Home / Northern Cyprus: An Emerging Paradise

Northern Cyprus: An Emerging Paradise

In news from Istanbul, the Prime Minister of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus announced yesterday that investments in the TRNC tourism sector would contribute significantly to the economy and International visibility. As it turns out, Northern Cyprus may be the brightest of all hidden Island jewels, let’s look.

Thousands of unexplored sea wonders await the traveler

Thousands of undiscovered sea wonders await in Northern Cyprus

Delivering a speech at an Istanbul meeting to declare 2011 “TRNC Year” Turkish Crpriot Prime Minister Irsen Kucouk revealed an initiative to welcome 1.1 million visitors a year over the next 5 years, and the hope some 2 million will visit by 2023. Kucuk topld the attendees Turkey, Egypt and TRNC have become the rising stars in tourism sector since the recent economic crisis hit Europe. He also said:

“In a very short period of time, we have increased the number of passengers arriving in our country by 13 percent and the number of tourists staying in our country by 7 percent.”

The walled city of Nicosia

The walled city of Nicosia, Capital of Norther Cyprus - courtesy Kyriakos

Turkish Culture & Tourism Minister Ertugrul Gunay, who also spoke at the gathering, said that Turkey had worked hard in gaining notoriety and economic benefit for being one of the world’s leading tourism destinations. Accordingly, Turkey appears ready and willing to share its experience in forward moving tourism industry strategies with TRNC. Gunay went on to suggest:

“Investments from our country have an important role in helping TRNC stand on its own feet. There is a great investment potential in TRNC and Turkish investors can make remarkable contributions to the island.”

Ayios Seryios outside Famagusta - courtesy wiseguy71

Cycling to spelunking, casino gambling to luxury beach spa experiences, square mile per square mile there may not be a more diverse paradise of tourism opportunity than Northern Cyprus. And we are not the first to suggest such an idea. For those interested in learning more about Northern Cyprus, please follow the links provide, as well as visiting the AFIK Group site,  Cyprus Holiday Advisor, and of course the Northern Cyprus website here.

Kyrenia Harbor and casinos

Kyrenia Harbor and casinos - courtesy Erik

If it’s exclusive resort treatment you seek, Northern Cyprus has a wealth of Casino/Hotel/Spa offerings that rival any in the world. The new Cratos Hotel & Casino below 4 miles outside of Kyrenia, is but one fine example. In fact, no other place we have recently highlighted actually offers such diversity, let alone value. Just as an indication of the popularity of these places, this hotel below is booked until I do not know when, I tried to find the rates via online booking, and??? You may also want to visit Cyprus Paradise in order to book a hotel or travel there.

Cratos Premier Hotel & Casino

Cratos Premier Hotel & Casino - courtesy the hotel

While the EU and most other International bodies do not consider Northern Cyprus as an independent entity from the Republic of Cyprus, many believe it is the will of the indigenous people there to decide their condition. Despite these political differences, Northern Cyprus remains a growing and apparently healthy Republic with a wealth of superb values for visitors.

Editor’s note: Due to comments from some interested parties, at least one change has been made to this article. The image at the top of sea caves is in fact not an image of these formations within what is accepted as North Cyprus. This image is of the world famous Cape Greco caves some 20 more more miles South of the border in Southern Cyprus.

Also, the Prime Minister of North Cyprus mentioned undiscovered caves visitors could explore, and by this he meant not only some sea caves, but other subterranian structures across the various regions of the Island, in the mountains for instance. The image below is a geological survey map of all Cyprus, for those who might be interested in searching out undiscovered caves of any kind.

Sea caves likely on Cyprus

Cyprus - is it a honeycombed sandstone rock - or impregnable granite mountain?


  1. says

    Thousands of undiscovered sea caves await in Northern Cyprus

    what a load of rubbish i have been diving in north cyprus for over 7 years and not found any sea caves

  2. Jenna says

    Umm sorry but the first picture is cape greco on the southern side, and it’s not a healthy republic when prostitution, gambling and the destruction of old people’s houses is going on

    • says

      @Jenna, you are correct about the first image, and I should clarify I suppose. Let me start by thanking everyone for commenting, taking your valuable time to let us know your opinion. If you do not see your comment here it is because I deleted it for any of several reasons – the most important being aggressive or threatening comments. This is not a democracy – we here – if someone threatens or uses improper language, their comments get deleted.

