London and Cyprus Homes

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General Information

Area: The island of Cyprus is situated in the eastern Mediterranean forty miles off the Southern coast of Turkey, it  covers an area of 9,250 square kilometres.

It is divided into two communities, the Republic and North Cyprus. The TRNC (Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus) has a 600 km of coastline and its major centres of population are Nicosia (Lefkosa) its capital, Famagusta (Magosa) to the east and Kyrenia (Girne) to the north.

Banking: There are many Banks operating in the TRNC from international banks (HSBC) to Local Banks (Kibris). All the banks that operate here follow the international codes of practise and the majority have English speaking staff to assist overseas customers. The Majority are located in the two major towns Kyrenia and Nicosia.

Bars in North Cyprus: Kyrenia has many varied Bars from traditional local bars to stylish modern establishments in all locations from the Venetian Harbour to the Mountain villages. Either next to the sea, in the harbour or high in the mountain you will find many bars to suit all tastes. Open till late...

Car Hire: Northern Cyprus has many car hire firms and we can assist you in locating one near to your property. The traffic systems are based on the UK and traffic drives on the left as in the UK.

Churches in Cyprus: Although the national religion is predominately Muslim there are a number of churches open in Northern Cyprus and the Largest St Andrews is situated in Kyrenia town centre. The Anglican Church of St. Andrew's is conveniently located near the town centre and services are held on Sundays and Thursdays.

Climate and Weather: Northern Cyprus enjoys over 320 days of sunshine per year, its warm and sunny climate is in contrast to the typical UK weather. We don't hope for sunshine as it is always there. Balmy evenings make for a truly outdoor lifestyle that many people long for.

Cost of living: Northern Cyprus has a lower cost of living than much of Europe. You will find that local amenities and charges are significantly lower than the UK and the everyday costs are also lower allowing your savings to go further.

Council Tax: Annual community tax approx is J100 per annum. The annual average local tax bill for amenities in northern Cyprus and Kyrenia area is equal to the amount you would pay in one month in most UK areas.

Culture: Northern Cyprus has a very rich cultural heritage reflecting its geographical position as a crossroads between mainland Europe and the middle east. You can identify this in the Arts and this tradition is proudly continued today. From concerts at the magical Bellapais Abbey to Opera at Salamis as well as the visits of modern practitioners to the clubs and hotels.

Currency: The official currency of northern Cyprus is the New Turkish Lira (YTL) and there are many banks and bureau de change in Kyrenia, Famagusta and Nicosia. Although the official currency is the YTL you find that most shops, hotels and restaurants readily accept most currencies with sterling being the most frequently used.

Driving: In Northern Cyprus the driving system is based on the English traffic systems with driving on the left and the vast majority of vehicles being right hand drive. UK visitors will be readily conversant with both the driving and the signalling which will be very familiar to them. You can bring cars not older than 3 years from abroad. (Each Foreigner has the right to use a duty free car not exceeding 1 year).

Education: In Northern Cyprus educational facilities are well catered for with pre-school nurseries to a number of universities. Your children's education will be catered for. There are a number of private English schools operating in the Kyrenia area many of which follow the UK curriculum.

Electricity: The government of Northern Cyprus have recently made great efforts to upgrade the electrical system, and now power cuts are rare. All the outlets in villas and apartments utilise the English three pin system so you will not need adaptors for your electrical goods. The television networks in northern Cyprus transmit the sound on a different frequency to Europe and most European specification.

Emergency: Emergency telephone numbers: Forest Fire 177, Police 155, First Aid 112, British Consulate 228-7051, Kyrenia Hospital 815-2266, Nicosia Hospital 228-5441.

Finance: We are happy to offer advice on finance with any of our developments. You will find that a number of local banks offer Mortgages although the terms are somewhat restrictive.

Gas: Northern Cyprus does not have piped gas but instead you have bottled gas or as in the case of our developments,  we install 400 ltr storage tanks to each villa or apartment that has central heating fitted.

