Cyprus is the third largest and third most populous island in the Eastern Mediterranean, located 70 km south of Turkey. Due to its strategic location, Cyprus has always attracted attention marking the meeting point of three continents – Europe, Africa and the Middle East.
Cyprus is a former British Colony gaining its independence in 1960, and has been divided into two separate states since 1974. The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) occupies the northern third (35%) of the island, while The Republic of Cyprus is in the south of the island. A border line known as the "Green Line" runs through Nicosia (Lefkoşa / Lefcosia), the capital of both South and North Cyprus, separating the two states. At present there are seven border crossings, offering 24 hour unrestricted access for EU citizens to pass through from North to South.
The geography of North Cyprus offers a unique blend of sandy beaches, picturesque beach coves, extensive plains and forested mountains. The Five Finger mountain range provides a stunning backdrop to the northern coastline. To the east of the island the Five Finger mountain range loses height as it extends along the narrow peninsula known as Karpaz, a spectacular area of unspoilt sandy beaches and soft hills, home to wild donkeys and other endemic species of flora and fauna.
North Cyprus has a subtropical climate – Mediterranean with very mild winters and warm to hot summers. Rain occurs mainly in winter, with summer being generally dry. Generally the country enjoys very pleasant weather conditions with an average of 340 days of sunshine per year.
Cyprus has one of the warmest climates in the Mediterranean part of Europe. The average annual temperature on the coast is around +24°C during the day and +14°C at night. Generally, summers last about eight months, beginning in April with average temperatures of +25–28°C during the day and +12–15°C at night, and ending in November with average temperatures of +21–23°C during the day and +10–12°C at night, although in the remaining four months temperatures sometimes exceed +20°C with a winter average of 6 hours daily sunshine and only moderate rain, making it an ideal year-round destination.