      Now on to some of the points addresses. Many of the “sea caves” Cyprus is so noted far are located at Cape Greco, some 20 miles or so south of the suggested Northern Cyprus border. While those geological structures are extraordinary, the reader should know too, they do not end abruptly at Cape Greco – this erosive feature is common around the circumference of Cyprus and other Mediterranean Islands as well.

      Despite the difficulties faced by Cypriots north or south, the whole of this Island and its culture are quite extraordinary, but I need not get into a history lesson here. It should be evident from the nature of some of these negative comments, “someone has a bone to pick with Northern Cyprus or Turkey” – I suppose this is natural given all that has transpired. And like all governments, no matter where situated, North and South Cyprus and Turkey even have their bad aspects – these are governments after all – think George Bush if you will.

      One person said he had been diving about Cyprus for years and never found those “undiscovered sea caves” I mentioned. Do I need to address this? An undiscovered cave is a bit of a mystery no? Beside this, the readers can follow any number of links to tens of thousands of references to sea caves about the Island. I have linked some in the text back there.

      Lastly, this articles was intended to show people how know so very little of Cyprus (North and/or South) a bit of the beauty. If you will excuse me, some of you (especially the more passionate ones whom I deleted) have now shown that the Island has some really pissed off people inhabiting it. How is that for honesty and transparency? Part of this article was from a press release which talked about caves and other natural attractions – I did make one mistake (besides trying to show people in the west a beautiful people and place to visit). Let me out line that mistake.

      The press release mentioned “caves” – in looking for significantly beautiful images in our network of photographers and out, I found any number of those where the sea caves were a subject. They do occur as I stated, but the “caves” the Tourism Minister(?) mentioned are also in the mountains of North Cyprus – a kind of spelunker’s paradise. So there you have it, a travel editor who did not hire a team of geologists and ask Google Earth to fly by, who did not hire Robert Ballard to run submersibles about the seashore, who did not resurrect Jacques Cousteau from his grave to ask about sea caves there – but I assure you I would do all this given the resources.

      Oh, now that I have typed this much, I see Nige’s comment right there below me. Rubbish indeed? Excuse me for not donning my OBA and paddling about North Cyprus to find “the inevitable” submerged chamber beneath what is essentially a huge chunk of limestone. The existence of these caves is a virtual mathematical certainty sir. As a student of geology myself, it is a simple matter to do a short study of the Pentadaktylos (Kyrenia) Zone which represents about half the North Cyprus geology. All the constituent subcutaneous structures are one kind of limestone or the other. I guess you can deduce the effects of millions of years of sea and surf on this material? Furthermore, the Troodos Ophiolite zone that makes up the core of Cyprus’ geological existence (and by the way where the Cape Greco sea cave feature is located) is made up of mountain, sea, sedimentary, and other effects churned for millions of years by the Asiatic tectonic plate mashing stuff up within the Mediterranean basin. In short, if there are not 1000 caves under there somewhere, physics missed a damned good chance my friend.

      As you can see, passion is not exclusively a Cypriot tendency. We take our love of people and the places they live pretty seriously here. My humble effort to show people in America, Europe, and elsewhere the wonder of a place 99 percent of them do not even know exists – well, it failed this time obviously. Now readers will come to see the worst of the near east – fighting, bickering, and an unforgiving tone from some you do not see. But make no mistake, the ip addresses of some commentary reveals the most adamant people are not from Cyprus, nor even Turkey – I will say no more.

      In a way, this article reveals a larger human problem. The ages of misunderstanding have rubbed raw people’s sense of kindness and fairness to a degree. Caves 20 miles this way or that, a Casino used as a stamp of prostitution for a whole people? What is this? Go to Las Vegas, Nevada my friends – in my home country. Cyprus is Disneyland comparatively.

      So again, let me thank all of you for taking your valuable time to comment on this article. We honestly do appreciate it. But please, we could care less about the politics. If troops are shooting down tourist? Yes, we would like to urge people to postpone their trip. Please disagree in a kind way. Say “rubbish” to someone who was trying to inform (and may have made mistake even) is just rude. Was I rude? Or did I portray Northern Cyprus fairly? All the best to you all, and tell us where you would visit.

      PS – for those who would like to study the geological features of Cyprus (fascinating stuff) here is a link to a fine survey map. I will put the image on the original post with my correction about the image. Best —-


      And since we are off into scientific exploratory,

  3. Tony says

    I also believe that Northern Cyprus is a wonderful place to see but it is a shame that there are so many Turkish troops in evidence, especially in Kyrenia – is it a holiday camp? Shame!

