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DOUBLE TREE PIYALEPASA BY HILTON
- Star: *****
- Region: Istanbul - Beyoglu
- Distance to airport: Ataturk (IST), 30 Km / 30 Minutes
- Distance to city centre: Beyoğlu, 0 Km / 0 Minutes
- Distance to sea: 0 / 0
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Places to visit
While in Antalya, if you have the opportunity, we recommend that you visit the Antalya Museum. Suleyman Fikri Erten founded the museum in 1922. It was initially inside the Aladdin Mosque located at the Fortress. It was then moved to the Yivli Minaret and finally moving to its present location in 1972. It was the recipient of Council of Europe Special Jury Award in 1988. The museum has 13 exhibition halls, outdoor galleries and a garden. The majority of the collection is made up of ethnographic works of art found during archeological digs in the Antalya region. The sculptures from the Roman Empire are among the most impressive works that can be found at the museum. Archeologists from the USA, Germany, France, England, Austria and Turkey continue to conduct research in the area and the Museum experts conduct the coordination of these efforts. The exhibition halls trail the history of the first inhabitors of Antalya to the present day and include thousands of years of chronological data and information.
• Taking photographs and videos are permitted. However, for professional shoots, permission must be obtained from the museum.
• The museum has a library;; however, books are not loaned out.
Make sure to include the Antalya Museum on your visit list!
Antalya Museum: Konyaalti Caddesi - Antalya Tel: (0242)-2414528
Yivli Minaret (Alaaddin Mosque, Center):
It is located in the city center of Antalya at Kalekapisi. It was built as a Bzyantine church in 1230 and converted into a mosque around 1225. It was destroyed and rebuilt in 14th century.The minaret of the mosque which is 38m high is the symbol of the city.
Kesik Minare Mosque (Broken Minaret, Korkut Mosque - Cami - i Kebir, Center):
It is in the Kaleici area in the center of Antalya. It was built as a Roman temple in 2. century A.D and did not have a minaret at that time. There was another Bzyantine church was built nearby in 600s. Then it turned into a mosque when Seljuk Turkish Empire conquered Antalya. That’s when the minaret was built. In 1846 it was destroyed by a big fire and abandoned.
Aspendos was founded by colonists coming from Argos. It was once the most important city of this area. The visible ruins are from the Roman era. The theatre which is a perfect example of the work of Roman architects is still active and used for concerts and other cultural activities. It was built by the architect Zenon and can hold up to 30000 people. It has been hosting Aspendos International Opera and Ballet Festival Aspendos since 1994. Besides the theatre there is a stadium which is one of the best preserved structures of the city. Agora, Basilica and Nymphaeum are the other places to see. Aspendos is located 48km east of Antalya and can be reached by taking a right turn after passin Serik on Antalya-Alanya road while driving towards Alanya.
Arykanda is located in Finike which is a lovely small town of Antalya. It is thought that people used to live here since 2000 B.C but the oldest coins found have been dated to the 5. century B.C. The bath complex, Agora, Theatre, odeon, stadium and necropolises are some interesting structures to see here. It is on the 17th kilometer on Finike-Elmalı Road while driving towards Elmalı.
It is located 92 km north-east of Antalya. The river ”Köprü Çay” is the most important part of national park which born from Taurus Mountains at the South of Eðridir Lake. Its valley is about 120 km and the river flows towards south showing different beautiful panorama. To reach to the sea, Köprüçay River has engraved and brought into view a wonderland at this part of countries in hundred of years. This valley is the longest canyon of Turkey which is 14 km long and 100-400 m height. This canyon ends in Olukköprü which is important for local transportation in present time. In the last few years it is not allowed passing lorries and tractors over the ancient Roman bridge that spans the river like a necklace. The Köprüpazari Stream winds through the valley, forming the finest rafting site in the whole Mediterranean region. At the same time, all those interested in nature, trekking and line fishing will find much to interest them here.
It is located inside a beautiful garden in Caybasi Mahallesi. It is not known when it was built but its architectural characteristic tells us that it is from the 16th or 17th century.
According to the inscription of the medrese, it was built near Korkuteli Alaaddin Mosque by El Emin Sinaneddin Chalis in 719 H.
Olympos is a valley at the south coast of Turkey, 90 km southwest of Antalya city near the Town of Kemer. Olympos was a member of the Lycian Union. Its coins date back to the 2nd century BC.
The entrance to the ancient city of Olympos on the cove of Adrasan can be reached by car. This area is a national park. Many drinkable water sources may be found in the area and this encourages the growth of different herbs and trees. However; these herbs and trees has destroyed or obscured many of the ruins. On the other side of the river there was a Byzantine basilica and a theatre that seated 3.000 people, though now only its gate is visible.
Near Olympos, located in the neighboring village of Çıralı the eternal flames called the Chimaera may be seen issuing from the ground. The fuel source for the flames is natural gas, largely methane, seeping through cracks in the earth.
During your visit, you can see tombs, a temple, the ruins of churches, parts of an ancient aqueduct, and tombs hewn into the rocks. Olympos has the perfect environment for trekking, mountain biking, canoeing, rock climbing, sea kayaking. It is possible to rent equipment in the village or to join organized tours.
To get to the ancient city of Perge, follow the Antalya-Alanya road fifteen kilometers to Aksu, where you turn left at the signpost for the site. The ancient city is two kilometers from the main road.
Perge was the capital of the Pamphylia region and is believed to have been built in the 13th to 12th centuries BC. . After coming under Lydian and Persian rule, the city surrendered to Alexander the Great in 334 BC. The brightest era of the city was during the reign of the Romans in the 2nd to 3rd centuries AD. All the visible remains of the city date from this era. There are excavations continuing on the site. Perge is today an archaeological site and a major tourist attraction.
After passing through the entrance you will see a Byzantine basilica. After the basilica comes the agora and on the left there are baths. Among the cities of Pamphylia the largest and most beautiful baths were to be found in Perge. As you keep walking, you will see two tall walls that run parallel to each other. These walls, the symbol of Perge, arc dated to the 3rd century BC. After the Hellenistic gate comes a 300-metre-long colonnaded street ending at the nympheum beneath the acropolis. To the left of the street is a 79x79 meter palaestra (open square) dedicated to Emperor Claudius (41-54 AD) by Julius Cornutus. It is in good condition and located to the north of the acropolis on a flat plateau.
The theatre, away from the historical site, is the first view of the city from the road approaching the entrance. The 15,000-seat theatre has been restored and re-opened to visitors. Behind the theatre is the large and impressive stadium, one of the best-preserved of the ancient world and the second-largest after the stadium in the ancient city of Aphrodisias.
Phaselis is an ancient Lycian city in the province of Antalya in Turkey. It is located between the Bey Mountains and the forests of Olympos National Park, 16 km west of the touristic town of Kemer and on the 57th kilometer of the Antalya–Kumluca highway.
This port city, founded in 693 BC, though overgrown with pine and cedar trees, is easily visited. Phaselis in history was an important port city. The city had three ports, one of which was at the entrance in the north. To its right there is a small port, the middle of the three, which was known as "war" or "protected" Port. At the end of Port Street comes the port of “sun", now an anchoring spot for blue cruise boats. Phaselis was the oldest settlement in the region and, through its trading activities, the port rapidly developed and prospered. It joined the Lycian Union and became one of its important cities. With the weakening of the league, Phaselis shared the fate of other port cities and fell under the control of pirates until the Roman Empire began to dominate the region. In the Byzantine period it became a bishopric. It retained its importance until the 3rd century AD and declined after that.
For protection from pirate attacks, the city was surrounded by walls which we can see traces of today. At the entrance to Phaselis is the aqueduct used to carry water from the Taurus Mountains to the city. The most important thoroughfare of the city was Port Street, still impressive today with its width of 20-24 meters.
Hadrian's Gate is to the south of the street and the entrance to the port, and a small amphitheatre is located on a hill facing out to the sea. On the top of the hill there is an acropolis and next to the port to the south an agora can be seen.
Concealed by a multitude of wild plants and bounded by dense pine forests, the site, with its peaceful and untouched appearance, has a more distinct and impressive atmosphere than other ancient cities. Because of its natural and historical riches, the city has been included in a National Park bearing its name.Termessos, one of the best-preserved ancient cities in Turkey, was built between two peaks on Güllük Mountain. The site of the city is 1,050 meters above sea level and spread over a wide area.
In ancient inscriptions the people of Termessos referred to themselves as the Solims, an old Pamphylian tribe. The language they spoke was a unique dialect of Psidia. Termessos first left its mark in history when Alexander the Great surrounded it in 334 BC, and the residents successfully defied the invader. Arrian, one of the ancient historians who dealt with this event and recorded the strategic importance of Termessos, notes that even a small force could easily defend it due to the insurmountable natural barriers surrounding the city. Because he knew he could not capture the city, Alexander did not undertake an assault, but instead marched north and vented his fury on Sagalassos.
The city enjoyed a period of prosperity during the Hellenistic and Roman periods, but there is little information available on its subsequent life in the Christian era. Termessos was an ally of Rome, and so in 71 B.C was granted independent status by the Roman Senate; according to this law its freedom and rights were guaranteed. This independence was maintained continuously for a long time. The end of Termessos came when its aqueduct was crushed in an earthquake, destroying the water supply to the city. It was abandoned in (year unknown) - a fact that does much to account for its remarkable state of preservation today
The remains of Termessos are mostly scattered across the thick rnaquis and forest area. It is hard work to find the points of interest without a guide, but you can still trace them by studying the general park plan (there is one at the site).
To get to Karain Cave, take the Korkuteli road, turning left OPPOSITE the entrance to the National Park and driving another eleven kilometers. The cave, which is in the hamlet of Döşemealtı and near the village of Yağca, was a prehistoric settlement. The cave at a height of about 370 m from the sea and about 80 m up the slope, has three passages linked to each other and a narrow entrance on the side of Çam (Katran) Mountain facing the Mediterranean. The first space is believed to have been used as a living area, the second as a cemetery, and the third, which is very narrow, as a shelter. As you move deeper into the cave, in the second and third galleries you can see stalagmites and stalactites. Karain Cave is one million years old and was utilized in the Paleolithic and Iron ages. The wall inscriptions and archaeological finds show that it was a religious centre in the Hellenistic and Roman periods. Excavations and scientific research are still continuing at the Karain Cave and some of the finds are exhibited at the museum near the entrance.
Alanya Castle (Alanya Kalesi) is a medieval castle in the southern Turkish city of Alanya. Most of the castle was built in the 13th century under the Seljuk Sultanate of Rûm following the city's conquest in 1220 by Alaeddin Keykubad I as part of a building campaign that included the Kızıl Kule. Today the building is an open air museum. Access to the seaward castle is ticketed, but much of the area inside the wall, including the landward castle is open to the general public.
After the Kızıl Kule and Tersane, you come to the Alanya Fortress. To reach the fortress on foot takes about forty-five minutes, though there are frequent minibuses running there. Even if you take a minibus or taxi, you should walk at least part of the way back to enjoy the fortress tour. Other sights include the Arap Evliya, an 11th century Byzantine church converted to a mosque; the Süleymaniye Mosque; and right next to it the restored bedesten (covered market) that is now a hotel, restaurant, bar, and cafeteria. Next there is the Ehmedek, where the fortress commander used to reside, as well as the small Alanya houses dating from the Ottoman and Seljuk eras, the mescid (small mosque) of the Akşebe Sultan, and the sultan's tomb. On the left, a water cistern covered with red tiles is the largest of the 400 cisterns within the fortress and still in use. One of the most important works that has survived to our day is a Byzantine church that was used as a mescid in the Seljuk era.
Antalya is Turkey's leading tourism center and one of the most important tourism centers in the world.. You start your Antalya visit at the historical city centre, which includes Hadrian's Gate, the Hidirlik Tower, the Yivli Minaret, the Kesik Minaret, and Kaleici (old Antalya), with its narrow streets, historic houses, and the ancient port. All are within an area of one square kilometer. You can cover all this on foot, which is the best option as cars are banned on certain streets.
The Hadrian's Gate (or Hadrianus Gate or The Three Gates (meaning "Üçkapılar" in Turkish) is a triumphal arch which was built in the name of the Roman emperor Hadrian, who visited Antalya in 130 A.D. It has three arched gates. According to the legend, Sultan Belkis, the Queen of Sheba, is said to have passed under those gates and enjoyed a happy day in the palace in Aspendos on her way to visit King Solomon. According to the famed traveller Evliya Çelebi, the historical city was surrounded by 4.5 kilometres of walls. The walls of the fortress and towers were strengthened during the Seljuk period, surrounding the whole port area. At the southeast end of the walls, the two-storey Hidirlik Tower stands fourteen metres high. You can get there from Hadrian's Gate by following Hesapçı Street down to the seaside.
