Varosha – a town which once breathed life is today an epitome of screaming silence. Cross the metal fence and you can be in the midst of what is today called a ghost town. Just be careful not to get in sight of patrolling army because if they see you, they will do just one thing – shoot at sight! Such are the orders and army all over the world is known for following orders. So, what happened there? Why is the place deserted? What used to be there before it turned into a ghost town? Let us learn 16 interesting Vorasha ghost town facts and find answers to all these questions.
Interesting Varosha Ghost Town Facts: 1-16
1. Varosha was a resort town located in Famagusta district of north Cyprus.
2. The town sits in the southern section of the Cypriot city of the district.
3. From 1970 to 1974, it was one of the most popular tourist spots in entire world and the most popular tourist spot in Cyprus.
4. It was one of the most favorite spots for millionaires and celebrities like Brigitte Bardot, Raquel Weich and Richard Burton.
5. Those who had been there during its booming days described Varosha as hub for intellectual activity and art.
6. Many have compared it to French Riviera and attach a sense of romanticism to this small town.
7. During its peak years, the town was struggling to cope with the pressure of flooding tourists and hence, many high-rise hotel resorts were built.
8. The heyday didn’t last long and on July 20, 1974 Cyprus was invaded by Turkey because of an inter-ethnic violence that eventually ended as a military coup which was inspired by the military junta of Greece.
9. The entire population of Varosha evacuated the town hours before the Turkish army and the Greek Cypriot met each other on streets of Famagusta. The people of the town evacuated because they thought there would be a massacre.
10. The Turkish army gained control of the area and fenced it off. Only Turkish army and UN personnel were allowed and civilians were cut off completely.
11. In 1984 United Nations asked Turkey to handover Varosha to UN and prohibited resettlement by people other than those who originally lived there.
12. Turkish date refused to comply with UN’s orders and held Varosha as a bargain chip hoping that people of Cyprus will come to a settlement on Turkey’s terms.
13. One such settlement term was the Annan Plan but the majority of the Greek Cypriots rejected it. Thus Turkey continued to maintain its control over Varosha.
14. Devoid of any population, Varosha today stands completely deserted. Unstoppable forces of nature are gradually taking over the town.
15. Buildings have been damaged beyond repair over the last 4 decades and any efforts of reconstructing the area will mean flattening the entire town and reconstructing all over again.
16. Corroding metals, breaking walls and windows and tree roots gradually working their way through the walls are common sights. The calm and beautiful beaches have today become a nesting place for sea turtles.
So, that’s the story of Varosha ghost town which was once draped with life but today, it stands in absolute silence.