A sculpture of one of the TRNC`s rare orchids was unveiled on Saturday as crowds gathered for the first ever Hisarkoy Orchid Festival.

The representation of the punctate orchid- one of 31 species of orchid endemic to Cyprus- has been created by Bahire Korol, Hulya Dimililer and Ceylan Dimililer, and occupies pride of place now in the village square.

Speaking at the unveiling of the sculpture, Lapta Mayor Fuat Namsoy said the artwork would become the symbol of Hisarkoy.

Mr Namsoy said most of the orchids unique to Cyprus grew around Hisarkoy and the importance of the village as a major attraction for tourists needed to be grasped.

It was important, he added, to instil in people an understanding of the need to protect orchids, and this was the reason behind the festival, staged by Lapta Municipality in tandem with Hisarkoy`s muhtar and the village`s Culture and Sports Association.

Festival activities after the unveiling included folk dance shows and a display by the Kibris Liners.

Flowers, various foods, jewellery and drinks were on sale at the event, which was attended by dignitaries including Finance Minister Ersin Tatar, Girne District Officer Gurkan Kara, Alsancak Mayor Yucel Atakara and UBP Girne deputy Mehmet Tancer.

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