came here for a week’s holiday. That was ten years ago!” Many who eventually move to live in the north of the island initially arrive for a holiday and quickly realise that the TRNC is the perfect retirement destination.


There are now over 10,000 British, European and other international expat residents living happily alongside the over 300,000 resident Turkish-speaking population. So why do so many people choose North Cyprus for retirement?T


here are a huge number of benefits to retirement in the TRNC. Probably the most frequently quoted reason is simply the fabulous Mediterranean weather – out of 365 days in a year, you can expect sunshine on around 340 of them! The Cyprus climate verges on the semi-tropical and although there is of course the much-needed rain in the winter, it's generally at least 10° hotter than the UK on any given day of the year, with frost almost unheard of.

Retiring in North Cyprus

It's well known that people 60+ benefit hugely from warmer weather and increased natural sunlight, with doctors recommending a Mediterranean climate to those with certain health conditions including arthritis.


Private healthcare and hospital facilities are “state of the art” with new centres including the Near East University Hospital and Medical School boasting world-class equipment and treatment opportunities. More and more visitors arrive to take advantage of the far lower prices for private healthcare and operations and find better healthcare in Cyprus than in their own country of origin. Although those retiring to North Cyprus do need to consider private medical insurance, the specialist consultation prices are so low that it can be cheaper just to “pay as you go”. Prescription and over the counter medicines are often far cheaper.


For the active retiree, the sky is actually NOT the limit for the number of leisure activities you can pursue. Well-known British centenarian and former TRNC resident, Peggy McAlpine, was world-famous for her Guinness Book of Records paragliding feats aged 104 from the 2,400 ft peak of the North Cyprus Besparmak (Five Finger) mountains down to the coast.


For those preferring land or water-based leisure activities, Korineum Golf & Beach Resort boasts an impeccably maintained 18 hole golf course with stunning mountain and sea views. There are marinas as well as a host of diving and waters ports clubs.


For those who like socialising, the various English-speaking societies organise dances, talks and other fundraising events. There's a host of new expat bookshops, cafes and weekend markets where expats meet and relax together in the sun.


North Cyprus is officially a Muslim country but welcomes people from other faiths. Church goers are delighted to find the lovely traditional St. Andrew’s church in Kyrenia with regular Sunday services run by an Episcopal vicar resident at the nearby Hermitage.


The British Residents Society and "Foreign Residents Society" hold “clinics” where experienced ex pats are happy to dispense advice to new arrivals and where membership can be obtained.

Guides > General > Rough Guide

Guides > General > Transportation

As an island in the Mediterranean, travel to Northern Cyprus is mainly air, although transportation from Türkiye by sea is also an option. Once you’re here there’s a number of transportation options to choose from.


Air Travel

Ercan Airport (ECN), located near the capital Lefkoşa, serves over 4m passengers a year. Turkish Airlines, Anadolu Jet and Pegasus Airlines are the main carriers. Charter flight carriers include Freebird, Tailwind and Corendon Airlines. A major extension of the runway as well as construction of an eco-friendly new terminal opened on 20 July 2023. 


The size of the new terminal building, described as the TRNC’s “window to the world”, is 20,000 square meters, sitting on grounds that measure some 7.8 million sq meters – six times the airport’s old size. The terminal parking area is 34,000 sq meters and its new main runway will be 2,755 meters long, in keeping with international standards for commercial aircraft.


The airport apron has room for 30 parked aircraft, 9 of which have passenger boarding bridges.

Ercan Airport

Inside the new terminal building, there are 60 check-in desks and 44 passport control points. Security has been enhanced with 26 modern x-ray devices and a baggage screening and handling capacity of 5,000 per hour. The new larger space and improved facilities mean the airport’s passenger traffic can grow to 10 million passengers a year. Most travellers currently come from Turkiye, but tourism to the TRNC from Europe, Central Asia, Africa and the Middle East continues to rise. Ercan Airport is located 14 kilometres from Lefkoşa, 40 km from Famagusta and 44 km from Kyrenia. Ease of access to Ercan and its direct links to global travel hub Istanbul Airport, has made it an increasingly popular choice for residents living in South Cyprus too.

