Family Life

Exploring Nicosia, Cyprus, The World’s Last Divided Capital City 🇨🇾

hello good morning and welcome back to nicosia the capital of cyprus and i’m starting here in el etheria square if i got the pronunciation right which is a combination of modern and the old here on the greek side of nicosia the last divided capital in the world and that is because a u.n border runs through the middle of the city separating the turkish side from the greek side and in this video i’m going to be exploring the greek side and in the same day i’m going to cross the border to the turkish side and show it later this afternoon but that will be the next video so i’m shooting two videos in one day here and this is just the vibe of the square in the center of the city here in the morning very clean and organized with some nice architecture inhabited for more than 4 500 years nicosia has been capital of the island since the 10th century so i’m now here walking down ledger street which is the main sort of center of nicosia and you’ll see brands like h m there are arches of mcdonald’s in the distance international brands that when we cross to the other side in the next video we won’t see which is interesting and as i said this is the main kind of tourist lane there are souvenir shops cafes restaurants lots of tourists walk down here and at the very end is the ledger street border crossing which is the main crossing that most people will take to pass from one side of the city to the other starbucks as well on the left but what i’m going to do now is swing left off this street i will come back at the beginning of the next video to cross the border so i’ve already shown a little bit of lanika and the general feeling of greek cyprus here so i thought in this nicosia video i would walk along the border and show the un buffer zone close up because i think it’s interesting and the best place to start here if you want to follow the same route as me is pathos gate it was one of the three gates built by the venetians the venetian wall that runs around nicosia in the middle ages and it’s called pathos gate because it leads to paphos in the south west of the island and right here as we walk closer we can really see the border up close to my left you have the turkish flag and the flag of the turkish republic of northern cyprus and to my right the greek flag and the cyprus flag so we’ll continue along here here atop puffle skate we still have barrels and also barbed wire here there is a building saying un 65 the un were the ones who enforced the buffer zone following the war in 1974 a church right here interestingly they have the pope’s face here of course as with everywhere in the southern part of cyprus you have greek and prices for things are in euros let’s talk a little bit about the history to give some context to how this situation developed in the first place once a part of the ottoman empire in 1925 cyprus became a colony of britain and then finally got its independence in 1960 as the republic of cyprus however full unification of cyprus’s greek speaking majority greek orthodox majority and its turkish-speaking mostly islamic minority lasted only 14 years 1974 turkish troops invaded the northern coast of the island after simmering tensions now i’m not going to go into the details of who started what because i am not an expert i am just a visitor relaying you the general information you can obviously do deeper reading and your own research to find out more specific details of the events that then led to the turkish invasion of the island but after fighting just know that the island was partitioned and the northern third became the de facto state of the turkish republic of northern cyprus and those turkish people living in the southern exclaves of the islands such as places like larnica then either left the island or moved north and those greek speaking people living in the north in places like karenia or now gurney today moved south almost like uh pakistan india partition style movement of people just not on the same scale so this is the situation right before the border here the immediate streets just before it ah an interesting place as we walk around you can see buildings that look like they’ve frozen in time since 1974 with that writing and un signs sector city troop it says there and even a portion of wall right here you can see the border is just at the end of this street these lanes closest to the u.n buffer zone are some of the eeriest places of nicosia where the divide between the two sides is felt way more closely than anywhere else a lot of pretty historic buildings 100 greek food and you get the feeling that on both sides flags and bunting is taken to another level look at the all these greek flags here next to this greek orthodox church when it comes to souvenir shops on this side then you’ll see lots of things related to greek orthodox old coins byzantine things and postcards so as i said greek cypriots make up the majority of the island’s population in fact it’s about four-fifths and those greek-speaking cypriots originate from either the aboriginal inhabitants of cyprus or that’s why i’m filming on the gopro so i don’t draw too much attention to myself i nearly got caught out there if i carried on filming i would have been in trouble and the peloponnese who colonized the island from around 1200 bc to the 16th century check out this cafe with the damaged front of a bus probably from the civil war in some ways nicosia is a little bit like beirut in that they in many areas are using the skeleton of the war for kind of modern bohemian uh cafes and things like that i’m sure we’ll see more of that on the turkish side too electric cars and new modern refurbished housing with well-placed trees and all the rest of it to tend to the wounds of war a neat little cafe street here actually lots of kind of bougie places clothes shops and homemade fabrics here imagine what it’s like living right here on the actual un buffer zone itself look at these old rusted cars and the barbed wire and abandoned buildings which lie within the buffer zone easier to get a closer look further away from legislate as there are less people monitoring over here keep in mind and take note of the atmosphere of these back streets just behind the un buffer zone and we will compare them with the northern side and see just how similar the streets and roads look how the buildings look so here we are i have reached to fexis park and that concludes the journey from paphos gates walking parallel to the u.n buffer zone across the southern side of nicosia and if you want to follow the same route then you can do it from paphos gate to to texas park a football pitch i thought it was a park but it’s actually just a tough and all these cafes are closed there are mountains in the distance on the turkish side beyond them is the coast you can’t make it out on the camera but i can see a cypriot and greek flag and then just next to it a turkish and turkish republic of northern cyprus flag i’m going to walk back towards ledger street on the way i will grab some greek food and then probably conclude this video and then make my way to the border crossing for the next one and maybe there’ll be people saying in the comments of this video why don’t you show more of the greek side of nicosia why don’t you show the bars and the cool cafes and more of the street life and things to see and do but this is what’s interesting i think this is what’s unique and nicosia kind of has what lanaka has it has what limassol has i’m guessing this used to be a turkish populated area on the southern side of the city as we have a mosque right here which is firmly padlocked at its entrance this area has probably seen a huge change in community in the last few decades i wonder if on the northern side we’ll find churches that are also in the same states [Music] found this quite local looking place with no english which is what you want everything’s in greek they have various pies here some with halloumi i think others with spinach and uh with almonds different types of cakes i love the vibe so i think i will sit here so here i have a traditional cheese pie filled with halloumi i believe and i cannot remember the name of this greek cypriot uh sweet but it’s filled with like a sweet cream i’ll find out in a moment orange juice on the front it says 1952. the vibe is very local i don’t see any tourists around it is a saturday today so most people are here with families and that kind of thing i am loving this dessert i found out the name of it it’s called galact and it has these kind of uh syrupy flakes on the top and then a kind of milk interior that’s uh trifle-like and it’s really nice filling though along with the pie so i’m finishing off here with the latest craze in greece and cyprus which is the freddo you can get it as an espresso like me or as a cappuccino and it has this beautiful look to it and i first saw it in lanaka and had no idea i’d never heard of it before but i saw loads of people drinking them and i’ve been drinking them ever since perfect for cyprus’s weather it’s essentially an espresso shop poured into a metallic canister and is then blended with ice cubes and sugar if you opt for sugar to create this signature foam that you see here and it’s just uh an iced espresso essentially with more liquid and signature foam and you can get it milkier with a cappuccino and it’s super refreshing especially on a hot day on the island or if you’re in greece maybe you can find them in other mediterranean countries i’m not exactly sure but if you’re in cyprus do make sure to try it if you’re a coffee fan so there we are i am back now on ledger street and i’m going to end this video of southern nicosia here i’m going to cross the border right now using my passport of course and i will be showing the northern side of the city in the next video so join me as i cross the border and explore the turkish republic of northern cyprus see you then [Music] [Music] you
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