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Introduction to Cyprus: Lifestyle, Climate, and Costs in Northern Cyprus and Southern Cyprus

Cyprus is an island situated in the Mediterranean Sea, divided into two parts: Northern Cyprus and Southern Cyprus. Let’s delve deeper into this beautiful country and get acquainted with its favorable climate and unique characteristics.

About Cyprus

Cyprus, deriving its name from an ancient Greek word meaning “Mediterranean cypress tree,” stands as the third most populous island in the Mediterranean, housing over 1,170,000 inhabitants.

As mentioned, the country is divided into two distinct regions, with Northern Cyprus predominantly inhabited by Turkish Cypriots and Southern Cyprus by Greek Cypriots. The capital city, Nicosia, is also divided into Northern Nicosia (capital of Northern Cyprus) and Southern Nicosia (capital of Southern Cyprus).

About Cyprus

Historical Background

Southern Cyprus

Following Cyprus‘s independence from Britain in 1960, tensions arose between the southern and northern parts of the country. Eventually, in 1974, the northern part of Cyprus was occupied by Turkish forces, predominantly inhabited by Turkish Cypriots. Consequently, Southern Cyprus, mainly populated by Greek Cypriots, was recognized as an independent country and later joined the European Union.

Northern Cyprus

The island of Cyprus, due to its strategic location, has historically attracted the attention of various governments and empires. The Republic of Cyprus, as recognized today, was established around 1960. Before that, it was a British colony, gaining independence in 1960. However, conflicts between the Greek Cypriots residing in the south and the Turkish Cypriots in the north escalated, leading to the partitioning of the island by an imaginary line called the “Green Line.” In 1974, with the support of Turkey, Northern Cyprus achieved independence and was officially declared the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus in 1983.

Wars in Cyprus

Cyprus has witnessed numerous wars throughout its history. However, when referring to the Cyprus conflict today, it pertains to the series of conflicts that ultimately led to a military intervention by Turkey and the occupation of Northern Cyprus. Turkey claimed that this action was in response to Greece‘s attempts to annex the island of Cyprus. Currently, approximately 36% of the island is under Turkish control.

Where is Cyprus Located?

Northern Cyprus is a large island in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, bordered by Turkey to the north, Greece to the west, and Syria to the east. Cyprus is also considered adjacent to Egypt, albeit at a greater distance from the south. This island holds a unique strategic position and has been recognized since ancient times as a major stop for people traveling by ship between the continents of Asia, Europe, and Africa.

Map of Cyprus

As mentioned earlier, Cyprus is divided into Northern Cyprus and Southern Cyprus by an imaginary line known as the “Green Line.” Below, you can view the maps of both Northern Cyprus and Southern Cyprus:

Map of Northern Cyprus

The map of Northern Cyprus is depicted in the above images. In the first image, this country is highlighted in yellow in the northern half of the Cyprus island.

Map of Southern Cyprus

As observed in the images above, the lower half of the Cyprus island, indicated with a different color, represents the map of Southern Cyprus.

Reasons for the Division of Cyprus into Two Halves

The primary reason for dividing the Cyprus island into Northern and Southern parts lies in the ethnic differences that have always existed between the Turks and Greek residents on this island. These differences gradually escalated, leading to conflicts and minor wars. Greek efforts to occupy the island escalated internal wars until eventually, the Turkish government launched a widespread military intervention, occupying the northern part of the Cyprus island, officially separating it from the southern part.

Geographic Location and Language in Cyprus

Geographic Location and Language in Northern Cyprus

Most people living in Northern Cyprus are fluent in several of the world’s living languages and can speak English. However, the official and prevalent language in this region is Turkish. Northern Cyprus is situated in the upper part of Cyprus island and is close to Turkey.

Geographic Location and Language in Southern Cyprus

In Southern Cyprus, the majority of people speak the Greek language, and their culture is closer to that of the people in the country of Greece. Nonetheless, Southern Cyprus is a completely independent country and is not under the sovereignty of Greece.