Shuttle Service

Services to and from Ercan Airport to five major towns, Kyrenia, Nicosia, Famagusta, Güzelyurt and Lefke are organised around inbound and outbound flight times, offering visitors a consistent and economic means of transport. Many Tour Operators also offer transfers and door to door services for visitors booked through them.

Car Rental

Global and local vehicle hire operators are stationed throughout the island, with those running at Ercan offering pick up and drop at the airport. Car hire prices differ, based on season, brand, passenger capacity and length of hire. Visitors intending to explore the island are well advised to arrange car hire to make the most of their experience.


Renowned for only driving luxury vehicle models, vacant taxi drivers are almost always stationed at their bays and not likely to be stopped roadside. All hotels will have a designated taxi partner readily on call, and in most town centres travellers will pass by a near taxi bay. Taxis are metered and charge per kilometre distance travelled, although rates do change between daytime and night. When travelling between towns, on mid to long distance journeys, most drivers will be able to quote a fixed price beforehand, and if you really wnat to get local, try bargaining the fee before you get in.

Public Transport

Not the most advanced service or infrastructure, small minibuses also known as “Dolmuş” (dol-moush) pick up passengers’ roadside and transport over short distances, connecting main towns to villages. Very frequent in most towns as well as cheap, there's often no regulated schedule nor do they stray off any main roads, an important consideration when planning for your visit.

Sea Travel

If you're considering crossing the Mediterranean by sea, daily ferry services operate from Famagusta and Kyrenia to Mersin province in the southern coast of Türkiye and final plans are under way for services connecting Alanya near to Antalya, with North Cyprus. Depending on the type of ferry available, the shortest duration from Kyrenia to Mersin Taşucu is 2.5 hours.

Driving Regulations

Traffic in North Cyprus uses the left-hand side of the road and driving regulations are similar to that of the United Kingdom. Short-term visitors and tourists can drive non-commercial vehicles using most global driving licences, including EU and UK.


Pedestrians are reminded that traffic moves on the left side of the road and are advised to look both right and left carefully before crossing any road. If  pavements aren't available, you should walk on the right side, towards any oncoming traffic.

Guides > General > Visas & Entry

There are two distinct ways of entering North Cyprus. Directly via Türkiye into Ercan airport, or via South Cyprus and crossing over the border.


Via Ercan airport

British, EU and US passport holders don't need tourist visas for North Cyprus entry and up to a 90-day stay may be granted. Tourist visitors staying at hotel or rented accommodation will normally be issued a visa for a maximum of 30 days. If they can submit documents showing that a prior payment has been made for lengthier accommodation, a visa up to 90 days may be granted. A visa up to 90 days may also be issued to those who come for official visits, business meetings, conferences, seminars, meetings, festivals, fairs, exhibitions, sporting events, cultural and artistic events, health tourism and similar purposes. Citizens of the European Union and Schengen Area Countries travelling to North Cyprus can show

Visas in North Cyprus

National Identity Card, whereas citizens of other countries are required to present a valid Passport. Ercan Airport, located just outside the capital Nicosia, currently serves over 4million passengers a year, and major carriers include Turkish Airlines, Pegasus Airlines as well as several charter flight carriers..


Upon arrival to Ercan, visitors fill out personal details on a white slip which will be stamped on entry and should be retained throughout the visit.  Citizens of countries that don't have an Embassy, Consulate General, Consulate or Representative Office in North Cyprus, or that are not members of the EU, must have a passport valid for at least 6 months to be able to enter the country. Citizens of countries that do have an Embassy, Consulate General, Consulate or Representative Office in North Cyprus or are citizens of EU countries, must have a passport or travel document valid for at least 2 months to be able to enter. It's worth noting that visitors transiting Türkiye en route to Ercan, may decide to leave the airport in Türkiye to visit for a few hours or days, in which case they will have to purchase a visa available upon exit through passport control.

Via South Cyprus

You can cross the border at one of the many Turkish Cypriot passport controls points, and the same conditions apply. There are no restrictions on how many times you cross and border crossings are open 24 hours a day. There are limitations on the volume of goods you can cross the border with, especially duty-free items, such as cigarettes and alcohol or contraband. Any person found to be violating these restrictions will have their goods confiscated and a fine can also be imposed.

