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Sunday, February 18, 2024

Travel

Traveling to Cyprus for IVF Treatment

Cyprus is a country where the weather is usually warm during winter and hot during summer. It will be in lower 10s during winter and upper 30s during summer, so make sure you pack your clothes according to the weather. It will be a good idea to check the local Cyprus weather prior to your travel so that you can decide for yourself how to pack your bag.

The electric plugs in Cyprus are similar to the ones in the UK, however, patients traveling from other countries should bring an adapter with them if they are planning on bringing electrical equipment with them (blow dryers, cell phone chargers). These Europe-UK converting adapters can be easily found at airports, therefore, if you are traveling to Cyprus from a country other than the UK, then it will be a good idea to purchase a Europe-to-UK adapter for electrical appliances at the airport when you are traveling. These adapters can also be found in Cyprus, but it would be more convenient if you had one on you.

Do not use your cell phone excessively unless you have to. The roaming charges will be high and you will face a large bill upon your return, therefore, it will be wise to obtain a prepaid phone chip with one of the local carriers to use in your cell phone to avoid those charges. Our clinic’s driver will help you obtain one.
 
The local currency used in Northern Cyprus is Turkish Lira. However, all major currencies including the US Dollars, Euros, and Pound Sterling are accepted at local shops, supermarkets and restaurants due to the traditional role of tourism in North Cyprus. You will also have access to foreign currency exchange offices to change your money into the local currency if you would like to use the local currency.
 

Turkish is the commonly spoken language in the North. However, most people have conversational skills in English, therefore, you are not likely to have any language barriers. If you have any problems, your patient coordinator and patient care team will help you accordingly.

You can travel to North Cyprus via two distinct routes:

1- Ercan Airport in North Cyprus: This is usually the most preferred route for traveling to North Cyprus as this airport is located in North Cyprus. Given that the Ercan Airport does not offer direct flights from most European cities, travelers are often required to fly to Ercan Airport via a connecting flight in Turkey. Most flights to Ercan Airport have a connection in Istanbul for a short period of time. Affordable tickets to Ercan Airport can be found at Pegasus Airlines,  and Turkish Airlines. Ground transfers to and from the Ercan Airport are offered free of charge by our clinic.

Traveling to North Cyprus does NOT require a visa for American, EU and most Middle East country nationals. However, immigration office in North Cyprus requires a visa for African nationals as well as Armenian nationals. If you are a passport holder of these nationalities, please let us know so that we can organize a visa letter for you to obtain your visa prior to your arrival.

2- Larnaca Airport in Southern Cyprus: Larnaca Airport is located in the South, about one hour driving distance from our clinic, which is still convenient. Since the republic of Cyprus is an EU member, patients traveling through the Larnaca Airport must either be exempted from the visa requirements of the republic of Cyprus, or obtain a visa for travel. Once you are in Cyprus, crossing back and forth between the North and the South takes only about a couple of minutes. Our clinic  can arrange your transport from Larnaca Airport with a charge paid directly to the taxi.,  or you can  book your own transport.

For information on accommodation, please refer to the “accommodation” page.

North – South Checkpoints

Some of our patients wonder about the situation between North and South parts of Cyprus. In the past, there was no crossing between the North and the South due to political disagreements on the two sides. However, border crossings were made possible 19 years ago, in 2003. Initially, there were long ques and exhaustive waiting periods to cross back and forth, but as years passed, crosings became a part of every day life and more of a standard activity. Now, there are no visa or paperwork requirements to cross over from the North to the South or from the South to the North. You can simply show your ID card to the civilian clerk at the check point and cross over.
 
There are a number of check points between the North and the South. Some of these are checkpoints that can be crossed with a car while some are pedestrian only crossings. If you are staying in the South and having your treatment with us in the North, then it will be important to be able to find where our clinic is located. For this, it will be a good idea to organize so that you come to one of the Nicosia checkpoints and our driver can meet you there and take you to the clinic for your appointment. Otherwise, you may have a difficulty finding the clinic, at least on your first apppointment. The main checkpoint which can be crossed by car or by foot is called “Agios Dometios” or “Metehan”. This is the only checkpoint where you can cross with a car. The rest of the checkpoints are pedestrian only crossings.
 

If you have hired a car in the South, then you will need to purchase additional insurance plan for coverage in the North. At least this is the situation for now, though we have heard that the politicians are working on a unified insurance system as we speak. So if you have hired a car, and would like to purchase the additional insurance plan to drive on the North, that is great. However, it would still be a good idea to organize so that you can meet our driver at the checkpoint and follow him to the clinic so that you don’t get lost trying to find our clinic. While the clinic is located within 3/4 minutes driving distance from the car crossing point, it would still be more convenient to follow the driver at least for your first appointment. If you are not willing to pay for the additional insurance coverage, then we will be happy to send you the driver to meet you at the checkpoint for all your appointments.

Places of Interest

While you are in Cyprus, you might as well enjoy the natural beauties and fine dining! Below is a list of the main attractions you can fit into your short schedule:

Bellapais Monastery: This historical monastery is located in the beautiful village of Bellapais. It offers an amazing view of the entire coastal strip and has amazing reastaurants where you can enjoy the fine Turkish cuisine. Kybele restaurant is one such place.

Kyrenia Harbor: This historical harbor is one long strip with fine dining, cafes and pubs. The castle located next to the harbor offers a magnificent historical sight you should see.

El Sabor Latino: This restaurant offers a combination of good food, great Sangria, and the mystic ambiance of historical old town of Nicosia.

Lord’s Palace Sky Bar: If you want to enjoy a drink at a roof bar with 360 degrees of the view of beautiful Kyrenia, this is a great place to visit and have a good time.

Galabalik Fish Restaurant: This restaurant, located in Nicosia, is a very nice traditional fish restaurant with traditional cold and hot appetizers.

 

 
 
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