North Cyprus | Road to Salamis
Cyprus offers a beautiful setting for archaeological discovery. Amidst the unspoiled natural landscape of this sun-blanched land, on our journey through the northern part of the island we find an array of Medieval castles, expansive classical sites, and gentle villages. Meet with a local archaeologist who offers a real insight into the ongoing excavations on the island.
Salamis is, of course, the true highlight of our tour. The ancient city covers a small stretch of land along the Cypriot shore, and is easily the country’s best archaeological site. Discover the fully restored Roman amphitheatre, a gymnasium with marble baths, and a fascinating collection of mosaics.
- Explore vast archaeological sites of once mighty classical cities - with a mammoth gymnasium complex, Roman baths and a partially restored theatre
- Enjoy gorgeous, breathtaking views from the Kyrenia Mountains out across the Mediterranean Sea
- Discover atmospheric Byzantine castles, domed Ottoman mosques, arched caravanserai, and other landmarks from Cyprus’ rich history
- Special Access
- All Inclusive
We fly into Ercan, via Istanbul.
We spend the day strolling through the beautiful town of Kyrenia - the ancient town of Girne. We also stop at the Folk Art Museum along with the Shipwreck Museum, which tell the story of trade in the Mediterranean at the turn of the 4th century BC. After lunch, we take a guided tour of the impressive Kyrenia Castle. The castle dates back to the Byzantine period, and has also served the Crusaders, Venetians, Ottomans and British in the long contest over the ownership of the island.
Today begins at the Neolithic settlement of Akanthou, where we have special access to ongoing excavations.
We spend the afternoon at the eco-village Büyükkonuk, where we see a reconstructed olive mill, and end the day with a visit to Ayios Trias.
This day will be dedicated to the capital of Cyprus, Nicosia. In the morning we will visit the Cyprus Museum, housing the most important archaeological artefacts found throughout the island. After lunch we have an appointment at the Centre of Visual Arts & Research, where the Severis Collection is on display. The rest of the day will be spent in the northern part of Nicosia’s Old Town, where we visit the sixteenth-century Büyük Han, a beautiful caravanserai built by the Ottomans. We also explore Nicosia’s Selimye Mosque, converted from a cathedral in 1570.
This morning we travel to Güzelyurt, stopping en-route to see the well-known altar at the late Bronze Age sanctuary of Myrtou Pigadhes. We will see the Museum of Archaeology and Natural History before heading to the ancient city of Soli. Our final visit of the day will be the 5th century BC Palace of Vouni, with its beautiful views out across the sea.
We discover the magnificent Castle of St. Hilarion in the Kyrenia mountains. The best preserved of the Kyrenia strongholds, it was originally founded as a monastery and later fortified by the Byzantines as a defense against the Arabian pirates who raided the coast in the 11th century. We continue to the famous Bellapais Abbey, a 13th century monastery also known as the Abbey of Peace.
We spend the day in Famagusta, visiting Othello Castle built by the Lusignans in the 14th century which might have been the inspiration for Shakespeare’s play. In the afternoon we will experience the medieval remains of Famagusta during a walking tour.
We enjoy a morning at the ancient site of Salamis, famous for its archaic period “Royal Tombs” and Cellarka cemetery. We also visit the Bronze Age city of Enkomi, once an important trading centre.
We return home today, flying from Ercan via Istanbul.
- Flights - Scheduled return flights London to Ercan via Istanbul
- Tour Manager
- Local Travel - Private a/c coach
- Meals - All meals included - dinners with wine
- Entries & Tips - Entry to all sites in programme; tips included
- Hotels - 5 nights in an opulent 5* hotel in downtown Kyrenia, blending Colonial and Ottoman architectural influences, 3 nights in a newly renovated hotel situated in the ancient port town of Famagusta, on the island’s east coast
5 nights in an opulent 5* hotel in downtown Kyrenia, blending Colonial and Ottoman architectural influences
3 nights in a newly renovated hotel situated in the ancient port town of Famagusta, on the island’s east coast