The enigmatic entrance to northern Cyprus
Ercan is an airport in Northern Cyprus, serving the capital city Nicosia. There are no direct flights to Ercan from the UK. To get there from anywhere in Europe, flights must first touch down in mainland Turkey, in places such as Istanbul, Anakara, Izmir or Antalya, before continuing the flight to Ercan. The Cypriot capital Nicosia has a long and fascinating history and the city is renowned for its museums and old churches. Possibly because of the difficulty of getting there, Nicosia is not as tourist-driven as many of the beach resorts in Cyprus, which means visitors can enjoy a very authentic experience of this divided city.
Ercan Airport is ideal for visitors travelling to northern Cyprus, particularly to the capital Nicosia, but being the wrong side of the UN buffer zone in the Turkish-controlled area of Northern Cyprus, the journey can become unnecessarily complicated. Plans to introduce direct flights to Ercan could make things a whole lot simpler in future.
When to Go?
The weather in Cyprus is generally very good throughout the year, only falling to an average low of around 17 degrees between December and February. If anything, spring and autumn may be the best times to visit Cyprus when the weather is almost guaranteed to be good, but temperatures do not reach the scorching mid 40s of summer.
How to get there?
Discussions are underway to allow planes from Britain to fly directly to Ercan Airport (ECN). Flights from London Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted with airlines such as BA, Turkish Airlines and Pegasus Airlines, typically fly to destinations such as Istanbul, Ankara, Izmir or Antalya first, before the flight to Ercan takes you into the Turkish controlled area of northern Cyprus. You may need a visa to cross from northern to southern Cyprus.
Due to hostilities between the Greek Cypriot communities in the south of the city and the Turkish Cypriot communities in the north, a dividing buffer zone known as the ‘Green Line’ was introduced to keep them apart. The city therefore has the distinction of being the world’s last divided capital, and the Green Line is a tourist attraction in its own right. You can enjoy some fairly decent shopping in Nicosia, then stop off for a shot of strong Cypriot coffee in a street café. Various museums, such as the Cyprus Museum, showcase some amazing archaeological finds from the island’s long history.
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