Geographic Location and Language in Cyprus

Administrative Divisions of Cyprus

Cyprus is comprised of six provinces, namely: Famagusta, Girne, Iskele, Guzelyurt, Lefkoşa, Larnaca, Limassol, Nicosia, and Paphos. Of these provinces, Famagusta, Girne, Iskele, Guzelyurt, and Lefkoşa are situated entirely in Northern Cyprus, while the remaining four provinces are located in Southern Cyprus. However, Nicosia is divided into two parts, referred to as Lefkoşa in the northern section.

Major Cities of Cyprus

The most significant city in Cyprus is Nicosia, which is partly situated in Southern Cyprus and partly in Northern Cyprus. This city has a population of approximately 73,000 individuals and houses many governmental offices and organizations of Cyprus. It’s also recognized as the only split capital in the world.

Another prominent and picturesque city in Cyprus is Girne, also known as Kyrenia. This city boasts numerous natural and historical attractions, attracting a significant number of tourists to the country. Other important cities in Cyprus include Famagusta, Larnaca, Ayia Napa, Polis, and more.

Best City in Cyprus for Living

Choosing a city in Northern Cyprus to reside in largely depends on personal preferences. If you wish to live in a region with a pleasant climate and near the seaside, cities like Girne or Famagusta could be excellent choices. However, Nicosia offers more facilities and better access to all parts of the island.

Climate of Cyprus

Generally, Cyprus experiences hot and humid summers and mild winters. Approximately 12% of the land in this country is under cultivation, producing various crops such as citrus fruits, wheat, barley, potatoes, and olives. The warm season in Cyprus typically begins in mid-April and extends until late October and November. The cold season starts in December and lasts until February. Spring and autumn also exist between these periods, characterized by milder weather. Overall, Cyprus offers a desirable climate for living, which is why many individuals prefer to spend their vacations or retirement there.

Demographics of Cyprus

According to confirmed statistics, about 77% of the population on the Cyprus island consists of people of Greek descent. Approximately 18% are of Turkish descent, while other residents belong to various minority ethnicities.

Religion in Cyprus

Christianity and Islam are the two official and prevalent religions on the Cyprus island, with almost all residents adhering to one of these two religions. Most people in Northern Cyprus follow Islam, and the majority in Southern Cyprus adhere to Christianity. However, Cyprus allows considerable social freedom, permitting individuals to choose their religion or have no religious affiliation.

People, Culture, and Customs of Cyprus

People, Culture, and Customs of Cyprus

People in Cyprus are generally educated and cultured. As previously mentioned, most inhabitants of this island can speak international living languages such as English, French, German, and even Russian alongside Turkish and Greek. Here’s a specific breakdown of the culture and customs in Northern Cyprus and Southern Cyprus:

People, Culture, and Customs of Northern Cyprus

The people of Northern Cyprus boast a rich culture. Family holds significant value among the inhabitants of this country, and people give considerable importance to their dressing style. Generally, individuals in Northern Cyprus prefer formal attire, presenting themselves with a refined appearance at national ceremonies and gatherings. One prominent feature of the people in Northern Cyprus is their hospitality.

People, Culture, and Customs of Southern Cyprus

In Southern Cyprus, people adhere to formal culture and address older individuals with formal names. One notable habit among people in Southern Cyprus is their flexibility concerning punctuality, and therefore, some of their meetings and appointments might face delays.

Politics in Cyprus

In 1974, due to conflicts between Athens and Ankara, the island of Cyprus was divided into Northern and Southern parts. Southern Cyprus is recognized as an entirely independent country by the United Nations and is a member of the European Union.

International bodies, including the United Nations, have made numerous efforts to reunify Northern Cyprus and Southern Cyprus, but all these attempts have failed so far. The most recent attempt was in 2017 when negotiations were held, mediated by António Guterres, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, to unite the two parts of the Cyprus island, yet it did not come to fruition.

Currency of Cyprus

Since 2008, the official currency in Cyprus is the Euro. However, in Northern Cyprus, many transactions are conducted using the Turkish Lira, the official currency in Turkey. Nevertheless, investing in this country is possible with other international currencies such as the Pound and Euro.