Once you enter Kaleiçi one of the monuments that will attract your attention is the Yivli ("Fluted") Minaret, the symbol of Antalya. The 37-metre-high brick minaret has eight chamfers or turns. In was built by the Selçuk Sultan Alaaddin Keykubat I.
Another interesting monument in old Antalya, Kaleici, is the Kesik Minaret. The building was originally a 5th century church dedicated to the Virgin Mary. Later the son of Sultan Beyazid II, Korkut, had it converted into a mosque. The original wooden minaret burned down in 1986 and it has since been known as the Kesik Truncated) Minaret.
Now it is time to move towards the port area through the narrow streets of Kaleici. The district can be visited at all hours of the day but the best time is towards the evening. Many of Kaleici's historic houses and mansions have been restored and several are used as hotels, pensions, bars, and shops. Most shops offer gifts and souvenirs aimed at the tourist market. Most hotels, restaurants, and bars in Kaleici have an inner courtyard under the orange trees, the ideal spot for a drink with lots of ice. There are also many cafeterias, bars, and restaurants that overlook the walls.
The old port of Antalya was restored in the 1980s and this restoration work received the European Council Golden Apple award. You will come across many boats anchored in the port. You can take one for an excursion to the nearby waterfalls via the dolmuş system (where you wait for enough passengers to fill the boat) or hire one yourself.
Kaleiçi nights are colourful. You can get carried away by the inviting music coming from the side streets; you can sip your drink or dance in bars and restaurants with live music and late closing hours; you can make friends with people of many different nationalities: Turk, German, Russian and Italian…
For a panoramic view over the city of Antalya, take the Korkuteli turnoff and drive three kilometers to the Düzlerçamı Park. Then continue to Güveruçurumu Section Three for a view of the city, the pearl of Turkish tourism.
On a stream running through pine forest and a valley covered with thick vegetation, twenty-four kilometers from Antalya, there is a recreation area under the national park authority with small and large waterfalls, lakes, viewing terraces, and walking paths. There are small lakes where you can look at water lilies and see ducks and fish swimming.After this, you can observe the cool waters running into a cave and then bursting into a waterfall before your eyes, as the water drops turn to gold in the sunlight. Walks on the paths that follow the stream and run all around the valley are another source of joy. Or you can climb on the trees that stretch their branches over the running water, cross the bridges and, if all this is not enough for you, you can walk beside the stream as it runs through the valley. The reward for this walk is to rest in the rustic restaurants and coffee houses around the waterfall after the excursion. To get to Kurşunlu Waterfall, follow the Antalya-Alanya road and take the turn onto the NEW İsparta road after seventeen kilometers. Then follow the signposts for seven kilometers to the site.
The Hadrian's Gate (or Hadrianus Gate or The Three Gates (meaning "Üçkapılar" in Turkish) is a triumphal arch which was built in the name of the Roman emperor Hadrian, who visited Antalya in 130 A.D. It has three arched gates. According to the legend, Sultan Belkis, the Queen of Sheba, is said to have passed under those gates and enjoyed a happy day in the palace in Aspendos on her way to visit King Solomon.
Hamam of the antic agora, remaining from 5th and 6th century A. D., against the agora, which belongs to Roman Period, is restored on 1960 / 61, and turned into a museum.
Most of the pieces of art exhibited within the Museum, are the findings revealed during the excavations performed between 1947 and 1967 in Side antic city by Prof. Dr. Arif Müfid Mansel. From Hellenistic, Roman and Byzantium Period; inscriptions, gun relieves, Statues, torsos, tombs, portraits, ostotexes, amphorae, altars, tomb stalls, column heads and column pedestals, which are the copies of Greek originals, built in Roman Period, are being exhibited.
Side Antique City
Side, which is 7 km. away from Manavgat, is an ancient settlement center. Side, which is mentioned by historians as founded in 1405 A. D., had met with the reigns of Lydian, Persian, Alexander The Great's, Antiogonous's, Ptolemaioses, respectively beginning from the second half of VI th century A. D. After 215 A. D., The city, which is improved under supervision of Syrian Kingdom, and turned into a science and cultural center, had left to Bergama Kingdom on A. D. with Apameia peace, then had protected its independence with Eastern Pamphilya region, and reached to a great richness and prosperity with a huge commercial fleet.
It entered under Byzantium reign after Roman reign after 78 B. C. Side, which was a Bishop center during Vth and VIth centuries, had lived its greatest times during these years.
Main gate of the city, which has a unique labor, is between two towers. There are two main streets in Side province. These streets are samples of columned streets of Ancient Age. After passing city gate, flat stones adorned area is the starting point of this street. There are columned porticos beside both sides of these streets, and shops behind them.
There is a "Nymphaeum", biggest historical fountain of Anatolia, against city gate, outside ramparts. A wide pool place is below this foundation. You can reach to a monumental structure, passing through a street after theater. This building with dimensions of 100x100 m., is an agora which is the Bazaar area of the city, surrounded by porticos and there are shops at three sides of it. There is a Gymnasium, surrounded by porticos and composed of three halls, on the street, south side of the Agora. In the main street at North - south direction, there is an arched structure, constructed during Roman Period. Importance of Side city's theater, in connection with architecture, is its construction on arched places instead of a slope of a hill like other roman theaters.
Theater, which is composed of three divisions, cavea, orchestra and scene, is the biggest and most monumental one among Pamphylia theaters, and has a capacity of 20.000 spectators.
There are wide cemeteries outside of Side's ramparts, and most important one of these, Western Necropolis, is 1,5 km. away. There are also temples and aqueducts in Side. Most important ones of the temples are Athena, Apollon and Men temples. Water of side is brought from Dumanlı source, within Oymapınar Dam Lake, approximately 25 km. away. This water transportation system is composed of ten aqueducts, of which some of them are two layered. Biggest one is near to Oymapınar and has 40 specs.
A huge Roman Hamam is turned into a museum, and hosts for most beautiful archeological pieces of art collection of the region. The city, which is reigned by Seljukians during the 13th century, Hamitoğulları and Tekelioğulları during the 14th century, and finally Ottoman Empire during the 15th century, was not a settlement during this period.
Although most parts of the city ramparts, which are holding structure and characteristics of Roman and Byzantium periods, has been demolished today, nearly all of the ramparts at land side had remained
Alaçatı (also known as Agrilia) is a unique Aegean town on the western coast of İzmir Province in Turkey, which has been famous for its architecture, vineyards and windmills for over 150 years. It has now made its name in the world of windsurfing and kitesurfing, with its crystal clear water, consistent and steady wind and well acclaimed Turkish hospitality.
Bodrum Castle (Bodrum Kalesi), located in southwest Turkey in the city of Bodrum, was built by the Knights Hospitaller starting in 1402 as the Castle of St. Peter or Petronium. The chapel was reconstructed in Gothic style by Spanish Knights in 1519-1520. Their names can be found on two cornerstones of the façade.
Each tongue of the Order had its own tower, each in his own style and the French tower being the tallest. Each tongue, each headed by a bailli, was responsible for the maintenance and defence of a specific portion of the fortress and responsible for manning it with sufficient numbers of knights and soldiers. For over a century St. Peter's Castle remained the second most important castle of the Order. It served as a refuge for all Christians in Asia Minor.
In June 1522 Suleiman the Magnificent attacked the Order's headquarters in Rhodes from the Bay of Marmaris with 200,000 soldiers. The castle of Rhodes fell in December 1522. The terms of surrender included the handing over of the Knights' fortresses in Kos and St Peter's Castle in Bodrum.
After the surrender, the chapel was turned into a mosque and a minaret was added. This mosque was called the Süleymaniye Camii, as attested by a traveler Evliya Chelebi, who visited Bodrum in 1671. The minaret was destroyed on 26 May 1915 by rounds fired by a French warship during the World War I. It has been reconstructed in its original shape in 1997.
In 1962 the Turkish Government decided to turn the castle into a museum for the many underwater discoveries of ancient shipwrecks in the Aegean Sea. This has become the Bodrum Museum of Underwater Archaeology, with a vast collection of amphoras, ancient glass, bronze, clay, iron items. It is the biggest of its kind devoted to underwater archaeology. Most of its collection dates from underwater excavations after 1960.
The garden inside the castle is a collection of almost every plant and tree of the Mediterranean region, some of which have a mythological significance : the myrtle was dedicated to Aphrodite.
Miletus was an ancient city on the western coast of Anatolia (in what is now Aydin Province, Turkey), near the mouth of the Maeander River in ancient Caria. Evidence of first settlement at the site has been made inaccessible by the rise of sea level and deposition of sediments from the Maeander.
The first available evidence is of the Neolithic. Miletus is south of Söke. The ruin lies 5 kilometers north of Akkoy and near to Balat village. Recorded history at Miletus begins with the records of the Hittite Empire in the Late Bronze Age. The prehistoric archaeology of the Early and Middle Bronze Age portray a city heavily influenced by society and events elsewhere in the Aegean, rather than inland. The city of Miletus became one of the twelve Ionian cities of Asia Minor.
Miletus was an important center of philosophy and science, producing such men as Thales, Anaximander and Anaximenes.
Seljuk Turks settled into the city in the 12th century A.D. and used Miletus as a port to trade with Venice. Finally, Ottomans utilized the city as a harbour during their rule in Anatolia. As the harbour became silted up, the city was abandoned. Today the ruins of city lie some 10 kilometres from the sea.
The main collection of artifacts is in the Miletus Museum in Didim, Aydın.
Didim, home of the antique city of Didyma with its ruined Temple of Apollo, is a small town, popular seaside holiday resort and district of Aydın Province on the Aegean coast of western Turkey, 123 km (76 mi) from the city of Aydın. Didyma settled in the Neolithic period, established as colony of Mycenae and then Crete in the 16th century BC. Didim was brought into the Ottoman Empire by Mehmet I in 1413.
Today, Didim became a very popular holiday resort and is genuinely attractive with its long sandy beaches, clear blue sea, ancient ruins to visit, and its own microclimate, benefitting from hundreds of days of sun a year and warm winters, allowing residents to enjoy the famous beaches and water sports even in January. Perhaps the most attractive bays are the smaller quieter ones further from the centre, such as Haydar, along a dirt road around the shore of Akbük (white bay). In the evenings, visitors try to find somewhere quiet to sit by the sea and look at the lights of other towns across the water, but for those of a more energetic nature, Didim has a number of discotheques, smaller bars and clubs, some with live music, mostly Türkü (Turkish folk music).
For many the most dramatic feature is the ruins of the Ionic Temple of Apollo with its columns pointing up into the sky, and its legend of the romance between Apollo and Daphne. The original temple and home of an oracle was destroyed during the Persian Wars and the one we see today was rebuilt following the victory over the Persians of Alexander the Great. Nearby Miletos, the ruins of the ancient city including a well-preserved antique theatre, stadium, baths of Faustina, temple of Serapis and much more.
It's over the River Seyhan. It was constructed by the Roman Emperor Hadrianus in the IV.th century (385). It was an important bridge between Europa and Asia for centuries. Harun Reşit (766-809) joined it to Adana Castle with some addings. At the beginning of the IXth century, Memun, who was Harun Reşit's son and the 7 th Abbasian caliph had it repaired. It was repaired by Ahmet III. (1713), Kel Hasan Pasha (1847), Ziya Pasha, the Governor of Adana Province (1789) at different times. The epigraphs of these three repairings are present today. The last repairing was constructed in 1949. It is 319 metres long and 30 metres high. The 14 out of the 21 bridges are still standing. Two lion relieves can be seen on the big bridge in the middle. It's known that it's the oldest bridge of the world which is still in use.
Halil Bey had it constructed in the period of Ramazanoğlu Lordliness in 1507. It was enlarged with a building extention in 1541. Halil Bey's tomb is here. The Grand Mosque was constructed with the shaped stones.
The monumental portal, on which there are a line of inscriptions with large text-writing framed, is curved and oister niches. The minaret next to portal with eight corners is an interesting sample of its time.
The museum was established in 1924. Because it exhibites the remains of Kahramanmaraş, Gaziantep, Mersin, Yumuktepe, Tarsus Gözlükule and Missis diggings besides Çukurova, it's also in the position of a regional museum. The most attractive one among many important works in the museum is Tarhunda's statue on a car, who was a Hittite's God and belonged to 7 th century BC. Besides this, the museum is famous for its coins.
