Cyprus // North Cyprus //

The road to Buffavento

The castle is accessed from the main coast road east of Girne. Look out for the sign (“Buffavento 6km”) on the right, past Acapulco Beach. From Lefkoşa, take the main Gazimağusa road east, then take a left (signposted “Girne”) at a roundabout after 14km. Ignore earlier signs for Buffavento via Taskent – you’re better off sticking to the main roads. After the turn-off, a good road climbs for 13km up towards an impressive blade of a mountain (called Pentadaktylos because its five peaks look something like a hand) past a large quarry – you may have to overtake heavily laden lorries grinding along at barely walking speed – to the Buffavento turning.

The mountain road to the castle looks narrow and uninviting, and is easy to miss, but it’s well surfaced (not gravel as is sometimes reported) and meanders fetchingly off into the mountains. It certainly doesn’t, as some guidebooks say, require four-wheel drive. There are stretches where there are steep drops to the left and no guardrail, and in places you might have to dodge rocks that have fallen off the cliffs to the right, but it’s easy enough driving if you ignore the amazing views and keep your eyes on the road. After 6km a clear sign points up a steep hill to the castle car park.

20% off ebooks

Subscribe to the Rough Guides newsletter and get 20% off any ebook.

Join over 50,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month.