Nicosia is the capital of Cyprus; the only remaining divided capital in the world. The Nicosia district combines its cultural heritage with the contemporary way of life. The capital is steeped in history with large Venetian walls encompassing a beautiful old city. There is also a museum containing many amazing artifacts dating back to a time long ago. Its artifacts include a 1st Century A.D. statuette of Aphrodite of Soli and the original mosaic of Leda and the swan as well as another museum (Leventis Museum) containing artifacts depicting Nicosia’s history. The new city expands in to a modern European-influenced centre of buildings, offices, pavement cafes and shops. Nicosia is an ideal place for shopping especially Stassicratous Street.
In the countryside you’ll encounter olive groves and various orchards leading up in to the renowned pine forest of the Machairas Mountains on top of which lies a centuries old monastery. From the monastery which is dedicated to the Virgin Mary and is one of the jewels of Cyprus, you can look down on to the picturesque valley with a brilliant view in all directions. Traditional villages with cobbled streets are spread throughout the rural areas of the Nicosia district. The village of Fikardou, declared a national monument, was awarded the Europa Nostra award in 1987 and is a must-see if you are in the vicinity and want a strong taste of the Cyprus rural life.