In the museum, which is in Kuruköprü district of Adana, there are ethnographical works belonged to Turkoman tribes who lived in Çukurova and Islamic stone works. This building, where there is the museum now, was built as a church. During the invasion of French, it was used as the French Military Hospital, later it served as the Local Museum. It has been serving as an Ethnographical Museum after the Local Museum was moved to its present building.
Saklikent (Hidden City) Gorge is the second-largest (20 km-long) gorge in Europe, the longest and deepest gorge in Turkey and is located by Fethiye. Saklikent Gorge is so steep and narrow that the sun cannot not penetrate the water which makes it very cold even in summer. Summer is the best time to visit Saklikent because of the deliciously cool water and the splendid view of the walls. A total of 15 caves have been found in the walls of Saklikent. It is found that these caves were used as shelter in ancient times. While walking through Saklikent you generally have to go into the cold water sometimes 2 meters high. On the way you can take a quick shower under small waterfalls. But it is impossible to reach to the end of the canyon due to the natural conditions. At the trials up to today, only professional technical teams could reach to the end of the Canyon by the help of security belts.
Saklıkent is one hour from Antalya city center on the lower slopes of Mount Bakırlı which is 2547 m in height, and it is a corner of Antalya province and the world whose equal is rarely to be found with its suitability for winter and outdoor sports and its proximity to the city. The skiing season is approximately the same period as that of other ski centers in Turkey. The season opens at the end of December and provides enthusiasts with the chance to ski until the middle of April.
Ephesus was an ancient Greek city on the west coast of Anatolia, near present day Selçuk, Izmir province, Turkey. It was one of the twelve cities of the Ionian League during the Classical Greek period.
The city was famed for the Temple of Artemis (completed around 550 BCE), one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. The Temple was destroyed in 401 CE by a mob led by St. John Chrysostom. Emperor Constantine I rebuilt much of the city and erected new public baths. The town was again partially destroyed by an earthquake in 614. The city's importance as a commercial center declined as the harbor was slowly silted up by the Cayster River (Küçük Menderes).
Ephesus was one of the seven churches of Asia that are cited in the Book of Revelation. The Gospel of John may have been written here.
Şirince is a village of 600 inhabitants located 8km east of the town Selcuk.
From the town of Selcuk, a winding road takes you further up the mountains through green countryside to this corner of paradise. Perched High in the hills surrounded by vineyards, peach orchards and olive groves, Sirince is one of the most picturesque villages on the Aegean coast.
Most of the houses in Sirince were built around the 19th century or earlier when Sirince was predominantly a Greek village, today some of them have been restored and turned into pensions for over-night guests.
Souvenir shops, an open market, a dozen restaurants and a few guest houses scatter the pretty cobbled streets of the village. Although tourism has come into the village, farming remains the foremost activity. Villagers make olive oil, and grow some of the best peaches in the country.
Sirince is probably most famous for it’s wine production. You see many wine houses around where you can taste the many sorts of grape and fruit wines they make there.
Greek writer Dido Sotiriyo in his book, “Greetings to Anatolia“: “If there is a paradise on earth, then our Sirince is surely part of it.”
As well as a mosque, there are also two churches in Sirince. The St John Baptist church, set in a beautiful courtyard with a fountain, is currently being restored by the ministry of culture of Turkey.
Dikili is a coastal town and a district of İzmir Province in the Aegean Region of Turkey. The district is quite picturesque both along its shoreline and in its interior parts and is a popular summer resort. The center town of Dikili is situated at about 120 km (75 mi) north of İzmir, served by a good road. The notable township of Çandarlı (ancient Pitane) is a depending center and is located close to Dikili.
The whole area of the district abounds in places of natural beauty as well as spots of historical interest. There is a crater lake in Merdivenli village, and ancient caverns in Demirtaş and Delitaş villages as well as pine forests extending towards the Madra Stream. The area is also famous for its thermal springs, which are in Nebiler, Bademli and Kocaoba villages. Furthermore, the beaches in Bademli and Denizköy localities are important touristic attractions of the region. Dikili has a fine port large enough to accommodate three passenger ships simultaneously, and the port has good land transport connections. Another must see is the Merkez Mosque which is a rare example of a wooden construction dating from 1789. Its particularity is in having been built without using any nails in the construction.
A small islet within Dikili district (called Garip Adası locally, with ancient sources also citing the name Argounissai) made international headlines in April 2007. The islet is offered for sale by its proprietors.
A river flows through the Köprülü Canyon; ancient name of it was Eurymedon River but nowadays it is called as Köprüçay River. It has its source in Lake District, a region where big and little lakes are twinkling with their blue eyes under the hot sun. Brooks having their sources from Sari Idris Mountain on southern east of the Eğirdir Lake constitute its initial branches. It flows through canyons which are shaped by it through carving soft marls (carbonate and clay mixture) massed by the Mediterranean Sea millions years ago and it passes through the Taurus Mountains. Köprülü Canyon is one of the seven canyons carved by the Köprüçay, 183 kilometers in length, before emptying into the Mediterranean Sea. Surrounded by steep rocks, this canyon is 14 kilometers in length and depth of this canyon valley is more than 100 meters and it even reaches to several hundred meters in some places. There is a single-arch bridge in height of 27 meters.
Die Zeytintasi Höhle wurde zufällig bei der Errichtung einer neuen Galerie für ein Bergwerk entdeckt. Sie ist eine sehr interessante Höhle, die mit kleinen aber unzerstörten Tropfsteinen reichhaltig besät ist. Dadurch, dass der Eingang der Höhle sofort geschlossen und die Höhle unter Schutz gestellt wurde, konnte es verhindert werden, dass die Tropfsteine innerhalb der Höhle zerstört wurden. Das Innere der Zeytintasi Höhle, die sich in 16 Km Entfernung vom Zentrum des Kreises Serik der Provinz Antalya oefindet, ist voll mit Tropfsteinen jeder Art, die herrlich aussehen. Nach den Untersuchungen, die von Fachleuten durchgeführt wurden, gibt es diese Stalaktitenbildungen in sonst keiner anderen Höhle. Insbesondere sind die ^ludel-Stalaktite, die sich überall in der -öhle bilden und teilweise eine Länge von 0,5 m erreichen, die charakteristischen Merkmale der Zeytintasi Höhle. Diese Baby-Stalaktiten, die sich noch im Wachstum befinden, kann man nicht in jeder Höhle in unserem Land antreffen. Die vielen kleinen Seen, die sich zwischen den großen Säulen befinden, verleihen dem Aussehen der Höhle zusätzlich eine interessante Komponente. Die wilde Schönheit der natürlichen Umgebung, die leichte Anfahrt, die Nähe zur Strasse zwischen Antalya und Alanya und nach Akarayolu und Aspendos hat den touristischen Wert der Höhle noch mehr erhöht.
It is another important Pamphilian city located on 5 km of the road turning north from 29 km of the Antalya-Alanya highway. It was founded on a hill between the cities of Perga and Aspendos and this acropolis could be seen from both of these cities. Foundation of the city is associated with the migration wave after the Trojan War. Like the other Pamphylia cities, Mopsos and Kalchas are considered as the legendary founders of the city. In 333 B.C. the city was occupied by Macedonian Alexander the Great and he constituted headquarter in the city. In Persian period, Silyon was used as a defensive castle. The best conserved Hellenistic Architecture samples of the Region can be seen there
The Diyarbakır Citadel is one of the finest treasures of human history. And certainly merits a visit. Its imposing, solid walls with the legends, reliefs and forms that grace them, offer inscriptions from 12 different periods. Renowned art historian A.Gabriel says the walls of Diyarbakır are "in themselves a museum of inscriptions" It is not know when the citadel was first built, but in 349 A.D. the Roman Emperor Constantine expanded and partially repaired them. Almost all the major towers teem with Turkish-Islamic inscriptions. The citadel has 4 gates, facing the four cardinal points. As the city developed new Gates were opened. The walls are 5 km long and 12 meters high, with a width of 3 to 3.5 meters and 82 towers.
Keci Tower is built on a mass of rock east of the Mardin Gate, largest and oldest of the citadel towers. It was restored in 1223 by the Mervanites although the date of construction is not known. The tower boasts 11 arches and is thought to have served as a temple, and contains a cistern and underground passage although this is blocked.
The church of Virgin Mary or the Church of the Virgin Mary dates from the 3rd century. Restored many times, the church features a Byzantine altar and Roman style door, plus the tombs of various saints. It is Diyarbakir's loveliest church of the Syriac Jacobite order.
The church dated on third century and during Artuklu period used as a Turkish bath. It is an art gallery now.
The Grand Mosque is among oldest mosques not only of Anatolia, but in the entire Islamic world. Solidly built of basalt, it was converted from the Mar-Toma (St.Thomas) Church in 639 when Muslim armies captured Diyarbakir. Once ravaged by fire, the mosque was restored in Seljuk and Artukid times, and additions were made. Inscriptions from various civilizations grace the walls.
The Melik Ahmet Mosque was built by Melik Ahmet Pasha in the 16th century and has a mihrab all of ceramic tile. A double staircase neither with a view of the other reaches half way up the minaret where the two join. The base of the mosque is delicately decorated with tile mosaics and reliefs
These caves in the village of Hilar in Ergani County contain rock tombs and reliefs that are quite ancient, and excavations near the village show that this was among the earliest inhabited locations.
Carved from solid rock on a step slope overlooking the Tigris in Eğil County, this citadel was built by the Assyrians, and teems with secret passageways down to the river. The bank of the Tigris also boasts the tombs and pyramids of Assyrian kings
These cave are seven km from Silvan on the roat to Malabadi. Apart from hundreds of caves are chambers carved out of the rock and connected by corridors. There are notable for being clustered close together
These caves are found in rocky hills 104 km from Diyarbakır on the Bingöl road. At the entrances to two caves some 1000 meters from the higway there are stelae with cuneiform inscripions pertaining to the Assyrian Kings Tiglatpleser I (1116-1090 B.C) and Salmanasar III (859-825 B.C)
Diyarbakır has been the center of many beliefs, cultures and languages during BC and AD. The exact construction date of the Diyarbakır Church of Mar Petyun is not known. It has been expected that it was built in late 4th or early 5th Centruy. The church was restored several times in the history that was last restored in 17th century, and it was the Center of Patriarchate for a long time.
This historical church is still been visited by the people from different beliefs.
The Sümela Monastery stands at the foot of a steep cliff facing the Altındere valley in the region of Maçka in Trabzon Province, Turkey. It is a major tourist attraction located in the Altındere National Park. It lies at an altitude of about 1200 metres overlooking much of the alpine scenery below.
The monastery was founded in the year 386 (during the reign of the Emperor Theodosius I, AD 375 - 395) by two Athenian priests - Barnabas and Sophronius according to the Turkish Ministry of Culture. Legend states that they found an icon of the Virgin Mary in a cave on the mountain and decided to remain in order to establish the monastery.
During its long history, the monastery has fallen into ruin several times and been restored by successive Emperors; During the 6th Century AD, it was restored and enlarged by General Belisarius at the behest of Justinian.
It reached its present form in the 13th century after gaining prominence during the reign of Alexios III (1349 - 1390) of the Komnenian Empire of Trebizond (established in 1204)..
Following the conquest by the Ottoman Sultan Mehmed II in 1461, it was granted protection by order of the Sultan and given rights and privileges which were renewed by following Sultans. Monks and travellers continued to journey there throughout the years and the monastery was extremely popular up until the 19th century.
The Monastery was seized for a time by the Russians during the occupation of Trabzon between 1916 - 1918.
It was finally abandoned in 1923, following the population exchanges between Greece and Turkey.
Today its main purpose is as a tourist attraction. Its place overlooking the forests and streams below make it extremely popular for its aesthetic attraction as well as for its cultural and religious interests. The Turkish government is currently undertaking necessary restoration works to the site.
Construction and Buildings
The principal elements of the Monastery complex are the Rock Church, several chapels, kitchens, student rooms, a guesthouse, library and sacred spring revered by Orthodox Greeks. These were built over a very large area.
The large aqueduct at the entrance, which clearly supplied water to the Monastery, is constructed against the side of the cliff. The aqueduct has many arches which have mostly been restored to date.
The influence of Turkish art can be observed in the design of the cupboards, niches and fire-place in the rooms of the buildings surrounding the courtyard.
The inner and outer walls of the Rock Church and the walls of the adjacent chapel are decorated with frescoes. The frescoes of the time of Alexios III can be seen on the inner wall of the Rock Church facing the courtyard.
The frescoes of the Sümela Monastery are seriously damaged, having largely been moved from their original settings. The main subject of the frescoes are biblical scenes telling the story of Christ and the Virgin Mary.