Northern Cyprus Visa Applications

  1. Passport with a minimum of 2 blank pages that will be valid for at least 90 days after the end of travel. Copy of the first page, including personal data and previous visas (if obtained) also must be provided.

  2. Completed and signed visa application form along with one color biometric photo, that are not older than 6 months.

  3. Proof of travel, with confirmed two-way tickets.

  4. Bank account details, proving the passenger can sufficiently fund their travel.

  5. Evidence of occupation in the form of certified documents such as; letter from an employer, student certificate, document of registration or demonstration of pension funds.

  6. Accommodation details through an invitation letter or proof of hotel reservation throughout the stay.

  7. Documentation of travel health insurance throughout the period of travel and that is valid within the entire Schengen area.


There are specific documents that need to be attached to an application depending on employment status.


  • Employment contract (original certificate of employment indicating position in company and salary)

  • Bank account statement of the past 6 months

  • Approval letter of leave from employer

  • Income Tax Return (ITR)



  • Proof of business license (company registration)

  • Company’s bank account statement of the past 6 months

  • Income Tax Return (ITR)



  • Documentation of University enrolment

  • No-objection certificate from school management



  • Pension statement documenting the past 6 months



  • Proof of financial resources is required

  • If the person is not able to finance their own expenses, proof of a sponsor is mandatory.


Visa Sponsorship

Students or unemployed/retired people who aren't in a position to cover their own travel expenses will need to demonstrate support from a sponsor who will bear all costs. The sponsor must be a first-degree relative and will have to prove sufficient resources by meeting certain requirements such as filling out the sponsorship form and submitting the requested documents.

Northern Cyprus Visa Rules

  • Visa applications shall be submitted to the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus Embassy or Diplomatic Mission.

  • It's advised to submit applications at least one month prior to your travel date. Visa applications are concluded in three days.

  • Citizens of Syria, Nigeria and Armenia are required to process their visa applications in person.

  • Citizens of other countries may obtain their visas at the border by Immigration Officers. However, the terms of entry differ depending on the nationality of passport holders.

  • Flights to Northern Cyprus are connected from Türkiye. Thus, travelers may need a transit visa from Republic of Türkiye depending on their nationality of origin.

  • Turkish citizens may face problems obtaining a Greek visa if their passports have an entry or exit stamp from Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. Therefore, it may be recommended to travel with national identity card.

Turkish Citizens

  • Turkish citizens can visit Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus without any visa requirements. A valid passport or identity card is needed.

Guides > General > Weddings & Honeymoons

Good enough for royalty

Weddings and Honeymoons in Northern Cyprus are really special. The warmth of the people who place marriage at the centre of their culture just adds to the occasion. Since Richard the Lionheart chose to marry his Queen, Berengaria in Cyprus, the island has always held a romantic attraction for couples. Convenient marriage laws and spectacular wedding locations make Northern Cyprus a truly great destination for your wedding.


Whether it be the party itself, or the getaway after, Northern Cyprus has been soaring in appeal in recent years. Marriages in TRNC are legal, accepted and recognised worldwide, so it doesn’t matter where you're from.


The law is based primarily on English law, which simplifies the whole marriage process, making it easier to understand and meaning wedding services and marital documents are all in English.

Weddings & Honeymoons in North Cyprus

Legal requirements for a wedding to take place include: bride and groom to have stayed in TRNC for at least 6 days before their wedding; copies of passports; birth certificates, a form to be completed for submission to the District Officer; and a decree absolute if divorced.


You'll find everything you might want which takes the stress out of the whole process. Personalised bouquets and arrangements are widely available. Standard or personalised wedding cakes only need a few days advance order. Custom designed wedding rings are widely available and usually less expensive. Hair and beauty salons are on almost every street corner or you can book a stylist to come to your venue and spend the day by your sides. Professional photographers and camera operators are on hand. Live entertainment, musicians, orchestras, English speaking singers and artists as well as DJ’s, are in abundance and easily found. Hen and stag nights can be catered for. Spa days, group nights out for dinner, raving at one of the best clubs in the Med, private boat trips or anything else you can come up with - it's all here!

