The ghost town of Varosha

A mere 15 minutes walk from the walled city of Famagusta past the shops and restaurants, the quarter of Varosha is a reminder of the Cypriot reality: the distinct division between the north and south. Prior to the Turkish invasion in 1974, it boasted of luxurious and sophisticated hotels overlooking the azure Mediterranean and was a major tourist attraction of the country as well as one of the best tourist destinations in the world. Now behind rusty razor wires, once high-end properties have been left to rot and decay without a care. The term “ghost town” is very apt for Varosha has been one since the arrival of the Turkish army back in 1974 which led to the  Greek Cypriots, fearing for their lives, fleeing overnight with only the clothes on their backs, with the hope to return after the conflict ended. Except it never did.

Rot and decay all around. Photo credits: Andriy M.
Rot and decay all around. Photo credits: Andriy M.

Once booming with life. Photo credits: Andriy M.
Once booming with life. Photo credits: Andriy M.
Got a room? Photo credits: Andriy M.
Got a room? Photo credits: Andriy M.

Today, Varosha is heavily guarded by the Turkish military and remains sealed off, behind which only waste and decay lies. Turkish Cypriots can usually be found fishing by the military zone at a nearby beach on a good day and I can only imagine it’s the same at the other side of the ‘border’. Even amongst all this chaos, life goes on.

Catch anything? Photo credits: Andriy M.
Catch anything? Photo credits: Andriy M.
Varosha, from far.
Varosha, from far.
Not hard to believe that this view was a money maker only 40 years ago
Not hard to believe that this view was a money maker only 40 years ago
Absolutely no doubt. Photo credits: Andriy M.
Absolutely no doubt. Photo credits: Andriy M.
Advertisements

6 thoughts on “The ghost town of Varosha”

  1. The Turkish Invasion really is something. To be honest, I only found out about it only because of my arrival here in Greece. I love to read further about it. So thanks for this. Your pictures are for the win!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s