Uzungöl is a lake situated to the south of the city of Trabzon in Turkey. Over the years it has become a major tourist attraction. It is also the name of a nearby village.The lake is at a distance of 99 km from Trabzon and 19 km from Çaykara district. It was formed by landslide making the stream bed to become a natural dam in the valley of Haldizen Stream.
The area is most famous for its natural beauty. Located in a valley between high rising mountains, the lake and village at first appear inaccessible. The surrounding greenery of the mountain forests and fog, occasionally enveloping the lake at night, also add to the scenery.
In recent years a major tourist boom has attracted a number of hotels, restaurants and gift and souvenir shops to be built in the area. The transport infrastructure has also been greatly improved. However all of this development has been carefully planned not to encroach upon the village or the lake itself.
Safranbolu is a district and a town of Karabük Province in the Black Sea region of Turkey. Its location can be roughly described as about two hundred kilometers north of Ankara.
The Old Town preserves many old buildings, with 1008 registered historical artifacts. These are: 1 private museum, 25 mosques, 5 tombs, 8 historical fountains, 5 Turkish baths, 3 caravanserais, 1 historical clock tower, 1 sundial and hundreds of houses and mansions. Also there are mounds of ancient settlements, rock tombs and historical bridges. The name of the town derives from saffron, since Safranbolu was a trading place and a center for growing saffron. Safranbolu was added to the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites in 1994 due to its well-preserved Ottoman era houses and architecture.
Zigana Plateau is situated at 2.034 m on the passway of Zigana Mountain on the transit road to Trabzon of the Silk Road. It's one of the touristic plateaus with a ski track of 800 m , a hotel, restaurant and other facilities for indispensible needs.
Ayder plateau is located 19 km southeast of Çamlıhemsin, there is a year-round minibus service. With an elevation of 1350 m. the Ayder Highland is the most well-known highland along the Black Sea. The infrastructure is totally in place and it almost has the appearance of a small town. Besides the abundant plant and wildlife, it is also very famous for its thermal spring. The hot water (50 C) brings healing to rheumatism, various stomach and feminine ailments. The area around this highland village, used as part of the ascent up the Kaçkar mountains, has abundant wildlife. Animals that can be seen here are curly-horned mountain goats, lynx, bear and wolves. The 'Ayder' Festival is held here every year. There are several hotels as well as bed and breakfast type lodgings. Everything that one would need can be found here in the village.
Zilkale(Turkish zil "bell" + Turkish kale "castle") is a medieval castle located in the Fırtına Valley and is one of the most important historical works in the Çamlıhemşin region of Rize. The castle is built at an altitude of 750 meters, and sits at the edge of a cliff overlooking the Firtina river approximately 100 meters below. The castle consists of outer walls, middle walls and inner castle. There are garrison quarters, and a possible chapel and head tower. It is believed that the castle was built in 14-15th century.
Anzer plateau (aka, Ball-köy (Honey-village plateau), is one of the uplands in the Blacksea region of Turkey. It has some peaks reaching an altitude of 3,000 m. The "Anzer honey", famous with its curative powers, is produced here.
The cave is located at the 13th kilometer of Burdur-Antalya highway , 900 meters east of the road in Mandıra village. The total length of the cave is 597 meters and is a horizontal and dry cave. The cave is one of the first caves arranged for tourism as it has appropriate connections to nearby cities.
From the formation of stalactite and stalagmites from limestone sedimentation in various shapes and structures, it is assumed that the cave was formed thousands of years ago. There are 9 lakes of various sizes inside various galleries leading to different directions.
There is a cool and clean air circulation inside the cave. It is believed that some of the cave waters are curable to diabetics and some stomach diseases. There is an accommodation facility nearby the cave.
Tahtalidag, which was called "Tasolyma" in antiquity, is one of the biggest members of "Tahtalidaglar" chain that lies north-south of Antalya Bay. It rises sharply from the sea and reaches a height of 2366 meters, so it can be seen from every direction with its full magnificence. There is no other mountain above 2300 meters and so close to the sea.
The Tahtali Aerial Cableway uniquely combines two classic holiday destinations – the sea and the mountains. Mount Tahtali, at 2365m above sea level, is situated in an attractive and rapidly growing tourist area and provides the region with a new dimension.
With a length of 4,350 meters, the Tahtali Aerial Cableway is the longest cableway in Europe, and the second longest worldwide. Unique experiences await: approach through a nature conservation area, modern base station, ride in a cabin with a capacity of 80, summit station with panorama terrace, 360° view, restaurant, short walks ...
During blasting work for the construction of Alanya Harbour in 1948, engineers found the Damlatas cave. Today the cave is one of the town's most popular attractions. The cave has a constant temperature of 22-23 degrees Celsius and humidity level of more than 90 %. There are also stalagmites and stalactites which are several thousand years old. The climate in the cave is said to be therapeutic for those with respiratory problems, especially asthma sufferers. Doctors can prescribe visits to the cave and time is reserved every morning for their patients.
The Dim River flows from the highlands in Konya about 200 kilometres southwards before it meets the Mediterranean Sea east of Alanya. Approximately 5 kilometres from the mouth of the river the government is constructing a large dam. The dam will not only supply Alanya with drinking water but will also solve the problem of the insufficient and unstable supply of electricity.
Many restaurants are to be found along the riverside and they are almost situated in the river. In the summertime when the water level is low the tables are placed in the water and thus it is possible to cool your feet in the chilly water while eating. Every restaurant at Dim River breeds trout which are served freshly caught.
It is located 12 km east of Alanya, on the slope of Cebel-i Reis Mountain of 1,649 metres. It has an altitude of 232 m. The cave is introduced to the visitors in 1998 and it is the second biggest cave known to the visitors. It is estimated to be 1 million years old. There are two paths inside the cave one is of 50 m, the other of 360 metres. There is a small lake towards the end of the cave.
The 360 m. long path is prepared and illuminated, so as to provide a pleasant excursion offering a tremendous scenery of stalagmite and stallactite for the visitors. After the excursion you can go down the path to Dim Creek valley or you can take the walk up the cave from the picnic area near the creek. There is a panoramic view of Alanya Fortress at the slope where the cave takes place.
The sanctuary of Leto called the Letoon, sometimes Latinized as Letoum, near Xanthos, was one of the most important religious centers of the Lycian region in Anatolia. The site is located between the towns of Kaş and Fethiye in Antalya province of Turkey, approximately four km south of Xanthos along the Xanthos River.
Archaeological finds at the site, which was never a fully-occupied settlement, but remained essentially a religious centre, date back to the late sixth century BCE, before the Greek cultural hegemony in Lycia, which began in the early fourth century.
The foundations of the Hellenistic temple dedicated to Leto, and her children, Artemis and Apollo, have been excavated. Archeologists have excavated much of the ruins; discoveries include the Letoon trilingual, bearing inscriptions in Greek, Lycian and Aramaic, which has provided crucial keys in the deciphering of the Lycian language; it is conserved in the Fethiye Museum.
Across Haghia Sophia, Yerebatan Basilica was built as an underground cistern in the 6th century acroos the Ayasofya. Its 336 columns in total are arrayed in 12 rows of 28 each. The capitals of the columns have Corinthian and early Byzantine qualities. Two fine Medusa heads were revealed during the carefully made restorations in this cistern. That is the biggest and the only one open to visitors among the 70 cisterns in the city.
Yedikule, a pentagon inner fortress built by Fatih Sultan Mehmet and his successors, is located at southwest intersection point of the city walls. A perfect fortress and the panorama of the old city can be watched from Altın Kapı, one of the parts of the fortress that was added later.
Haghia Sophia, built on a hill in the centre of Old Byzantine, has a perfect appearance from the sea. Emperor Justinianus demanded a new church to be built in a short time after the one before Haghia Sophia had collapsed in 532. After the construction had been planned and ready to begin, Justinuanus appointed the mathematician Anthemius of Tralles and Isidorus of Miletus, who was a static expert and an architect. Haghia Sophia became the most powerful and respected church of Christianity over 1,000 years. It was considered to symbolize the composition of the imperial thought peculiar to Rome and the understanding of God in Christianity. When the construction of the church completed in a short time, in six years (532-537),"Solomon, now I am superior to you" Justinianus shouted against the appearance of the church.The breathtaking fact is the brilliant unity in the interior classification of Haghia Sophia the visitors, as well as the splendid design with marble panels and mosaic ornaments; so that the church is called "The Eighth Wonder of the World."
The island of monks retired into seclusion, the centre of Adalar district, the biggest of the nine islands is a big island as its Turkish name refers, famous with being a land where people of all religions gather for wishing and praying on the certain days at the monasteries and churches decorating its hills, drink Aya Yorgi (St. George) wines and where there are no motor vehicles if you ignore the ones "official use" whose number has increased up to the limits of patience recently, with its pavilions, Anadolu Kulubu, hundreds of phaetons, thousands of bicycles with plate numbers.
The five and twelve kilometer phaeton tours are the easiest and the most enjoyable way of exploring Büyükada. Those who have never tried the phaeton before, must definitely try it once. Another way as enjoyable as this one is renting a bicycle from one of the "rent-a-bike"s you can find in the islands. The only alternative left for those who do not want the former ways is walking. Especially, the walks up to Aya Yorgi through the historical pavilions with well-cared gardens are recommended. There are nine Greek-Orthodox, an Armenian and a Latin churches as well as a Jewish synagogue. There are extremely nice picnic areas, countryside restaurants with magnificent panorama, fish restaurants and beaches you can swim.
Sultan Abdülmecit moved his court from Topkapı Palace to Dolmabahçe Palace in 1855.The palace that was built in showy style called Şekerci Style, is built by the Armenian Balyan family.It forms a complex with Dolmabahçe Mosque and the Clock Tower. Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of modern Turkey, died in this palace in 1938. The interior decoration of the palace is in harmony with the
complexity of the exterior surface which extends as far as 500 meters parallel to the sea.
Heybeliada that had housed the important personalities of Turkish literatur such as Ahmet Rasim, Esat Mahmut Karakurt, and Hüseyin Rahmi Gürpmar, is the second biggest island in Adalar. The green coverts, shore and beaches, pretty architecture are the leading qualities that make the island popular. Heybeliada, the oldest known name is Domonissos (Demon Isles), has a very old and colourful story dating back to 2,500 BC. Due to its flora and atmosphere resembling Mediterranean climate, Heybeliada is a place that must be visited during winter, not only summer; but certainly during spring and fall, like the rest of the islands. The splendid monasteries of Heybeliada are famous. One of them is Aya Triada, first turned into Greek Orthodox School of Theology, then into the Greek Highschool for Boys, with a director but without any students.
The smallest, thus the prettiest of the islands. The name during the Byzantine period was Antigone, coming from a castle built by one of the generals of Alexander the Great. Its current name is similar, Burgaz means castle. Burgazada is calmer than the other islands. The island that has a width and length of 2km, used to be Greek village, before Turks began settling down here after the second half of the 18th century. The only hill of the island, Bayrak Tepesi (170m) or Hristos with its old name, has a beautiful view for those who does not get tired and climb.
The first stop of a journey towards Adalar is Kinaliada. That is why its name during Byzantine period is Proti, in other words First. The current name, Kınalı (henna-coloured) comes from the colour of its soil with plenty of ferric oxide. It is so small that, phaetons are not used in the island, because you can walk from one side to the other in half an hour. Kinaliada is suitable only for excursions, because there is no hotel in the island. Ayazma restaurant or Ayazma Beach is the only place you can swim in the sea or pool. Kirkor Lusarovic Armenian Church, Panagia and Khristos monasteries must certainly be seen with their magnificent architectures.
Almost a city; founded on 50 streets on an area of 1336m2, with 4400 shops, 40 inns, mosques, mescits (small mosques), 19 Turkish baths and fountains, workshops, coffee-houses and pudding shops. As the Turkish names point out, once all kinds of goods were -and actually still is- sold here. It is safer, since it is a covered area, hence has been an ideal place for the shops selling valuables. Everything can be found from souvenirs to copper, jewellery to leather, garments to carpets and kilims, wooden objects to antiquity, tile to glassware, nostalgic accessories, coffee shops to Turkish delight shops.
"An extraordinary beehive composed of shops" Mark Twain described Kapalı Çarsı. Only 2,000 of the 4,000 shops are jewellery shops. It is not difficult -but beneficial in fact- to get lost in the biggest covered market of the world, despite of its systematic plan divided into rectangular.The market, where more than 20,000 people work, is visited by nearly half a million people which is doubled in the eve of great holidays. By the way, Kapali Carsi is just a part of a much greater and open market district, Tahtakale.
