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Trabzon

Country
Turkey
State
Trabzon
City
Trabzon
Type of Location
Multiple
About Location

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Places to Visit
How to Reach

 By Air

Trabzon International Airport is the biggest in the region where all kinds of planes can land and take off. There are regular daily flights from Ankara and İstanbul to Trabzon. During summers there are also flights to some European countries and Russia as well.

By Sea

In summer from May to September there is a ferry boat to Trabzon run by Turkish Maritime Lines. The ferry boat sets sail from İstanbul and calls at Sinop, Samsun, Trabzon and Rize ports. There are also yachts that set sail to Black Sea for touristy voyages.

By Road

There are regular bus services from and to major cities such as Ankara, İstanbul and many other cities. There are three main roads to Trabzon from Rize and Artvin in the East, from Erzurum and Gümüşhane in the South and from Giresun, Ordu and Samsun in the West.

Key places to visit
Hagia Sophia, Ortahisar Mosque, Sumela Monastery, Town Center, Armenian Churches


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Places to Visit

Hagia Sophia

Some 3km/2mi west of the harbor in Trabzon, charmingly situated on a hill near the coast, is the Church of Hagia Sophia (Ayasofya), probably built by Emperor Alexius Comnenus immediately after his arrival in Trabzon from Constantinople in 1204. It was converted into a mosque in Ottoman times and is now a museum.

Like other Byzantine churches in Trabzon, Hagia Sophia has a cruciform plan with a nave flanked by aisles and a transept with wall-paintings. Over the crossing is a dome. Along the base of the south doorway is a frieze depicting the story of Adam in a style which shows a clear Eastern influence.

Ortahisar Mosque

The Cumhuriyet quarter of Trabzon begins beyond the Tabakhane Deresi (fine views from the viaduct) at the old citadel hill. The most notable building in this district is the Orthisar Camii or Fatih Camii, originally a 13th century Byzantine church known as the Panagia Chrysokephalos (Church of the Virgin with the Golden Head), a name which derives from the gilded dome above the crossing. It has a Latin cross plan with a nave flanked by lower aisles and cut by the transept. The galleries over the aisles which are marked off from the nave by triforia were the gynaecea, the areas reserved for women. Outside the main doorway stand a fountain and a marble basin for ritual washing (sadirvan).

Sumela Monastery

Some 70km/45mi south of Trabzon in the Altindere Vadisi Milli Parki (Gülden Valley National Park) the Meryam Ana Manastiri (St Mary's Monastery) clings to a rock high above the Altindere. During the summer months visitors are admitted each day at 9am, 11am, 2pm and 4pm. There are two ways to get there. One very steep track leads directly up from the parking lot, while another longer, more leisurely route initially follows the valley upwards, but then at the first bend to the left a path runs back almost parallel to the monastery. The old Greek name for the monastery was Hagia Maria tou Mela (St Mary from the Black Mountains). 67 steps lead to the inner courtyard well back behind the entrance doorway. Directly above the precipice are the main living quarters and the old library while beneath a rock face several other monastery buildings huddle around the courtyard including the painted cave chapel. The monastery in its present form with cells for 75 monks, a refectory, visitors' house and fountain (miracle-working water) dates from 1860.

Town Center

Trabzon consists of three districts built on low hill ridges - the commercial district or Iskander Pass immediately west of the harbor, the Cumhuriyet quarter adjoining it to the northwest and an old quarter of irregular streets and wooden houses further west.

Armenian Churches

The triple-aisled St Anne's Church is situated in the Iskander Pass quarter ("Kücük Ayvasil Kilise", small Armenian Church) of Trabzon. Nearby is St Basil's Church ("Büyük Ayvasil Kilise", large Armenian Church). Both churches date from the eighth century.

Right Time to Visit

April - October

Temperature