Abandoned Cyprus Ghost Town

Varosha – The Abandoned Ghost Town of Northern Cyprus

Varosha (or Maras) is a quarter in the city of Famagusta, in the Gazimagusa District of Northern Cyprus.

Abandoned Cyprus Ghost Town

Varosha was the most popular tourist destination in the world in the 1970’s and was visited by the rich and famous and everyone in between. With the increase of transient vacationers to Famagusta, the Varosha quarter grew and more hotels, high rise buildings, shops and stores were built. The most notable hotels of the time included the Argo Hotel, The Asterias, King George Hotel and the Grecian Hotel.

On July 20, 1974, the Greek Cypriot army and the Turkish army fought in the streets of Varosha. The 35,000 residents fearing death fled the area to the surrounding towns a few hours before the fighting began. The Turkish army gained control of the area of Varosha, fenced off the area and barred entry to anyone except for the Turkish military and United Nations personnel. The residence of Varosha were not allowed to return as they had hoped and instead were met with this barrier and the threat of being shot if they tried to enter. The Turkish state continued to hold Varosha in the attempt to persuade the people of Cyprus to agree to their terms of the invasion, none of which have been accepted.

Since 1974, Varosha has been abandoned and entry is still forbidden with the exception of the Turkish Armed Forces. No repairs or maintenance of any kind are performed on any of the buildings and they are slowly decaying and becoming one with nature.

Known celebrities to have visited Varosha during its prime included Raquel Welch, Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton.

Abandoned Cyprus Ghost Town

Abandoned Cyprus Ghost Town

Abandoned Cyprus Ghost Town

Abandoned Cyprus Ghost Town

Where is the abandoned ghost town of Varosha located? You can find it with these coordinates. 35.104857,33.960409.

Abandoned Cyprus Ghost Town

Images 1 and 6 used under Creative Commons License Attribution Share Alike 3.0 Unported. Images 1 and 6 by Ballantyne108 / Wikimedia.
Image 2 used under Creative Commons License Attribution No Derivs 2.0 Generic. Image 2 by Michael Kirian / Flickr.
Image 3 used under Creative Commons License Attribution Share Alike 3.0 Unported. Image 3 by Julienbzh35 / Wikimedia.
Images 4 and 5 used under
Creative Commons License Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 2.0 Generic. Images 4 and 5 by Sergej Fomin / Flickr.

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