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Gazima?usa and Salamis


Famagusta Last Sunday

We left Nicosia around 10 am. When I say we I mean, Karolina, Baby-face, Kejt, Wajih and I. We decided to go to Famagusta despite the rain. We were happy to spend some time together.

Famagusta is situated in the Northern Cyprus. So we had to cross the border and show our passports. But nothing too difficult. Let me describe the city a bit. It is an ancient walled city and seven hundred years ago Famagusta was the richest city on earth. In fact, the city was so well known that Shakespeare chose it as the setting for his play Othello. I loved the ancient Church now used as a Mosque and the architecture in th e old town. It reminded me of Dubrovnik in Croatia.

Then we drove down to Salamis ruins. It is very closed to the beach and it was the capital of Cyprus as far back as 1100 BC. A severe earthquake destroyed the city in 76 AD. The Romans had an obsession about baths, and in the Great Hall buildings one can make out the Sudatorium (hot baths), the Caldarium (steam bath) and Frigidarium (cold baths). Before the Christian period (pre 400 AD) it was quite a colourful city; the marble columns were covered with coloured stucco, coloured statues, and numerous polychrome mosaics of which only a few are left. It was during the Christian period that walls with rectangular towers at regular intervals were built, but all that one can see of these today are mounds of sand.

I loved climbing on the ruins and taking beautiful pics of the landscapes. Visiting these ruins give you a strange feeling though. Thanks to this visit we discovered a really nice beach where no one goes. Very peaceful and calm. I was very happy to spend my day there.

On the way back there was a storm. On this Island the weather is very strange, you can never be sure...

 

Ruins of Salamis

In the Old Town

The Cathedral

The Cathedral again now used as a Mosque

 


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Publié à 09:57, le 8/04/2011, Famagouste
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I tasted their Specialities!

 Apollo Temple near LimassolKolossi Castle - LimassolApollo Temple near Limassol

     Keo-The Beer of Cyprus            MEZZE                          The Souvlakia

KEO is a Cypriot beer, the only domestic brand in widespread national distribution. It is a light straw-colored lager with a thick head, and is sometimes compared to a pilsner in taste. The beer is brewed in Limassol, in Cyprus. The beer won the 1987 brewing industry world bottled lager competition Gold Medal. I drunk it several times at home, and I have to say that it is really tasty and cheap!! 

MEZZE: The food comes without ordering and won’t stop coming until you say so. It all starts with a fresh saladpickled vegetables and capers and olives. The bread is freshly baked. Everything is so fresh, its simply great.Everything is served in small bowls and dishes.

Once they are emptied new ones are brought. Chicken cooked in creamLamb with lentils, roast beef with chutney… a perfect way of spending an evening.

I went to the Plaka Tavern. It was nice and the people there were really friendly. Unfortunately, we had no live music. But I do hope that next time I go there I'll get some!

Souvla, in Greek σο?βλα, is a popular dish from the island of Cyprus. It consists of large pieces of meat cooked on a long skewer over a charcoal barbecue. I ate it many times already and it was so delicious. I can't wait to grill some again!

I think I have lots of others things to try still! And it's good because I have time for it! 


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Publié à 23:59, le 2/03/2011, Nicosie
Mots clefs : foodMezzeKEOSouvla


Carnaval in CYPRUS :))

 While all of Cyprus celebrates Carnival with fancy dress and parties, there is no City which approaches the spectacle Limassol annually presents. The Apokreo  festival  begins two weeks before the 50 day Greek Orthodox Lenten period which occurs later than the Roman Catholic pre Easter period. Some trace the customs back to Greek times although the customs are now all their own. 

 

The first week is called the Meat Week (Kreatini), as it is the last week for eating meat before Easter. The second week is known as the cheese week (Tyrini), when cheese and other dairy products may be consumed.

 

Carnival festivities begin on the Thursday of the Meat Week, and the day is known as Tsiknopefti, gaining its name from the unmistakable aromas of the meat cooking. The festival starts with the entrance parade of the King Carnival, entering the town which is decorated for the occasion. 

The first of the two Sundays is the Children's Parade and then the serenaders with their melodic guitars and mandolins become the focus of much of the Carnival.  These serenaders will wander the streets on foot enchanting young and old alike. Many fancy-dress balls and parties take place at hotels each night.

 Parties are held and people gather to feast, sing satirical songs and play games. The last Sunday of the Cheese Week is the highlight of the Carnival. This is when the Grand Carnival Parade takes place on the last Sunday of the Carnival Festivities before Green Monday or the first day of lent. 

Colorful floats and groups of people, singing and dancing, parade in the main roads of Limassol creating a truly festive atmosphere. The open-air celebrations and feasting  take place throughout Cypriot towns but the  Grand Parade in Limassol is the peak focus of the Carnaval. During the Carnival parade large crowds from all over the island gather to watch the floats accompanied by the serenaders and other amazing  costumed groups.  

During the cheese or Tyrini week of carnival look out for seasonal specialties such as pastry bourekia filled with mint flavor cheese and ravioli. Also sticky sweetmeats such as daktyla and kandaifi.  Many Cypriots will pack a picnic on Green Monday and head for the countryside where their picnic feast will include vegetables, olives, bread and salad and local wines.

These customs date back to ancient times with a particular nod to the days when Dionysus ruled the Mediterranean as a deity of mystery and wine.  With the passage of time it has acquired a different, purely entertaining character, with a large, popular following.  During the Carnival parade there will be many  serenaders and other masqueraded groups. Also make an effort to attend a fancy-dress ball at a hotel as part of your Carnaval experience.

 Next Sundayyyyyyyyyyyyyyy!!!


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Publié à 02:27, le 26/02/2011,
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Weather here :)

The weather was one of the reasons why I decided to come here.

Well, it has been bad since one week: heavy rain shower, cold (8 for the night and 17 during the day).They forecast the same weather till the end of next week. I'm sad. I need sun, beach and I can't wait anymore for the hot season to come: news.bbc.co.uk/weather/forecast/4208

I really hope it's gonna be better in a while.

I still have so much work to do for the University and I am so bored. I have to find a subject for a presentation on Tuesday and I need to write 3 assignements. Lots of things to do!!!

 


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Publié à 13:11, le 25/02/2011, Nicosie
Mots clefs :


On the Other Side :)

Publié dans Cyprus

 On Monday, I went to the turkish side of Nicosia: Lefko?a. I was really surprised and found it very nice and different from the european side.

To go there you have to cross the "green line", and it's an easy thing really. You give your ID to the turkish cypriot border guard, then you take a piece of white paper you write your information on it and they stamp the paper and not your ID or passport. They do so because if when you come back and show your passport to the greek cypriot border guard with the Turkish Republich of Northern Cyprus's stamp then they won't let you cross the border again. It is really simple anyway. The feeling is strange but what you discover on the other side is worth it.

What I firstly saw on the turkish side was a recently renovated Han (Büyük Han) that has largely been given over to local artisans. I really love this place. The people were really friendly and the atmosphere there was peaceful and pleasant.

I visited a Mosque, it is Selimiye mosque, formerly St. Sophia's cathedral. It was built between 1209 and 1226. From the outside it looked surprisingly high, nice and like brand new. But inside, I was disppointed. Nothing special at all. This Mosque became a symbol for all the turkish people. But we should not forget that before becoming a Mosque, this building was a Christian Catholic Cathedral in medieval times, and was converted to a Mosque after the Ottoman invasion.


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Publié à 09:43, le 17/02/2011, Nicosie
Mots clefs : trurkish sidegreen lineMosque


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