With the average cost of a wedding spiralling in Europe, it’s no wonder thousands of couples are looking to TRNC for their dream day where costs are commonly a third of a similar wedding at home - with almost perfect weather. Many friends and family make the trip to share in your dream wedding in the sun, often making a holiday of it themselves. Even if you do get married in Europe, North Cyprus offers a grand choice for honeymoons. Booking as a honeymoon couple will usually get you the “honeymoon suite”,  decorated for the occasion and a generous welcome package. Pamper yourself at the spa, laze on golden beaches, bathe in the blue Mediterranean, sip cocktails, dine in style overlooking the shores or with a mountain backdrop and soak up the nature. It'll be a holiday to treasure and tell the kids about in years to come.


Korineum Golf & Beach Resort

Boasts breath-taking landscapes and 360° views with the Beşparmak Mountain Range on one side, the Mediterranean on the other and luscious lawns in between. Proceedings are set apart from the main hotel grounds ensuring your day remains private and intimate. For couples wanting luxurious facilities, but in green and peaceful surroundings, it's the perfect choice. Set amongst natural forest of umbrella pines and olives it’s an experience you’ll never forget. They also offer their private beach for weddings and events.

Doğanköy Church

If you’re looking for a quaint little church off the beaten track for your wedding in North Cyprus, Dogankoy Church could be perfect for you. Doğanköy is a small village located to the south east of Kyrenia. The church is one of the oldest buildings in the area and was recently restored to make it a really attractive wedding venue, away from the hustle and bustle of the town. The cool whitewashed walls inside the church make it very welcoming on a warm day, so you can share an intimate wedding ceremony under the white stone arches, surrounded by beautiful flowers and your close friends and family.

Bellapais Abbey

If you want a stunning historical backdrop for your ceremony then Bellapais Abbey is perfect. You can’t overstate how romantic it is to have a wedding surrounded by the arches of a 13th century abbey, with a backdrop of rugged mountains and spectacular views down to the Mediterranean. The Bellapais Monastery is one of the best examples of Gothic architecture in Europe, and almost certainly the most famous of all North Cyprus’ architectural treasures. The Monastery remains in a wonderful state of preservation, providing a haven of peace and tranquillity for your wedding. The nearby Kybele restaurant can cater for post-wedding celebrations, with great food for formal dining, or a drinks reception in the beautiful gardens. Alternatively, there are plenty of options in Bellapais Monastery Village for your wedding reception or accommodation for your guests.

Bellapais Monastery Village

Perfect for couples looking to marry in a peaceful, luxury retreat. The hotel is located at the foot of the Five Finger Mountain range, with panoramic views down over Kyrenia town and harbour. It’s just a short uphill walk from Bellapais Village and Bellapais Abbey. The hotel accommodates 130 guests in villas, rooms and luxury suites. There’s a rooftop restaurant for your wedding breakfast, a tranquil garden for reception drinks and space for live entertainment, making it perfect for the entire wedding party.


If you dream of a wedding by the sea, you’ll fall in love with Ambiance as a venue. The decking that stretches out over the water makes it a truly unparalleled wedding venue with one of the best beach front locations in North Cyprus. During the day there’s a pool area with sun loungers, but the evenings take on a whole new look, with sophisticated dining for you and your guests. As the sun sets over the Mediterranean you can dance by the sea and party late into the night to your own choice of music and the sound of the sea lapping against the rocks.

Karpaz Palm Beach Hotel

The Palm Beach Hotel in Famagusta is a small boutique hotel offering 5-star luxury and a magnificent private golden beach. Weddings are held on the private sandy beach, pool area and decking area.

Shayna Beach Club

The perfect venue for an affordable beach wedding. Located right by the sea, with a private beach that can accommodate up to 500 people and a restaurant with a capacity of 120, everything you need is on site. The restaurant specialises in traditional Turkish or fresh fish meze, which are perfect for guests to sample local delicacies. There’s plenty of boutique hotels and luxury five-star facilities nearby.

Five Mile

Ideal for a fairy tale beach wedding, right on the sea front and with a backdrop of a stunning mountain range. Clean water and warm temperatures make it one of Kyrenia’s top swimming beaches as it curves round a gentle bay, fringed with trees and protected by the foothills of the Kyrenia Mountains. It’s overlooked by the restaurant of the same name, which provides all the facilities you need. They provide luxury 3 course wedding breakfasts or a cocktail party with canapés for your wedding reception, with a tailored menu.

