The Rules of Cyprus: A Guide to the Cultural Norms

The Rules of Cyprus: A Guide to the Cultural Norms

The Rules of Cyprus: A Guide to the Cultural Norms

The Rules of Cyprus: A Guide to the Cultural Norms


When traveling to a new country, it is important to familiarize yourself with the rules and cultural norms of that destination. Following these guidelines not only shows respect for the local culture but also helps ensure a smoother and more enjoyable experience. In this article, we will explore the rules and cultural norms of Cyprus, a fascinating Mediterranean island known for its rich history, stunning beaches, and warm hospitality.

Key Elements

Element 1: Greeting Etiquette

In Cyprus, greetings play an important role in social interactions. When meeting someone for the first time, it is customary to shake hands and maintain eye contact. In more informal settings, Cypriots often greet each other with a warm embrace and a kiss on both cheeks.

Element 2: Respect for Religion

Cyprus is a predominantly Greek Orthodox country, and religion holds deep significance in the lives of many Cypriots. Visitors should be respectful when visiting churches, monasteries, and other religious sites. Modest attire is expected, and it is customary to remove hats and sunglasses upon entering these places.

Element 3: Dining Etiquette

Cypriots value the act of sharing a meal, and dining experiences often revolve around generosity and hospitality. It is important to arrive on time for meals and bring a small gift, such as a bottle of wine or sweets, to show appreciation to the host. During the meal, it is polite to try a little bit of everything and to compliment the cook.

Element 4: Driving Laws

If you plan to drive in Cyprus, familiarize yourself with the local driving regulations. In Cyprus, driving is on the left side of the road, and the use of seat belts is mandatory for all passengers. The country also has strict laws on driving under the influence of alcohol, with a low legal blood alcohol limit of 0.22 mg/ml.

Element 5: Respect for the Environment

Cyprus is home to breathtaking natural landscapes, and it is important to respect and preserve this beauty. Avoid littering, and make sure to dispose of waste responsibly. Additionally, refrain from taking shells or other natural souvenirs from beaches or protected areas, as it is illegal and damages the fragile ecosystems.

Element 6: Photography Etiquette

While capturing memories through photography is a common practice, it is important to be respectful when taking pictures in Cyprus. Avoid photographing people without their consent, particularly in religious or private settings. Additionally, some cultural and religious sites may have restrictions on photography, so be sure to check for any signage or inquire with the site staff.

Tips for Traveling

Now that we have explored some of the key rules and cultural norms of Cyprus, here are a few practical tips to consider when traveling to the country:

  1. Research Local Customs: Before your trip, take the time to research and understand the local customs and traditions in Cyprus. This will help you navigate social situations with ease and show respect for the local culture.

  2. Dress Appropriately: Cyprus has a warm Mediterranean climate, but it is important to dress appropriately for different situations. When visiting religious sites or attending formal events, opt for more conservative attire to show respect.

  3. Learn Some Basic Greek Phrases: While English is widely spoken in tourist areas, it is always appreciated when visitors make an effort to learn a few basic Greek phrases. Simple greetings and expressions of gratitude can go a long way in forming connections with locals.

  4. Observe Local Laws: Familiarize yourself with the local laws and regulations, especially when it comes to driving, alcohol consumption, and drug possession. It is crucial to abide by these laws to ensure a safe and hassle-free trip.

  5. Be Respectful of Personal Space: Cypriots value personal space, so make sure to maintain a comfortable distance when interacting with locals. Avoid physical contact unless initiated by the other person.

  6. Tipping Culture: Tipping is customary in Cyprus, with 10% being the general guideline for restaurants and cafes. However, it is always a good idea to check whether a service charge has already been included in the bill.


Please note that the information provided in this article is for informational purposes only. While we strive to provide accurate and up-to-date information, rules and cultural norms can vary and may change over time. It is always recommended to seek professional advice and consult official sources, such as embassy websites or travel guides, before traveling to Cyprus.

By familiarizing yourself with the rules and cultural norms of Cyprus, you can ensure a respectful and rewarding travel experience on this beautiful Mediterranean island. Whether you are exploring historical sites, relaxing on the beaches, or indulging in delicious Cypriot cuisine, embracing the local customs will enhance your journey and create lasting memories.