Introducing North Nicosia (Lefkoşa)
Home to roughly a third of the population of North Cyprus, the northern half of Nicosia is another world. Approached from the smart boutiques in Ledra St, North Nicosia sees the avenue fracture into a medina-style market of stalls and kebab houses. Thanks to the Nicosia Master Plan, however, many of the historic buildings are being restored and the area around the Selimiye Mosque, in particular, has a real sense of heritage.
This is essentially a daytime city where the appeal lies in observing daily life and exploring the dusty historic streets lined with ancient mosques and Frankish ruins. Many visitors take a day trip via the Ledra Palace or Ledra St checkpoints. Consider staying until dusk, when the minarets light up and release their evening call to prayer and the air is scented with an intoxicating combination of wild jasmine and freshly grilled kebabs.