Cyprus Cruise Vacation: Discover The Sun-Kissed Coastline
A cruise holiday to Cyprus brings you to the crossroads between east and west, an island that has been the stepping stone of practically every influential civilization in the region. From the Neolithic period to the adventurous Phoenicians and the genius of the ancient Greeks, Cyprus is more complicated than first meets the eye but is also endlessly fascinating and delightful to discover.
The third-largest island in the eastern Mediterranean, the Republic of Cyprus is an independent country mainly composed of Greek Cypriots in the south and Turkish Cypriots in the north – both communities their rivals occupy their respective territories illegally.
But the island’s deep ancient roots make it a mosaic of cultures. Its dramatic landscapes, sun-kissed coast and cool Troodos Mountains at the core, Cyprus is studded with hills of vineyards, castles and monasteries that make even the shortest foray something to remember. Whilst much of its historical prominence lies in a state of beautiful ruin, others are still in active use today.
A Contrast of Culture
It only takes a few hours to see how the modern and very ancient past easily commingle on this island nation. Cyprus may be part of the European Union, but a strong Middle Eastern influence harks off the coastal cities of Israel and Lebanon which lay closer to Cypriot shores than Athens.
Consequently, Cyprus is a blend of regions and religions, and thanks to its fantastic beaches and quaint historic old town, draws travellers from around the world today. Prior to the Turkish invasion in 1974, which ultimately divided the country, the casino-lined golden mile of Cyprus was the Monte Carlo of the eastern Med.
Its copper-rich mines were crucial to the rise of Cyprus, and together with the captivating scenery persuaded Richard the Lionheart to banish the Byzantine rulers and marry his beautiful bride, Berengaria, in Limassol Castle.
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The Crossroads Between East and West
Cultural Cyprus Cruise Vacations
Iconic Monuments in the Med
Cyprus’ tumultuous history has left an indelible mark on the island’s architecture and culture. The island is the only country in the world separated by a wall which divides the Turkish Cypriot community in the north from the Greek Cypriots in the south. You will also note the Cypriots drive on the right-hand side of the road, a custom left by the British that brought the island in the fold of its far-reaching Empire between 1878 and 1960.