Economy of Cyprus

According to a report by the World Bank, Cyprus has a robust and growing economic status. The unemployment rate in this country has never exceeded 10%, and its economy is market-oriented and service-based. Let’s take a closer look at the economy of both Southern Cyprus and Northern Cyprus:

Economy of Northern Cyprus

Given the unique geographical location of the Cyprus island, Northern Cyprus has a highly advantageous situation for attracting tourists, experiencing significant growth in the tourism industry. Northern Cyprus, besides its beautiful coastlines, possesses picturesque mountains and valleys, attracting numerous tourists to the country each year. It also excels in agriculture, exporting various products to other countries. Additionally, maritime transportation and the construction industry are notable income sources for this country.

Economy of Southern Cyprus

In Southern Cyprus, agriculture plays a significant role in the country’s economy. The country has experienced substantial immigration growth, and a significant part of Southern Cyprus’s income is derived from tourism. It has been highly successful in attracting foreign investments, with many foreign investors having spent significant amounts in various sectors in recent years.

Economy of Northern Cyprus

Living Conditions in Cyprus

Before delving into the advantages and disadvantages of living in Cyprus, it’s essential to note that every country has its specific strengths and limitations. As a Mediterranean country, Cyprus has its strengths and weaknesses, which we’ll discuss below:

Advantages of Living in Cyprus

Cyprus boasts numerous advantages, attracting many individuals seeking migration or residency in the country. Recognized as a Mediterranean tourist destination due to its natural beauty, here are some key advantages of living in Cyprus:

  • It offers a serene and stress-free environment with beautiful nature.
  • The majority of residents in the Cyprus island can speak English.
  • The crime rate in this country is remarkably low.
  • The cost of living in Northern Cyprus is relatively lower compared to other European countries.
  • The country allows flexibility in currencies like Euro, Pound, Dollar, and Lira for shopping.
  • Health and medical facilities in Northern Cyprus maintain high quality.
  • Tax rates in Northern Cyprus are low, and remote work is feasible for most professions.
  • Northern Cyprus’s economy has experienced good growth in recent years, indicating a promising future.
  • Internet speed on Cyprus Island is high without noticeable limitations.
  • Not recognized as an industrial country, Northern Cyprus has clean and clear weather.
  • It provides excellent investment opportunities, offering temporary residency through property purchase.
  • Education in Northern Cyprus is relatively affordable, with good universities and no language qualifications needed for enrollment.

Disadvantages of Living in Cyprus

Despite the many advantages of living in Northern Cyprus, the country does have certain limitations:

  • Income levels in Northern Cyprus are not particularly high compared to other European countries.
  • Many facilities on the island are available mainly during tourist seasons.
  • Permanent residency in this country involves some complexities.
Cost of Living in Cyprus

Cost of Living in Cyprus

Generally, the cost of living in Cyprus is lower compared to most European countries. Housing, education, essential goods, and more are not significantly expensive, allowing for a good standard of living. Here are some specific living conditions and costs in both Northern Cyprus and Southern Cyprus:

Living Conditions and Costs in Northern Cyprus

The cost of living in Northern Cyprus largely depends on the purpose and manner of migration. Lifestyle also heavily influences living expenses. For instance, a student migrating to Northern Cyprus for education will have different living expenses compared to someone immigrating with family through real estate investment.

Living Conditions and Costs in Southern Cyprus

As mentioned for Northern Cyprus, living expenses in any country are closely related to lifestyle, social status, and economic power. In the following tables, we’ll outline the basic living costs in Northern Cyprus and Southern Cyprus for you to have a general estimate of expenses.

Housing Costs in Cyprus

In this section, approximate prices for properties in Southern Cyprus and Northern Cyprus are provided:

Area and Property Type Size and Number of Rooms Price
Purchase of Apartment in Famagusta Two bedrooms 140,000 Euro
Purchase of Apartment in Larnaca (Southern Cyprus) Two bedrooms 190,000 Euro
Purchase of Apartment in Paphos (Southern Cyprus) Two bedrooms 150,000 Euro
Purchase of Apartment in Lefkoşa (Northern Cyprus) One bedroom 120,000 Euro
Purchase of Villa House in Paphos (Southern Cyprus) 173 square meters 425,000 Euro
Purchase of Villa House in Ayia Napa (Southern Cyprus) 244 square meters 3,457,000 Euro
Purchase of Villa House in Limassol (Southern Cyprus) 180 square meters 2,200,000 Euro
Purchase of Villa House in Protaras (Southern Cyprus) 166 square meters 450,000 Euro

