Activities in the North Cyprus
Whilst North Cyprus may have a reputation for being a quiet retreat, perfect for those looking to find sun and solitude, it may surprise you the amount of activities that can still be found in Northern Cyprus. If not choosing to read on the beach or have a wander around the town shops and restaurants, there are many adventurous sports you can try as well as peaceful ones.
North Cyprus Activities such as paintballing, paragliding and go-karting are in popular demand, and can give your holiday that extra edge, while the water sports are great fun for families! You can explore the vast array of exotic sea life in Northern Cyprus with some snorkelling or diving, and embrace the nature by going on a hike or horse ride through the picturesque Kyrenia Mountains. For a more chilled out way to spend your time in North Cyprus, the lavish Korineum Golf Club offers North Cyprus’ only 18 hole course, which you can tackle whilst wrapped in the warm Mediterranean ambience. So, if you find yourself getting restless from all the lounging around and relaxation on your North Cyprus holiday, there’s always the opportunity to try something new and exciting here.
Bowls or lawn bowls is a game played on perfectly measured grass, or a synthetic replacement, where players aim to get their bowls as close to the Jack (a smaller coloured ball) whilst simultaneously trying to knock other players bowls out of the way. Highly popular in the UK as well as around the world, the number of British expats in North Cyprus means that lawn bowls has become similarly popular there and clubs are slowly being set up for people to be able to play a perfect game of this sport in the same conditions they would expect at home.
The main club in the West of Kyrenia is the Olive Press, a British run club which has a range of fantastic standard typical lanes available as well as some less traditional ones that involve objects to block the Jack. There are also multiple societies and clubs that play around the country, with games and tournaments regularly being arranged with clubs in the South, as well as British teams who travel over to play. To get involved with the local community, or maybe just to play a game with your family whilst on holiday, why not play bowls?
While seemingly a peaceful little part of the world, North Cyprus might surprise you when it comes to its nightlife. The main hub of entertainment is centred in Downtown Kyrenia, where delicious eateries and ambient bars, pubs and clubs await. From live music and bands to DJ’s and Karaoke, the variety and range of options both within and outside of the hotels will keep you feeling lively after night fall. Also, don’t forget to visit a beach party when the night is almost over for some magnificent views of the sunrise.
Although not as numerous as in the UK, there are cinemas in North Cyprus and they show a range of films including everything you would expect to see back home. A range of European and International films are shown including Hollywood films as well as any Cypriot films (of course) although they are rare. Each region has at least one cinema (apart from Iskele and Karpaz) and Kyrenia has two, whilst the capital city Nicosia and the surrounding areas have three. But no matter where you are, it’s easy to watch that film that you just can’t miss and the cinemas will let you know when English screenings are available (subtitled in Turkish instead of dubbed). Below are the cinemas in each region for more information.
- Guzelyurt – Guzelyurt Lemar Cineplex
- Kyrenia – Kyrenia Galleria Cinema Club Kyrenia – Kyrenia Lemar Cineplex
- Nicosia – Misirlizade Galleria Cinema Club Nicosia – Nicosia Lemar Cineplex Nicosia – Nicosia Galleria Cinema Club
- Famagusta – Famagusta Galleria Cinema Club
Gyms and Fitness Clubs
If you can’t stand the idea of going abroad and eating, drinking and lazing around without maintaining your exercise routine, then don’t worry because North Cyprus is perfect for each and every gym lover. Most hotels will have some sort of work-out area, but if not (or if it’s not to your typical standard) each major town and city will have a gym with short term passes available. Perfect for burning off that slice of baklava or making sure you don’t have to worry about how many glasses of wine you had (or if you’ll look good at the beach) gyms are commonplace and keep long opening hours. Just make sure to check out your hotel before you get there to see if they have the facilities you have in mind, or maybe just make sure to ask at your hotel where your closest gym is.
Paintball is an exhilarating game that pits two teams against each other with CO2 powered weapons, used to defend your team’s flag, whilst attempting to attack those who are trying to capture it. If you get hit you’re out so don’t worry about getting covered with paintballs a hundred times, but because there are multiple rounds of short games, there’s no worry of getting taken out of the game and sitting out for more than a few minutes. The paint is water soluble and non toxic so it’s nothing to worry about if any happens to get on your clothes or skin (but covered in protective clothing and with a mask, there’s no real worry of that happening). Each game can be on a different landscape depending on where you go, so one minute you might be running for your life through the beautiful trees of North Cyprus and moments later leaping over barrels after your target.
Go Karting is a unique and adrenaline pumping activity to try whilst on holiday in North Cyprus. It’s also a great source of entertainment for people of all ages, with Karts available specifically for younger kids (from about the age of 7+). There are two main go karting centres in North Cyprus, one being the Tazkarts track and the other Zet Karting, which is just outside of Nicosia. Tazkarts have a 350 metre track while Zet Karting has a 1200 metre long track. Zet Karts in particular have two types of kart available, with a 120cc kart designed for 7-14 year olds, and a 270cc kart for adults above the age of 14. There are even floodlights on the track in place for some night time driving! Both karting establishment’s record times and top speeds. They also have restaurants and a bar to keep guests energized after a long day on the track. This is a great idea if travelling as a family and looking for a day out to break up all the relaxation with some excitement.
Ten Pin bowling is a popular pastime for many people all year round. From the USA to the UK and even to North Cyprus. A perfect location to enjoy family time or time with your friends, Ten-pin bowling is a social activity that combines practices and technique, along with an environment of socialising.
The social environment continues in North Cyprus. One such example is the King’s leisure centre in Kyrenia. Located at the bypass is this large 3 storey establishment. It gives a perfect setting for a range of entertainment from a choice of restaurants and a bar to the 12 lane bowling alley. Other bowling alleys are located in Nicosia and Famagusta too.
Ten pin bowling is a good choice in the summer or winter with its air conditioned environment, it’s a perfect getaway.
The National Park
Although there is only one national park in North Cyprus, it’s a great one. With camping sites available, as well as horse riding tracks and long stretches of beach, the Karpaz Peninsula National Park is one of the most fantastic places to get back to nature whilst on holiday and truly enjoy the natural side of Cyprus, whilst also getting to take advantage of the glorious weather. The main home of the adorable Karpaz Donkeys, the National Park in the peninsula is full of a beautiful and colourful range of wildlife including birds, flowers and sheep. The perfect place to hike or cycle, the national park in Karpaz is fantastically placed between glorious beaches that are within easy reach, offering the best of both worlds.