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Limassol, Cyprus

limassol

Mayor: Mr. Nicos Nicolaides 

Population: 160,000 residents.

A brief history of the city

Limassol is located between the ancient cities Amathus and Curium, and was populated since ancient times. In 1191, King Richard the Lionheart liberated Cyprus from the Byzantine dominion, a campaign during which the nearby Amathus was destroyed and its residents were transferred to Limassol. For a period of about three centuries, Limassol enjoyed remarkable prosperity under various rulers, until the occupation of Cyprus by the Ottomans in AD 1570. The settlement of merchants in Limassol in the 13th century led to the financial welfare of its inhabitants and the development of the harbor as a center of transportation and commerce. The conquest of the city by the Turks brought with it devastation and destruction and a steep decline in the residents' situation.

The British took Cyprus over in 1878. The first British governor of Limassol was Colonel Warren. During that period the condition of the city improved, the roads were cleaned and fixed, and the port was rehabilitated. By the end of the 19th century, the city enjoyed industrialization and modernization, and the development of tourism began.

In 1975, the Turkish-Cyprian habitants of Limassol were transferred to northern Cyprus, due to the invasion of Turkey into Cyprus. At the same time, many Greek-Cyprian people who became refugees and fled from northern Cyprus, settled in Limassol. When the Turks conquered Cyprus' primary tourist center, Famagusta, Limassol became a major tourist and trade attraction.

General information and special features

Limassol is the second largest city in Cyprus, with the biggest merchandise port in the Middle East. It offers a unique mixture of ancient, Frankish, Byzantine and modern influences.

The city boasts a castle from approx. AD 1000, which had a chapel in which Richard the Lionheart married Berengaria. After an earthquake levelled the chapel, a new Gothic-style church was erected in its stead. The city also has a public park with a zoo.

Culture

Limassol is renowned for its long-standing cultural tradition. Visitors can enjoy a wide variety of activities and a large number of museums and archeological sites, such as the Archeological Museum, the Folk Art Museum, the Medieval Museum, and a municipal art gallery.

The Haifa-Limassol Twin Cities Treaty was signed on September 9, 2000