Cyprus or officially the Republic of Cyprus.
Cyprus is an island country in the Eastern Mediterranean,
Cyprus is the third largest Mediterranean island after Sardinia and
Sicily, and ahead of Crete.
Geographically, Cyprus is closer to Asia but is historically and culturally
a European country.
The Republic of Cyprus occupies two-thirds of the island towards the south, and the Turkish Republic occupies the northern third of the island.
There are also two bases, Akrotiri and Dhekelia, that are under British sovereignty.
This UN-controlled buffer zone separates the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus and the Republic of Cyprus.
Reason for naming the country
Through overseas trade, the island has given its name to the Classical Latin word for copper "Cyprium, "metal of Cyprus", later shortened to Cuprum.
The standard word relating to Cyprus or its people or culture is Cypriot.
The terms Cypriot and Cyprian are also used, though less frequently.
The state's official name in Greek and Turkish literally translates as "Cypriot Republic" in English, but this translation is not used officially, in favor of "Republic of Cyprus" instead.
The national flag of Cyprus was adopted on 16 August 1960 (after gaining independence from the United Kingdom).
The current flag was adopted on 24 April 2006.
The flag of Cyprus features a white background with a copper-colored map of the island at the center, and two crossed olive branches at the bottom.
Although the original design was officially adopted on August 16, 1960, when the country gained independence from British colonial rule, some minor modifications were made on April 24, 2006.
The copper color (the map) represents the large deposits of copper on the island.
The olive branches are a symbol of peace between the Greek and Turkish communities inhabiting the island.
The white color represents international peace and harmony that the nation must endeavor to preserve.
Turkish Cypriots use their own flag, nevertheless, it is not internationally recognized.
The use of a map as a central motif is truly unique, only Kosovo had a similar.
Cyprus has two official languages, Greek and Turkish. These languages are used by the government, courts, administration, media, and educational institutes of Cyprus.
The three main minority languages spoken in Cyprus are Armenian, Cypriot Arabic, and Kurbetcha. English is a popular foreign language spoken in the country. Cypriot Greek and Cypriot Turkish are the vernacular languages of Cyprus.
A number of immigrant languages are spoken in Cyprus. These languages are spoken by the immigrant population of various ethnicities living in the country. English, Russian, Ukrainian, Romanian, Bulgarian, etc., are some of the immigrant languages of Cyprus.
Christianity is the dominant religion in Cyprus, and about 78% of the country’s population identify themselves as Christians. Within Christianity, the most popular denomination is Orthodox Christianity, with the majority of Cyprus’ Christians being followers of the Autocephalous Greek Orthodox Church. Another Christian denomination that is popular in Cyprus is the Roman Catholic Church whose followers account for about 2.9% of the country’s population.
Other major religious beliefs in Cyprus are Protestant Christianity, Islam, and the Armenian Church.
Islam is the second-largest religion in Cyprus, the Turkish Cypriots are Sunni Muslim.
There are also smaller Maronite, Armenian, Roman Catholic, and Anglican Christian communities on the island.
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Unitary presidential constitutional republic
Cyprus has a Mediterranean climate along the coast, with mild and rainy winters and hot and sunny summers, while in the inland plain of Nicosia the climate is hotter in summer.
In the mountainous areas, the climate is obviously colder.
Snow is possible only in the Troodos Mountains in the central part of the island.
Rain occurs mainly in winter, with summer being generally dry.
If you want to visit the cities of Cyprus, the Greco-Roman ruins as well as the Byzantine monasteries, the best periods are spring and autumn, and in particular, from mid-April to mid-May and from mid-October to mid-November, when you can find daytime temperatures around 20/25 °C (68/77 °F), with cool nights, sometimes a bit cold in the plain of Nicosia; sometimes, however, it can rain. Spring is more advisable because it has longer days, and also because nature in this period is in bloom. By choosing these two periods, you can avoid the summer heat, and this applies especially to the plain of Nicosia, where the heat is often intense.
For a beach holiday, you can go from mid-May to mid-October, even though, as previously mentioned, the sea is still cool in May.
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