If you aim for profitable investment in Northern Cyprus or prioritize access to reputable colleges and universities, the city of Girne might be the optimal choice. Generally, house prices in Girne range from 80,000 to 3 million pounds. Private villas in the touristic city of Girne tend to be higher priced. You can explore some projects related to Girne here. Another prime area for property investment in Northern Cyprus is İskele or Esentepe. This region hosts the most modern and best construction projects, mainly sought by foreign investors. The minimum price for purchasing a home in the initial stages of a housing project is approximately 87,000 pounds.

However, if you prefer Chittaslow areas, the best choice in Northern Cyprus would be the Boaziçi region. Complying with Chittaslow regulations worldwide, this area preserves its pristine nature, offering a high-quality lifestyle. Most projects in this beautiful and unique area consist of semi-apartments, villas, or semi-villas. The minimum house price in this area starts at 120,000 pounds, varying based on property conditions. You can explore an attractive project from the Aretan collection in this area here. Moreover, access to all projects of the Aretan collection in mentioned cities is also available from this section.

Food Costs in Cyprus

The table below presents the prices for certain food items in both Northern Cyprus and Southern Cyprus. Note that food prices can vary across seasons, and this table considers median prices:

Restaurant or Supermarket Items Price in Northern Cyprus (Lira) Price in Southern Cyprus (Euro)
One meal in an average restaurant 80 Lira 25 Euro
One meal in an expensive restaurant 180 Lira 50 Euro
Coffee 40 Lira 5 Euro
1.5L Mineral Water 6.75 Lira 2 Euro
1L Milk 22 Lira 2 Euro
Large Bread Loaf 7.75 Lira 1.5 Euro
1kg Rice 23-67 Lira 3 Euro
A dozen eggs 23 Lira 6 Euro
1kg Chicken Fillet 80 Lira 7 Euro
Various fruits per kg 10-50 Lira 2 Euro
Various vegetables per kg 10 Lira 0.5 Euro
1kg Beef 310 Lira 10 Euro
1kg Local Cheese 180 Lira 8 Euro
1kg Potatoes 21 Lira 1 Euro
1kg Onions 16 Lira 1 Euro

Transport Costs in Cyprus

A significant part of living expenses includes transportation costs. The table below shows the average transportation expenses in Southern Cyprus and Northern Cyprus:

Transportation Expense Northern Cyprus Southern Cyprus
Public transportation 67 Lira 1.5 Euro
Taxi per kilometer 70 Lira 1 Euro
Gasoline per liter 21 Lira 1 Euro

Utility and Internet Costs (Monthly) in Cyprus

Another set of expenses involves general utilities, and here are some of them:

Utility Northern Cyprus Southern Cyprus
Average general utility bills 3000 Lira 130 Euro
Mobile phone package with calls and internet 180 Lira 0.1 Euro
Home unlimited internet 180 Lira 38 Euro

Costs for Restaurants, Supermarkets, and Transportation in Cyprus

In the previous tables, some costs related to restaurants, transportation, and consumables were mentioned. Here are some additional expenses:

Northern Cyprus Expense Price (Lira)
1L Oil 60 Lira
500g Pasta 15.75 Lira
3L Liquid Detergent 55 Lira
1L Dishwashing Liquid 35 Lira


Southern Cyprus Expense Price (Euro)
Can of Coca-Cola 1.5 Euro
1kg Apples 2 Euro
1kg Bananas 1.5 Euro
1kg Oranges 1.5 Euro
Pack of Marlboro Cigarettes 5 Euro
0.5L Domestic Spirits 1 Euro
0.5L Imported Spirits 2 Euro

Please note that currently, prices have been fluctuating significantly, and the situation with the Ukraine war has also been a crucial factor in price increases. Therefore, the possibility of these prices changing in the short term exists.