Hideaway Club

Weddings at The Hideaway Club Hotel offer stunning views of both mountains and sea, all within one of North Cyprus’ top boutique hotels. Just three miles from Kyrenia, The Hideaway Club sits in the foothills of the mountain range, flanked by the majestic St Hilarion Castle. You and your guests can take in views of Kyrenia and the Mediterranean coastline from beside the pool.

Ambellia Village

Resting 1000 feet above sea level in the Five Finger Mountains, you’ll struggle to find a wedding venue with better views. Every balcony and patio offers panoramic views of the coastline and the town of Kyrenia. With the sea in front of you, the mountains as the backdrop and Bellapais Monastery in the distance, you can be sure your guests will be wowed, and your wedding photos will be remarkable. Nature lovers enjoy springtime weddings in Northern Cyprus, when the island becomes a paradise of wild flowers and beautiful birds, and Ambellia Village is a perfect wedding venue to take it all in.

The Colony

Style and sophistication for your dream wedding venue means The Colony Hotel. In the heart of downtown Kyrenia, the 5* hotel reflects the grandeur and opulence of the past, blending colonial style architecture with the glory of the Ottoman era. There’s a rooftop swimming pool, a spa and a restaurant with amazing views so your guests will be sure to be wowed. You can even arrive in your very own horse drawn carriage. 94 rooms and suites, means you and all your guests can enjoy the luxury of The Colony for the whole of your wedding.


There are some beautiful venues to choose from if you're dreaming of a church wedding in North Cyprus. Saint Andrews Church is situated behind the magical harbour, and it’s a perfect spot to have a Christian blessing before being taken by horse and carriage to one of the luxury hotels for your wedding reception. The church was built in 1913 and is part of the worldwide Anglican Communion. The relatively small resident congregation in Northern Cyprus is regularly joined by visitors to the island, and is extremely welcoming to new couples. Saint Elisabeth is a Catholic church located in Kyrenia. It’s close to the harbour, and provides a beautiful setting for a church blessing.

Altinkaya Hotel

Perfect for couples who’d like an outdoor wedding in the sun. This small, friendly hotel caters for weddings of all sizes around their beautiful pool and terrace area, with breathtaking views of the mountain range. It’s just 1km east of Kyrenia and 1.5km from Bellapais Abbey. There’s a rooftop and an indoor restaurant, so you can adapt your wedding depending on what the weather brings, and with plenty of on-site accommodation, you can relax knowing all your wedding guests are being well looked after.

Guides > General > Making a Will

You may be surprised to know that the majority of expats in TRNC don't have a Will. Making a Will ensures all your belongings will go to who you decide. If you die intestate (i.e. without leaving a Will) your spouse won't automatically inherit your estate if there are surviving children. Under TRNC law, no Will means your spouse would get 1/6th of your estate and the remaining 5/6th  would go to any surviving children. If there's no children, then other relatives will get a share.

A common misconception people have is that the State automatically gets an estate if there's no Will - this isn't true.  The State only becomes entitled to an estate if there's no “next of kin”. Given there are six degrees of kin, there's usually someone living to inherit, not the State. 


Six degrees means a Second cousin or Great Great uncle’s son, for example. If you die with no “next of kin”,  you're considered to have died without heirs, and your estate will go to the State, just as it would go to the Crown in the UK under the same circumstances.

Making a Will in North Cyprus

Be aware, that a Will prepared outside of TRNC doesn't cover your estate here, so you do need a separate one prepared.  Also, include only assets in TRNC and not ones you have in your home country; they should be kept totally separate.  A lawyer will talk you through the process and establish your requirements and who you wish beneficiaries and executors to be. Normally a Will includes property, any additional immovable property, real estate, leasehold rights, movable property, all rights for monies lodged in North, all personal belongings and items that are unique to you. The wording is generally quite standard and similar to Wills prepared in other countries and will normally be written in English. You need to be of sound mind and aged over 18 to make a will. Two witnesses need to sign it in your presence then it's lodged with the Probate Registrar at the local court (this isn't legally required but is sensible practice) who will check everything is correct, that you're the person making the will, and issue you copies with an official receipt. When you die your executor applies for a Grant of Probate or Administration, which will be issued by the Probate Registry allowing them to proceed with administering your estate and carry out yo

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