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Kyrenia a jewel of the north

Often dubbed the jewel in the crown of northern Cyprus, the port of Kyrenia, Turkish name Gime, is certainly blessed with plenty of tourist attractions. There is an impressive and extensive castle, an attractive harbour, a comfortable town centre and some splendid restaurants to add to the mix.

A nearby mountain range, replete with attractive villages, interesting monasteries and impressive fortified castles give scope for all types of holiday, from cheap self-catering to all-inclusive holidays to Cyprus.

Kyrenia  Bellapais1
Kyrenia  Beach  Catalkoy

In both the town and surrounding villages the pace is slow and the atmosphere somewhat more relaxed than in the slightly frenzied feel you can get in the package tour-dominated south.

Many tour firms offer a day trip to Kyrenia by coach but it's worth more time than that. This part of the north coast doesn't have the greatest beaches but compensation can be found inland.

The writer, Lawrence Durrell, once made his home here on the hillside above Kyrenia and wrote his nostalgic memoirs 'Bitter Sweet Lemons of Cyprus'.

The hillsides are dotted with small villages where you can take a step back in time, the crags of the Kyrenian range offer plenty of inviting mountain trails for walkers while less active visitors can head for such interesting sights as the fairytale castle of St Hilarion or the lofty fortress of Bufavento.

There are beaches to be found east and west of the town and, beyond that some 12km west at Gazinosu and there are some good archaeological sites at Soloi and Vouni.

Exploration of North Cyprus beaches and villages is highly recommended and visitors who learn more about North Cyprus holiday tours will reap very rich rewards.

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