Introduction to the Education System in Cyprus

The education system in Cyprus bears similarities to our country; education starts from preschool and primary school and continues up to university and higher education. Generally, the education system in Cyprus can be divided into two sectors: public and private schools and universities. Here’s more information about the conditions for studying in Cyprus.

Studying in Cyprus

An important point to note is that the conditions for studying in Northern Cyprus and Southern Cyprus differ somewhat. These two countries have different laws in some areas and present different prerequisites for admitting students. Below are some of the most important conditions for studying in Northern Cyprus and Southern Cyprus separately:

Studying in Northern Cyprus

One of the positive aspects of studying in Northern Cyprus for Iranians is the absence of a need for a study visa upon arrival. This allows prospective students to travel easily to this country and proceed with their university registration procedures. Most universities require an English proficiency test; however, if a person lacks language proficiency, they can participate in the language learning course offered by the university for an additional fee. The education system in Northern Cyprus is highly aligned with Turkey, and therefore, the university diplomas from this country hold high credibility. The cost of studying in Northern Cyprus is comparatively lower than in most foreign countries.

Studying in Southern Cyprus

The education system in Southern Cyprus mostly follows European countries’ practices. Student admissions in universities of this country take place in September and February each year, and applicants must prepare their documents in advance and take action accordingly. The requirement for English proficiency in Southern Cyprus is higher, and applicants must have an IELTS or TOEFL certificate. While the official language in most universities in Southern Cyprus is Greek, some courses are also offered in English.

Introduction to Top Universities in Cyprus

Some reputable and well-known universities where you can pursue your studies in Cyprus include:

  • Cyprus International University
  • Eastern Mediterranean University
  • Near East University

Cost of Studying in Cyprus

One of the most significant advantages of studying in Cyprus is its low cost. Cyprus universities charge lower tuition fees compared to most European countries and even many other parts of the world. Additionally, living expenses in Cyprus are lower compared to many other countries. However, the cost of studying in this country will vary depending on the field and level of study, as well as the chosen university.

Cost of Studying in Cyprus

Working in Cyprus

In this section, we’ll mention the working conditions in Cyprus. We’ll discuss the employment market and situation in Northern Cyprus and Southern Cyprus.

Working in Northern Cyprus

The economy of Northern Cyprus is advancing, consequently improving working conditions there every day. Numerous individuals enter the country annually to work in various professions. Although the job market in Northern Cyprus is not as robust as that of powerful European countries, the wages and standard of living are higher compared to most neighboring and other regional countries.

Working in Southern Cyprus

Those interested in working in Southern Cyprus should know that proficiency in English or Greek is one of the foremost requirements. While Southern Cyprus is considered a European country, its economy is not as advanced as several other nations on the continent. However, due to the competitive wages and good welfare facilities available in Southern Cyprus, there’s always a high demand for work visas in this country.

In-Demand Jobs in Cyprus

Here are some of the most sought-after occupations in both Northern and Southern Cyprus:

  • IT Engineer
  • Dentist
  • Accountant
  • Pharmacist
  • Nurse
  • Tourism-related jobs
  • Restaurant ownership
  • Hotel management
  • Real estate
  • Exporting agricultural products

Tax Situation for Living in Cyprus

Another advantage attracting many to work and live in Cyprus is its low tax rates. Most professions incur low taxes, with only a few job categories paying higher taxes.

Healthcare in Cyprus

Cyprus has a healthcare system comprising both private and public sectors, maintaining high standards in both. The country provides accessible medical and healthcare facilities to the public, and its practicing physicians are highly specialized, many having studied in advanced countries like Germany and England.

Immigrating to Cyprus

Immigrating to Cyprus

Immigrating to Cyprus is feasible through several legal avenues. Registering for a university in Cyprus allows for residency throughout the study period. Additionally, individuals with specific expertise can apply for a work visa in Cyprus. Below, we discuss the various immigration methods in Cyprus.

Immigrating to Northern Cyprus

There are various pathways for immigration to Northern Cyprus, including for education, employment, and investment. Aretan Group provides specialized services in immigration and investment in Northern Cyprus. For further information and consultation, contact our experts at +905391201929 or via email at


Immigrating to Southern Cyprus

The methods for immigrating to Southern Cyprus are similar to those of its northern neighbor. One can pursue residency in this country through educational, employment, or investment routes. Moreover, marrying a Cypriot citizen allows for migration to this country through one’s spouse. Overall, for detailed information on immigration to Cyprus, it’s crucial to consult with an experienced lawyer specializing in this field.

