Do you remember the Berlin Wall? Well, Berlin is an amazing city, but what visitors found most memorable about Berlin until 1989, was its wall. There is still one divided capital city in the world: Nicosia, located in the center of Cyprus. It has a population of 300 thousand, and there is a border going through its very heart (through the old town, in fact), separating Cyprus from the Turkish Republic of Cyprus, also known as Northern Cyprus.The border is called the Green Line, and it is guarded by the United Nations' Blue-Helmet Soldiers. It is undeniably Nicosia's main attraction, although in 2003 it became a lot more open than it had been before. Now there are several border checkpoints, and citizens and tourists alike can freely move from one part into the other.
Nicosia is extremely old. In the first millennium BC it was known as the city state of Ledra. Then it saw armies and empires come and go for many centuries: The Romans, the Franks, and the Ottomans were there, and then the British made it the capital of the island in the 19th century. Fortunately for the people of today, most of those rulers left their own monuments as imprints on Nicosia, many of which can still be admired, giving the city a unique mythological flair. Especially the Venetian city wall, which surrounds the whole old town, is most spectacular. Then there is a huge variety of ancient churches and mosques.
Although Nicosia is divided, it is actually quite a peaceful place. Now, in the 21st century, nobody can imagine the outbreak of another war in Cyprus. Though, if the two parts of the country and the city are ever going to reunite is anybody's guess. However, in a way this has already happened - though trade and globalization. Nicosia is now a high-tech hot-spot and an innovator in many forms of modern technology. Its international business community is big - and growing. Being surrounded by mountains, Nicosia is very attractive for adventure tourists who like to climb or hike. With no less than five universities, Nicosia is also an important center of education, for the Greek side and the Turkish one alike.