Güzelyurt is a city that is said to have been established for the goddess Aphrodite by the Spartans who migrated from Greece during the Ancient period in the north-west of North Cyprus. Located in the middle of the cities of Kyrenia, Lefke and Nicosia, Güzelyurt is the most efficient and meets the majority of the island's orange export in terms of citrus production with its command of the Troodos Mountains and its mild weather. In this context, the Orange Festival is held every year. Güzelyurt is a city where many fruits and vegetables such as watermelon, melon and pomegranate are grown besides citrus fruits and different plant species belonging to Cyprus Island are formed. Besides these natural beauties, Güzelyurt also hosts important works in terms of island history such as Soli Ancient City, Vuni Palace, Tumba Tu Skuru, St. Mamas Church.
Besides its historical and natural beauties, Güzelyurt is on the way of having an important place in the education life of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus with its Northern Cyprus Campus located in Kalkanlı village of Middle East Technical University.
Transportation to Güzelyurt is made by road after reaching Nicosia from Ercan Airport by land, and by way by land after entering Girne Port by sea. Güzelyurt is 40 km from Nicosia and 47 km from Kyrenia.
Tumba Tu Skuru
It is a settlement of the Late Bronze Age, known as Tumba Tu Skuru, which lies in the direction of Güzelyurt-Girne but to the west of the road and a few miles north of Güzelyurt.
St. Mamas Church
The original church was Byzantine, it was renovated in various times and a considerably important building was made in the Middle Ages in the Gothic style. This was completely rebuilt in 1725, that is, during the Ottoman period, and the large central dome was added during this period. Some architectural details from the Gothic building have been preserved, including: the entrance in the North and South; real columns; two marble columns in the western window and the arched part where the saint's throne is located. All this is from the 15th century and in a flamboyant style.
Iconastasis is a mixture of two periods and style. Four (4) marble columns and marble panels with a Gothic head in the iconastasis date from 1500. These panels are the most beautiful examples of small art available on the island of Venice, decorated with grape and oak motifs, in high relief and Venetian crests are placed in the corners. The wooden workmanship of Ikonastasis is a magnificent example of the 16th century with its dark blue and golden paint. The two doors on the sacred entrance to the left of the iconastasis and the painted canopy on the altar are from the same period. The marble sarcophagus, which is from the Byzantine period of the saint, is placed under an arch and inside the wall and can be seen from inside and outside. In the writings on the western gate, the feasts made by the French consul M. Porey in 1738 and by a person from Moscow in 1753 are spread. The monastery building was built in 1779 and some columns and capitals were taken from the old church.
Aziz Mamas is one of the most well-known saints of Cyprus, depicted in the icons with a lion and a lamb in his arms. According to the local legend He was a poor man living in a cave near Mamas Güzelyurt. In the declaration published by the Byzantine Duke of the period, he asked everyone to pay taxes and did not accept it because Mamas was not involved in social life. Hearing this, the duke demands that the saint be arrested and punished.
As the soldiers arrest St. Mamas and move towards Nicosia in the forest, they suddenly encounter a lion that has never been seen in Cyprus and want to smash the leading lamb. The lion calms down when the saint raises his hand, and the saint takes the lamb in his arm and climbs on the back of the lion like a mule and goes to the presence of the duke. The Duke is surprised by what he sees, and exempts Aziz Mamas from lifetime tax.
Archeology and Nature Museum
The Museum Building was used as a Metropolitan before the 1974 Peace Operation. The building was allocated to the Department of Antiquities and Museums in 1974 and it was opened as a Museum in 1979 after necessary modifications and arrangements. It has two floors and consists of two sections: Archeology and Nature. The nature section is downstairs and the native and migratory bird species seen in Cyprus, insects, snakes, fish species living in the Mediterranean and the stone types present in the geological structure of Cyprus are exhibited in this section.
In the Archeology section on the upper floor, the ancient artifacts found in various parts of Cyprus are displayed in a chronological order (from the Neolithic Age to the Middle Ages). The Tumba Tu Skuru finds and the Artemis Statue are the most important works of the museum.
The Artemis Sculpture is 68cm tall and shows great similarity with the Artemis Sculptures in Ephesus in terms of both material and shape. The fact that it is multi-mammal symbolizes abundance and fertility. This statue was taken out of the sea by a tourist in Salamis in 1980 together with two deer statuettes. It is dated to the 2nd century AD.
Atatürk Monument, located in front of Güzelyurt District Governorship, was built in Nazilli in 1973 with the great efforts and initiatives of Teacher Feriha Coşkun.
The monument was intended to open on October 29, 1973, the 50th anniversary of the Republic. However, due to delays in the construction of the monument and its arrival in Cyprus, the monument could not be opened on the specified date. The monument, which was brought to the island in 1974, was placed on the record prepared in Paphos. The monument, which was to be opened on 30 August 1974, could not be realized due to the Peace Operation on 20 July 1974. With the population exchange after the peace operation, Turks living in Paphos settled in Guzelyurt. As a result of the attempts made to bring the Atatürk Monument to the Turkish side, a Greek delegation in Güzelyurt was sent to the Greek side and the Atatürk statue in Paphos was brought to the Nicosia Turkish region.
The statue of Atatürk, which was placed on the record prepared at the present location in Güzelyurt, is used as a ceremony area. In the summer of 1999, the Atatürk Monument was brought to a new appearance with the arrangement made in and around it.
The first trains used in Cyprus are located in the Festival Area in Güzelyurt. These are the first trains of Cyprus.
The train station buildings on either side of the Nicosia-Güzelyurt entrance served as the Güzelyurt station buildings of the train line operating on the route of Famagusta-Nicosia-Güzelyurt-Lefke during the British period.
Today, it is an important historical monument that is left to us together with the locomotive in the festival park. However, it is used and protected beyond its purpose. In order to carry this historical heritage in the region to the future, the railway station buildings should be restored and used for tourism as soon as possible. The absence of railway lines in our country for many years increases the importance of these historical monuments.