The Armenian Patriarchate in istanbul is one of the four hierarchical centres of the Armenian Church -the others are in Erivan, Beirut and Jerusalem. The first patriarch of istanbul, Hovaghim I, was in charge during the reign of Fatih Sultan Mehmet. Since 1641, the Virgin Mary (Meryem Ana) Central Church and the traditional wooden Patriarchate building of istanbul Armenian Patriarchate is in Kumkapi, a harbour once called Konstancalion. Patriarchate complex (Külliye) is twenty minutes away from Haghia Sophia, the Blue (Sultan Ahmet) Mosque and the Topkapi Palace on foot.
The Greek Orthodox Patriarchate is also in the court of the church in Fener. The Patriarchate moved to St. George (Aya Yorgi) in 1602 that was formerly a monastery. Despite of the church was severely damaged in the fire in 1941 and several other damages occurred in time, it was restorated all the time. The last restoration finished in 1991. St. George is famous with the priceless objects it houses.
One of the northern gates of Istanbul opening to the sea is Kilyos. Kilyos is a place preferred for swimming, eating fish and having picnic, walking barefoot on the long beaches and staying alone in the shelter bays for a while by the residents of Istanbul. Road to Kilyos, occasionaly passing through Belgrat Ormanları, is worth to have frequent breaks for enjoying the meal grilled on brazier or trout cooked on tiles served in the countryside restaurants here. There are good restaurants in Kilyos as well as markets where you can meet your any kind of need for daily trips. It is a good idea having spent a different weekend at Kilyos before it is completely occupied by villa-cities.
Şile is a typical summer resort whose known history dates back the 7th century BC with its booth fish restaurants you can find various kinds of fish, festivals, artists, long and golden beaches, giant rocks, famous fabric used for stylish and light garments. Ancient Greek, Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman civilisations had passed from this small town by leaving their particular traces. Şile had been an outpost for these civilisations against the dangers that would come from the Black Sea. A fortress, built for this purpose by the Byzantine, still exists, though in ruins. A mark left by the Ancient Greek is the name: Şile means wild flower in Ancient Greek. It is possible to come across with hidden cave churches and religious structure in the adjacent villages.
It has an important place among the similar museums: Haghia Sophia, Topkapi Palace and other antique buildings are almost next to each other. The most significant exhibition object of the museum is the Alexander Sarcophagus. He is not buried in it, though, on the sarcophagus is his figures. Alexander's war, a lion and panther hunt are all in relief with an extraordinary realism. . This world famous work of art from 310 BC has been protected until now, even with its colours that can be distinguished. The marble portrait of Alexander from the 2nd century BC, based on a portrait of sculptor Lysippos shows us a restless young man attacking a certain target, rather than a ruler who has the power and the consciousness of having it. It is worth coming to Istanbul even just for the Head of Alexander.
The busts of numerous Roman emperors are exhibited in the museum as well as other tombs, Greek, Roman and Byzantine columns. Among the emperor busts are Augustus, Tiberius, Hadrian (childhood), Marcus Aurelius and Diocletian, Arcadius and Constantine the Great.
The Rahmi M. Koç, Museum, which is on the shore of Golden Horn, is the first museum that displays the historical objects of transport, industry and communications in Turkey. A lot of historical objects in the categories of road transport, rail transport, marine, aviation, engineering, communications, scientific instruments, models and toys being displayed and the development of industry being shown phase by phase.
Istanbul Toy Museum is in a historical chalet in Goztepe. In 500 square meters there are about 2 thousand toys are on exhibition. The oldest toy is a violin, made in 1817 in France. Each exibition room designed like a stage. There is also a meeting room of 70 in the museum.
A mini Turkey theme park has established in Istanbul This project has led by Istanbul Municipal and Kultur A.S and settled on Golden Horn. The establishment contains more than 100 miniatures of important cultural sites in Turkey.
The Miniaturk theme park project contains 50 architectural sites which are resembled in 1/25 scale from Istanbul and beside from that Hagi Soafia, Mouseleum of Ataturk, Ephesus, Dolmabahce Palace, Nemrut Temple, Saint Antoine Church, Aspendos Amphitheatre, Ishakpasa Palave and Cappadoccia are also included to themes. Miniaturk has inspired from its similar which is located in Netherlands. Miniaturk also has recreation areas such as cafeterias and restaurants.
Istanbul Modern Arts Museum, entitled to being the first modern arts museum of Istanbul, constituted by the efforts of Istanbul Kultur ve Sanat Vakfi, combines both contemporary and modern artistic accumulation of Turkey. Established over a 2 storey, 8000 m2 building, houses three exhibition areas and office space for educational and research purposes.
As well as permanent and temporary exhibitions, a library, archives, movie theatre for 100 people, a photograph exhibition hall, and a statue garden constitutes some of the facilities. Istanbul Modern Cafe, located on the upper floor has a fabulous bosphorus view.
IMOGA is the first graphic arts museum where exhibited gravure, lithography, serigraphy, linolium and takes place at the trail of Çamlica in asian side. IMOGA is one of the few collections with 1200 works which belong to over 80 artists. There is a workshop, a library in the exhibition hall. It is a six storeyed building and some seminars, activities are being arranged in the museum.
Beylerbeyi Kasrı that is located on the Asian side, to the north of the Bosphorus Bridge was a pavilion where the empires and sultans hosted their guests. Its construction was completed in 1865.
Sultan Ahmet Camii is the sign of Istanbul and the favorite of Muslims tourists: It is the biggest mosque of the city with its six minarets and called "The Blue Mosque" because of its tile decoration. The Blue Mosque, built on a high hill at the shore of the Sea of Marmara across Haghia Sophia, has domes that symmetrically widening in all directions with three storeys.
The interior of the building is in great unity and simplicity, such as the exterior. The blue and white of more than 20,000 İznik tiles are in a perfect harmony with golden manuscripts of Koran and the red of the carpets. The giant area (51m by 53m) is full of light but also in a mystic darkness owing to its more than 260 windows, mostly coloured. The Blue Mosque, completed in 1616, is the example of the last point the Ottoman architecture reached.
The mosque, built between 1550-1557 brings such a beauty to the atmosphere of the city, no other building can. The architecture of the mosque is apparent, the four piers are not hidden as they are in Haghia Sophia. The dome is carried by four piers that get sharper upwards, thus giving this well-proportioned structure a weight that is "as light as feather".The heaped dome system presents a wonderful view when looked outside. The mosque standing on the hills with great majesty can be watched especially from the Galata Bridge and the Bosphorus with a great taste. The four minarets with ten balconies in total are the symbols for Sultan Suleyman, the tenth sultan of the Ottoman Empire and the fourth sultan to rule in Istanbul. Sinan had built two of the minarets shorter than the others; a perfect invention to show the building more harmonious with the slope of the hill.
The famous Ottoman historian and traveller Evliya Celebi describes the Topkapı Palace (Topkapı Sarayı) as "the loveliest sultanate palace that human skill could have created". One can not help doing anything but ruling if living in here! The palace had a concept peculiar to the East, accommodating several qualities in it: The residence of the Sultan and the centre of a world empire, the religious centre of half of the world and the stage that incredible intrigues displayed, the focus of cruel murders and the cradle of breathtaking successes. Once, 4,000-5,000 people used to live in Topkapi Palace. This was a city in the city. Fatih Sultan Mehmet decided to have a vast palace built to the ridges of old Byzantium Acropolis.
The reason Sultan Mehmet chose this place was not only the beauty of the ridges. He was planning to have a residential fortress built where Istanbul could be protected best. A high city wall, extending from Golden Horn as far as the Sea of Marmara, separating Topkapi Palace from the rest of the city. The Byzantium walls, beginning from the corner of the palace and stretching to Theodosian Walls through the shores of Marmara were protective against a possible sea attack.
Istiklal Caddesi is the main street of Beyoglu (Pera) and is a pedestrian area. The street that used to be called "Grand-Rue de Pera" during its bright times, was a modern meeting point by the beginning of the 20th century, during the best times ("Belle epoque") of Istanbul. The cultural and social activities for different tastes as well as the cafes, cinemas, bookshops, restaurants, bars come out of İstiklal Caddesi or the streets it has connection. There are many shops on the street.
At the south end of the street is the entrance of Tunel (Tunnel). Tünel is an underground railway system that is 570m, from 1875 extending to Galata Bridge and is the second underground of the world in terms of construction date after that of London. While walking towards Taksim, after passing Galatasaray Lisesi, you will see Cicek Pasaji (Cite de Pera) on the left hand side. As its Turkish name implies it used to be a passage that flowers were sold; today has many cheerful bars and 'meyhane's. It's an ideal atmosphere to eat, to drink Turkish Raki and to feel Beyoglu. Balık Pazarı is worth to see just next to the passage. Although it is prefered for finding fresh fish, you can explore the shops that you can find kind of meat, cheese, desserts, pickles, almost anything you can buy as you walk further.
Taksim is one of the important centres of this multi-centred city. After Pera became popular and crowded the new type of urbanization moved to Nişantaşı and Şişli neighbourhood; thus, Taksim has become an important centre. It was a cemetery area until the end of 19th century. There was a large barrack in the middle of the square and the biggest football field in the city used to be in this barracks.
Taksim had become the most important square of the city during the years when the Republic was founded. It was the most expensive residential area in 1950s. The name of the square is Taksim due to the water coming from Belgrat Forests used to be distributed here in 18th century. The cistern, made by Mahmut II in 1732, is still at the entrance of Istiklal Caddesi. At the southwest of the square is the monumental statue of Taksim Cumhuriyet Anıtı showing Atatürk, the founder of the Republic of Turkey and his friends, made by the Italian artist Canonica.
Aphrodisias was a small city in Caria, Asia Minor. It is located near the modern village of Geyre, Turkey, about 230 km from İzmir. The city was built near a marble quarry that was extensively exploited in the Hellenistic and Roman periods, and sculptors in marble from Aphrodisias became famous in the Roman world.
The Temple of Aphrodite was and still is a focal point of the town, but the character of the building was altered when it became a Christian basilica. The Aphrodisian sculptors became renowned and the school of sculpture was very productive; much of their work can be seen around the site and in the museum.
The stadium which is said to be probably the best preserved of its kind in the Mediterranean except, perhaps, for the Sanctuary of Apollo at Delphi. It measured 262 by 59 m and was used for athletic events until the theatre was badly damaged by a 7th century earthquake, requiring part of the stadium to be converted for events previously staged in the theatre.
Bergama (Pargauma/Pergamos:People of High City) refers to a city and its surrounding district in İzmir Province, in the Aegean Region of the Republic of Turkey. Known for its cotton, gold, коврами,в древние времена город the city was in ancient times the Ancient Greece and Roman cultural center of Pergamon; its wealth of ancient ruins continues to attract considerable tourist interest today. The ruins of the ancient city of Pergamon lie to the north and west of the modern city; Roman Pergamon is believed to have sustained a population of approximately 150,000 at its height in the first century AD
Bergama is also renowned for its high quality carpets. There are approximately eighty villages that still weave Bergama carpets. The history of carpet weaving in Bergama dates back to the 11th century - when Turkish migration started to the area. Bergama carpets have almost always been woven with wool - an attestation to the pastoral life style of the Yörük clans populating the area at the time.
Ariassos (or Ariasos) was a Pisidian city built at a height of 1050 meters in the Taurus Mountains(modern day Antalya province, Turkey).
Ariassos is 48 km from Antalya along the Antalya-Burdur highway and before arriving at the village Dag, turn left and Ariassos is 1 km. further on. Ariassos was built in a valley and could survey its surroundings. The gate, the baths, the rock tombs and the mausoleum are almost intact.
Sagalassos is an archaeological site in southwestern Turkey, about 100 km north of Antalya (ancient Attaleia), and 30 km from Burdur and Isparta. The ancient ruins of Sagalassos are 7 km from Ağlasun in the province of Burdur, on Mount Akdağ, in the Western Toros mountain range, at an altitude of 1450-1700 metres. In Roman Imperial times, the town was known as the 'first city of Pisidia', a region in the western Taurus mountains, currently known as the Turkish Lakes Region. Already during the Hellenistic period, it had been one of the major Pisidian towns.
From 1990 Sagalassos, a major tourist site, has become a major excavation project. On August 9, 2007, the press reported the discovery of a finely detailed, colossal statue of the Emperor Hadrian, which is thought to have been stood 4-5m in height. The statue dates to the early part of Hadrian's reign, and depicts the emperor in military garb. On August 14, 2008, the head statue of Faustina the Elder, wife of Roman emperor Antoninus Pius (Hadrian's successor and adopted son) was discovered in the same site.
