Cyprus // Lefkosia (South Nicosia) //

The Cyprus Police Museum

Just east of, and visible from, the main road (Leoforos Lemesou) into Lefkosia from the motorway, is one of those small specialist museums that can be an absolute delight. The Cyprus Police Museum is housed in a clean white building with appropriate blue trim which sits inside the main police HQ. You approach from Evangelou Floraki, a small street which runs parallel to the main road – if you can’t find the way in, ask at the main gate and they’ll give you directions. When you get to the entrance, just ring the bell. The museum was founded by the British in 1933 as the “Criminal Museum”, and was seen as the Cypriot equivalent of the Metropolitan Police’s famous “Black Museum”. After independence, it moved around, eventually settling in its current building in 2004. It includes all the sort of stuff you’d expect, from badges, truncheons, helmets, guns, riot shields and uniforms up to motorcycles, Black Marias and armoured cars, and some that you wouldn’t – for example, a room full of musical instruments. If you’re lucky the curator – a serving officer and very knowledgeable – will show you around.