The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) is closer to Turkey which lies at a distance of 65 km to the north. The main island itself is located 100 km west of Syria and 420 km north of Egypt. Its capital city is Lefkoşa (Nicosia), the largest city on the island. The other major towns are Gazimağusa and Girne (Kyrenia) a harbour town which are located on the coastline. Güzelyurt and Lefke are two towns which are famous with the large citrus orchards. The official language is Turkish but English is widely spoken and understood in commercial circles. The religion is Islam, with Muslims making up 99% of the population.
Cost of Living
Compared with most countries in Western Europe, the cost of living in Northern Cyprus is relatively low.
Ercan Airport, which is 12 km east of Lefkosa (Nicosia). Geçitkale Airport, to the east, is sometimes used as an alternative.
The international dialling code is 00 90. Internet access can be at internet cafes in the cities, towns,schools, restaurants and some resorts.
Traffic keeps to the left, a relic of commonwealth's rules.
Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus has a typical Mediterranean climate with about 300 days of sunshine per year. It enjoys dry, warm summers and mild winters. The bulk of the rain falls during the period from November to March. The coldest month is January having minimum and maximum mean temperatures of 6ºC and 16ºC respectively. In the hottest month August the corresponding minimum and maximum mean temperatures are 21ºC and 35ºC.
The official currency in the TRNC is Turkish Lira (¨). Real persons and corporate bodies are free to keep and save foreign currency, to use foreign currency like Euros and British pounds as a means of foreign exchange and to express in foreign currency figures appearing on payment orders and contracts. The official rates of exchange are fixed daily by the Central Bank and announced. Banks, foreign exchange bureaux and the Central Bank are free to fix different rates of exchange for the purchase and sale of foreign currency. There is a developed banking system in the TRNC. In addition to the Central Bank and the Development Bank there are 21 onshore commercial banks and 8 International Banking Unit (IBU) exist. Banks are free to keep foreign currency, act as intermediary in import and export transactions, accept foreign currency savings, engage in purchase and sale of foreign currency, deal in bonds required to be paid in foreign currency, give foreign currency loans, engage actively in money and foreign currency markets and in compliance with international banking usage, to deal in every kind of foreign currency transactions.
There is a multi party of democracy in the TRNC where human rights, political pluralism and private property are safeguarded. The head of the state is the President of the Republic who is elected by universal suffrage for a period of five years. Legislative power is exercised by the Assembly of the Republic which consists of fifty deputies. The country is managed by a Council of Ministers led by the Prime Minister who is appointed by the President. Elections are held freely every five years, based on universal suffrage.