Colybrassus is a city situated in Taurus Mountains, 30km northwest of Alanya and belonged to Roman period. Many inscriptions scattered all around have a lot of important information about the history of the city although the details are still unknown to us.
Among the ruins that exist today, the important ones are the tample with a corner stone in Ion style, tombs in necropolis and a grave that was carved as low arch and inside of it was decorated with head of Medusa.
The two sides of the arch are in eagle figure. Also in the city one can see an odeon, city walls with towers, exedras, some examples of houses.
The visit to the site is free. The other name of this ancient city is Ayasofya.
Ortaköy Mosque, officially the Büyük Mecidiye Camii (Grand Imperial Mosque of Sultan Abdülmecid) in İstanbul, is situated at the waterside of the Ortaköy pier square, one of the most popular locations on the Bosphorus.
The original Ortaköy Mosque was built in the 18th century. The current mosque, which was erected in its place, was ordered by the Ottoman sultan Abdülmecid and built between 1854 and 1856. Its architects were Armenian father and son Garabet Amira Balyan and Nigoğayos Balyan, who designed it in Neo-Baroque style.
The wide, high windows let the ever-changing light reflections of the Bosphorus shine in the mosque.
It is located in the province of Burdur, Susuz village. It is dated to 13th century under the Seljuk Sultanate of Rûm. It was on the Silk Road. Most significant part of this rectangular planned caravanserai is the entrance on its west side.
Üçağız ("Three Mouths," for the three rivers that debouche here) is located between Kaş and Demre and the best way is on a boat tour from these cities. The setting of this little town is very nice, with several islands in the horizon and the village itself as a few picturesque quarters. If you're one of those who never get tired of archaeology, there are some sarcophagi to the east of the village, ruins of ancient Theimussa.
Kastelorizo, (Greek: Megisti), is a small Greek island and municipality located in the southeastern Mediterranean. It lies roughly 1,300 m (4,265 ft) off the south coast of Turkey, about 110 km (68 mi) east of Rhodes.
Kastellorizo is probably the most quiet and peaceful island you can find in the Mediterranean sea. Kastellorizo is a natural and biological Paradise. As there is no real interference a number of animals and plants developed very nicely. Among them water turtles, dolphins and the monachos seal.
The place is too small to get lost. With no more than 300 inhabitants, the little shuttle bus and the only taxi are two of the few modes of transportation on the island. There are nearly no streets in the town and harbour, which makes it ideal for family holidays. The houses of the town are slender and characterised by wooden balconies and windows of the Anatolian type.
Kaleköy (literally "Castle's village" in Turkish; ancient Lycian: Simena), is a village of the Kaş district in the Antalya Province of Turkey, located between Kaş and Kale, on the Mediterranean coast. Kaleköy faces the island of Kekova, and can be reached by sea or on foot from Üçağız.
The village lies amidst a Lycian necropolis, which is partially sunken underwater. Kaleköy is overlooked by a Byzantine castle, built in the Middle Ages to fight the pirates which nested in Kekova. The castle contains a small theatre.
Kaleköy is a popular yachting destination.
Limyra was a small city in Lycia on the southern coast of Asia Minor, on the Limyrus River
It is mentioned by Strabo (XIV, 666), Ptolemy (V, 3, 6) and several Latin authors. Nothing, however, is known of its history except that Gaius Caesar, adopted son of Augustus, died there (Velleius Paterculus, II, 102).
The ruins of Limyra are to be seen three or four miles east of the Turkish village of Finike.
Düzlerçami is 8km north of Antalya on the Korkuteli highway and is especially popular in summer with picnickers. The Güver Abyss is a result of three mountain chains separating from one another causing an abyss 115 m deep and which still continues to deepen because of erosion. It is believed to be one million years old.
Manavgat Waterfall on the Manavgat River is near the city of Side, 3 kilometres (1.9 mi) north of Manavgat, Turkey. Its high flow over a wide area as it falls from a low height is best viewed from a high altitude. During floods, the Manavgat Falls may disappear under high water.
The white, foaming water of the Manavgat Waterfalls flows powerfully over the rocks. Near the waterfalls are shady tea gardens providing a pleasant resting place.
The Oymapinar Dam is located 12 km to the north of the river.
Oymapinar Dam is an arch dam built on the Manavgat river in Turkey in 1984. It is an arch dam in design, 185 m in height, built to generate hydroelectric power.
Oymapınar Dam is located 12 km north of Manavgat Waterfall. It is an artificial, freshwater dam with a capacity of 300 million cubic meters.
The dam has four underground turbines with a total capacity of 540 megawatts. When built in 1984 it was the third largest dam in Turkey. As more dams have been built, it is the fifth largest.
Acıgöl (literally "the bitter lake" in Turkish) is a lake in Turkey's inner Aegean Region, in a closed basin at the junction between Denizli Province, Afyonkarahisar Province and Burdur Province. Its surface area varies greatly through the seasons, with 100 km² in spring and 35 km² in late summer, with a maximum depth of 1.63 m. The lake is notable for its sodium sulfate reserves extensively used in the industry and Turkey's largest commercial sodium sulfate production operations are based here. It is situated 60 km east of Denizli city.
The lake's altitude is 836 m and it is fed primarily by high-sulfate springs issuing from a fault line on its south side. The yearly production rate in late 1990s was 100,000 tonnes, all operated by private sector companies.
Gündoğmuş is a town and remote district of Antalya Province in the Mediterranean region of Turkey, 182 km from the city of Antalya, off the road from Akseki to Manavgat. Area is famous of its grapes. There is no industry and little agriculture on this steep hillside, although grazing animals and beekeeping are important sources of income.
Antique sites in the district include the town of Kazayir (near Taşahır on the main road to Antalya); the ruins of Kese near the village of Senir; the ruins of Gedfi 11km south of the town of Gündoğmuş; the ruins on Sinek Mountain, 15 km (9 mi) east of Gundogmus, near the village of Pembelik; and many more.
The town of Gündoğmuş itself has the Ottoman Empire period mosque dedicated to Cem Sultan, an Ottoman prince who was at one time governor of this area.
And of course the area provides many opportunities for climbing, mountain walking and picnics in the forest.
Akseki is a town and district of Antalya Province in the Mediterranean region of Turkey.
Known for its snowdrops, Akseki is located in the western Taurus Mountains at an elevation of 1500m. The Manavgat River passes through a large valley in the centre of the district, which is otherwise mainly mountainous. Places of interest include caves, valleys and a number of high meadows. This windswept rocky mountainside is not good farmland and the local economy mostly depends on forestry and raising sheep and cattle.
Antalya's Akdeniz University has a branch here training nurses, and doing some other vocational training.
With its rich architectural heritage, Akseki is a member of the Norwich-based European Association of Historic Towns and Regions.
Söğüt is a town and district of Bilecik Province in the Marmara region of Turkey.
Söğüt was a Seljuk Turkish tribe in western Anatolia that later gave birth to the Ottoman Empire.
Legend has it that the bey (chief) of the tribe in the late 13th century, Ertuğrul, bravely kept the enemies at bay so that his son, Osman, could conquer them all during his reign, 1299 to 1324. When Osman's son, Orhan, came to power after his father's death he renamed the tribe Osmanli in honour of his father. The village of Söğüt (formerly Thebasion until 1231) later grew into a town that served the Osmanli tribe as capital until the capture of the Byzantine city of Bursa in 1325 when the capital was moved to the far more luxurious palaces of the Byzantines.
Turkish history and life-size statues of the Ottoman sultans are exhibited in the Söğüt Ethnographical Museum.
Gömbe is a district of Antalya Province in the Mediterranean region of Turkey. It is 180 km away from Antalya city center and 60kms from Kaş.
Green Lake,which is 30 minutes away from Gömbe, is a great outing for those interested in walking in the pastures of the Taurus Mountain highlands and learning about the semi-nomadic way of life that dominates the peaks all summer-long. The brilliant Green Lake is 6,500 ft above sea level and a pilgrimage center to which people come from every corner of the country to drink its sacred healing water. Semi-nomads live in tents near the lake with their flocks and are very hospitable to visitors. These people represent the long history of the Turkish people who migrated from central Asia.
The lake is formed by the melting snow which stays on top of the mountains until early August. It offers spectacular shots for photographers and is a cool place to visit in the summer. The area of Green Lake overlooks a stunning valley once traveled through by Alexander the Great and his troops on his Persian campaign.
Green Lake is also located very near the sacred "Flying Waterfall". Like Green Lake, the water here is considered holy and people come from all over to drink its curative waters. It is believed to have been given to people as a gift by the founder of a nearby dervish monastery.
Kestel Gölü is a temporary lake on Kestel Plain in west Mediterranean region. Its surface is 24 km²’.
Water can be found in the lake sometimes, but it is dried out most of the times. It is thought that water is carried to Antalya Gulf through natural underground holes.
Yeşilyayla is a village in Korkuteli district of Antalya Province. Its old name Andıya comes from a beautiful Greek girl who used to live here.
Its economy depends on agriculture (mostly mushroom) and animal breeding. Highlights of this area are: Two caves named Inlice from Greek period, an underground water spring which is cold in the summer and warm in the winter.
Lake Beyşehir is a large freshwater lake in Isparta and Konya provinces, southwestern part of Turkey. It has an area of 65000 km² and is 45 km long and 20 km wide.
Water level in the lake often fluctuates. Lake Beyşehir is used for irrigation, although it is also a national park. There are thirty-two islets in varying sizes in the lake. Lake Beyşehir is also an important site for many bird species.
Cennet Cehennem (Heaven and Hell) are two dolines, located very closely, near the small fishing village Narlıkuyu. They are cultic places since prehistoric times.
The Greek believed this to be the place where the giant Typhon lived, who was killed by Zeus, with the help of Pan and Hermes.
Cennet Çökügü (Heaven) is a huge pit 250m long, 110m wide, and between 60 and 70m deep. Quite a strenuous visit, as it is entered on a limestone staircase of 452 steps. The floor of the pit is full of trees with birds nests. Cool air announces the cave entrance, which is also the place of a 5th century cave church, or better a cave chapel, which is ruined with only the lower meter of the walls remaining.
Cehennem Çukuru (Hell) is located 75m northeast of Cennet. It is 60m wide and 120m deep, an almost circular daylight shaft. Because of its lesser diameter it is said to be smaller, but it is much deeper and obviously was rather frightening for the locals. This may be the reason for the name hell, and obviously the chapel is the reason why the other pit is called heaven in contrast. It is also possible to visit this pit on a steel ladder, but this is rather dangerous and not recommended for the average tourist.
300m to the southwest of Heaven is the Astim - Dilek Magarasi (Asthma and Wishing Cave), also called Narlıkuyu (Pomegranate Spring). This cave is well developed and lighted and the most easy to visit of all three caves. It shows impressive speleothems, like stalactites, stalagmites and all forms of calcite crystals. The cave is 250m long and 10 to 15m wide and high.
Mount Ararat is the tallest peak in Turkey (5137m). This snow-capped, dormant volcanic cone is located in the Iğdır Province, near the northeast corner of Turkey, 16 km (10 mi) west of the Iranian and 32 km (20 mi) south of the Armenian border. Many people believe that Mount Ararat is the place where Noah's Ark landed.
Ararat is a stratovolcano, formed of lava flows and pyroclastic ejecta, with no volcanic crater. Above the height of 4,200 m (13,780 ft), the mountain mostly consists of igneous rocks covered by an ice sheet.
It seems that Ararat was active in the 3rd millennium BC; under the pyroclastic flows, artifacts from the early Bronze Age and remains of human bodies have been found.
The climb is long, but there is a fairly easy route from the south in late summer for climbers who are familiar with the use of axe and crampons. Snow covers the last 400 m (¼ mile) year-round. There are two possible campsites on the mountain, and the glacier begins around 4,800 m (15,750 ft). The Turkish government requires a climbing permit and use of a certified Turkish guide. Arrangements can take two months to complete.
The Yedigöller National Park is located in the north of the Bolu Province, Turkey. In Turkish Yedigöller means 'Seven Lakes'.
The Yedigöller group of seven small lakes is located within the boundaries of the 550-hectare national park on two plateaus that have a height difference of 100 meters between them. These lakes are fed by the same sparkling mountain stream, forming a treasure of untouched nature, both in the summer and winter. For most who go there, the best time of the year to visit is autumn, when the trees and hillsides are painted in reds, yellows and all the colors that make autumn such a glorious time of year.