  4. Andreas says

    The “TRNC” is not a recognized state by the UN or the international community. It is a puppet state with no legal status created by Turkey after an illegal military invasion that took place in 1974, forcing thousands of Cypriots out of their homes, replacing them with illegal immigrants from Turkey. The advertised tourist places in the occupied part of Cyprus, the so called “turkish republic of northern Cyprus”, belong to Greek Cypriots who were forced by the turkish military to leave them and become refugees in their own country. In a few words, “TRNC” IS “FOUNDED” ON STOLEN PROPERTY.

    The above situation is validated also by UN resolutions that recognizes the responsibility of Turkey to withdraw its troops from Cyprus and allow the return of the Greek Cypriot refugees to their homes that were illegally stolen by force in 1974.

    In short, Turkey created by force an anachronistic abarheid / divisive system that takes Europe back to the middle ages. Ironically, that save Turkey knocks the door of the European Union and wants to become a full member!

    For more information on the true situation in Cyprus, visit http://www.mfa.gov.cy

    I leave any conclusions to your judgement.

  5. says

    The norther coast of Cyprus has always been since time immemorial a true gem of Cypriot culture and included destination harboring a special sense of Cypriot hospitality. The above mentioned report is a complete irresponsibility from the view point of Tourism planning and sustainability, and I’m afraid that 2011 will mark a point of no return for a Tourism initiative that has other financial objectives than those of uplifting a destination as a paradise. It’s a fact of life that paradise can be interpreted in different ways, but your appreciation brings us closer to the gambling paradise of Las Vegas, and yet another forceful push against the nature of the destination itself.

  6. says

    Phil, thanks for taking the time to respond. I can sympathize with you about wanting to neglect politics when informing about Cyprus, but as you now know it’s something you just can’t neglect. It is as elemental as Cypriot and not Cyprian.
    My point of this unfortunate incident is that the basis of your article embraces the campaign (politically motivated) to be launched for 2011 as a basis for exploring Cyprus. That’s a lot of fluff before getting to the point of true interest which goes completely unnoticed – your geological view point – and that is unfortunate.

    • says

      So what are you suggesting people to do, Patrick? No report on some on these issues, just because they do not want to plunge into political dissertations? Let no tourists come to North Cyprus, because some of the people there don’t like the politics? Do you honestly believe that’s fair? What about people in the region who depend on tourism for their livelihood? In your hunt for the political grail, did you stop to consider that, perhaps, this article serves them, and helps them? Don’t you think it’s enough dirt in the media already? We choose not to report on the dirt for a reason: that part of the world is a pearl underneath all the negativity surrounding politics and politicians.

      @john What on EARTH are you talking about?

    • says

      Thanks for the help Patrckdh, I am, as anyone who knows me will assure you, the world’s worst typist. :) I can use all the help I can get. Do you need an editing job?


  7. john says

    Same old problem: why don’t you guys take the trouble to employ proper English, before launching yourselves on the international market?
    E.G. “Speiunking”, says wikipedia , is an occasional American use, which this English graduate has not encountered in 68 years of reading. Why not just use the familiar form “caving”, or “potholing”?
    “Speliology “, I agree, is just too technical.

    • says

      John, please define both “speiunking” and “speliology” for the group, will you? I am sure that, as an English graduate, you know everything about what happens to people who live in glass houses. Next time when you throw the stone, why don’t you employ some proper English yourself? Or some manners? Why do you see the speck in your brother’s eye but fail to notice the beam in your own eye?

  8. Andreas E. Alexandrou says

    I am surprised that Argophilia is promoting holidays in the Turkish occupied area of northern Cyprus (“TONC”). As a matter of international law there is no such legal entity as the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. Both the European Court of Human Rights and the European Court of Justice have held the administration in TONC as nothing more than a serviant agency of Turkey, which illegally occupies the northern part of Cyprus by force of arms (e.g. 40,000 Turkish Soldiers are presently in TONC).
    Argophilia is encouraging in this promotion its readers to undertake a criminal act, as traveling to TONC other than through a port of entry approved by the Government of the Republic of Cyprus is punishable with imprisonment and or a fine. Similarly it is a violation of international Law (i.e. the Chicago Convention).
    As important, the bulk of the land and properties, including most of the hotels in TONC are owned by refugees, excluded from their possession by the Turkish invasion and subsequent occupation of the north of the island. You are effectively promoting the unlawful trespass of those properties. As you may be aware from the proceedings and in the English Courts in the Oram’s case, the owners of those properties are entitled to sue for damages for that unlawful trespass. Other more far ranging proceedings are presently contemplated against EU citizen’s and or residents who have carried out such trespass.
    The Turkish occupation of northern Cypriots violets over 100 UN Resolution and it is irresponsible and reprehensible to find people giving succor to that illegality and inducing others, in this case your innocent readers to support and participate in that illegality.
    I trust you will publish an apology to the 200,000 or so refugees whose property and heritage you are abusing and to your readers for not providing them with all the facts when encouraging them to participate in various criminal and civil wrongs.

