Cyprus

Cyprus

Use Normal Level of Caution

The Republic of Cyprus, located south of Turkey, is a small island in the Mediterranean Sea. Its location and history created a nation with a distinct combination of both European and Middle Eastern cultures.

Cyprus is a presidential democracy with a president as the chief of state and the head of government. The population of Cyprus is estimated to be 1.2 million people (2016). The primary religion is Orthodox Christian.

Formerly a British colony, the Republic of Cyprus has been an independent nation since 1960 and a member of the European Union since 2004. Much tension has existed on the island between the Greek and Turkish ethnic groups. In 1963, the hostility reached a climax, resulting in violence in the capital city of Nicosia. UN peacekeepers attempted to mediate the conflict in 1964, but violence continued, forcing the Turkish people, the minority group, out of the major cities of Cyprus.

In 1974, the government of Greece attempted to overthrow the President of Cyprus. The Turkish Government retaliated with military force, further dividing the island. In 1983, Northern Cyprus, administered by Turkish Cypriots, declared itself an independent nation: the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. Today, this “nation” is only recognized by Turkey. Despite continued discussions between the northern and southern parts of Cyprus to reunite the divided island, the island remains separated under two autonomous administrations.

Travellers should note that the Euro is used in the northern and southern parts of the island, while in the northern part, the Turkish new lira (YTL) is also used.

With tranquil beaches, Roman ruins, and beautiful mountainous hiking trails, Cyprus is one of Europe’s hidden gems.

Currency EUR: Euro
Language Greek, Turkish
Capital Nicosia
Recent Alerts 3
Latest Alert April 19, 2021 - COVID-19 Precautionary Measures in Cyprus (19 April Update)

Diseases To Be Aware Of

The diseases listed below are those which occur most often in Cyprus. Other, less frequently encountered diseases might be displayed within the Travel Alerts section if they have occurred recently.

Hepatitis A

There is a risk of exposure to hepatitis A virus in this country through contaminated food or water.

Hepatitis B

There is a risk for acquiring hepatitis B in this country.

Rabies

Rabies may be present in bats.

Malaria

Malaria infections have been reported in Esentepe (also known as Agios Amvrosios) in the Kyrenia District in northern Cyprus.

Vaccinations to Consider

The following is a list of recommended vaccinations for travelling to Cyprus.

Hepatitis A Vaccine

There is a risk of exposure to hepatitis A in this country, therefore, the vaccination is recommended.

Hepatitis B Vaccine

There is a risk of infection with hepatitis B for this country, therefore, the vaccination is recommended.

Rabies Vaccine

Vaccination against rabies is recommended for travellers whose activities or employment may bring them into direct contact with bats (i.e. adventure travellers, veterinarians, wildlife professionals, researchers, etc.).

Medications to Consider

The following is a list of recommended medications for travelling to Cyprus.

Anti-malarial Drugs

For persons visiting Esentepe (also known as Agios Amvrosios) in the Kyrenia District in northern Cyprus: Atovaquone-proguanil, chloroquine, doxycycline, mefloquine, or primaquine.

Safety and Security in Cyprus

Emergency Numbers

199 Local police number in the Republic of Cyprus
155 Local police number in the Turkish Cypriot area
112

Personal Safety

Although there is general hospitality towards tourists in Cyprus, take necessary precautions to stay safe and to avoid petty crime and theft. Always be alert in your surroundings. Keep valuables secured and out of sight. Safeguard your important documents, such as your passport, and never use your passport as a deposit. Avoid walking alone at night. Do not accept drinks or food from strangers and never leave your drinks out of your sight. Specifically, be aware of “date rape” drugs at bars and nightclubs. Tourists to Cyprus have also been subjects of bar fraud, where bar proprietors overprice their products and use violent threats to force payment. Travellers are advised to avoid gambling establishments in Cyprus as these locations have been used for criminal activity.

Cyprus has a strictly enforced, zero-tolerance policy for drug possession.

Roads in Cyprus are generally well maintained, however, poor driving practices and a general lack of respect for road rules may make driving hazardous. Mountainous areas and rural roads may not be well maintained, and unpredictable winter storms may create poor driving conditions. Drive on the left-hand side of the road.

Travel by rail line does not exist in Cyprus, and public buses are limited. Taxis are available as modes of transportation.

Due to Cyprus’ location in an active seismic zone, small earthquakes are not uncommon. Forest fires may also occur due to the hot, dry summer climate. Travellers should be cautious when swimming due to strong undertows; swim at authorized beaches only.

Photography of military establishments and of militarized zones is prohibited and strictly enforced.

Although same-sex relations are not illegal in Cyprus, same-sex travellers may be subject to social discrimination, especially in the North where same-sex relations were decriminalized in January 2014.

Areas To Avoid

Take caution when travelling to the North. Crossing into the North, from the South, by foot is permitted at the following checkpoints in Nicosia: Ledra Palace and Ledra Street. Agios Dometios is the main car crossing point in the capital city. Turkish military presence is evident in the Northern part of the island.

Be cautious when entering Cyprus from a Northern port. The South considers entry from the North as an illegal entry into Cyprus. Anyone entering the country from a Northern port could be subject to fines.

UN peacekeepers control the Buffer Zone between the Turkish (Northern) and Greek (Southern) parts of the island. Do not enter the Buffer Zone which is a restricted military zone that may still be mined. Be aware that violence may occur along the Buffer Zone.

Get A Free Account!

Sitata uses advanced software algorithms to monitor the world for disease outbreaks and safety hazards. Each travel alert published by Sitata is reviewed by staff to ensure it meets the concerns of a traveller.

Sign up for a free account so that you can prepare for your trip and view the latest alerts.

Plan A Trip