The park is home to several species of trees such as beech, hornbeam, oak, poplar and pine. Although the lakes are not large, they are beautiful and their shores are home to deer, bears, wolves, foxes, rabbits, squirrels and countless numbers of birds. If you are lucky, you can also see swans on Büyükgöl. Fishing is also a possibility in certain seasons.
Lake Abant (Turkish: Abant Gölü) is a freshwater lake in Turkey's Bolu Province in northwest Anatolia, formed as a result of a great landslide. The lake lies at an altitude of 1,328 m at a distance of 32 km from the provincial seat of Bolu city. It is a favorite vacation and excursion spot for both Turkish and foreign travellers thanks to the natural beauty of its surroundings, which are covered with dense forests, and easy access by car (it is served by a 21 km road leaving from the İstanbul-Ankara E5 highway at the level of Mount Bolu, three hours' drive from these two largest cities of Turkey).
Lake Abant covers an area of 1.28 km² and its deepest spot is 18 m.
European black pine, Scots pine, oaks, ashes, hornbeams, willows, junipers, tamarisks, hazels, common medlar, and strawberry trees are among the tree species that make up the lake's woodlands, and there are wild boars, fallow deer, roe deer, brown bears, red foxes, jackals and rabbits in the surrounding forests, which makes the lake a prized location for hunters during the season. A brown trout subspecies Salmo trutta abanticus, endemic to the lake, carries the Turkish name "Abant alası".
The Mevlâna museum, located in Konya, Turkey, is the mausoleum of Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi, a Sufi mystic also known as Mevlâna or Rumi. It was also the dervish lodge (tekke) of the Mevlevi order, better known as the whirling dervishes.
Sultan 'Ala' al-Din Kayqubad, the Seljuk sultan who had invited Mevlâna to Konya, offered his rose garden as a fitting place to bury Baha' ud-Din Walad (also written as Bahaeddin Veled), the father of Mevlâna, when he died on 12 January 1231. When Mevlâna died in 17 December 1273 he was buried next to his father.
Mevlâna's successor Hüsamettin Çelebi decided to build a mausoleum (Kubbe-i-Hadra) over his grave of his master. The Seljuk construction, under architect Behrettin Tebrizli, was finished in 1274.
The decree of 6 April 1926 confirmed that the mausoleum and the dervish lodge (Dergah) were to be turned into a museum. The museum opened on 2 March 1927. In 1954 it was renamed as "Mevlâna museum".
The sarcophagus of Mevlâna is located under the green dome (Kibab'ulaktab). It is covered with brocade, embroidered in gold with verses from the Quran. This, and all other covers, were a gift of sultan Abdul Hamid II in 1894. There is also a box (Sakal-i Ṣerif), decorated with nacre, containing the Holy Beard of Muhammad.
Akdamar Island is a small island in Lake Van in the Eastern Anatolia region of Turkey, about 0.7 km2 in size, situated about 3 km from the shoreline. At the western end of the island a hard, grey, limestone cliff rises 80 m above the lake's level. The island declines to the east to a level site where a spring provides ample water.
It is home to a 10th century Armenian church, known as the Cathedral Church of the Holy Cross (915-921), and was the seat of an Armenian Catholicos from 1116 to 1895. Between May 2005 and October 2006, the church underwent a controversial restoration program and reopened as a museum.
Lake Van (Turkish: Van Gölü) is the largest lake in Turkey, located in the far east of the country. It covers an area of 3.713 km². It is a saline and soda lake, receiving water from numerous small streams that descend from the surrounding mountains. Lake Van is one of the world's largest endorheic lakes (having no outlet). The original outlet from the basin was blocked by an ancient volcanic eruption
The only fish known to live in the brackish water of Lake Van is Chalcalburnus tarichi the Pearl Mullet or inci kefali. The Lake Van region is the home of the rare Van Kedisi breed of cat, noted for among other things its unusual fascination with water.
Since about 1995 there have been reported sightings of a 'Lake Van monster' about 15 metres (49 ft) in length named Van Canavarı ("Monster of Van").
Hattusa (near modern Boğazkale, Turkey) was the capital of the Hittite Empire in the late Bronze Age. The region is set in a loop of the Kızıl River (Marashantiya in Hittite sources and Halys in Classical Antiquity) in central Anatolia.
Hattusa was added to the UNESCO World Heritage list in 1986.
There were several other settlements in the vicinity, such as the rock shrine at Yazılıkaya and the town at Alacahöyük.
At its peak, the city covered 1.8 km² and comprised an inner and outer portion, both surrounded by a massive and still visible course of walls.
Modern estimates put the population of the city between 40,000 to 50,000 at the peak. The dwelling houses which were built with timber and mud bricks have vanished from the site leaving only the stone-built-walls of temples and palaces.
The city was destroyed, together with the Hittite state itself, around 1200 BC, as part of the Bronze Age collapse. The site was subsequently abandoned until 800 BC, when a modest Phrygian settlement appeared in the area.
Yazılıkaya (Turkish for "inscribed rock") was a sanctuary of Hattusa, the capital city of the Hittite Empire, today in the Çorum Province, Turkey.
This was a holy site for the Hittites living in the nearby city of Hattusa. Most impressive today are the rock-cut reliefs portraying the gods from the Hittite pantheon. There were also shrines built adjacent to the rocks. It is believed that New Year's celebrations took place at the site. The sanctuaries were used from the fifteenth century BC, but most of the rock carvings date to the reign of the Hittite kings Tudhaliya IV and Suppiluliuma II in the late 13th century BC.
Karatay Medrese is a medrese, meaning a school with a frequently but not absolutely religious focus, built in Konya, Turkey, in 1251 by the Emir of the city Celaleddin Karatay, serving the Seljuk sultan.
Since 1955, the edifice serves as a museum where Seljuk tiles are united, while artifacts in stone or in wood are on display in Ince Minaret Medrese, also in Konya. The collection of Karatay Museum was particularly enriched by the finds collected as of the 1970s in Kubadabad Palace royal summer residence on Lake Beyşehir shore, at eighty miles from Konya to the west.
A caravanserai, also built by Celaleddin Karatay in the outskirts of Konya, carries his name too.
Yeşil Cami (Green Mosque), also known as Mosque of Mehmed I is a part of the larger complex (a kulliya) located on the east side of Bursa, Turkey, the capital of the Ottoman Turks before they captured Constantinople in 1453. The complex consists of a mosque, tomb (Turkish : türbe), madrasah, kitchen and bath.
Meram is the district of Konya which lies somewhat away from the city center, with lighter construction and more greenery. The name "Meram" also refers to the popular picnic area located in the farther corner of the Meram district. Near this picnic area there are a few historic buildings to see, some of which are the "Tavus Baba Türbesi" and the "Ateşbazı Türbesi".
Assos is a small historically rich town in Behramkale, Turkey. Aristotle lived here and opened an Academy. The city was also visited by St. Paul. Today Assos is a Aegean-coast seaside retreat amid ancient ruins.
The city was founded from 900-1000 BC by Aeolian colonists from Lesbos, who specifically are said to have come from Methymna. The settlers built a Doric Temple to Athena on top of the crag in 530 BC. From this temple Hermias of Atarneus, a student of Plato, ruled Assos, the Troad and Lesbos for a period of time, under which the city experienced its greatest prosperity. Under his rule, he encouraged philosophers to move to the city. As part of this, in 348 BC Aristotle came here and married King Hermeias's niece, Pythia, before leaving to Lesbos three years later in 345 BC. This 'golden period' of Assos ended several years later when the Persians arrived, and subsequently tortured Hermias to death.
The Persians were driven out by Alexander the Great in 334 BCE. Between 241 and 133 BC, the city was ruled by the Kings of Pergamon. However, in 133 BC, the Pergamons lost control of the city as it was absorbed by the Roman empire..
St. Paul also visited the city during his third missionary journey through Asia Minor, which was between 53-57 AD, on his way to Lesbos. From this period onwards, Assos shrunk to a small village, as it has remained ever since. Ruins around Assos continue to be excavated.
Many of the old buildings of Assos are in ruins today, but Behram (the city's modern name) is still bustling. It still serves as a port for Troad, and is now well known for its history. A project went on in the early 1900s to clear the temple to Athena, and much of the art found has gone to museums like the Louvre. The art found includes pictures both of mythical creatures and heraldic events. Down the steep seaward side of the hill at the water's edge is the charming hamlet called Iskele (meaning Dock or Wharf), with old stone houses now serving as inns, pensions and restaurants. The small pebbly beach is less of an attraction than the boat tours and the hamlet itself.
Lake Avlan was completely drained up in 1970’s with political purposes. Drying operation had drastic influences on socio-economical status of the residents both in the town and in the villages. Elmalı County to Antalya due to a long lasting drought experienced in 1980’s. Main crops; apple, sugar beet and wheat productions decreased in considerable amounts. Cedars forest in the county, one of the best in the world, was negatively affected from the drought. Migrating birds have not been often seen anymore since the time of drought began.
The lake was regained due to the restless efforts of growers, farmers and non-governmental organizations in a mature collaboration, in order to re-establish the already disturbed ecological balances in Elmalı and its surroundings.
Ahlat is situated on the northwestern coast of the Lake Van.
Ahlat and its surroundings are known for the large number of historic tombstones left by the Ahlatshah dynasty. Efforts led by the local administration are presently being made with a view to including the tombstones in UNESCO's World Heritage List, where they are currently listed tentatively.
Divriği Great Mosque and Hospital (Turkish: Divriği Ulu Cami ve Darüşşifa) is an ornately decorated mosque and medical complex built in 1299 in the small eastern Anatolian mountain town of Divriği, now in Sivas Province in Turkey. The architect was Hürremshah of Ahlat and the mosque was built on the order of Ahmet Shah, ruler of the Beylik of Mengücek. The inscriptions contain words of praise to the Anatolian Seljuk sultan Alaeddin Keykubad I. The adjoining medical center (darüşşifa) was built simultaneously with the mosque on the order of Turan Melek Sultan, daughter of the Mengücek ruler of Erzincan, Fahreddin Behram Shah.
The exquisite carvings and architecture of both buildings put them among the most important works of architecture in Anatolia and led to their inclusion on UNESCO's World Heritage List in 1985.
“How glad for those who shed light into the darkness of thought.”
These words, written by Haci Bektas-i Veli, the famous Turkish-Islamic mystic, philosopher, and dervish from Khorasan, echo delicately in our ears as we enter the dervishes' convent. The stamp of Haci Bektas-i Veli's imprint upon Turkish, Islamic, and world history is deep and unmatched. Haci Bektas-i Veli's contributions to achieving unity among the Turks of Anatolia were crucially important. Expressing himself in the language of the common folk in order to make himself understood to as wide an audience as possible, he was instrumental in ensuring that the core of the Turkish language would survive.
The Haci Bektas-i Veli complex was opened to visitors as a museum on 16 August 1964 after restoration work undertaken by the General Directorate of Pious Foundations. The complex reflects architectural elements ranging from the 13th to the 19th century. The complex consist of three main sections, each built around a courtyard:the First or Nadar Courtyard, the Second or Dergah Courtyard, and the Third or Hazret Courtyard.
It is one of the largest underground cities in Cappadocia with eight stories. It covers an area of approximately 4 km² / 1.5 sq mi. Visitors can see only about 10% of the city by going down a maximum of five floors. It probably is connected to nearby Derinkuyu. It was opened to visitors in 1964. The population of Kaymakli is thought to have been about 3,000.
The underground city of Derinkuyu which means "deep well", like Kaymakli, is one of the largest. It was opened in 1965. It is 70-85 m / 230-300 ft deep with 53 airshafts. The original ventilation system still functions remarkably well. It is not recommended that visitors having problems of claustrophobia or restricted movement go inside since there are many passageways where one has to squat.
Eskigümüş monastery is 16 km. north of Niğde, and 45 km. south of Derinkuyu. The pillars of the churches built in the 10th or 11th centuries in Byzantine period are still standing and the colors and motifs are still lively. The ceiling and the walls of the church are painted with pictures depicting the monks representing Christianity, Virgin Mary and Christ in her arms. Colors and paintings are mostly in their original form. The ruins of an underground city around Eski Gümüş monastery show that people were living there as a community.
The ruins of Tyana are at modern Kemerhisar, three miles south of Niğde. There are remains of a Roman aqueduct and of cave cemeteries and sepulchral grottoes.
Novaraft is an Antalya based adventure company organizing outdoor activities all over Turkey. Our base is at Antalya Köprülü Canyon National Park and our activities are run mainly in the Mediterranean region. In addition, we organize activities anywhere in Turkey upon requests from groups.
