Cyprus - Into Occupied Territory

Passports in hand, we decided to make an excursion to the northern (Turkish occupied) part of Nicosia.  En route, we spotted smoking meat on a barbeque on the street.
It was a Sunday and there seemed to be a disproportionate number of women out and about on the Greek Cypriot side of Nicosia.  Many carried umbrellas to protect themselves from the sun.
We walked to the end of Ledras Street and crossed over the border to the North.  Once again, pictures of the border are not allowed.  I took this one just after we'd crossed over to the Turkish-occupied part of Nicosia.
One of the main differences we noticed right away was the beer advertisements had changed from Keo (Cypriot) to Efes (Turkish).
The streets were humming with people.  Interestingly, there were many more men than women out and about in North Nicosia.  The minarets of Selimiye Mosque loomed in the distance.
We approached the mosque and did a loop around it.
Headscarves and long skirts are available just outside for visitors that want to look inside but aren't appropriately dressed.  I donned the gear and took off my shoes.  The mosque used to be a Christian church and was thus oriented in an unsual way relative to the layout of the building since certain of the mosque's features need to point to Mecca.
We wandered through the streets taking shelter from the sun where we could.
We spotted another small mosque and a statue of Atatürk in the foreground.
We continued our walk past ornate columns...
...and popped into the tourist office which was housed in this small gatehouse near a break in the Venetian Walls.
At the recommendation of the tourist office, we took a walk through Samanbahce, a housing project more than 120 years old.  Unlike Fuggerei in Augsburg, this area is no longer used as social housing but is now a traditional neighborhood.
We emerged from Samanbahce and took shelter under a tree near a mosque with a charming flower garden.
We continued on through the narrow streets that skirt the border between the Northern (Turkish Occupied) part of Nicosia and the Greek Cypriot south.
Giant footprints suggest a path through the narrow jumble of streets.
After a long and demanding walk in the heat, we were overjoyed to sit down in the shade in front of an outdoor air conditioner at a local bar.  We both ordered a pint of Efes but the beers were served in two different glasses.  I guess mine was for ladies.  It's much more dainty looking than the stein.
We were intrigued by the show on the TV at the bar.  While we couldn't understand the lyrics, the video was basically one long stream of short skirted ladies shaking their bums.  I thought it was an interesting choice of content for a predominantly Muslim area.



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Sidewalk Safari | Part-time Travel Blog: Cyprus - Into Occupied Territory
Cyprus - Into Occupied Territory
Sidewalk Safari | Part-time Travel Blog
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