Geography: It is near the Middle East (and is sometimes included in the region geographically) and to the south of Turkey. The geography on the island is dominated by the mountains and the central plain that they surround, called the Mesaoria. To the south,  the Troodos Mountains cover most of the southern and western portions of the island and account for approximately half its land mass.

Insurance: We are now in discussions with a number of northern Cyprus Insurance Companies to assist our customers to obtain the best value buildings and Vehicle insurance. We are able to obtain schemes LC Homes customers taking into account the excellent build quality of your new home. You will find the cost of insurance in both cases much lower that the equivalent in the UK.

Internet: Broadband Internet service is widely available in Northern Cyprus and we have identified that our developments are able to have satellite broadband  fitted. There are a number of providers for you to choose from.

Language: The national language is understandably Turkish but you will find that English is widely spoken in most establishments but we have listed below some basic words spelt frenetically to help you get by as you will find that it is much appreciated by the local community if you at least try.

Main towns: Lefkosa (Nicosia) - the financial centre with a population of approximately 35,000. Gazimagusa (Famagusta) - with many famous universities and historic buildings. Girne (Kyrenia) - is the centre of tourist attractions and has a wonderful Venetian Harbour. Guzelyurt - known for its citrus trees and religious buildings. Zeytinlik - tranquil, rural, overlooked by St. Hilarion Castle. Alsancak - located 6 miles west of Kyrenia centre, has wonderful mountain range and several sandy beaches.

Medical Service and Hospitals: The Central State Hospital is in Lefkosa, Nicosia and there are other smaller government hospitals in Kyrenia (Girne), Famagusta (Gazimagusa), Guzelyurt and Lefke. There are also government clinics in smaller towns and small villages. The private health sector is also well catered for in the main towns and the service provided is exceptional and considerably cheaper than Europe.

Passports and Visas: A valid passport is required to gain entry into Northern Cyprus and a visa will be issued to you upon arrival. The normal period issued will depend on what the purpose of your journey is it will range from 14 days to three months maximum. Please check with the immigration official as to what period you have been given. If you have to extend a period of stay it may be necessary to visit Kyrenia police station.

Pets: If You would like to bring your pet into Northern Cyprus there are some key facts that you have to be aware of the following: Your pets have to have a rabies injection and a UK vet certificate stating that the animal has no infectious diseases and this is then presented to the Ministry of Agriculture. The quarantine period is 28 days. You must look after your own pet during quarantine.

Police: Crime levels are extremely low in Northern Cyprus. The local police force are always willing to assist if you need them. You can contact them on 155 from any telephone but you will also see them out on the streets as well. Always polite and willing to assist.

Ports: The main industrial ports in Northern Cyprus are in Famagusta (Gazimagusa) and Kyrenia (Girne). There is a ferry service weekly to Syria as well as the daily ferry services to the Turkish mainland for vehicles as well as passengers.

Post: The postal system is expanding and contrary to common belief it is usually reliable. The delivery routes are expanding in major towns but it is common to rent a post box where your mail can be delivered to. Please remember that any incoming mail must be suffixed 'Mersin-10, Turkey' and not 'Northern Cyprus'.

Public transport: There is a network of buses and mini buses which operate between all the main towns. In addition there are Dolmush (shared taxis) operating on the same routes. All the forms of transport are relatively low cost. There is no railway on the island.

Restaurants: There is large selection of excellent restaurants with wonderful settings and amazing food. Prices vary accordingly, but are generally cheap compared to the rest of Europe.

Telephone: Public telephone booths are available throughout Kyrenia and Nicosia and telephone cards can be purchased from the Telecommunications Offices in these two towns. It is easy to connect to a local mobile in North Cyprus. You simply purchase a sim card, showing proof of identity and pay for the credit as you use it (Pay as you go).

Time: Northern Cyprus is on the same time (GMT +2hrs) as Turkey. The island also observes daylight saving adjustment in the winter equinox.

Travel: Ercan airport is only 35 minutes from Kyrenia from where there are daily flights to Europe, all at present via Turkey. However. it is anticipated that these may be available within one year. You are also able to fly to and from the South side of the Island across the border.