Hasankeyf is a city located along the Tigris River in the Batman Province of southeastern Anatolia, Turkey. The Romans had built a fortress on the site and the city became important under the Byzantine Empire. It was conquered by the Arabs, in ca. 640, who built a bridge over the Tigris river.
With its history that spans nine civilizations, the archaeological and religious significance of Hasankeyf is considerable. Some of the city's historical treasures will be inundated if construction of the Ilısu Dam is completed. These include ornate mosques, Islamic tombs and cave churches.
The threat of the Ilisu Dam project prompted the World Monuments Fund to list the city on its 2008 Watch List of the 100 Most Endangered Sites in the world. It is hoped that this listing will create more awareness of the project.
Thirty kilometres east of the city of Denizli in southwest Turkey you see a yellow signpost pointing south to Haydarbaba Türbe and Kaklik Cave 3 kilometres away. Kaklik Cave was created by an underground stream eating away the limestone and sulphurous rock of the region. It seems strange that a cave should be situated not on the nearby Mount Malý, which rises to 1277 metres and is made almost entirely of marble, but on a flat plain covered with cotton fields and vineyards.
The mouth of the cave lies near Kokarhamam Spring - the name literally meaning 'smelly bath' on account of the sulphurous fumes! - which waters a reedy marsh crisscrossed by channels.
Manyas is a town and district of Balıkesir Province in the Marmara region of Turkey.
Manyas Kus cenneti (Bird Heaven) Lake, of just 64 hectares, is home to more species of bird than anywhere else in Turkey. More than 60 species of bird, including various Owls, Ibis, Heron and Ducks breed here every year. 239 species of birds, many of which migrate from Europe and Asia during the summer, and fly south before the winter.
Knidos was an ancient Greek city in Anatolia, part of the Dorian Hexapolis. It was situated at the extremity of the long Datça peninsula
Knidos was once one of the most famous cities of the ancient world. Today, the barren, terraced hillsides that surround you are strewn with the rubble of Knidos’ glorious past. Although a small percentage has been excavated, there are some amazing things to see as you wander through the ruins.
Çatalhöyük (çatal is Turkish for "fork", höyük for "mound") was a very large Neolithic and Chalcolithic settlement in southern Anatolia, dating from around 7500 B.C.E for the lowest layers. It is the largest and best preserved Neolithic site found to date.
Çatalhöyük is located overlooking wheat fields in the Konya Plain, southeast of the present-day city of Konya (ancient Iconium) in Turkey, approximately 140 kilometers (87 mi) from the twin-coned volcano of Hasan Dağ. There is also a smaller settlement mound to the west and a Byzantine settlement a few hundred meters to the east.
The Kangal Fish Spring has a multitude of tiny, toothless fish that live in 37 degree water of the Kangal hot springs. The Doctor or Kangal Fish do not reach more than 10 cm (4 inches) in length and are related to the carp family of fishes.
The Spa has become famous world-wide for the aleviation of symptoms related to the skin diseases psoraiasis and neodermitis. Patients come for a 'cure', the recommended period is 21 days. They bathe in hot, Selenium-rich water and the hungry shoals of fish eat the plaque produced on the skin by these diseases.
Kanytelleis (modern Kanlıdivane) is located 50 km northeast of Silifke, in the mountains inland from the coastal highway. This large site was settled in the late 3rd century BC and continued to be occupied into the 11th century AD. Extant remains include the ruins of five churches and a huge Hellenistic tower built about 200 BC by Teukros of Olba.
4km/2.5mi northeast of Narlikuyu the massive remains of the citadel of ancient Korykos face the picturesque island fortress of Kizkalesi (Maiden's Castle). During the Middle Ages this fortified islet became one of the most notorious pirates' lairs on the coasts of the Mediterranean.
A caravanserai on the way from Konya to Aksaray 40 km / 25 mi before the city. It was built by Sultan Alaattin Keykubat I during the Seljuk period, in 1229. It has two sections, one open with a courtyard and another covered. It is the largest of all Seljuk caravansaries in Anatolia with an area of 4,800 sq m / 1.2 acres. Sultanhan is a monumental caravansary which looks like a fortress.
Zelve is situated on the northern slopes of Aktepe, 1km from Pasabaglari (Monks' Valley) and 5 km from Avanos. The ruins at Zelve are spread over three valleys, which also house several pointed fairy chimneys with large stems. Like the ones in Uçhisar, Göreme and Çavusin, it is not known when the rock dwellings in Zelve were first inhabited but it was an important settlement and religious area during the 9th and 13th centuries. The valley was inhabited until 1952. Some of the most important churches in the valley are Balikli (Fish), Üzümlü (Grape) and Geyikli (Deer).
Apart from monastreies and churches, houses, a tunnel joining two of the valleys, a mill, a mosque and several dove-cotes are found in the valley.
Göreme, situated 10km from Nevsehir, is found in an area surrounded by valleys, within the Nevsehir-Ürgüp-Avanos triangle. In a document, it is said that St. Hieron was born in Korama at the end of the 3rd century, was martyred in Melitene (modern Malatya) with his 30 friends and his hand was cut off and sent to his mother in Korama. A very big depiction of St.Hieron of Korama is found in the Tokali (Buckle) Church in Göreme Open Air Museum.
Despite the vast number of monasteries, churches and chapels in the vicinity of Göreme, there are not many inscriptions bearing dates. For this reason, these religious buildings are mainly dated according to the iconography or architectural features.
This valley is situated 30 km from Aksaray and can be reached by making a turn at the 11th km of the Aksaray-Nevsehir road. The Melendiz river found its way through these cracks, eroding the canyon bed and helping to form canyon we see today. The Melendiz river was used to be called "Potamus Kapadukus" which means the River of Cappadocia. The 14km long, 100-150m high valley begins at Ihlara an ends at Selime. There are numerous dwellings, churches and graves built into the valley walls, some of which are connected by tunnels and corridors.
Ortahisar citadel, built both as a defence and as a settlement, is situated 6km from Ürgüp, on the road to Nevsehir. Typical examples of the area's civilian architecture can be found among the houses skirting the citadel. The sides of the valleys are littered with carved out storage areas used for preserving local products such as apples and potatoes, as well as oranges and lemons brought from the Mediterranean.
Very interesting churches and monasteries can be fonud in the surrounding valleys. Among these are, Sarica Church, Cambazli Church, Tavsanli Church, Balkan Deresi Churches and Hallaç Dere Monastery.
This valley is situated near Yesilhisar in the province of Kayseri, 30 km southeast of Urgup, and 25 km to the east of Derinkuyu. Fractures and collapses during earthquakes have added to erosion resulting in deep valleys and canyons. Soganli Valley,which is divided into two has been occupied since the Roman period. The rock cones found on the sides of the valley were used a graves by the Romans, and later as churches by the Byzantines. The frescoes in the church date back to the 9th and 13 th centuries. Important churches in the valley are Karabas, Yilanli, Kubbeli and the Church of St.Barbara (Tahtali).
The Selimiye Mosque (Turkish: Selimiye Camii) is a mosque in the city of Edirne, Turkey. The mosque was commissioned by Sultan Selim II and was built by architect Mimar Sinan between 1568 and 1574. It was considered by Sinan to be his masterpiece and is one of the highest achievements of Islamic architecture.
The Galata Tower (Turkish: Galata Kulesi is located in Istanbul, Turkey, to the north of the Golden Horn. One of the city's most striking landmarks, it is a huge, cone-capped cylinder that dominates the skyline on the Galata side of the Golden Horn. The tower was built as Christea Turris in 1348 during an expansion of the Genoese colony in Constantinople.
A contemporary or urban legend tells that in 1638, Hezarfen Ahmet Çelebi flew as an early aviator using artificial wings from this tower over the Bosphorus to the slopes of Üsküdar on the Anatolian side.
In the 1960s the original wooden interior of the tower was replaced by a concrete structure and it was opened to the public. There is a restaurant and café on its upper floors which commands a magnificent view of Istanbul and the Bosphorus. Also located on the upper floors is a nightclub which hosts a Turkish show. There are two operating elevators that carry visitors from the lower level to the upper levels.
Alexandria Troas ("Alexandria of the Troad", mod. Eski Stambul) is an ancient Greek city situated on the Aegean coast, a little south of Bozcaada. It is located in the modern Turkish province of Çanakkale.
As the chief port of north-west Asia Minor, the place prospered greatly in Roman times, and the existing remains sufficiently attest its former importance. Strabo mentions that a Roman colony was created at the location in the reign of Augustus, named Colonia Alexandria Augusta Troas (called simply Troas during this period).
Sardis, also Sardes modern Sart in the Manisa province of Turkey, was the capital of the ancient kingdom of Lydia, one of the important cities of the Persian Empire, the seat of a proconsul under the Roman Empire, and the metropolis of the province Lydia in later Roman and Byzantine times. As one of the Seven churches of Asia, it was addressed by the author of the Book of Revelation in terms which seem to imply that its population was notoriously soft and fainthearted. Its importance was due, first to its military strength, secondly to its situation on an important highway leading from the interior to the Aegean coast, and thirdly to its commanding the wide and fertile plain of the Hermus.
Some of the important finds from the site of Sardis are housed in the Archaeological Museum of Manisa, including Late Roman mosaics and sculpture, a helmet from the mid-6th century BC, and pottery from various periods.
Lake Bafa is a lake situated in southwest Turkey, part of it within the boundaries of Milas district of Muğla Province and the northern part within Aydın Province's Söke district. The lake used to be a gulf of the Aegean Sea until the Classical period, when the sea passage was gradually closed by the alluvial mass brought by Büyük Menderes River. The gulf, and later the lake, was named Latmus in antiquity.
At the innermost north-east tip of the lake is the village of Kapıkırı, as well as the ruins of Heraclea by Latmus (sometimes called Heraclea in Ionia), to distinguish from other ancient Greek sites named Heraclea.
According to the legend, it was here that the goddess Selene fell in love with the shepherd Endymion and she asked Zeus to keep the young shepherd in perpetual sleep and bore up to fifty children from her nightly encounters with the sleeping young man.
Antiokheia is a Pisidia city established on the productive land lying along the southern slopes of Sultan Mountains at approximately 1 km north of Yalvaç District of Isparta Province.
Antiokehia is a Seleukos colony just as Apolloia, but its date of establishment is not known precisely.
The inscriptions arranged for the emperor and his legates evidence that Latin has been used as the official language until 295 AD. But the protocols of decurios (state senator) after that date are mostly written in Greek.
In accordance with the estimations of I.A. Richmond and R.G. Collingwood, the population in the city centre was about 7500 - 10.000. B. Levick claims that there were more than 3.000 retired soldiers. But, we can say that a population of 30 -40 thousand lived in the large borders of Antiokheia.
St. Paul visited this ancient city which was really important for Christianity.
Seyitgazi is a town and district of Eskişehir Province in the Central Anatolia region of Turkey.
Seyitgazi Kulliye (group of buildings) consists of a tomb and a mosque built on behalf of Seyyid Battal Ghazi in the beginnings of the XIIIth century, and historical buildings added to these tomb and mosque after. The group of buildings has traces of three civilizations. Tomb and mosque were constructed in the era of Anatolian Seljukids. Other departments, such as imarethane (kitchen for the distribution of food to the poor), medrese (school) and tekke (convent of dervishes), were built in the Ottoman Period. Besides the tombs of Ummuhan Hatun, Çoban Baba and Ayni Ana, there are also the tomb of Elenora, daughter of the king, and some special departments in the group of building.
Yunus Emre Museum is situated in Yunus Emre village in Eskisehir sub-province of Mihaliccik. It was opened in 1971. There is also a mausoleum in memory of the great Turkish poet, Yunus Emre.
The museum contains a collection of the poet's lyric poems, his pictures, and documents and books about him.
Çifte Minareli Medrese is an architectural monument of the late Seljuk period in the Turkish city of Erzurum. Built as a theological school a few years before 1265, it takes its name, Twin Minaret Madrasah, from the two fluted minarets that crown the monumental facade. The Çifte Minareli Medrese is thought to be the model for the Gök Medrese in Sivas.
This shrine, was built to honor Veysel Karani a close friend of Hz. Muhammad. Veysel Karani has lost his live during the time of Azerbaijan invasion of the Arabs and was buried here.
Antandros was a Greek colony on the north side of the Adramyttian (Edremit) Gulf in the Troad region of Anatolia, near the modern village of Avcilar in Turkey. It was founded in the 5th century BC by Aeolians from Mytilene. During the Peloponnesian War and the Corinthian War, it became a military objective in the region. It was used as a naval base, and changed hands on several occasions.
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