    • says

      Well the readers know now the facts from your comment, Mr. Alexandrou. An no, we do not owe anybody an apology. This is NOT a place for political rants. We only report travel news. I repeat: TRAVEL NEWS. I am sure that, as a lawyer, you can make that difference, can’t you? The purpose of the article was to describe the beauty of the place, nothing else. I trust our readers are intelligent enough to make an educated decision.

    • says

      Mr. Alexandrou, I am always surprised that passionate and intelligent people, when rising up onto their soap boxes, are willing to stomp on the heads and shoulders of anyone who gets in their way. Always. If we wanted to become political zealots, those terrorists of the mind, heart, and cerebrum, we would not tell anyone to visit anyplace. I will not elaborate, but in a brutal and Machiavellian world, so many are mired in the mud at the bottom of the sewer.

      I am appalled any time a human being is subdued. But you will not believe me, not research who I am, no – you have condemned me to your own personal living hell for anyone who objectionably even mentions Northern Cyprus. Pick your bone elsewhere, lest I categorize you a cad for being so obtuse. Good day, sir.


  9. Froggy says

    You’d think that an English graduate knows how to spell Speleology in the first place. Watch out for those stones, friends. They have a tendency to ricochet.

  10. says

    @Mihaela I’m with you about the dirt, my point is you shouldn’t add to it either. Just 2 points
    1. You say no politics, but the campaign advertised has political motive that are not local (Istambul, remember)
    2. Where you mention local support, we say its a tourism model that’s been already abused on the island.

    The post is overall pretty nice except for all the mistakes, but it is the model of growth that I find fundamentally unsustainable for you to be supporting
    It’s not about the livelihood of the North as a destination, it’s about the model of growth, pushed to an extreme which goes against long term economic and social value. It’s a model that degrades the destination and favors financial interests, quick returns, that couldn’t care less for long term effects, let alone about the caves! Of course, since the’re in the South.

    • says

      I understand you point, Patrick, and I do agree with many of your opinions. I am more than willing to give you the opportunity to express these opinions in an in-depth editorial. I think that will serve the purpose better, as long as you only talk about the travel proposition of the issue. We want to stay as away as possible from conflicts and judgments for which we are not qualified.

      You see, we can only report news, without dissecting the political background, and the reason is simple: we do not live there, we cannot interview the people to learn about both sides of the story, and last, but not least, this is not Argophilia’s specialty. All attractions mentioned in the article have already been published on the web, and one thing is certain: Northern Cyprus is stunningly beautiful. Now, if there were caves mentioned, I am sure there are many in the region, some of the most famous in the Kyrenia region if I am not mistaking. Yes, not sea caves – this could be a mistake from translating the press release. But I am convinced that someone who truly means well, could address these errors we made in a more civil manner (I don’t mean you).

      So no “you people” and no racist comments like I already had to delete. Remember that there are many innocents living in Northern Cyprus.

    • says

      I say we all stop going to, writing about, whispering about any place on Earth that has an unsustainable growth model. “Silence” – treats the little guy like crap – “more silence” – misuses the public trust in any way – “a pin drops” – agendas, this is what all the complaints are about here. Give me the proverbial break.


  11. says

    The little guy shouldn’t stop writing, but could get that well deserved break; making sure to use his shades for eye protection, for the brightness of the next hidden jewel that Argophilia will uncover, may be blinding – Yia Sou.

  12. CyprusChill says

    North Cyprus for the total holiday chill out experience.
    Like the Mediteranean of old that we all love and cherish.
    The magnificent mountains, sea and sky and the wonderful people.

    You have to have visited to experience its all and then you return again and again.

  13. THE TRUTH says


  14. says

    The Truth, you need to focus your anger on building more positive things. If you want to build anything positive, remember that person who once died on a cross for humanity. Sometimes if you fight fire with fire you only get burned. But if you fight it with water, well… you think about it.