The Citadel and The Old Town
The original city walls were constructed by the Hittites 3,000 years ago as a defence and rebuilt by Byzantine emperor Michael III in 859 and updated by Roman emperor Heraclius who used earlier Galatian fortifications as a foundation.
Ak Kale and Sark TowerThe Ak Kale (White Fortress) is at the northern end of the citadel and gives fantastic views of Ankara and the Sark Kulesi ( or Sark Tower ), a ruined tower on the eastside of the walls, also offers great views. The South Gate (Guney Kapi) is at the southern end of the citadel and has two huge towers that flank a twin portal and has Roman masonry fragments and pieces of altars embedded in the wall that connects the towers. Inside the gate is the Alaeddin Mosque a restored 12th century mosque with a meticulously carved Seljuk mimber inside.
Aslanhande MosqueThe Aslanhande Mosque ( Lion House ) is Ankara’s oldest and most impressive mosque and has remained untouched. It is known as the Forest Mosque because of the 24 wooden columns that support the elaborate wooden ceiling. The mimber, dating back to 1209, is one of the finest examples of Seljuk decorative carving and is complemented by the mihrab which is another exceptional piece of work. The founder of the mosque Ahi Zerafattin is buried in Ankara’s only surviving Seljuk tomb opposite the mosque and has a unique octagonal plan and pointed roof.
Ahi Elvan MosqueThere is another ‘forest mosque’ a short walk southwest from here, the Ahi Elvan Mosque that dates from the late 13th century and also worth viewing. It was founded by the Ahi brotherhood who were a guild associated with dervish orders and the mimber inside is another fine example of carved workmanship, although not quite as impressive as at Ahi Elvan.
Pirinc Han Shopping CenterBetween these two mosques is Pirinc Han built in the 18th century under the citadel walls and was an inn for travellers that protected them from bandits. It was the first inn built in Ankara and made with a wooden frame filled with sun-dried bricks and was in use up until 1921. During the War of Independence the military used it as a command post because of its strategic position at the top of the hill. Today it is a fully restored shopping centre with over 40 shops selling a vast variety of things. There is also shady courtyard to stop and have refreshments.
You can find other stores on the street of Cikrikcilar Yokusu Road selling antiques, copperware, carpets and handicrafts.
Turkey Property For Sale
Turkish Food Recipes
Chicken Soup with Vermicelli - Soup
Keskek or Pounded Meat-Wheat Dish - Red Meat Courses
Okra with Chicken - White Meat Courses
Stuffed Artichokes in Olive Oil - Vegetable Courses
Stuffed Mussels - Seafood Mezes
Kidney Beans in Olive Oil - Legume Courses