Conditions for Obtaining Visas and Residency in Cyprus

Conditions for Obtaining Visas and Residency in Northern Cyprus

Due to Northern Cyprus being under the protection of Turkey, Iranians can travel to this country as tourists without a visa and stay for 30 days. However, for immigration, one needs to pursue one of the previously mentioned routes. Each of these methods has its specific procedures. For instance, in the educational route, presenting acceptance details from a university in Northern Cyprus is required.

Conditions for Obtaining Visas and Residency in Southern Cyprus

The conditions for obtaining visas and residency in Southern Cyprus largely depend on the chosen immigration path. For instance, for educational migration, a letter of acceptance from one of its universities is required. Similarly, for employment migration, an invitation from a Cypriot employer is necessary. Individuals intending to invest in Southern Cyprus need to establish a business or purchase property in the country.

Investment Conditions in Cyprus

Investing in Cyprus is an intelligent method to secure residency in this country. Through this method, one can not only obtain residency and migrate but also gain substantial returns on their investment. Conducting thorough research and consulting experts before engaging in this process can yield greater benefits.

Real Estate Purchase Conditions in Cyprus

Real Estate Purchase Conditions in Cyprus

Real Estate Purchase Conditions in Northern Cyprus

Anyone interested can purchase property in Northern Cyprus with a valid passport and a clean criminal record certificate. As per the country’s laws, upon purchasing a property or even paying one-third of the total property cost, one can acquire temporary residency. It’s advisable to consult with an experienced lawyer and experts before engaging in investments.

Real Estate Purchase Conditions in Southern Cyprus

Buying a newly built house in Southern Cyprus allows individuals and their families to obtain permanent residency in the country. While physical presence is not mandatory, visiting Southern Cyprus at least once every two years is necessary for residency renewal.

Comparison Between Turkey and Cyprus in Terms of Living Conditions

Both countries have their unique living conditions. Cyprus is an island in the heart of the Mediterranean with stunning natural beauty, making it an excellent vacation destination. However, some may not plan for long-term residency in this country and might consider obtaining residency in Cyprus for migration to another nation. Conversely, in recent years, Turkey has made substantial efforts to attract foreign investors and has attracted numerous skilled professionals in various fields.

Ultimately, the decision on which country to choose for migration depends entirely on personal preferences. Both countries show promising economic futures, with improving economic conditions and living standards in the coming years.

Frequently Asked Questions About Cyprus

Frequently Asked Questions About Cyprus

In this article, we aim to comprehensively discuss Cyprus and its various features. Below, we address some common questions users have about the country and provide brief answers:

What Are the People of Cyprus Like?

Northern Cyprus has remarkably calm and hospitable people. Conflict or altercation in the streets is rare, with Cypriots generally known for their composure and courteousness.

What Is the Job Situation in Cyprus Like?

Cyprus boasts a growing economy with a relatively low unemployment rate. Individuals with various skills can find suitable employment opportunities in this country.

What Is the Education Scenario in Cyprus?

Universities in Cyprus maintain an acceptable academic standard, and their degrees are widely recognized and reputable in many universities worldwide.

How Is Healthcare in Cyprus?

Cyprus has a robust healthcare system. All residents have access to healthcare and medical facilities. Cypriot doctors often graduate from reputable universities in Germany and the UK.

What Are the Living Expenses in Cyprus Like?

Living costs in Cyprus are significantly lower compared to most European countries, contributing to a decent societal welfare level for its citizens.

Closing Remarks

Cyprus is a serene and beautiful island in the heart of the Mediterranean known for its picturesque nature and stunning coastlines. The country is divided into Northern and Southern Cyprus, each independently governed by its specific laws. In this article, we provided a comprehensive introduction to both countries and their distinct characteristics. Lastly, we remind you that Aretan, with a brilliant track record in consultancy for migration and investment in Northern Cyprus, is ready to assist all applicants in this regard.

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